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Doing business in Jersey? Go in search of something even better than a dot com!

Posted: Tuesday 22 January 2019

Taking a stroll around the Christmas Market in the Royal Square last month I was struck, time and time again, by the pride stallholders showed in their homegrown and homemade produce. The Genuine Jersey logo was on show here, there and everywhere, and the makers were buzzing in their conversations with shoppers about the provenance of what they were selling.

Taking a stroll around the Christmas Market in the Royal Square last month I was struck, time and time again, by the pride stallholders showed in their homegrown and homemade produce. The Genuine Jersey logo was on show here, there and everywhere, and the makers were buzzing in their conversations with shoppers about the provenance of what they were selling.

 

It’s the same sort of pride people in Jersey show in the island’s flag, and in the myriad traditions and customs that stop Jersey being just another place on the map. We’re rooted in our heritage, in our quirks, and in our own way of doing things, and in a digital age there’s no reason not to continue with that spirit.

For years now businesses have been able to register websites ending with .je rather than .com or .co.uk. Indeed Digital Jersey was the very first to do so when we set up www.digital.je as our online shop window. It’s an immediate statement that ‘this business is from Jersey and for Jersey’, but – until now – for some there’s been a financial barrier to doing so.

This is why, at the start of 2019, I am delighted to say we’ve been working with Nigel Roberts of Island Networks (who run the .je Registry as well as other extensions), as well as with local web development companies, to all but wipe out the cost of making the switch to .je. The first year is now either free, or will cost you a couple of quid for an admin fee, and then it’s just £25 annual thereafter.

But cost aside, there’s a much bigger reason for Jersey businesses doing their trade on-island to embrace a .je website, and that’s Google.

The world’s biggest search engine, something so embedded in so many people’s daily lives, is now using its location technology to offer up search results based on where people are. And, when in Jersey, websites that end with .je get preferential treatment, meaning those businesses appear higher in the search rankings.

If you’re a pub or restaurant, a shop or garage, it is an absolute business no-brainer to get a .je domain sorted today. In pure commerce terms you are giving yourself an advantage, but you’re also showing your pride in Jersey, and helping the whole island shout about its digital ambitions.

Businesses that are trading globally should be using .com – but those whose primary focus is right here in Jersey, .je is the way to go.

There’s also the issue of website name availability. So many of the shorter, catchier and more memorable .com addresses have long gone. And, besides, who’s going to remember www.thecornershopdowntheroadjustpastthecowsatwestscentre.com anyway? By moving to .je you stand a much greater chance of getting exactly the address you want.

If you’ve not got a website, this should be your incentive to get one. If you have, switching from your existing address to a new one is quick and easy and there are many local web development companies who will do that work for you.

That walk around the Christmas Market filled me with the festive spirit, but it also filled me with pride in the many entrepreneurs who were selling their homegrown and homemade wares. In the physical world, many display the Genuine Jersey logo. I’d love to see all Jersey businesses who are trading on island use a genuine Jersey website. Let this be the year you make the switch to .je to show your pride, digitally, in Jersey… and perhaps boost your own business fortunes, too.

Tony Moretta

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