The Evolution of Radix: An Interview with Neha Naik
We reached out to Neha Naik, Director of Channel Partnerships at Radix, to learn a little bit more about Radix’s journey from 2012 until today. Below, you’ll read about how Radix began, and learn about the domain extensions it owns and operates. You will also hear about how Radix is tackling the current world challenges. Plus, Neha shares her top tips on how businesses in the domain space can stay on track during these challenging times and talks about how to pivot your brand in the changing markets. Enjoy!
It’s been almost 6 years since your first TLD launched. Tell us a little bit about Radix’s journey so far?
In 2012, when ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) invited initial applications for new top-level domains (nTLDs), it offered a wonderful opportunity by opening up new namespaces for businesses and individuals to have meaningful domain names. Radix actively participated in this round, and submitted applications for 31 strings and invested over $30 million. Of those, Radix secured 7 strings and since then has gained 3 more extensions.
Today, Radix exclusively owns and operates 10 new domain extensions; .TECH, .STORE, .SITE, .ONLINE, .WEBSITE, .PRESS, .HOST, .SPACE, .UNO and .FUN; and 1 repurposed ccTLD, .PW. With these extensions, users now have an opportunity to get their first-choice domain names that are industry-defining and unique.
Radix’s objective has always been to focus on the quality of its TLDs. As of March 2020, Radix has over 6 million domains under management and two of its domain extensions, .ONLINE and .SITE, both have surpassed 1 million domain registrations each. For all new registrations done across nTLDs in 2020, Radix has 29% of the nTLD market share with only 1% of total nTLDs.
The ongoing COVID-19 crisis has taken a toll on several industries. Have you noticed any changes at Radix?
Our partners across the industry have shared reports on how the current crisis has impacted businesses in their region and the industry overall. Over the past few months, we’ve observed a surge in offline businesses looking for ways to go online and establish their brand on the world wide web. Be it eCommerce stores, blogs, tutorials-- everyone is working towards building an online presence.
Businesses that were already online are working towards expanding and scaling their operations to overcome these unique challenges that we’re facing today. For instance, a lot of them are adding additional eCommerce capabilities and secure online payments to their existing website.
At Radix, we’re observing the impact of these changes through our partners--registrars, hosters, website builders, and eCommerce platforms. It seems like the eCommerce business, on the whole, is also seeing a surge--Radix’s eCommerce-specific domain extension, .STORE grew by over 25% in April as compared to January 2020.
Radix is seeing the impact of this through our partners - registrars, hosters, website builders, and eCommerce platforms. And as expected, eCommerce is seeing a surge - Radix’s eCommerce-specific domain extension, .STORE, grew by over 25% in April as compared to January 2020.
How is Radix tackling the challenges of the ongoing situation?
The team at Radix is focused as ever and has its ears close to the ground. We’re listening to our industry partners and actively working with them to help them and their customers during this crisis. For instance, we are sharing educational and helpful resources with our registrar partners that can help their customers build a strong online presence.
Internally, the team is coming up with innovative programs and approaches to help businesses make the transition from offline to online. We are an agile team that’s looking for ways to help our partners and change course as and when needed. This ability keeps us grounded and focused at all times.
Europe has been an important market for Radix’s TLDs. What has your experience been so far in this region?
Europe is a big market for us and I’m happy to say that Radix’s TLDs have been well-received by the market. Today, our TLDs have a 47% nTLD market share in Europe and we owe that to multiple factors.
We owe our success to the strategic partnerships we have in the market. In addition to promotions, we also engage in multiple strategic marketing campaigns with our partners. We have active end-customer co-marketing campaigns, coupled with content partnerships including sharing blog posts and infographics. We’ve also built out end to end social media campaigns with them. Apart from that, we also co-brand and promote our TLDs with our partners at end-user events. We believe in walking together, hand in hand and that value is at the core of all our strategic partnerships.
The goal is to create sustained brand building for our TLDs and we’re working towards further scaling these initiatives.
The .ONLINE extension, for example, is one of the leading TLDs in the European market with a 23% market share in Germany alone. The word ‘online’ is universally understood and truly represents a global brand. It’s also a great way to compliment a ccTLD that a customer may own.
Other extensions such as .SITE and .STORE have performed exceptionally well too. .STORE has grown 98% year-on-year in Europe. We believe that these domain extensions bring their own unique set of attributes and benefits that make it interesting to a specific market, and we are seeing that come through.
Lastly, what advice would you give to businesses in our industry that are grappling with this new situation?
The present circumstances are definitely trying for everyone. Businesses have been stalled, global trade has been derailed, and simple everyday functions have been disrupted. The best we can do at this point is to listen to our customers, help them stay afloat, and assist them to bring their businesses on track.
This presents us all with some unique opportunities to be creative and pivot quickly to the needs of the changing market. For instance, the current state of events has really catapulted more businesses to go online faster than they ever would have. We have to find ways that we can add value to these businesses and really be the reliable partner that they need.
One way to do this is to keep a close tab on the developments in your market because things can change quickly. Stay agile, and move quickly with your customers in mind.