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What is a domain?

The domain is a recognised domain name extension for charities and non-profit organisations registered in the United Kingdom. Originally, it was necessary to show documentation as proof of being a non-profit organization in order to register a domain, but now the domain is available for anyone to buy. Today it’s still popular with a variety of UK organisations including charities, community projects, and group projects.

You may already be familiar with the .org domain. When combining this globally-known domain with .uk domain, you get the domain. This gives you the best of both worlds: it shows you’re a non-profit organisation or charity and also that you’re based in the UK. Those that want to know more about certain charities or maybe even donate to them will look for the domain as it evokes trust. domain logo

For which purposes is the domain suitable?

The domain is perfect for any kind of charity or non-profit organisation based in the UK, such as trusts, foundations, independent educational bodies, associations, and religious organisations. People will see this domain and immediately associate it with a non-profit, helping to strengthen your online presence.

Many well-known UK charities have recognised the importance of registering a domain, including the NSPCC, Oxfam, Save The Children, RSPCA, The National Trust, Barnardo’s, The Red Cross, British Heart Foundation, The Salvation Army, MacMillan, Marie Curie, Age UK, and Christian Aid.

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Just like the domain, the .org domain was originally intended to be used by non-profit organisations, but due to the restrictions being relaxed, it can now be registered by anyone. The .org domain can be registered worldwide and is also recognised globally, but if you want to specify that your organisation is located in the United Kingdom, a domain is the way to go.

There are numerous reasons for registering a domain. This domain is ideal for UK-based non-profit organisations or non-commercial companies and means you’re instantly recognizable as such.

Even if you have another domain registered for your organisation, you can also register a domain to protect your online brand from cybersquatting, which is where domain names that use the names of existing businesses are bought with the intent to sell the names to those businesses at high prices to make a profit.

If you want to specify your location, but the version is already taken, then the domain is a great alternative. It also improves SEO in UK search engines, increasing the probability of your website appearing higher in the search results. The familiarity of a domain name containing ‘UK’ -rather than a global domain name - may also make UK residents more likely to click on it since it’s familiar.

The domain was originally only meant for charities and non-profit organisations, but the restrictions were relaxed and now anyone can register a domain. Make sure that the domain name that you register does not infringe someone else’s copyright or trademark before you register it. Please note that you can register your domain for a period of between one and 10 years.

Registering either of these domain options is a great idea when your organisation is located in the UK as it helps locals find you. Although anyone can register a domain, it is best left to non-profits so as not to confuse visitors. The domain is more suited to commercially motivated companies.

You may also find that there aren’t as many name possibilities available with a since most have already been snapped up. The domain has been available since 1998 after all. If the name you want for your non-profit organisation does happen to be available, it makes sense to be on the safe side and register both the domain AND the domain. Registering multiple domain names should be a part of your brand protection strategy as it stops others from being able to do so. This prevents cybersquatting where others register your name to cause damage to your brand or to attempt to sell it to you at a high price. And if you don’t want to create individual content for both domains, a 301 permanent redirect will solve the problem.

Domain expertise
Find out more about website addresses in IONOS’s Domain Guide. The Guide is suitable for everyone, from small and medium-sized business owners to website operators and domain traders.See all articles about domains
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