Domain Name Registrations and the Global Internet Population

graphic of internet population and top-level domain names of each nation worldwide

The internet population of each nation is indicated by the color of each circle (see lower left of graphic* above for scale); the size of each circle indicates the total number of domain name registrations [generic top-level domains (gTLDs) and country code top-level domains (ccTLDs)] in every nation worldwide.

The majority of domain names (78%) are registered in Europe or North America (US alone has about 33% of all registrations); Asia has 13%, Latin America 4%, Oceania 3%, and the Middle East and Africa combined 2%.

Globally, there are about 10 Internet users for every registered domain. The US has one domain name registered for every 3 internet users. Registering a domain name is relatively rare in much of the world outside of Europe and North America. There are fewer domains registered in China than in the United Kingdom, even though the UK internet population is one tenth that of China’s, which has the world’s largest internet population. China has only one registered domain for every 40 internet users.

There is a significant positive correlation between a nation’s rank in Gross National Income (GNI) per capita, and the number of domain names per Internet user. A nation’s ranked position by GNI per capita explains about 50% of the variance in its ranking by number of domain names per Internet user. Another correlating factor is the absence or prevalence of internet censorship in each nation.

Bottom line: if you are in the domain name industry, the ideal market environment has good internet connectivity, internet freedom, and high GNI per capita.

*source: Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford, England (UK)

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