.CA Sales Are on the Rise.
By Jay Kane Finnan
DomainInformer.com Contributing Author
July 04, 2006
The Market for Canadian Domains Heats Up; CAN You Believe It?
By Jay Finnan, Director of Marketing for Sedo.com
Canada’s top-level-domain (.CA) has been steadily racking up sales over
the past few years but ’06 has seen an unprecedented level of
transactions, some of them blockbuster. The investment in .CA’s
is finally paying off big for some. Publicly reported sales of
Canadian domains have been so hot recently that they have outpaced its
southern neighbor’s top-level-domain (TLD), the .US, by a wide
margin. The future is looking green for those who’ve invested in
quality .CA domains. In this feature we’ll take a look at why
Canada’s domains have never been in more demand.
This Spring eMall.ca made headlines across the web when they announced
the sale of 300 premium generic .ca domains to Yellow Pages Group for a
little over $6,000 a piece, netting the small company $2.5
Million. For Yellow Pages Group it was a move to lock up key
pieces of virtual real estate in the Canadian market in order to
promote and grow their online directory. .CA investors are hoping
that’s just the beginning and they have a reason to be
optimistic. Even if the eMall.ca sale is not counted, 2006 has
been a record year for reported Canadian domain sales. The sale
of a 300 domain portfolio isn’t the largest of the year but it’s
certainly one to remember.
It underlines a bevy of .CA sales and an unprecedented volume of
transactions. The number of publicly reported .CA domain sales
has doubled in each of the last 3 years. With the recent eMall.ca
portfolio sale, Canadians can now argue that their TLD is more popular
than .US domains, the country code TLD for the United States.
What’s even more interesting is that .US domain sales have been rapidly
growing. In 2005 over $300,000 worth of .US domain sales were
reported, and that was almost 400% greater from the year prior.
Seeing .CA domain sales eclipse .US sales is like watching a Formula
One race car zip past a Ferrari, both barreling down the racetrack at
mind boggling speeds.
Of course this is only counting publicly disclosed sales. For
both .CA and .US domains there is an entire galaxy of sales that go
undisclosed each year. CIRA, the Canadian Internet Registration
Authority that oversees the registration of all .CA domains, recently
reported 5,696 registrant to registrant transfers took place in
2005. This accounts for a 144% growth over the year
prior**. By any measure, the market for Canadian domains is
Investors have started to catch on to this and are rapidly moving to
acquire .CA domains. Since CIRA began operations they have seen a
decidedly healthy growth with a big jump in registrations and renewals
over the last 3 years.
Why is Canada’s .CA in such high demand? Not only is Canada a
nation of 40 million English speakers with an internet infrastructure
most countries in the world can only dream of, the .CA TLD benefits
from a variety of demographic and behavioral trends as
well. Not the least of which is a consumer-driven demand
for local products and services. Viral growth coupled with .CA
publishers looking for an easier way to target the Canada audience are
putting the .CA extension in the same league with other country code
domains that have seen double digit growth in the last few years.
If you’re wondering how you can get in on the Canadian domain market
and you happen to be Canadian it’s as simple as contacting an
accredited .CA registrar. Prices tend to vary but for capable
businesses and individuals who are interested in .CA names, Sedo has
partnered with Webnames.ca, Canada's leading domain name registrar, to
offer all Sedo newsletter subscribers a 25% discount off all domain
name related purchases until the end of July, 2006. Simply visit
www.refer-a-friend.ca and enter the code SED-425 to receive 25% off
your first purchase. If you plan on registering a large number of .CA
domain names, please contact Webnames.ca by phone at 1-866-221-7878
with your new account username and they will be happy to apply special
domainer volume pricing for future purchases.
Regardless of what happens for the rest of the year, 2006 will be a
record for .CA sales. Those with quality, generic, .CA domains
should feel very good about their investments right now. Of
course, the year is only half over and the 2nd half may leave the first
in the dust. One thing is for certain, the demand for quality .CA
domains will continue to grow.
* Sales data provided by the DNJournal
** Transfer data taken from CIRA’s Annual Report
*** Registration data provided by CIRA’s Annual Report