Have you secured your .uk domain?

Image of a ball with ".uk" to illustrate the .uk domainThe standard domain for UK-based companies was traditionally .co.uk, and more recently .org.uk, .net.uk, .me.uk, and even .plc.uk or .ltd.uk. We might have asked ourselves why was .uk never on offer – after all the traditional domain in Australia is .au, Ireland .ie, France .fr and so on.  OK, it’s not a huge deal, but it does add three or four characters to the URL and the same to any email addresses that you have set up on the domain.

I had noticed that the odd .uk domain was starting to appear around the web and did wonder where they were coming from as it is not generally being offered by Virtual Names, who I use to register most domains for my clients as well as ourselves. I have now discovered that this was launched back as far as June 2014 by Nominet, who are the official registry for UK domain names. Not only that, but for 5 years from the launch – until 10th June 2019 – they are reserving names exclusively for those who own the older formats of .uk domain names. So as the owner of fionastoreydesign.co.uk I currently have the right to purchase the domain fionastoreydesign.uk.

You can check whether you have the rights to buy the .uk version of a domain on the UK Domain website. You simply enter [yourdomain].uk into the box and it will tell you which domain’s (or domains’) owner(s) would have the right to buy the .uk domain. You need to purchase it through the registrar of your existing domain

Will I do it? I am certainly considering the option. After all, the UK names are generally reasonably priced. Even though I would probably not change my main domain over to it (I already own fionastorey.co.uk, which wasn’t available when I created my first website, and this would be shorter still!), it would prevent anyone else from registering it and using it for a similar business.

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