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So how do I now do a little bit of firefighting to try and get my site listed in the uk only part? I'm UK based and would expect a few export sales, but the UK has a much more developed market for the specific industry i'm selling in.
I'm going to advertise in the only 3 magazines which service this market and so could hope that brand recognition means people will guess that my domain is mycompanyname.com, but I still don't want to cut out potential customers, especially as I suspect the majority won't be expert users.
You should simply switch the redirect so that .com redirects to .co.uk - that way whatever anyone uses they will end up at the site, and you will also be able to appear in uk-specific search engine results. If the site is new, now would be the time to make the change, otherwise it may need a a little more consideration.
my host has excellent support and fantastic uptime and a very reasonable price, so as it ain't broke i really don't want to have to try and fix it.
I have a number of sites hosted in the US (so cheap at the moment!) that have .co.uk as the primary domain and the .com version set with a redirect. It works just fine with all major engines, they recognise it as a UK site. Also, I suspect that a listing in the UK regional branch of ODP will help with this identification. Good luck with the switch.
my host made the switch yesterday so fingers crossed that when i finally appear in google it'll be in the uk version too. i already submitted myself to the ODP but can't remember if I put myself in a country specific part. If I'm not under UK it is easy to get yourself moved? I presume if I resubmit myself that would be very much frowned on.