Brits embrace .UK domain for local relevance and ease of use

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, .UK

“How come Germany could have .de, France .fr, South Africa .za, Italy .it etc etc etc? And we poor British had to have the extra exhaustion of typing .co.uk. Three whole keystrokes. It doesn’t stack up to much when compared to other howling injustices in the world. The length of time poor students and tourists have to queue to get an Abercrombie and Fitch polo shirt for example, but nonetheless it has been a nuisance these twenty years or so. Fret no more, people of Britain. The day of .uk is upon us.” ~ Stephen Fry, 10 June 2014

Nominet_dotuk_birthday_logo_jpgIt might not cut time in the queue, but the .uk domain extension has certainly has saved many of us from the “exhaustion of typing .co.uk” since it became available to the masses on June 10, 2014.

A first-world problem? Perhaps. But, like early .uk advocates Stephen Fry and Martha Lane Fox, I say hoorah to anything that helps us be more agile online. And, one year in, the .uk domain extension is proving its worth.

The .uk extension is ideally positioned as a crisp, innovative domain that is locally relevant and easily understood.

A typical reaction to a business web address like MyNewVynils.uk would be, “Just like that, my-new-vynils-dot-uk? Oh, that’s neat, I like it!” And that’s what I love about it. In a country where over half a million new businesses start on a daily basis, you need to stand out and be memorable. The .uk extension gives you that edge without detracting from the core of your branding.

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.UK — a domain for entrepreneurs

It’s no wonder entrepreneurial types have been registering smart, memorable .uk website addresses. The “Food Meets Innovation” festival running later this year in Soho scooped up FoodHack.uk, for example, and an innovative documentary filmmaking studio got into the action by registering DogWoof.uk. What’s more, The Pitch — the UK’s largest small business competition — switched its web address to ThePitch.uk.

These savvy businesses hear opportunity when it knocks.

A .uk website address gives Britain’s Food Meets Innovation festival instant geo-recognition online.
A .uk website address gives Britain’s Food Meets Innovation festival instant geo-recognition online.

.UK + The Pitch = Big Chance for Entrepreneurs

In line with the benefits the .uk domain extension offers small businesses online, GoDaddy is partnering with the .uk registry to support more than 1,000 Pitch program applicants. I was so excited to talk to prospective applicants — vying for the chance to participate in this year’s program of education, mentorship and coaching — during a recent The Business Show. It was truly inspiring to see how much small businesses and startups value education, mentorship and networking … and that’s what The Pitch is all about.

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Yes, there’s a huge prize package. But perhaps more importantly, participants will learn new skills and meet people who might change their business trajectory completely. (If you haven’t guessed already, this is a shameless plug for the #thepitch15. So if you are a small business registered in the UK, you’re under three years old and have an hour between now and July, you can be The Pitch Champion 2015!)

Cool kid on the block

It might be only a year old, but .uk already is making a difference to British entrepreneurs and others who value a digital identity with a short and sweet national flavour. The traditional .co.uk might enjoy mainstream adoption today, but .uk holds the promise to become the British domain of choice over time. It is, after all, the cool kid on the block.

We’re celebrating .uk’s birthday with a special discount for one-year domain registrations. There’s never been a better time to join the party.

Nadya Frost
Nadya currently lives in Dubai with her husband and toddler twins. Before moving to sunny climes, Nadya worked at GoDaddy’s London HQ championing the success of our small business customers in the UK and EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa). Prior to joining GoDaddy, Nadya spent six years in the domains industry at Telnic and Afternic providers. While she misses English roses and London vibes, Nadya is also very fond of the “Big Sandpit” as her new home is commonly known.