.nl, the webshop domain
For Dutch webshop proprietors, .nl is the most popular domain by far. A total of about 130,000 webshops are now active in the Netherlands. Of those, just over 15,000 have .com addresses -- the second highest number after .nl. Enterprises with a strong international focus tend to be the ones that opt for .com. Other extensions are usually considered only if the corresponding .nl isn't available. The strong preference for .nl is easy to understand. Research has shown that Dutch internet users are more likely to buy from a .nl site than from an identical site with an identical name, but a different extension. That's especially true when high-price items are concerned.
Use of SSL skyrockets
Since 2015, when Google started taking SSL certificates into account when ranking sites, the number of certificates in the .nl zone has skyrocketed. Over the last twelve months, the total number of .nl websites with certificates has gone from 82,000 to 390,000. That includes 45,000 .nl webshops, with Let's encrypt the most popular option, largely because it offers free SSL. One in three Dutch webshops now uses Let's encrypt.
Payment methods: iDEAL stable, AfterPay and Bitcoin making ground
We've seen a 12 per cent growth in .nl webshops supporting iDEAL, with the number now standing at 37,000. In the twelve months to May 2017, deferred payment service AfterPay grew much more rapidly, from 2,700 supporting webshops to 3,400. That's 26 per cent. Bitcoin is starting to show up on the radar too. The virtual currency is now accepted at 1,040 .nl webshops.
As the number of webshops shows, the Dutch internet economy is booming. Of course, the shop count isn't everything. It isn't possible for us to tell from our data how profitable all those webshops are. But if the growth in numbers is anything to go by, the on-line economy is set to do very well in 2017.