Digital health index reports positive, but improvement needed

Ireland’s overall digital health has never been stronger, but much work is still needed to address consumer frustration and business trustworthiness, according to a recent report.

Ireland’s Domain Registry (IEDR) recently published the findings in their bi-annual Digital Heath Index, which assesses the number and quality of digital assets owned by Irish SMEs, such as websites, social media pages, and e-commerce tools. The report showed that nearly 20% of Ireland’s offline SMEs are prevented from building a website or engaging in e-commerce because of a poor internet connection.

Approximately 14% of Irish SMEs rate their internet connection as ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’, a figure that rises to 25% in Connacht and Ulster.

Despite ongoing issues with internet infrastructure and a persistent low uptake of e-commerce, this edition of the dot ie Digital Health Index recorded the best score for Ireland’s overall digital health since research began in 2014. David Curtin – Chief Executive of IEDR – said the increase in the overall score of the dot ie Digital Health Index is good news, but big changes are needed before Ireland can become a major e-commerce player.

“It is encouraging to see the dot ie Digital Health Index hit its highest ever score. However, nearly 1 in 5 SMEs remain completely offline despite almost half of them acknowledging the importance of a website in some way.”

RULE CHANGES

The rules for registering dot ie domain names are changing. From March 2018, the need to explain why you want a particular name (also called ‘claim to the name’) when registering a dot ie domain name will be removed.

According to Ireland’s Domain Registry, there is a growing demand for dot ie domains, and a subsequent need to facilitate Irish retail businesses in the global e-commerce marketplace. Retail businesses are being urged to secure their desired domains before the rule changes come into effect, as – from March 2018 – anyone with a connection to Ireland can register any domain name without proving a ‘claim to the name’.

For further information, and for a business to secure their available dot ie domains, visit www.iedr/finalcall.