269 .ie domains were registered in Offaly in 2016, according to the latest dot ie Domain Profile Report, published by the IE Domain Registry (IEDR), the company responsible for managing and maintaining Ireland's country code domain name extension - .ie.
The figure is down 2.5% on 2015. Overall .ie domain registrations in Leinster in 2016 numbered 21,739, a 3.5% decrease on the same period last year.
In total, 34,615 .ie domains were registered last year, the second highest year for new registrations since 2011. That equates to approximately 94 new .ie registrations every day in 2016. 72% of all new registrations in 2016 were made by businesses (corporate bodies and sole traders).
A total of 221,871 .ie domains are now registered in Ireland and around the world.
David Curtin, Chief Executive of IEDR, said, “2016 was one of the best years for the .ie domain in the last five years. More than 90 domains were registered every day, and the majority of registrations were by Irish businesses. This indicates that many companies and sole traders understand the importance of having a website and the value of .ie’s ‘Identifiably Irish’ brand, which helps to tell the world that they’re Irish.
“However, the decrease in registrations in Offaly suggests problems with Ireland’s internet infrastructure and SMEs’ understanding of e-commerce, particularly in rural areas.
“The quality and availability of broadband remains an insurmountable barrier for many SMEs located outside the big cities and major towns. On a positive note, ongoing e-commerce mentoring from business associations and government is beginning to help rural SMEs’ attempts to trade online and improve their digital skills.
“Ireland’s share of the digital marketplace is worth over €9 billion and growing. The Irish internet industry, business groups and leaders, and government representatives must continue to work together to make sure that the benefits of e-commerce and the wider digital economy are enjoyed equally across the country.”