Nine Millions of Domain Names Are “Just Numbers”

Nine Millions of Domain Names Are “Just Numbers”

While I was surfing over some article regarding SEO recently, I got somehow to this article: One in seven new gTLD domain names are actually just numbers. I found it very interesting and having our database on my hands I decided to go a bit deeper than Kevin Murphy and analyze all types of gTLDs, not only the Donuts, new GTLDs ones.

It is really pretty weird reverse thing – to use just numbers in domain names, while the whole domain system was built to get human-friendly address system instead of IP addresses, which are basically just numbers again 🙂

So, to go deeper we need to:

  1. Filter the registered domain names list, and get the list of containing only numbers
  2. Find out “the scale of disaster” and do some analytics around it
  3. Create a crawler and go over them to obtain useful data about those websites (at least first pages, titles, language, where it was registered and by whom)
  4. Analyze the obtained data, and communicate the results

 

We have four points in the plan, and first two points look like a pretty fast implementable thing, which we can do “right here, right now.”

8,932,393 domain names containing only numbers

First of all, I did a small python script to go through the list we have and get all second level domains with only numbers in their names. I’ve got 1,668,669 names in ccTLDs; 3,870,873 names in gTLDs and 3,392,851 in new gTLDs. In total, we have 8,932,393 domain names containing only numbers out of 271M second level domain names in our dataset, which gives us 3,28% of numeric domain names in average.

 

Numbers_in_domain_names_-_Google_Docs

Some summary and filtered domain lists available to download, for your research, if you need them:

TLDs Type Total Domains Numerics % Download Link (filtered list)
ccTLD 80,045,063 1,668,669 2.08%
gTLD 167,460,508 3,870,873 2.31%
New gTLD 24,996,505 3,392,851 13.57%
Total 272,502,076 8,932,393 3.28%

New gTLD domain zones are used six times more likely to register “just numbers” domain names

We see a huge gap in between popularity of numeric domain names in between traditional TLDs and New ones (.agency, .business, .travel and so on). New gTLD domain zones are used six times more likely to register “just numbers” domain names. We also can try to make some assumptions based on popularity of registering of such domains in different zones in absolute numbers:

Numbers_in_domain_names_-_Google_Docs

Almost 70% of all numeric ccTLD domain names are registered in China (.cn), which is understandable and as it was in original article “due to the fact that digits are the only 10 characters permissible in DNS that Chinese speakers natively understand”.

Sometimes it’s understandable, like typing and remembering domain names written in Latin letters giving a hard time for Chinese users. Therefore in China domain names written in numerals are spread wisely. The name of each digit is similar in sound to a particular word, so just remember these combinations.
For example, the name of the number “five” in Chinese sounds the same as the word «I» (I or me), and “six” – as a “stream» (stream). A great domain name for the video streaming site – 56.com, literally “I stream”.

However, for the rest, .us, we may want to figure out the reason and why it is popular.

Summary for 10 most filled ccTLD zones sorted by absolute numbers of registrations:

ccTLDs Numerics Domains in Database %
cn 1136168 5735111 19.81%
us 104617 2034891 5.14%
pw 61507 299157 20.56%
de 59315 16746948 0.35%
cc 44544 276891 16.09%
ru 34379 5923117 0.58%
nl 29760 6518194 0.46%
tk 26663 3729121 0.71%
uk 23416 3179518 0.74%
eu 20667 5403201 0.38%

 

As you can see in absolute numbers popularity of numeric domains for ccTLDs is pretty unpredictable, based on countries mentality and subject for future crawling research.

10 ccTLDs ranked by the percentage of their zones that are numeric:

 

ccTLDs Numerics Domains in Database %
pw 61507 299157 20.56%
cn 1136168 5735111 19.81%
cc 44544 276891 16.09%
gg 189 1565 12.08%
sv 5 70 7.14%
sh 122 1777 6.87%
cm 130 1938 6.71%
la 312 5694 5.48%
wf 11 202 5.45%
gd 142 2727 5.21%
us 104617 2034891 5.14%

 

You can also download the full data of that kind for 165 ccTLDs in summary data archive, just scroll down to the end of the article.

Names_Count_Analytics_-_Google_Sheets

Numbers_in_domain_names_-_Google_Docs

 

gTLDs Numerics Domains in Database %
com 2875333 129699424 2.22%
net 528933 15994682 3.31%
org 229659 12240795 1.88%
info 93569 6453142 1.45%
biz 80291 2385992 3.37%
pro 58756 378216 15.54%
cat 1545 111406 1.39%
name 1528 67791 2.25%
xxx 1139 104616 1.09%
tel 118 18665 0.63%
gov 2 5779 0.03%

 

The statistical data for gTLDs are available for download  in the end of the article as well.

And new gTLDs in absolute numbers:

Numbers_in_domain_names_-_Google_Docs

 

New gTLDs Numerics Domains in Database %
xyz 869064 6631010 13.11%
top 604643 2456311 24.62%
win 329898 1038760 31.76%
wang 325253 651976 49.89%
club 160088 911918 17.56%
red 85158 318853 26.71%
vip 83898 416501 20.14%
bid 83345 362348 23.00%
xin 79820 322818 24.73%
ren 67698 304620 22.22%

 

10 new gTLDs ranked by the percentage of their zones that are numeric:

New gTLDs Numerics Domains in Database %
cal 82 86 95.35%
gold 6132 9503 64.53%
run 8971 17090 52.49%
wang 325253 651976 49.89%
bet 12488 26722 46.73%
lol 45222 98986 45.69%
mom 20989 50451 41.60%
toshiba 2 5 40.00%
rip 1364 3516 38.79%
kim 48308 129435 37.32%

 

You can also download the statistical data for 464 new gTLD zones in summary archive at the end of the article.
Next obvious question here will be what’s inside that numbers, what’s kind of names are inside that numbers, so I made a chart of most popular one’s numeric names.

Names_Count_Analytics_-_Google_Sheets

So, most we have the winner – 888 is registered in 402 domain zones. Same info in a table:

Numeric Combination # of zones registred
888 402
360 382
123 357
420 316
666 299
365 299
100 292
0 289
8888 283
999 268
247 264
777 261
101 231
9999 230
168 229
417 226
111 223
1 217
333 216
321 216
88 215
555 214
520 211
24 207
1111 207
222 206
800 205
702 203

 

For ccTLDs only (123 most popular) :

Names_Count_Analytics_-_Google_Sheets

New gTLDs:

Names_Count_Analytics_-_Google_Sheets

 

For traditional gTLDs, there is only one combination registered in all of them (“1000”). And don’t want to overfill article with not so attractive data, so if it’s needed you can download it.

Most popular numeric domain names have 3-4 digits length

Summarizing, most popular numeric domain names have 3-4 digits length, same time there are 76 longest ones (63 digits long) registered in ccTLD zones, 50 in gTLD zones, and 94 in New gTLDs. And here we are talking about something like this:

012345678901234567890123456789012345678901234567890123456789012.net
012345678901234567890123456789012345678901234567890123456789012.asia
Or
666666666666666666666666666666666666666666666666666666666666666.xyz
and so on.

What’s the next step? First of all, in a next article we will do zones filling analytics, but for numeric domains only. We will combine the list of available numeric only combinations and by comparing it with most popular ones will find out in which zones they still are not registered.
Then, I’m going to crawl the most interesting zones to found some data about websites itself, to figure out what they used for, why the name contains only numbers, make some assumptions and predictions.

Stay tuned!

 

Domains Index co-founder