If you haven’t already heard of Brexit, you’ve been living under a rock. But how does Brexit affect UK site owners?
If you are a UK resident and own a .EU domain name it’s time to give it up. The European Commission announced that all UK based companies that own a .EU domain will have to give them up after Brexit. The document released reads.
“As of the withdrawal date, undertakings and organisations that are established in the United Kingdom but not in the EU and natural persons who reside in the United Kingdom will no longer be eligible to register .EU domain names or, if they are EU registrants, to renew .EU domain names registered before the withdrawal date.” – The European Commission
This means that any resident or company based in the UK has to give up their domain name and will not be able to renew or buy another .EU TLD. This has massive implications for companies that have spent time & money building a brand around a .EU domain.
The EU also noted that there are around 300,000.EU domain names registered by UK Residents. These may well be cancelled with no right to appeal.
“As a result of the withdrawal of the United Kingdom, a holder of a domain name does no longer fulfil the general eligibility criteria… the Registry for .EU will be entitled to revoke such domain name on its own initiative and without submitting the dispute to any extrajudicial settlement of conflicts.” – The European Commission
Brexit isn’t set to happen until 29th March 2019. This gives you just over a year to set up a new domain name and put 301 redirects in place to keep search engine rankings. This needs to be done sooner rather than later.
Normally within the SEO world we like to have permanent 301 redirects, or point the domain to the new one for good. Once Brexit is in in place and the EU regulations are in enforced, this can no longer be done. So, it’s important that steps are taken now with SEO, Branding & marketing to reduce the impact this will have on your company in March 2019.
We recommend contacting your SEO provider and Hosting company to start the transfer as swiftly as possible. We can also take care of this for you by purchasing a new domain name, migrating the site and setting up the 301 redirects to reduce the blow this may have on your company next year.
You can read the full document released by The European Commission on .eu Domain Names