Domaining Thoughts Category

New Domain Sales Site…NamusFamus.com

July 29th, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts


The Launch of NamusFamus
Every time a new domain sales platform/site is launched, we typically like to take a closer look to see what others in the industry are doing. We were notified by email that NamusFamus was a new website, launched this week, that focused on low priced, high quality domains with a few interesting features. We were contacted because we have bought and sold a few domains with the owner, Michael Storseth, in the past. Overall we were pleased and impressed with the site’s design and flow and feel like this has a good shot at being successful.

The Good
The content is fresh and the design is easy to navigate. The site is supplementing it’s traffic with daily email updates and includes a simple and clear subscription process that is well promoted on the main page. The best part about this is the fact that it should have appeal to an audience not already familiar with the domain aftermarket industry. Also very good are the prices. So far this week, we have seen quite a few very nice domains priced under $100 (AccountingPrinciples.org, ExerciseCenters.com, Impropriety.net and many more)Also, there seems to be a nice selection of higher priced names with impressive search and CPC statistics. As many of you know, beauty is in the eye of the beholder so you will need to check it out for yourself.

There is also a daily “Star Deal” feature that highlights one domain or set of domains and provides a little more depth in it’s description. Pretty nice selection of names so far for this feature. One more thing this site is providing is a daily trivia contest worth $25 in gift cards, incorporating some sort of tie-in to a name(s) listed for that day. We were fortunate to win the first one and were delivered our prize within hours of notification of winning. Not sure how long this will last so I would encourage you to act now to try and take advantage.

The Bad?..Not Really
As we stated earlier, we like the site and the prices so what’s the hitch. The biggest hitch we see moving forward is the DAILY demand on the site’s owners(s) to provide fresh names, prices, descriptions and emails that engage their audience. It will be a lot of work, but if they are able to do it, it should be a tremendous success.

Check it Out Yourself
Have a look for yourself to see what the team over at NamusFamus have put together. We always love to see folks success in this industry, especially if they are doing it the right way. Feel free to check out the email subscription as well. Have fun and Good Luck to NamusFamus and Mike.


Are There Any Good Geo Bargains?

May 10th, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts


Geo-Centric
Geo domains, domain names that include geographic references, have been at the cornerstone of successful domain investing for years. Look through the annals of the highest domain sales..no matter the TLD, you will find more than your fair share of city, state and country names. Although success can be found in keyword geos such as PhillyHardware.com or DcWelder.com, the true powerhouses are called pure geos. These are the names of the locations themselves. NewYork.com, Vegas.com, Japan.com.

Can They Still Be Had?
Because geo domains, and pure geo especially, lend themselves to so many advertiser rich industries, they have always been in high demand and valuable to the typical domain investor. Real Estate, Hotel and Travel, Dining and Sports content, provide tremendous opportunities for content and traffic. These do not come cheap.

Looking Outside of .Com
Your best chances for value are in TLDs outside of .com. Less desirable than the “King of extensions” they still provide all the same content, advertisers, and traffic potential, but on a smaller scale. A country names such as Trinidad-Tobago.org can be developed to serve the same needs as that of the .com. Another natural fit is the .tv TLD. As the domain brand focusing on multi-media content, .tv has seen quite a few successful city and country domains, and there seems to be some momentum moving forward.

Have You Seen Munich?
One of the name we spotted on auction recently with some of that potential, is Munich.tv. Although the auction house, Latonas.com does seem to get a good amount of domain investors to look at their inventory, this name, with a starting price of only 1500 Euros, doesn’t even have a bid. (Disclosure: This is not our name and we are offered nothing to mention it) As the third largest city in Germany and the capital of Bavaria, we feel this name has great potential for the right kind of developer, as long as the price stays under around $3K. The recent release of many of the premium fees on .tv domains has made this fertile ground of future expansion. This might be your chance to build something that can be easily replicated and more and more GEO .tv domains hit the marketplace. Don’t get us wrong, developing websites is no walk in the park, and that goes double for multimedia ones. It will require a commitment but, if you are game, why not take a shot.

Click Here to Visit the Munich.tv Auction Page.

Cheers and as always, Happy Hunting.


Bido.com Closing Shop on May 5.

May 4th, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts


Bido.com Closes up Shop
The folks at Bido used Twitter to announce the end of their experiment that auctioned off domains, one hour are a time, to the domain community. A visit to the site also shows the disclaimer.”Bido is ceasing operation as of May 5, 2010. All transactions and accounts will be gracefully finalized and closed. It is too bad and unfortunate that an innovator in the domain industry has to shut its web doors after a few short years. We have been involved and followed Bido.com from the bumpy beginning and there was a nice injection of energy and excitement put back into domaining when they launched.

One Name, One Focus
When the site was first launched, the format was one, hand-picked domain per day, on auction for one hour. These domains were all high quality and included many 3 letter .coms or one word domains. The end sale prices looked good. In fact, we submitted about a dozen decent names and all were rejected as not good enough. The auction was supplemented with community feedback via their “expert commentary” feature combined with live chat and web presentations by industry experts. There was great interaction and it was a terrific format for spotlighting a domains, but it was very high maintenance for the projected commissions, even on a $10,000K sale.

Many Names, Still and Hour
In what seemed to be a natural evolution of the format, more names were added per day and expert presentations were eliminated. All auctions remained an hour long and still included the live chat and commentary features. The names were still hand selected but the name quality, (as you might expect) suffered as a result. At this time, the initial bids were as low as $1, but after a few tweaks and changes, eventually moved up to $28. After more time still, the chat function was eliminated (technical and resource hog) and a few hundred names per day became a part of the auction. The selection of names moved from staff responsibility to the member community. Votes were now required (unless a fee was paid) to move a name from candidate to the live auction. There was a huge influx of marginal names and in many cases, very unreasonable sales expectations.

Success Could Still be Found
If your names were decent and you kept your price expectations in check, you were able to sell a decent number of domains. We sold about 2 dozen names over the past 7-8 months in 3 or 4 blocks of submissions. Top quality names did appear from time to time and they were able to generate very respectable sales figures—multiple 5 figure sales over the past few months alone. The buyers could be found, it was the quality of the names that was lacking. We can be considered just as guilty for our submissions, as we were more interested in picking off bargains, than selling our better inventory. That is not to say the site was problem free. We experienced website loading issues and delayed/abandoned payments from buyers but that should be expected in any new, untested platform.


Saying Goodbye
People will speculate that the introduction of Latona’s $1 auctions hastened the demise of Bido.com but we don’t put a lot of credence in that. Latona’s did generate a good bit of media attention when these micro auctions first kicked off (having a 15K email list of domain buyers doesn’t hurt either) but even now, they are only two weeks into this format, not enough time to be seen as the primary culprit. We had asked Sahar, Bido.com’s founder multiple times about his profit picture as it relates to Bido.com and his consistent response was that it was not profitable at the time but it was a marathon, not a sprint when it came to establishing a new sales format. Thank you Bido for giving it a shot and we hope some of your innovations continue as new auction sites launch.

Thank You Staff
We would like to take the time and personally thank all the members of the Bido team, past and present, who helped us in our sales and purchase efforts over the life of the site. Sahar, Jared, Garrett and others—Thank you and good luck in your future endeavors.


Fabulous & GoDaddy Charging $888 for an Available Domain?

April 30th, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts

Fabulous.com is For Domainers
We are big fans of Fabulous.com for their pricing, parking, support, sales and reporting tools for domainers. There are a few bugs we run into from time to time when looking for available domains, they primarily center around random domain available results missing when doing a bulk search. After discussing this with support, it seems they are aware of this issue and if checked individually the results are served properly.


Available Domains for $888?
While doing some available domain checking at Fabulous.com today, we ran across a domain, ChartSelect.com, that was tagged as premium and for sale for $888. This is not unusual because Fabulous has integrated their aftermarket sales platform into their checkout process and if a search is conducted that includes one of the names in the sales database, it offers it for sale. Trouble is, the domain was available to register. Not only that, but our WhoIs search done on Fabulous’ own servers are the ones who let us know that.

Not Just Limited to Fabulous
Fabulous.com has partnered with other Registrars for the aftermarket sales platform and one of those is GoDaddy. When checking the name for availability via them, it show similar results to Fabulous. Not Available-Premium Name for Sale-$888.

$8 At Name.com
Just to confirm that the name was available to register, we checked it with a registrar who was not a partner and it show it as available, Name.com.

Broader Questions than a Database Glitch
It is understandable (but not professional) that you might have some database caching and sync issues when integrating a sales process/platform into the registration process. What raises a question for us though is, “Why isn’t the whois the definitive “available” database and then if not available, a check then run on the sales database. This happened for two of the largest registrars on the planet. One of the reasons for using Fabulous and GoDaddy’s availability check system is that it was supposed to give real time results direct from the Verisign database rather than via a cached one. Does this now mean that we have to check the availability of all the “premium results” via a different tool before we can be satisfied that it is taken? Also, does this open up GoDaddy and Fabulous to potential lawsuits from a buyer who happens to buy that name, not knowing it was really available and only $8?

Feeling lucky? ChartSelect.com is still available to register–who knows, you might make a 100 fold return!


.US Making a Run on Bido today!

February 26th, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts


.US Generics On Auction
Great set of generics and keyword .us domains on Bido.com today. We have recently seen the light on the .us TLD and am making a concerted effort to add a few gems into our portfolio. The way we figure it, it isn’t going anywhere and holds much of the same benefits of other successful ccTLDs (.de, .uk, .in). Although not as strong as .com and will never be a powerful as those TLDs are in their own country, it has credibility.

So What In the Soup Today?
Here is a list of the names along with the minimum price expectations. Bido does not provide the pricing with their bulk download so we had to mash it together. The numbers should be right but go to Bido to directly to confirm and for start times. Note: The Bido Price can be elected by the seller to be lowered to the highest offer, even if the minimum was not reached.

STOCK.US $14,000
WINE.US $12,500
FUNDS.US $11,000
REBATES.US $8,500
BRAS.US $8,000
EASTER.US $7,999
BED.US $7,500
TEEN.US $7,500
TEENS.US $7,500
KEY.US $5,999
COPPER.US $5,000
HEARTS.US $5,000
HUMANRESOURCES.US $5,000
KEYS.US $4,999
FIREWORK.US $4,750
REFUND.US $4,500
KEYBOARD.US $3,999
COOKWARE.US $3,500
DUBAI.US $3,500
EMPLOYEE.US $3,500
GUYS.US $3,500
VOUCHERS.US $3,500
SHOWER.US $3,200
CONSOLIDATE.US $3,000
TRANSFER.US $3,000
WEALTHY.US $2,999
OFFERS.US $2,500
MILLIONAIRES.US $2,000
CONNECTION.US $1,999
CONSOLIDATING.US $1,700
INCREASE.US $1,250
CERTIFICATIONS.US $800
BOOKTICKET.US $499
FIXED.US $499
HANDBRAKE.US $78
STRONGBOX.US $40
R-T.US $38
BUSINESSFUNDS.US $29
ANALISYS.US $28
FINALISTS.US $28
FRESHFISH.US $28
NOBELPRIZE.US $28
SCHOOLBAG.US $28
UPLOADED.US $28

Price Analysis
At $165K total, $3,750 avg. over 44 names, most of the pricing is high based on comparables but there are some real opportunities to grab the kinds of category killer names that don’t come up very often. The best opportunity we see would be to either develop or approach end-users who are not quick big and/or quick enough to have gotten the .com and approach them. We will be looking at a few and hope to snag a bargain if we can. Let us know your thoughts as well.


UDRP.com sells for $16,500

February 25th, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts

Big Sale for Bido


Bido.com had a great sale yesterday that has not been widely reported. The UDRP.com transaction might be the highest ticket sale to date of this auction house that is only a little over a year old. We have been involved with Bido from the beginning and are happy to see it’s success

A Little Background
UDRP.com is a gem! UDRP, commonly used in domain matters, stands for the Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy. This policy was set up by ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) and is the primary avenue to resolve domain name disputes and address cyber squatting—a multi million dollar industry in an of itself. Anyone who registers a name from any of the top-level domains(TLDs) managed by ICANN, this includes .com, net, .org, and countless others, has agreed to allow the URDP to be the arbitrating force. In addition, many other TLDs not directly overseen by ICANN have adopted those same stipulations.

Crime, Fortunes and Corporations = Great News
UDRP gets a lot of press because it has the right to transfer domains and ownership with very little oversight and recourse. Fortunes can be at stake. Many times UDRP decisions involve the online activities of some of the most powerful and well know brands in the world making it a very sexy new story. On top of that, the decisions can be all over the map with no real consistency. Do a quick search on Google and just check out the stories.

Quiet Promotion
One of the downsides to this sale is that it seemed to be quietly promoted, if at all. The sale was conducted thought the “Bido Guarantee Program” where the buyer was privately contacted by Bido, they made an offer that was accepted before an auction was run. Had they pushed to auction, the price would have started at 75% of the last offer. A little risky yes, but it seems to follow that had there been more noise about the auction, it may have reached a much higher figure. That being said, it is a great price and good sales for Bido, the buyer and seller.

Bido.com is for Real!
There has been a lot of talk about Bido.com not having any real buyers and no one willing to pay premium prices for quality domains. Lets face it, we all want to pay bargain prices for premium names. :) Many times the quality hasn’t been there to see if that were true. This dispels that myth. If a name is good, buyers will spend on this platform. Congrats Bido and looking forward to getting even more names on your platform soon.


New Apple iPad Has A Name

January 27th, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts


Apple News Is Always Ripe
Just spend a few minutes listing to the new product announcement coming from Apple on their newest product innovation. The iPad. All the mystery and hype that has lead up to the announcment is typical Apple style with a frenzy of speculation and arguements for and against, EVEN before the product features have been outlines. Apple loves to play up to it very loyal customer base and has tremendous success with most of their product launches over the past few years. The iPod and iPhone have revolutionalized music and wireless communication so the anticipation is richly deserved.

What’s the Story?
The new iPad is basically (looks like) a huge blown up iPhone. The killer app is the ability to have not only full size (about) Magazines, Books, and Newspapers online, but to be able to have a near size monitor with integration of the touch screen technology. In effect this is just a big iPhone. Kind of cool, still waiting on a price but you get the story. A little bit over-hyped in our opinion

Watch the Press Event
Interested is seeing video of the entire press meeting via CrunchGear? Here you go!


FoodVacuums.com & ExerciseCenters.com on Auction!

January 25th, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts

We are entering the Bido.com fray with a few keyword domains up for auction.

FoodVacuums.com

and

ExerciseCenters.com

Because this is really a test, we expect these to go much lower than their worth. Estibot.com values FoodVacuums.com at $3100 with $3 PPC values.

They also value ExerciseCenters.com at $3800 with very high advertiser competition. Act now to get yourself a great name and starting bids are only $28. Auction ends tomorrow on 1/26.

Both of these will go quick and auction ends just after 2pm EST. Good Luck.

ExerciseCenters.com

FoodVacuums.com


NamePros Domain Forum is Back Up

January 21st, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts

Happy Days Are Here Again


After nearly two business days of being offline, NamePros.com, one of the largest domaining forums on the internet is back up. A quick check of posts timestamps, it looks to have been up as of 3:40pm EST on 1/21. It also looks as if 721 users were back on the forum within 30 minutes of it being up. Impressive.

We are all glad it is up but just waiting to see if this issue will be recurring. As we mentioned in a previous post, site outages have not been uncommon for NamePros.com as of late.

A request for info during the outage was requested of Ron James, the sites founder but no response we recieved.


NamePros Domain Forum Down Again

January 20th, 2010 by Admin in Domaining Thoughts


Seem to be a recurring theme for this forum. Not sure what the issue is but for the past 2 years or so, it has gone through long stretches of being down. Still a big fan of all this site has to offer but thes eservice disruptions have got to be killing the traffic #’s.

We will try and update as the site becomes available.

UPDATE: As of 3:45 or 5 hours later, the site is still down. Also of note is that Moniker is down as well. Must be a bad day in the interwebs.