.au direct domains coming in 2022

au direct domains are coming in 2022 - what do you need to know to get yours?

What are .au direct domains?

Domain names in Australia currently must contain an extension like “com” or “edu” or “net” or something similar between the domain name and the .au. Some examples are www.abc.net.au, www.smh.com.au, and www.vu.edu.au.

With direct domain names being available from March 2022, the domain name will directly precede the .au. For example, the websites listed above can choose to apply for the direct domain names www.abc.au, www.smh.au, and www.vu.au if they wish.

Why are Au direct domains being introduced?

The direct domain names are more memorable. They are easier to remember and faster to type. They are shorter and hence easier to display on mobile devices. The introduction of .au direct offers a wider choice of available names in the Australian domain.

Why would I want one?

The simplest answer is, for brand protection. Say you own the business Paragon Telecom, and you own the domain www.paragontelecom.com.au. Now you will become eligible to own the direct domain www.paragontelecom.au. If you don’t register for it, anyone else can apply for and be granted this name.

Do I qualify for one of these?

To be eligible for a .au direct name you must have an Australian presence. This includes being a citizen or permanent resident visa holder or being a company or organisation or association or similar registered in Australia.

What kind of names can I choose?

You can choose any name provided that it:

  • is available
  • meets the syntax requirements
  • does not appear in the Reserved Names List

I own the .com.au – do I get priority?

Yes. The .au direct Priority Allocation Process will be in place for the first six months, starting from 24 March 2022. This will give you the opportunity to:

  • Apply for the exact match of your existing domain names on a priority basis
  • Register new direct names that don’t exist in any other .au namespace

Note that if no one applies for a particular direct name during the Priority Allocation period, then the name can be registered on a first-come-first-served basis when the period ends.

What happens if someone else also applies for the same direct domain name?

There will be a “tie-breaker” which is based on the creation date of the base domain name.

  • Applicants with a creation date earlier than 4 February 2018 fall in Category 1.
  • Applicants with a creation date later than 4 February 2018 fall in Category 2.
  • Category 1 applicants have a higher priority than Category 2 applicants
  • If there are multiple Category 1 applicants, auDA (.au Domain Administration Limited) expects them to negotiate and agree on who should get the direct domain. If there is no agreement, the domain name will not be allocated.
  • If there are multiple Category 2 applicants, the one with the earliest creation date will be allocated the direct domain.

How can I register for Priority Status?

When .au direct launches, you can apply for Priority Status through auDA accredited registrars.

How much will it cost me to register for a direct domain?

  • We’re pleased to announce that from March 2022 through March 2023, SixFive will offer all .au direct domain name registrations at 50% of the retail price for the first year.
  • This means that every .au direct domain name you register with SixFive for your business, whether it’s through the Priority Allocation process or a brand new name, will be available for just $9.99 including GST.

How do I ensure that I can register one?

  • Details about how you can pre-register .au direct domain names for your customers will be available soon. In the meantime please let us know your interest by entering your email address in the form below. We’ll send you a handy fact sheet.

Get the fact sheet

Enter your email address to get the fact sheet, and we’ll keep you informed when you can start pre-registration.

Duncan Isaksen-Loxton

Educated as a web developer, with over 20 years of internet based work and experience, Duncan is a Google Workspace Certified Collaboration Engineer and a WordPress expert.
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