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.ch domain


.ch is the country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for Switzerland. Each country or territory on the internet is assigned a two-letter ccTLD and .ch is the one designated for Switzerland. This makes it different from the standard generic top level domains, such as .org, .com or .net.

Why .ch? It’s taken from the Latin name for Switzerland, Confoederatio Helvetica. With four official languages in Switzerland, this was chosen as the most neutral option.

.ch domain: a history

The .ch domain was first introduced in 1987. It’s administered by the domain registry SWITCH, a Swiss organization responsible for internet infrastructure. The .ch domain has since become a popular choice for websites associated with Switzerland, Swiss businesses and individuals.

Many Swiss businesses and government agencies use .ch for their websites. Additionally, some international entities may use .ch for branding or to target the Swiss market. If you want to make a clear statement about your Swiss identity, either as an individual or a business, a .ch domain is a good choice to use in your URL structure in order to do that.

There are currently 2,521,008 registered .ch domains, although this number grows by around 500 registrations daily. Of these 37% of the websites with a .ch domain are based in Germany, 33% in Switzerland, 10% in the US, 9% in France, 3% in Italy and the rest elsewhere.

.ch domain and ICANN

As with all domains, .ch is largely overseen by ICANN.

ICANN stands for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. It is a nonprofit organization responsible for coordinating and managing the Domain Name System (DNS), which is a hierarchical decentralized system that helps translate human-readable domain names (like into IP addresses that computers use to identify each other on the internet.

ICANN performs several key functions:

Domain Name System (DNS) management

ICANN oversees the allocation of domain names and IP addresses to ensure the stable and secure operation of the internet and the World Wide Web.

IP Address allocation

ICANN is responsible for the global allocation of IP addresses to regional Internet registries (RIRs), which in turn distribute them to organizations and Internet service providers.

Protocol parameter assignment

ICANN manages the assignment of protocol parameters and port numbers to avoid conflicts and ensure the smooth functioning of internet protocols - such as WHOIS.

Generic top-level domain (gTLD) management

ICANN manages the assignment and administration of generic top-level domains like .com, .org, .net and others. It also oversees the introduction of new gTLDs.

Root DNS server management

ICANN oversees the operation and management of the authoritative root DNS servers, which are a critical part of the DNS infrastructure.

Websites using .ch domain

This organic and natural beauty store uses a .ch domain extension as a Swiss beauty brand. It also shows how the .ch domain can be used to represent high quality goods and products.

Local companies with local markets can benefit from using a locale specific domain extension, such as .ch.

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How do I register my .ch domain?

To register a .ch domain, you typically need to go through a registrar accredited by SWITCH and then follow these essential six steps:

01. Choose a domain registrar

Select a domain registrar accredited by SWITCH to start registering your domain. You can find a list of accredited registrars on the SWITCH website. Alternatively, if you’re building a website with Wix, you can register a .ch domain as part of that process once you’ve purchased a paid plan.

02. Check domain name availability

Use the registrar's domain name search tool to check if the .ch domain you want is available and to help you choose your domain name. If it's available, you can proceed with the registration.

03. Provide all required information for registration purposes

You'll need to provide some information, including your contact details and potentially some other administrative information.

04. Pay the required fee

Pay the registration fee, which varies depending on the registrar and the specific domain. If you register a domain as part of using a website builder, like Wix, this fee is already included in your premium website package.

05. Wait for verification of availability

The registrar may need to verify your eligibility for a .ch domain, especially if you're a non-Swiss entity. Be prepared to provide the necessary documentation if requested.

Once your registration is approved, the registrar will complete the registration process and the domain will be associated with your chosen website or online presence.

.ch domain FAQ

Who can register a .ch domain?

Generally, .ch domain registrations are open to individuals, businesses and organizations worldwide. There are no strict restrictions and entities outside of Switzerland can register .ch domains.

How long does it take to register a .ch domain?

The registration process for .ch domains can vary depending on the registrar. Typically, it involves submitting necessary information and completing the registration form. The registration period is usually immediate but it may take some time for the domain to be fully active.

What is the registration period for .ch domains?

.ch domain registrations are typically done on an annual basis. Registrants can choose to renew their domain registration each year. With Wix, you will need to renew each year.

Can I register a .ch domain for personal use?

Yes, .ch domains can be registered for personal use. Individuals, as well as businesses, commonly register .ch domains for various purposes.

Can I transfer my .ch domain to another registrar?

Yes, it's usually possible to transfer a .ch domain from one registrar to another. The process involves obtaining an authorization code from the current registrar and initiating the transfer with the new registrar.


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