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Britons go '.uk' online for Christmas shopping

The independent survey follows the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) news that the UK has climbed four places to third in its world e-commerce league, behind only Sweden and Ireland, which have been shown to have more 'IT sophistication' levels than the UK.

The research highlights the strategic significance of .uk domain names in comparison with less localised domain names, with almost half of Britons (47 per cent) feeling reassured they can easily contact .uk companies and one third (34 per cent) having confidence in .uk websites as they have to adhere to UK trade laws.

With the Computer Industry Almanac estimating 25.5 million (75 per cent) online Britons regularly purchasing on the web and over 5.4 million (16 per cent) researching online before buying in the shops, there are substantial justifications for businesses having local domain names.

This evidence reflects a growing trend towards parochial Internet shopping, with buyers increasingly choosing to remain largely local in their online activities. This highlights the growing influence of localised domain names for companies and organisations of all sizes, perhaps best demonstrated in multi-national businesses rushing to establish local sub-brands in an effort to compete for the fast growing local e-commerce spend. It would appear the old world adage 'think global, act local' is also finding itself a place in the new world of online shopping.