You have  item(s) in your Shopping Cart
Delete Items Check Out
False
  • Domain Services
  • Trademark Services
  • Support

Which Countries Have the Most Popular Top-Level Domains in the World?

Did you know that the first ever domain name registered was Symbolics.com on March 15th, 1985? Symbolics was a computer manufacturer, but now the website serves as a museum of sorts for “firsts” in technology. Since then, registered domains have exploded across the globe, with countries adopting unique extensions called country code top-level domains, or ccTLDs. The team at Nominus.com has created a comprehensive guide to the most powerful top-level domains around the world, which can provide fascinating insights into how the internet has been built, which countries have the most expansive internet presence, and which domains may be the most influential for your needs:
 



 

Do Countries Own Domains?

ICANN says no, but there have been conflicts over ownership and even multi-million-dollar sales, which we will explore a bit later. For now, let’s explore some of the major country code top-level domains. What is a country code top-level domain? These domains are dedicated to countries, territories, and sovereign states. Every country code top-level domain contains two letters. Read on to learn more about international domain names:

 

North American ccTLDs and the Total Number of Active Domains in Each:

 

north-america-cctlds-domains-7r.jpg

The biggest country code top-level domain in North America is .ca, which has 3,150,895 active domains associated with it. Is .com or .ca better? That depends on your objective. Google.ca will favor addresses containing .ca, but if the objective is to reach U.S. audiences or worldwide audiences, .com is typically a better bet.  
 

South American ccTLDs and the Total Number of Active Domains in Each:

 

south-america-cctlds-domains-7r.jpg

The most popular country code top-level domain in South America is .br, which is associated with Brazil. Introduced in 1989, it is extremely popular in Brazil and provides the largest Portuguese-language Web presence.
 

European ccTLDs and the Total Number of Active Domains in Each:

 

europe-cctlds-domains-7r.jpg

The country code top-level domain with the most active domains in Europe is .de, which is also the second most popular top-level domain in the world. In many Romance languages (Spanish, French, Portuguese, etc.), the word “de” is equivalent to “of” in English, and this is exploited in domain registrations using .de for Romance-language Web hosts offering customized sites, such as elforo.de (“theforum.of”), encoding the site name into the URL, such as elforo.de/wikipedia, meaning “theforum.of/Wikipedia.”
 

African ccTLDs and the Total Number of Active Domains in Each:

 

africa-cctlds-domains-7r.jpg

The biggest country top-level domain in Africa is .ga, which is associated with Gabon. In 2013, the manager of the domain, Gabon Telecom, formed a partnership with the international domain registrar Freenom to offer registrations of .ga domains for free. These quickly became some of the most popular free domain names offered by Freenom and Safecow.
 

Asian ccTLDs and the Total Number of Active Domains in Each:

 

asia-cctlds-domains-7r.jpg

The largest country code top-level domain in Asia is .cn, which is associated with China. Established in 1990, it is sponsored by the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
 

Oceanian ccTLDs and the Total Number of Active Domains in Each:

 

oceania-cctlds-domains-7r.jpg

The most popular ccTLD in Oceania is .tk, which is associated with Tokelau, an island territory of New Zealand. In fact, it is among the most popular domain names of any country! Why is .tk so popular? The government of Tokelau partnered with communication company Teletok to offer free domain registrations to any individual, leading to an influx of users. However, free is not always good. It became a popular TLD used by scammers, especially for phishing attacks.
 
Another fun fact about ccTLDs in Oceania is linked to Tuvalu, a tiny island nation of 11,000 people. In 1995, Tuvalu was assigned the ccTLD .tv — little did they know what a cash cow it would become thanks to the rapid rise of online video streaming. In 2022, Tuvalu established a deal with  Web-hosting company GoDaddy that will earn it an estimated $10 million a year for leasing out .tv to companies such as Twitch. With its first $1 million profit, Tuvalu was able to cover membership fees to join the United Nations. It’s incredible how a tiny sequence of letters can be so powerful!
 

What About Antarctica?

Does Antarctica have Internet service? Yes! Believe it or not, Antarctica even has its own ccTLD despite not being a country. With only 102 active domains, .aq is reserved for organizations that work in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.
 

An Overview of Top-Level Domains

Now that we have explored the biggest country code top-level domains around the world, let’s delve into more general knowledge about top-level domains, including the different types of TLDs, the most popular top-level domains overall, and which top-level domains are the most trusted and sought after.
 

 What Is a Top-Level Domain?

A top-level domain is a domain that is ranked at the highest level in the hierarchical Domain Name System of the Internet after the root domain. In more simple terms, a TLD is everything that follows the last period or dot of a domain name.
 

 What Is an Example of a Top-Level Domain?

The most prevalent top-level domain is .com, which has the most current active domains attached to it. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) maintains authority over all top-level domains on the Internet and assigns responsibility for these to various organizations. For example, the American company VeriSign operates all .com and .net top-level domains. Top-level domains can also help indicate the purpose of the domain names that proceed them.
 

 What Are the Different Types of TLDs?

There are five official types of top-level domains:

  • Generic TLDs: Generic TLDs (gTLDs) include some of the most common, such as .com, .net, and .org. The creation of new gTLDs was once heavily regulated by ICANN, but these restrictions were relaxed in 2010, leading to an influx of lesser-known TLDs such as .top and .xyz.

  • Country Code TLDs: Country-code TLDs (ccTLDs) are dedicated for use by countries, territories, and sovereign states. Some examples of a country code top-level domain include .au for Australia and .jp for Japan.

  • Sponsored TLDs: Sponsored TLDs (sTLDs) represent ethnic, geographical, or professional communities. Each one has a designated sponsor; for example, .app is intended for the developer community and is sponsored by Google. Another one is .gov, overseen by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

  • Infrastructural TLDs: This category only includes one TLD: .arpa. It is named after DARPA, the U.S. military research organization that helped shape the modern Internet. In fact, .arpa was the first top-level domain of all time. It is now used exclusively for infrastructural duties such as reverse DNS lookups.

  • Reserved TLDs: Reserved top-level domains are domains that cannot be used without permission from the original creator. They are typically used for operational and engineering reasons, such as private testing, experiments, documentation examples, and demonstrations.
     

How Many Top-Level Domains Are There?

According to ICANN’s master list, there are 1,486 top-level domains.
 

What Are the Best Top-Level Domains?

According to an experiment conducted by GrowthBadger, .com domains are 33% more memorable than other domains, and this is considered the most trusted TLD. When people try to recall a URL, they are 3.8 times more likely to assume that it ends in .com.
 

What Are the Most Common Domain Extensions in the World?

 

top-50-top-level-domains-7r.jpg

What is the most popular domain extension? It is common knowledge that the domain extension .com is the most often used and trusted. Here are the 50 biggest top-level domains based on the number of current active domains attached to them:

  1. .com — 159,902,632 active domains

  2. .de — 16,141,315 active domains

  3. .net — 13,170,783 active domains

  4. .org — 10,614,272 active domains

  5. .uk — 10,593,406 active domains

  6. .cn — 8,980,611 active domains

  7. .ga — 7,049,929 active domains

  8. .nl — 5,635,081 active domains

  9. .cf — 5,383,367 active domains

  10. .ml — 5,344,979 active domains

  11. .tk — 5,041,535 active domains

  12. .ru — 4,995,267 active domains

  13. .br — 4,349,270 active domains

  14. .gq — 4,307,508 active domains

  15. .xyz — 4,130,573 active domains

  16. .fr — 3,867,191 active domains

  17. .eu — 3,664,237 active domains

  18. .info — 3,653,720 active domains

  19. .co — 3,396,167 active domains

  20. .au — 3,255,646 active domains

  21. .ca — 3,150,895 active domains

  22. .it — 3,125,192 active domains

  23. .in — 2,662,613 active domains

  24. .ch — 2,375,786 active domains

  25. .pl — 2,349,625 active domains

  26. .es — 1,950,923 active domains

  27. .online — 4,307,508 active domains

  28. .us — 1,844,273 active domains

  29. .top — 1,710,824 active domains

  30. .jp — 1,6137,56 active domains

  31. .biz — 1,425,740 active domains

  32. .se — 1,408,367 active domains

  33. .at — 1,401,807 active domains

  34. .dk — 1,398,484 active domains

  35. .cz — 1,374,684 active domains

  36. .za — 1,264,492 active domains

  37. .me — 1,196,876 active domains

  38. .ir — 1,169,743 active domains

  39. .icu — 1092501 active domains

  40. .shop — 1,040,404 active domains

  41. .kr — 1,012,638 active domains

  42. .site — 1,007,427 active domains

  43. .mx — 992,386 active domains

  44. .hu — 852,097 active domains

  45. .io — 847,444 active domains

  46. .cc — 836,363 active domains

  47. .club — 822,231 active domains

  48. .no — 805,466 active domains

  49. .cyou — 765,244 active domains

  50. .store — 759,128 active domains
     

Every Country Code Top-Level Domain in the World Ranked by Number of Active Domains

 

Rank Domain Extensions Country Active Domains
1 .de Germany 16,141,315
2 .uk United Kingdom 10,593,406
3 .cn China 8,980,611
4 .ga Gabon 7,049,929
5 .nl Netherlands 5,635,081
6 .cf Central African Republic 5,383,367
7 .ml Mali 5,344,979
8 .tk Tokelau 5,041,535
9 .ru Russia 4,995,267
10 .br Brazil 4,349,270
11 .gq Equatorial Guinea 4,307,508
12 .fr France 3,867,191
13 .eu European Union 3,664,237
14 .co Colombia 3,396,167
15 .au Australia 3,255,646
16 .ca Canada 3,150,895
17 .it Italy 3,125,192
18 .in India 2,662,613
19 .ch Switzerland 2,375,786
20 .pl Poland 2,349,625
21 .es Spain 1,950,923
22 .us United States 1,844,273
23 .be Belgium 1,651,671
24 .jp Japan 1,613,756
25 .se Sweden 1,408,367
26 .at Austria 1,401,807
27 .dk Denmark 1,398,484
28 .cz Czechia 1,374,684
29 .za South Africa 1,264,492
30 .me Montenegro 1,196,876
31 .ir Iran 1,169,743
32 .kr South Korea 1,012,638
33 .mx Mexico 992,386
34 .hu Hungary 852,097
35 .io British Indian Ocean Territory 847,444
36 .cc Cocos (Keeling) Islands 836,363
37 .no Norway 805,466
38 .nz New Zealand 706,264
39 .ua Ukraine 583,690
40 .cl Chile 552,459
41 .ro Romania 541,367
42 .id Indonesia 540,507
43 .ar Argentina 518,866
44 .fi Finland 514,264
45 .vn Vietnam 480,132
46 .tv Tuvalu 459,384
47 .gr Greece 458,408
48 .tr Turkey 436,196
49 .sk Slovakia 435,963
50 .pt Portugal 359,581
51 .tw Taiwan 351,319
52 .pw Palau 308,116
53 .ie Ireland 304,284
54 .my Malaysia 266,224
55 .il Isreal 262,192
56 .nu Niue 241,949
57 .hk Hong Kong 234,825
58 .lt Lithuania 217,264
59 .sg Singapore 191,493
60 .ae United Arab Emirates 180,477
61 .kz Kazakhstan 157,248
62 .ws Samoa 156,944
63 .ee Estonia 151,112
64 .si Slovenia 135,600
65 .ng Nigeria 133,069
66 .by Belarus 131,483
67 .lv Latvia 124,984
68 .rs Serbia 124,206
69 .pe Peru 121,428
70 .ai Anguilla 121,314
71 .pk Pakistan 113,064
72 .hr Croatia 112,686
73 .ma Morocco 103,012
74 .ph Philippines 102,198
75 .lu Luxembourg 100,499
76 .uz Uzbekistan 100,114
77 .su Soviet Union 99,681
78 .np Nepal 92,075
79 .uy Uruguay 84,549
80 .ke Kenya 83,170
81 .lk Sri Lanka 77,656
82 .is Iceland 77,549
83 .sa Saudi Arabia 76,880
84 .th Thailand 73,826
85 .bg Bulgaria 71,363
86 .hm Heard Island and McDonald Islands 65,303
87 .li Liechtenstein 63,490
88 .tn Tunisia 53,081
89 .ge Georgia 47,874
90 .la Laos 45,686
91 .ec Ecuador 45,168
92 .zw Zimbabwe 44,350
93 .cm Cameroon 38,895
94 .am Armenia 37,280
95 .re Réunion 34,301
96 .gg Guernsey 33,755
97 .mk North Macedonia 32,606
98 .im Isle of Man 32,447
99 .vc Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 31,636
100 .to Tonga 31,591
101 .az Azerbaijan 29,845
102 .do Dominican Republic 29,438
103 .bz Belize 29,063
104 .bd Bangladesh 28,165
105 .md Moldova 27,871
106 .ba Bosnia and Herzegovina 25,367
107 .py Paraguay 24,961
108 .al Albania 24,593
109 .ve Venezuela 24,543
110 .tm Turkmenistan 22,299
111 .tz Tanzania 21,880
112 .qa Qatar 21,797
113 .mn Mongolia 20,685
114 .cy Cyprus 20,238
115 .ag Antigua and Barbuda 20,163
116 .ly Libya 20,020
117 .gt Guatemala 19,859
118 .sh Saint Helena, Ascension, and Tristan Da Cunha 18,854
119 .fm Federated States of Micronesia 18,774
120 .mt Malta 17,523
121 .cr Costa Rica 17,292
122 .as American Samoa 16,263
123 .st São Tomé and Príncipe 16,228
124 .so Somalia 15,692
125 .cx Christmas Island 13,712
126 .dz Algeria 13,102
127 .bo Bolivia 12,814
128 .pa Panama 12,782
129 .sy Syria 12,234
130 .kg Kyrgyzstan 11,620
131 .ci Ivory Coast 11,400
132 .ac Ascension Island 10,703
133 .mu Mauritius 10,497
134 .ms Montserrat 9,800
135 .bw Botswana 9,239
136 .sv El Salvador 9,051
137 .ug Uganda 8,722
138 .ao Angola 8,609
139 .hn Honduras 8,274
140 .ps Palestine 8,176
141 .ky Cayman Islands 8,154
142 .mz Mozambique 8,123
143 .dj Djbouti 8,057
144 .eg Egypt 7,903
145 .sn Senegal 7,727
146 .jm Jamaica 7,644
147 .gs South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands 7,273
148 .tc Turks and Caicos Islands 7,178
149 .tj Tajikistan 7,019
150 .je Jersey 6,779
151 .pm Saint-Pierre and Miquelon 6,678
152 .cd Democratic Republic of the Congo 6,638
153 .nc New Caledonia 6,489
154 .rw Rwanda 6,421
155 .af Afghanistan 6,227
156 .mv Maldives 6,176
157 .gl Greenland 6,130
158 .fo Faroe Islands 6,121
159 .pr Puerto Rico 5,097
160 .ni Nicaragua 5,030
161 .mg Madagascar 5,027
162 .sd Sudan 4,993
163 .sc Seychelles 4,989
164 .zm Zambia 4,977
165 .bh Bahrain 4,830
166 .vg British Virgin Islands 4,712
167 .jo Jordan 4,648
168 .na Namibia 4,601
169 .mm Myanmar 4,483
170 .yt Mayotte 4,449
171 .om Oman 4,388
172 .lc Saint Lucia 4,211
173 .kw Kuwait 4,100
174 .fj Fiji 3,996
175 .ax Åland 3,989
176 .tt Trinidad and Tobago 3,904
177 .mc Monaco 3,894
178 .gy Guyana 3,654
179 .tf French Southern and Antarctic Lands 3,590
180 .sr Suriname 3,551
181 .gh Ghana 3,309
182 .bm Bermuda 3,227
183 .kh Cambodia 3,081
184 .bi Burundi 2,999
185 .cv Cape Verde 2,946
186 .sx Sint Maarten 2,934
187 .mo Macau 2,897
188 .ht Haiti 2,883
189 .gd Grenada 2,760
190 .bs Bahamas 2,730
191 .iq Iraq 2,491
192 .gi Gibraltar 2,450
193 .wf Wallis and Futuna 2,439
194 .pg Papua New Guinea 2,416
195 .mw Malawi 2,411
196 .bj Benin 2,356
197 .sl Sierra Leone 2,339
198 .sm San Marino 2,318
199 .ad Andorra 2,221
200 .lb Lebanon 2,219
201 .gp Guadeloupe 2,148
202 .tg Togo 2,071
203 .cg Republic of the Congo 2,019
204 .cu Cuba 1,956
205 .bt Bhutan 1,955
206 .ls Lesotho 1,945
207 .sz Eswatini 1,925
208 .bf Burkina Faso 1,912
209 .et Ethiopia 1,910
210 .pf French Polynesia 1,902
211 .sb Solomon Islands 1,788
212 .tl East Timor 1,721
213 .bb Barbados 1,694
214 .vu Vanuatu 1,605
215 .gm The Gambia 1,591
216 .vi U.S. Virgin Islands 1,570
217 .bn Brunei 1,465
218 .ck Cook Islands 1,320
219 .mq Martinique 1,247
220 .ye Yemen 1,140
221 .nf Norfolk Island 1,127
222 .gf French Guiana 1,107
223 .mr Mauritania 1,068
224 .ne Niger 991
225 .dm Dominica 989
226 .cw Curaçao 913
227 .kn Saint Kitts and Nevis 889
228 .pn Pitcairn Islands 791
229 .aw Aruba 752
230 .td Chad 671
231 .mp Northern Mariana Islands 654
232 .ki Kiribati 536
233 .gn Guinea 496
234 .lr Liberia 454
235 .va Vatican City 417
236 .nr Nauru 349
237 .gw Guinea-Bissau 332
238 .km Comoros 172
239 .fk Falkland Islands 155
240 .aq Antarctica 102
241 .er Eritrea 94
242 .gu Guam 68
243 .ss South Sudan 49
244 .kp North Korea 38
245 .mh Marshall Islands 10
246 .gb Great Britain 1


Related: International Domain Name Registration, and Domain Registration.

Want to display this infographic on your website?
You can copy the below code and paste it into your website.