Author(s): Mr. Raj Kumar Shahi , Mansi Kedia, Richa Sekhani, Gangesh Varma, Ujjwal Krishna and Raj Kumar Shahi
On the back of a vibrant Internet ecosystem in India, thrives a rapidly growing domain name market. Domain name registrations counts in India recorded a total of 5 million in May 202045 . In the absence of a centralised system for data collection, statistics on the domain name market are available from multiple sources, often different from each other. Registrations in India, however, account for only 1.24 percent of the global market. 46 . The popularity of “.com” is also observable in India. As a legacy TLD it commands almost 51% of the domain name market in India. Stakeholder discussions revealed that .com and .in are the first and second most preferred domain names respectively in India as was also concluded from the survey results analysed in section 4.The top 3 TLDs in India include .com, .in and .org with their respective share being 50.68%, 31.14% and 4.41% respectively.
Despite the growth in domain name registrations, India is still far behind several countries in overall domain penetration ratio. Defined as the number of domains per 1000 Internet users, the domain penetration ratio in India is 1.12%, compared to China which sits at 3.3% and the US at 38%. Moreover, domain registrations are concentrated49in a few states. Maharashtra, Delhi/ NCR, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka account for 50% of the total registrations; states where Internet usage, online businesses and startups are thriving. Moreover, there are relatively fewer registrants who actively use their domain names when compared to developed and other developing countries. A report by dataprovider.com analysed 260 million domain registrations and found that only 1 million (57.9%) of those had developed50websites. Of these 57.1% were used by businesses and 39.8 % as personal websites. Of the developed websites, about 2.1% websites are used by e-commerce platforms and 1% for blogging51 . Interestingly, a significant proportion of registered domains continue to remain undeveloped (in this sample 42.1%). This reflects the lack of meaningful utilization of domain names by registrants in India.