There’s an exciting development happening soon with Australian domain names. Up until this point, Australian companies had to get a domain that used two “dots” - .com.au, .net.au, etc.
While this wasn’t ideal for businesses that wanted an easier domain for their customers to use, it was all that was available, so everyone has gotten used to it.
Well, this is about to change, and companies will now be able to register for shorter domains ending in .au instead.
- Wider choice of available names in the Australian domain
- Shorter, more memorable online URLs
- Names will be easier to type and display on mobile devices
Netcare recommends applying for yours to protect your brand and your technology success. We’ll tell you what you need to know below!
What You Should Know About Appling for a .au Domain
When are .au Domains available?
These new shorter .au direct domain names will be available beginning March 24, 2022.
There are no restrictions on who can get them, and they are available to anyone that wants to have a website, personal or business.
How Can You Keep Someone From Taking Your Domain?
How do you ensure your domain is protected? For example, if you’re Microsoft, how do you keep someone else from taking “microsoft.au?”
Domain holders that already have a domain using com.au, net.au, id.au, etc. will be able to apply for what’s considered Priority Status to purchase the same domain with the .au ending. This can be done during the six-month period beginning from launch.
How Do You Know if Someone Has Priority Status on a Name You Want?
Say you want a new domain name using the .au direct domain. You could end up planning a logo, website, and other marketing around it, only to have someone come in with priority status that you didn’t know about.
The thing to do is first check the domain using auDA’s Priority Status search tool. It allows you to enter a domain and check to see if:
- There are many matching domain names in the .au namespaces
- There are applicants that have already put in an application for their matching .au domain name.
How Do You Apply for Priority Status?
If you have an existing Australian domain name, you’ll want to mark these dates down so you can apply for the matching .au domain name as soon as you can.
Even if you are happy with the domain you use now and don’t plan on changing your website and all your email addresses, it’s still important to protect your brand and own your matching .au domain.
Just imagine if you had Charlieshoes.com.au, and you didn’t bother to put in an application for Charlieshoes.au. Someone else could end up purchasing that domain for their own company. Or worse yet, a cybercriminal could purchase it for a phishing scam to try to fool your customers into thinking they are visiting your website.
Brand impersonation has been on the rise, and fake websites are often put up as a trap. Scammers will use a very similar domain to the real company’s website that unsuspecting victims won’t notice. This type of scam can be even more convincing if the scammers have a legitimate site’s .au domain name.
Here is the timeline you need to know for registering for priority status for your domain:
- Priority category 1: Your third level .au name was created on or before Feb. 4, 2018.
- Priority category 2: Your third level .au name was created after Feb. 4, 2018.
This is an important distinction because if there are two applicants (one category 1 and one category 2) that both claim priority status for the same .au domain, the one with the older existing domain (category 1) gets preferred status.
If there are multiple category 1 candidates, then all candidates must come to an agreement, or the domain will remain reserved indefinitely.
If there are no category 1 candidates, and more than one category 2 candidate, then the earliest creation date of the third-level .au domain wins.
Main Dates to Know:
- March 24, 2022: You can apply for your .au domain name
- Sept. 20, 2022: End of the Priority Status registration period. This means if you haven’t secured your .au domain name by now, someone else can take it.
When Do I Get My New .au Domain?
Once the 6-month Priority Status registration is over, if there is no other applicant that puts in a claim for your .au domain then you will get it issued to you right away.
Need Help Understanding How to Optimise Your Domain Email?
Another benefit of the shorter .au domain is shorter company email addresses. NetCare can help your Sydney area business understand the best way to leverage your new domain and use it to promote your brand.
Contact us today to learn more. Call (02) 9114 9920 or reach out online.