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2023 Membership Survey: highlights of member responses

By Julie Lépine
Manager, Membership Relations

In February, like every year, we survey members to gain insight into their perceptions of CIRA’s membership. This feedback helps us track the overall health of CIRA membership, and to identify any areas of concern. This year a whopping 732 members shared their opinions: that’s just over 200 more participants (41% increase) over the previous year! Here are the highlights of what we heard:

  • Majority of members are satisfied with their membership
  • 71% of members say they signed up to stay informed about CIRA and the .CA domain
  • 77% of members have a positive impression of CIRA
  • Few are familiar with what we do at CIRA and for Canada’s internet
  • 51% feel their membership is valuable to them
  • Most of the time we meet members’ expectations
  • 59% are unsure of how we can be more relevant to them

This is all very valuable insight from members and presents opportunities for us to focus our work to do better. Keep reading for further analysis of the survey results.

Member satisfaction score

CIRA Member satisfaction largely remains stable at 81% and consistently so over the past several years after seeing a slight bump in 2020. This score is an average of overall member satisfaction and member expectations of their experiences. More on those numbers further down.



Top reasons for joining

As part of this survey, on an aided basis, we ask members to select their main reasons for becoming a CIRA member. The top five answers include:



These top reasons are unchanged from 2022, however members are more likely in 2023 to say they joined to learn more about CIRA and how the .CA domain is managed, which saw 18% increase over the previous year (44% to 52%).


On a positive note:

Overall satisfaction

Members’ overall satisfaction with CIRA membership is on the rise at 78% and back to pre-pandemic norms after seeing a bump (89%) in 2020. Most members (53%) are at least somewhat satisfied with their membership and one-quarter (25%) are strongly satisfied.



Overall impression of CIRA

A new question added to the survey this year asked for members’ overall impression of CIRA in the context of our impact on the internet in Canada. Most members (41%) have a very positive impression and very few (5%) have a very negative impression of CIRA.




This is very encouraging feedback and signals to us that we’re on the right path. We’re glad to hear that members are supportive of our mission to build a trusted internet for Canadians—this inspires us to continue working every day to improve Canada’s internet.


Where we have work to do:

Familiarity with CIRA

Members are relatively familiar with CIRA but most only know a little about our role, activities, and operations.




We want CIRA members to be brand ambassadors and influencers within their networks. The more members know about CIRA the better equipped they will be to share our great work with others.

Value of membership

More than half of members say that their membership in CIRA is valuable to them; very few say that it is not valuable. This has been consistent over the last several years.




So why the sad song? It’s simple, we’d like to see fewer members who feel neutral about the value of membership and more who feel it is valuable to them. Through member feedback and engagement, we want to know what motivates current and future members and how CIRA can be more relevant to them.


Member expectations related to their experiences

Most members say that their experiences meet their expectations in terms of matching their initial expectations. This, too, has been consistent over time.




Although this is not a bad place to be as a member-based organization, this certainly presents an opportunity to exceed expectations more often.


Something surprising:

Being more relevant to members

We asked members if they had any advice for us on how to best focus our energy and resources to be more relevant to them. We heard a resounding “I don’t know” from nearly 60% of members! Surprising, a bit shocking, yet interesting.



It’s nice to see the response showing a decline, meaning more members over time have opinions on where we should focus. Looks like we need another survey or focus group to really unpack what members want!

Awareness of membership and interest in joining

In a separate survey we asked .CA domain name holders who are not members if they are aware that they’re eligible to apply for CIRA membership. Most respondents (71%) say that they are unaware that they’re eligible and one-third expressed an interest in joining as a member, but relatively few (9%) are strongly interested.





Looks like we have some work to do to make membership more appealing to potential members and to raise awareness of the opportunity to join. Keep sharing your feedback!

Demographics of member respondents

CIRA’s membership is dominated by men who are mostly 60+ years old who live in Ontario, largely unchanged over the years.






The geographic location is not surprising; it is mostly a reflection of the population across Canada. The rest, though, is not reflective of Canada’s age and gender diversity (as a woman in her late-40’s, I find this upsetting.) This is worrisome as a member-based organization and raises many questions. The lack of diverse representation/voice, future sustainability, and eco-chamber enablement to name a few.  This is something we are committed to addressing in the near future.


So, what now?

If you’re a member, thank you for participating in our survey and providing your honest opinions and perspectives—keep your feedback coming! The more you share with us the better we can make CIRA membership work for you. As a member, you’ve taken steps to be more involved in the development of Canada’s internet. Take your involvement to an even higher level and be our brand champions—encourage those in your network to think of .CA first for their online domain and help us grow and diversify our membership so that it represents all Canadians.

If you’re not a member and have a .CA domain name—become one! Don’t have a .CA domain name? What are you waiting for—register yours today.


About CIRA membership

CIRA is a member-based organization that values the input of its members and their contributions to enabling a trusted internet. Having a .CA domain name and being a CIRA member supports the great work we do for Canada’s internet.

Membership is free and only open to .CA domain name holders. It remains active so long as your domain(s) remain registered—there’s no additional renewal process beyond renewing your .CA domain name!

About the author
Julie Lépine

As the Manager of Membership Relations at CIRA, Julie manages the development, planning and delivery of CIRA’s membership and Member-related activities and engagement. She strives to create opportunities for Members and consumers, and partners to share, connect, and learn and get the most out of their relationship with CIRA.