Non-profit websites grow amidst UK recession
Web host sees 27 per cent leap in .ORG domain registrations
19 August 2009, Gloucester, UK: Fasthosts Internet Ltd, (www.fasthosts.co.uk), a leading web hosting provider and domain name registrar, today reported a marked increase in the number of .ORG domains registered by non-profit organisations during the past year. The domain suffix has out-grown in percentage terms many other non business top-level domain suffixes, indicating an increase in the number of non-profit and charitable projects being launched in the first half of 2009. The unique growth lends weight to the theory that many such organisations have initiated or grown web-based projects in response to the global recession.
The .ORG domain name is the domain of choice for organisations dedicated to serving the public interest. Data from Fasthosts, one of the UK’s largest domain name registrars, shows that .ORG registrations made by its customers grew by 27 per cent compared to the same period in 2008. The domain has seen the highest demand over all other non-business domains. Whilst domain success can often be skewed by short-term price promotions, the growth of .ORG comprises like for like growth over the 12 month period.
As many UK charities have reported falls in donation income since the economy slowed down, such growth in .ORG registrations may suggest that non-profit bodies have stepped up investment in the Internet. Web solutions now offer such groups extremely cost effective and scalable channels for gathering support and participation for causes, and taking donations directly from a website.
Steve Holford, CMO Fasthosts Internet Ltd., said, "It is pleasing to note the growth of the .ORG community and witness the remarkable difference that the Web can deliver to non-profit organisations. In challenging economic times, such groups are wise to leverage the efficiencies and visibility that online projects can offer”.
The .ORG domain is close to the original concept of the Internet – collaborative and intended for good causes. As an emblem, the domain is generally well respected by Internet users. The high retention rates for Fasthosts .ORG domains would suggest that the .ORG website remains a cost effective tool for all sizes of organisation in communicating non-profit initiatives.
Lance Wolak, Director of Marketing for .ORG, The Public Interest Registry added, "The contributions of the .ORG community in recent years are truly inspiring. They have not only helped to galvanize interest in various causes, but have given non-profits as well as individuals and commercial organizations an unprecedented means to inspire, educate, collaborate, and ultimately change the world as we know it".
Holford added, "Just as the recession has led UK businesses to step up ecommerce efforts, the Internet is the right logical step for non-profit groups to broaden their reach and safeguard their revenues”.
iT4Communities, a Fasthosts customer, is a charity that runs a large UK-wide network of IT volunteers who support hundreds of charity IT projects a year. They have seen a steady increase in requests for volunteer help with websites for small charities year on year. It remains the largest area of request for help as charities strive for a good website that helps them reduce costs and attract more support.
Anne Stafford, Programme Manager for iT4Communities, adds "Charities are relishing the benefits of websites with a CMS, making it cost effective to update their information and easier for volunteers to help as building a good site can take much less time".
Affordable and easy to use web solutions have played a key role in accelerating online growth for the charity, non profit and social activism sectors. Nowadays, ‘turn-key’ website solutions from providers such as Fasthosts mean that smaller groups can create a web presence themselves and communicate and collaborate online within minutes. Solutions for SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) such as Fasthosts Traffic Driver enable non profit websites to enjoy greater visibility and relevancy within mainstream search engines.
Fasthosts is a leading provider for shared and dedicated web hosting and business-class email solutions, and is the UK market leader for reseller web hosting.
For more information on Fasthosts, see the website at www.fasthosts.co.uk.