Monday, 21 November 2016

ICANN Study Maps Changes To Global Domain Market, But Misses Significant Legacy gTLD Declines

ICANN recently released the results of its Phase II study looking at the global domain market since the introduction of new gTLDs 2.5 years ago.

The study found the share of registrations held by the top registries and registrars has declined as the marketplace has become more diversified but the percentage of European and Asian registry operators has grown, particularly from China. Registrations of new gTLDs were more dispersed among registrars than for legacy gTLDs.

Registrations grew from 3,483,064 at Phase I in November 2014 to 16,570,035 registrations in March 2016 at Phase II with new gTLD registrations growing from 2% of all gTLD registrations to 9%.

The study strangely finds no aggregate (worldwide) effect of new gTLD entry on legacy TLD registrations. This appears to be plainly wrong as several legacy gTLDs have seen a significant drop in registration numbers, several of which commenced their decline at the same time as new gTLDs were introduced when looking at statistics on The .biz, .tel, .xxx and .us TLDs are some of those seemingly impacted, although .us has recently jumped significantly due to a promotion.

The study also found the average and median registration prices of both legacy and new gTLDs has declined and that the overall wholesale price, that’s the price charged to registrars, of legacy gTLDs is lower than that of new gTLDs.

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