Uniregistry’s Frank Schilling handed out a message of strong optimism at the domain industry event Namescon, in Vegas today.
“This event is twice the size of last year’s and yet I think it’s the last of the ‘small Namescons’,” Schilling said. “We’ll have twice as many people again next year. This industry is growing. I see growth on every side.”
Schilling expects the driver to be better marketing and improved integration of domain services. “Right now, the right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing. Domains are not easy to use for people at the moment, because there’s no integration between services like buying a domain, reselling it or hosting it.”
Schilling pushed back on suggestions that too many new gTLDs would confuse Internet users and hurt growth. “Our platform facilitated between USD 60 and 70 million worth of domain sales last year,” he said, adding that his competitors were seeing the same upward trends.
“Why are domain names still relevant today, with Facebook, Twitter, etc…” he asked. “Simple answer: email. Email has 99% penetration – everyone has an email account – and you don’t have email without a domain name. But email is also still growing. In Italy for example, email penetration is ‘only’ 86%. So there’s still a lot of room for growth.”