Top Level Domain .de
.de is the TLD for the Federal Republic of Germany (‘de’ standing for Deutschland, the name of the country in German). Specific second-level domains such as .ac.de or .co.de are not required by DENIC, which manages the TLD. This TLD currently has the second highest number of registrations of any ccTLD, behind .cn (China). Registrations can be ordered either from DENIC or from a registrar; the latter route is usually quicker.
Local residence is usually required to register this TLD, which makes application easy for businesses based in or having a subsidiary in the country. However, there are ways round the limitation, such as using an administrative contact for the domain name who has an address in the country (some registrars will provide thise service), or using the SLD .com.de which is freely available. This can be a good strategy for business which sell to, but aren’t based in, Germany. Using the .de TLD also has SEO benefits, clearly signalling to search engines which country your content is purposed for and making it more likely you’ll get a good place in the rankings.
Germany is a huge market. Domain names may consequently not be cheap, but the investment should be worth while in terms of the additional businesses that can be gained by registering this TLD and providing the right content to address the German market.