More than 4.6 million domain names were registered in the second quarter of 2004, bringing the total number of domain names registered worldwide to more than 64.5 million, according to VeriSign. The 2Q activity falls just short of the quarterly record of 4.7 million registrations in the first quarter of 2004.
The data showed continued growth among country code top-level domains (ccTLDs), which now account for 39 percent of all domain registrations. Renewal ratess for .com and .net addresses reached 72 percent, the highest ever, after dropping as low as 45.7 percent in early 2003.
On the pricing front, the only change among .com pricing among major providers comes from Go Daddy, which lowered its .com price by a dollar to $7.95, an expected response to the introduction of $9.95 domain pricing from Yahoo.
Most of the action in the domain price wars has shifted to .info names, which are being given away for free by numerous providers. NameSecure is offering up to 25 free .info domains, and has been matched by Dotster, while Hostway is offering .info names for free through Dec. 31. DomainSite is not far behind at 99 cents for .info names.
"We're taking this unconventional approach to marketing because we want to showcase our superior services and our company to everyone who is interested in creating or extending their Web presence," said Jeff Grosman, general manager of NameSecure.