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Thread: What's happened to domaining?

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    What's happened to domaining?

    As I mentioned in my Introduction post Iíve learned more on E-P over the past year than all other forums combined.

    Question. I just compared traffic trends for DNForums,NamePros, Domaining.com, etc on Alexa and I was shocked to see that over thelast 2 years they all trended downward by 60-70%. What happened to domaining tocause such a sharp decline in interest? I thought I was in the market to buy a domainportfolio or two but this is kind of discouraging.

    Note: I am aware that Alexa is unreliable in absolute terms but have heard that it is pretty accurate with trends, especially comparative trends.

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    Administrator Clinton is a Premium Member
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    I think the interest is still there, but there aren't a great deal of new entrants, many seem to see the domain ship as having sailed.

    You'll find there's also a downtrend in the blogs of the best known "internet marketers" - the snake oil salesmen from Shoemoney to Problogger to John Chow - and all the siteflipping sites, blogs and marketplaces. Flippa used to boast about being in the top 1000; they don't talk much about their Alexa rank anymore, nor about the 11% drop in reach in just the last three months. Even Viperchill which used to be a decent site has taken a dive (and that's even before Glenn sold out to the pimps and started hawking magic SEO pills).

    Fragmentation is just one of the problems the domain sites face. The "leaking credibility" spread can't be helping them either.
    Find the right business brokers to maximise the value you extract from your business and improve the chances of selling your business.

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  4. #3
    Top Contributor crabfoot is a Premium Member
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    What's happened to domaining?
    I've said it before, you can't catch 'em no more,
    The Germans are out in force
    They catch them so quick it would make a man sick,
    And nary a trace of remorse.
    They set out a target and cornered a market
    On many a dropping domain,
    Do what you like, you can just take a hike,
    Don't try catching unless you're insane!

    The company behind 1&1, which is ostensibly Swiss but mostly operates from Germany, bought Snapnames/Moniker at the end of January 2012. Since then they have been hyperactively catching any dropping domains with PR, backlinks, or nice catchy names. It is very hard to compete with them.

    Once you could catch from the search box at a lot of registrars. That is a futile activity now. You can only catch worthless domains with no backlinks or virtues.

    There's an API you can plug into with appropriate software, but the number of catching channels allocated depends on your previous spend with the company. It's better than the search box method, but not much better.

    you need a pro set-up to compete with Snapnames, and if you can't pick up domains for the registration fee you can't afford to sell them at reasonable prices. Plus, the Panda removes the PR from most of them before they drop nowadays, so it is harder to pick them out. Low-end domainers have changed direction due to lack of raw material.

    The exact match keyword domain has been devalued. And there's also the consideration that if you are not using a domain for an active site, ICANN rules say you are a squatter and can be forced to hand it over.

    And there's not a lot of money about. Two years ago, a collectible 50 year old Gibson Les Paul Special guitar would have cost you around $22k. People are selling them for a third of that in today's market. Just another sign of the times.

    You want a dropping domain, the best bargain is a GoDaddy backorder.
    Last edited by crabfoot; 5 June 2013 at 5:56 pm.

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    I don't know much about domaining, but recently I learned the value of a good expired domain. What I learned is that just like you said Crabfoot, PR of a domain will go down very fast when it is expired, but if this same domain has a link from a pr 5 or higher domain, it will still have nice link juice and you could use it to point it to your own domain.

    I tough the idea was very cool, but I found it hard to find good expired domain, I was looking on expireddomains.net and almost all the 10$ domains there have no links pointing to them.

    And I found this blog post: nohatseo.com/blog/expired-domain-training1-html/ and this one nohatseo.com/blog/expired-domain-training2/.

    I think it's a very nice strategy to find good expired domains for 10$ (registration fee).

    Basically what you have to do is to crawl a ton of link with the Xenu Software (which is a link crawler usually used to find broken links). So you crawl a ton of links, then you find those which are listed as: No Such Host. That means that they are not hosted anymore and might be available to buy for 10$.

    A good way to start is to find PR7 websites that points to a lot of old websites and crawl them. It is explained in greater details in the videos embedded in the two pages linked above.

    I tried it and did not find any links that way, but I think it is a very smart idea and I am sure that if I only knew where to start my research, I could find a lot of gold nuggets. Do you have any ideas where to start this kind of research?

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    Top Contributor crabfoot is a Premium Member
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    I could tell you how to start, but then you have to actually catch the domains you find, which is when things start to get difficult. It is the catching which has become difficult, the amateur can't compete with Snapnames these days. Eighteen months ago people would "backorder/ book a catch" with a catching company for a particular domain which was dropping. The volume of domains that Snapnames is catching suggests that they are building their own domain portfolio.

    A good parked domain can make a little money, but there has always been the need to share that with the parking company which will manage the domain on your behalf.

    A registrar like Moniker/Snapnames, on the other hand, can register domains much more cheaply than a member of the public, and if the domain provides a return on the work needed to catch it through the use of their own parking facilities, that makes commercial sense.
    The big domainers catch or register domains for themselves, set up their own parking, and try to sell their domains at premium prices. If they work like that, their stock costs them nothing to hold, and can also make a profit when they sell domains.

    If you can see value in a dropping domain, the best way to catch it is a Godaddy back order. $22.50 + other bits and renewal fees, whereas Snapnames catching fees start at about $110. There's always the prospect of a post-catch auction with other people in either case, but it costs a lot less money to start into the process at GoDaddy.

    You can book a catch cheaper at Dynadot ($15), but they only catch about 4% of the domains you ask for, and you'll be lucky to get a good one if someone else is after it.

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    I could tell you how to start, but then you have to actually catch the domains you find
    Actually the domains I find this way are available to buy for 10$ like any other domains. BUT most of them don't have any real link juice. I bought hotelscancun.ca that I thought could have some potential... On majestic SEO I found a couple of interesting links pointing to it, but 0 in opensiteexplorer so I am unsure about it. Anyway it was only ten tomatoes, it's just a test.

    If you can see value in a dropping domain, the best way to catch it is a Godaddy back order. $22.50 + other bits and renewal fees
    Like I said, I don't really know about domaining. I already saw that some domains were back orders, what I understood of it is that you buy a place for the auction. But I think I see what your saying, so if nobody else pay 20$ to try to pick up a back ordered domain I automatically win it?

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    The industry as a whole (reseller market mostly) suffered greatly during 2008-2009 and has been on a mostly downward trend ever since. I used to know many full time domainers who did well before that and quit or moved on to other things afterwards, myself included - I should probably change my name to SiteMagnate or something like that

    There is still a large community of domainers who do quite well for themselves, but it's become a lot harder and they are now mostly focusing on end user sales, devepment projects, or simple sitting on large and high value portfolios. But the reseller market, including drops, has evolved a lot and went through a natural process of consolidation.

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    Top Contributor crabfoot is a Premium Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by brunogo View Post
    Actually the domains I find this way are available to buy for 10$ like any other domains. BUT most of them don't have any real link juice.
    That's the trouble and the main point. The ones that drop with good links are snatched up the second they drop. A couple of years ago, they were snatched up the minute they dropped, so amateur catchers had about 45 seconds to get a registration in.


    Quote Originally Posted by brunogo View Post
    I bought hotelscancun.ca that I thought could have some potential... On majestic SEO I found a couple of interesting links pointing to it, but 0 in opensiteexplorer so I am unsure about it. Anyway it was only ten tomatoes, it's just a test.
    You might have stood more chance with an ICANN domain. Unless you can move Cancun to Canada, that's a hard one to get started.
    Anything to do with travel/hotels is in a fiercely competitive market. If a site on that domain showed signs of making a significant profit, it would be attacked by unknown forces and retro-fitted with trojans etc.
    OSE does not always tell the truth about links. If Majestic and / or Alexa shows links, and OSE does not, that means you have to guess.

    Quote Originally Posted by brunogo View Post
    I already saw that some domains were back orders, what I understood of it is that you buy a place for the auction. But I think I see what your saying, so if nobody else pay 20$ to try to pick up a back ordered domain I automatically win it?
    If nobody else has placed a backorder with GoDaddy, AND GoDaddy actually catch it, your backorder will secure the domain. The fee is for the catch, you have to additionally pay for a "package" which includes a year's domain renewal, and costs (from memory) about $17.
    If someone else has placed a backorder with GoDaddy, you move into an email auction situation where you have to bid against them on the domain.
    Last edited by crabfoot; 6 June 2013 at 9:17 pm.

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