New Domain Extension Fan or Foe?

The new GTLDs are here!

How are you approaching the tidal wave of new GTLDs?

New GTLD Domain NamesAre you watching from the sideline to see how it plays out?  Do you think they are a Gold Mine or a river full of Fool’s Gold?

Are you buying all you can get?  Or would you not buy one of those domains for any amount of money?

My approach – mimicking the King (the Domain King)

Personally, I am being very selective and buying only what I can on general availability release.  There are a couple I might be tempted to purchase in the pre-registration phases, but at least I have some time to see how these early releases pan out.

If I end up selling a few of the ones I’ve picked up, I will probably roll that money [Read more...]

Domain-Pocalypse

Snowpocalypse

Riding home on a gator after the snowpocalypse.

Survived the Snowpocalypse here in the South… Got home late, but safe and sound.  Can’t sleep so I thought I would get a few random domain name thoughts out of my head to see if that helps…

  1. Domain Shane isn’t human.  He says he has a full time “real business”, a kid/family, runs ridiculous distances, scans/invests in the stock market, etc.  AND he has a great domain business that he works on only 2 hours a day including blogging, scanning lists of domains like the “secrets” one on this list that is still pissing me off that I missed…  I don’t buy it.  I have to get to Namescon next year and get his secrets after the tables and drinks kick in… Oh yeah.
  2. Secrets on Flippa.  That portfolio of names Shane mentioned that was on Flippa.com closed at $1150.  $1150 for 50 names is what, $23 each and even if they are renewing soon that puts your average price around [Read more...]

DomainSherpa.com Brandable domains

The latest domain name review from Domain Sherpa is out.  After writing the article about the Domain Name Sherpas last week, I saw Michael was running a themed domain review this week.

Michael Cyger

Michael Cyger
aka Domain Sherpa

 

Taking the plunge with Themed Domain Names

The topic?  “Really cool brandables”  These are domains that can easily be branded, but the opinions on what is really cool varies significantly so if you don’t know what they are, I suggest starting with this definition and checking out Shane’s article on why domains are irrelevant (not!) and Morgan’s assessment.  Also, if you are planning on buying some to resell, hold, etc do yourself a favor and carefully read Elliot’s experience – it may save you some time and money.

I hesitated to submit a name because it could easily get trashed… Knowing that I had a couple of domains that might fit the brandable description and trying to really dive in and learn to be a “REAL” domainer this year, I decided I had to submit a name!

Before I reveal which name is mine, go take a look at the list of names that were submitted and think about which ones you like (you have to scroll down to “Reader Submitted Domain Names”.)  I wanted to do that before I watched the review, but I was too excited – like a kid on Christmas morning.

So do I get a lump of coal or a diamond in the rough?

 

My brandable domain name

I will say this, there are over 100 domains in the list and I only really liked or understood the brandability of about 15 of them.

My favorites from other submissions, in no particular order, are PinkBear.com, Jumbrellas.com, and [Read more...]

Great domain name sales opportunity

For anyone who knows me or follows this blog for any length of time, you know I love podcasts.  What does that have to do with Domain Name Sales?  Plenty!

Domain name evaluation and appraisals

 

Michael Cyger

Michael Cyger
aka Domain Sherpa

Michael Cyger over at DomainSherpa.com also produces a podcast and one thing he has been doing for a while now is Domain Name Portfolio Reviews.  He takes 50 names from two regular Joe Domainers and has a panel of 4 experts he calls Sherpas review the names.

The Sherpas provide honest (brutally honest, which I like) feedback, and possibly pricing recommendations and appraisals.  Great stuff.  They have even made real time offers for names they love!

Learning from other domain owners

Submitting your portfolio to DomainSherpa isn’t for the faint of heart because most of the time the portfolio of names get trashed with the exception of a few names – maybe 5 out of 50 are keepers – MAYBE.  You would have to be open and willing to truly listen if it was your portfolio.  I have submitted my 50 a while back and if it ever does get reviewed it will get thrashed – I plan to do a post where I try to use what I’ve learned listening to them to review my own portfolio… I will update this post if I do my own review – would be fun to do that before they did and compare results if it were to happen :)

The great thing is that you get to see what other people submit – you have to assume it is their best stuff knowing what is going to happen.  Then you get to hear what the Sherpas have to say about the names.  You can really learn a lot about the way truly successful domain name entrepreneurs think about domain names and their business.

Like most things with a subjective factor, sometimes a couple of the sherpas like names while others hate them.  Sometimes that has to do with the way each Sherpa does business – if they specialize in brandables they might like something that another who specializes in product domains or geo domains doesn’t, but in general they like most of the same names.

Domain name themes

A more recent variation of the portfolio review are domain name themes.  Instead of 50 names from two domainers, Michael or one of the Sherpas will select a specific topic or theme for the next review.  The best thing is anyone can submit one domain name within that niche and [Read more...]

Creating multiple pages in WordPress

I love WordPress.  It is very flexible and is simply a great tool to quickly build, develop, and maintain websites, blogs, etc.

One of the greatest features is the concept of themes followed closely in my opinion by plugins.  You can find a plugin to do most anything you can think of in WordPress…

Plugins for WordPress

My personal favorite is the plugin feature where you can search for and add in a plugin from either WordPress.org or from some other developer.  You can literally add extensive functionality in a couple of seconds.  Analytics – done.  Spam control – done. Multi-user sites – done.  Seriously, most anything you could want on a site is available.

Yesterday I had an idea that would require creating a LOT of similar pages on this site in bulk.  Content, titles, format all very similar.  Most of the data I needed to use was in excel so I thought why not check out the plugins rather than having to create all these pages manually?

A quick search later and I’ve found multiple plugins that look promising.  Some that load straight from excel while others that let you put in text fairly quickly. So far, so good.

Unfortunately, I haven’t found one that meets my needs exactly so I’m going to look around some to see if there are any premium (that is online open source terminology for “paid”) plugins that will do the trick.

I know I could do it myself and just repetitively put in page after page and it probably would take the same amount of time as what I’m searching and researching… But, what fun would that be?  Plus, if I can find something I like it will be something I can do again and not have to spend the time.  And the odds of that are fairly high so it is worth it to do some research for now.

While I’m away, do you have a favorite plugin you’d like to recommend?  I don’t care what area it is in – seo, social media links, commenting systems, etc.  I am just always looking for good tools and pieces of functionality!  Leave a comment or recommendation below.

Eat That Frog! book review

Eat that frog!

Eat that Frog!

What do domain names and eating frogs have to do with each other?  As it turns out, quite a bit!
At the end of last year, when evaluating my domain names and deciding what to do with them for the new year, I read the book “Goals” by Brian Tracy.  I really got a lot out of it and I’ve used many of its principles to accomplish goals for selling domain names and building websites on other domains.

Recently, I visited Brian’s personal brand site and while there I actually signed up for his email list.  I usually hesitate to get on email subscriptions because I get so many emails already, but I figured Brian’s was worth it so I signed up.  BTW, I viciously unsubscribe to anyone not providing valuable content in exchange for my email because of some serious information overload… another story for another time.

 

Now I get all the daily quotes and the recommended “training” or products in the sales pitches that he does – I really don’t mind these type pitches because most of them offer some decent information along with the offer to buy something.  I’ll listen to a brief pitch if you give me enough value for free and I can expect the product to be worthwhile if I am interested… and they generally are.

 

One of the benefits of working for large corporation as my day job is that we have a corporate library with a lot of information about our industry along with business and marketing books, current magazines, etc.  I went to the library the other day looking at some personal/business networking books(which I desperately need) and social media books and I saw Brian Tracy’s name on another audio book, “Eat that Frog!” – I filed a mental note to come back another day to check it out…

 

Within 4 hours I saw two recommendations for Brian’s books – one from an Internet marketer’s site and another from a domain name investor’s website.  Both of them highly recommended this book as well as the goals book so I went and picked it up.

 

These are my notes from listening to the book in its audio format.  A lot of it is direct quotes or my summarizations with some domain name information and thoughts thrown into the mix.  I’ll also have commentary of my own so if you want a version without my notes convoluting the original ideas go to Amazon or your local bookstore.

[Read more...]

Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III? Which is more valuable?

Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III?

That is the multi-million dollar question many will be asking today as the NFL draft conducts the first round of minting new millionaires.  As with many things when you buy and sell domain names, you start looking for related domains as the high dollar question!  So a better question would be:

Which Domain Name is worth more?

AndrewLuck.com, RobertGriffin3.com, Luck.com, Draft.com…

Since I’m not a big fan of the NFL, you wouldn’t think I’d even bother to look, but I am a big Alabama football fan.  Even though I hate to see them leave, I really hope for the best for all the young men coming out of college and making their initial fortunes in one fell swoop!

Most of us aren’t that lucky genetically or have any expectations of getting a ton of cash from any other source such as inheritance or lottery winnings.  We can however, look at buying domain names for a way to make some money!

Trends and hot topics in the news are often the most lucrative quick flips in domains, but you have to act fast if your dreams of hand registering  a great domain associated to a fairly viral social event are to come true.  The general process is to:

  1. Look for overall trend/product name in the .com first and then other extensions
  2. Look for specific products/examples/subtrends preferably in the .com so it is easier to flip
  3. Check out related names or slight variations.  If it is a product, try adding buy to the front or review/s at the end

People involved in the trending event often register the primary domain, but leave many available.  That is what I want to look at today to let you know how my mind works on topics like this.  Way late to the NFL draft game so I expect to find poor or no domains available, but you can apply this process to any upcoming trend you see.

If you didn’t know or weren’t aware of how big an event this has become, do a quick google search for “NFL draft” or “mock draft” and you will see some amazing content:  contests for picking the draft order,  entire sites dedicated to  top recruits, pre-draft analysis of what position each team needs to draft, post-draft analysis of previous years, etc.

So here are my thoughts – Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III will be the highest profile draft picks as they are both quarterbacks with incredible talent.  Very different in skills and abilities, but each has the potential to make a great name for themselves… which of these can you say would have the same effect for domain names?

Note that I do NOT recommend you ever buy trademarked domain names or high profile people names as you are just asking for trouble.   For this hypothetical discussion though, I’d put AndrewLuck.com ahead of RobertGriffinIII.com or even RobertGriffin.com.  Both names are fairly common so I would expect someone registered these a long time ago.

A quick whois search and I see Andrew’s name was registered in 2005 to a guy in Seattle with the same name (who also needs a new profile pic by the way…sheesh).  My guess is he has received several offers to buy the domain especially since he only has it redirected to his LinkedIn account.

Another quick search and I see Robert’s shorter url was registered way back in 1999 and has an old website on it.  RobertGriffiniii.com was just registered this year to someone NOT name Robert Griffin so my guess is that is a domainer.  RobertGriffin3.com is a little older with a November 2010 born on date and a quick look at the domain shows it is parked at godaddy.com so I’m sure that is a domainer as well.  A quick look at valuate.com shows RobertGriffin has the edge in domain value but neither are super valuable to anyone other than the guys who wear the same name on their jerseys on Sundays next Fall.

Andrew Luck and Robert GriffinIf you happen to like some of the other extensions, a quick bulk domain search reveals there are only a handful still available for either name.  Other people are looking at the same idea I see!

Now for some real fun!  What would be even better names related to these two names and the draft in general.  Well, if you listen to what the broadcasters call them I’d say Luck and RG3  are good words to start with.  No way any of those are available.  I’d also do a little brainstorming and come up with names like draft, nfldraft, mockdraft, recruit, recruits…you get the idea.

Still don’t expect any of those to be available, but it will be interesting to see if any of the newer extensions are available since these words were probably registered a long time ago and sometimes you’ll see new extensions still available…

Well, not much luck there either if you’ll pardon the pun :)  Only MOCKDRAFT.CO, MOCKDRAFT.INFO and MOCKDRAFT.ME.  Have at ‘em.

In this case valuate offers what I would expect – a huge price tag on luck.com, a medium price on draft.com all the way down to a reasonable price for rg3.com.  No big surprises there.

You can apply this 3 step process to most any trend… speaking of 3, what about 3d – more specifically 3d printers?  That model ship has sailed, but it is going to be a huge market and you see new breakthroughs and lower costs every day which will bring 3d printers to the mainstream markets and raise the domain values in the process.  I’ll take 3 minutes here and see if anything jumps out at me…

Nothing much still available and valuate hates the names that are available giving most of them zero value.  I would agree for the most part, but a couple could be of some value in a few months/years… if you grab one let me know how you do.  I bolded a couple that at least have some obvious potential.  Available domain names:

  • 3DPRINTERINK.CO
  • 3DPRINTERINK.INFO
  • 3DPRINTERINK.ORG
  • 3DPRINTERINK.ME
  • 3DPRINTERINK.US
  • 3DPRINTERSINK.COM
  • 3DPRINTERSINK.CO
  • 3DPRINTERSINK.INFO
  • 3DPRINTERSINK.NET
  • 3DPRINTERSINK.ORG
  • 3DPRINTERSINK.ME
  • 3DPRINTERSINK.US
  • BUY3DPRINTER.CO
  • BUY3DPRINTER.US
  • BUY3DPRINTERS.CO
  • BUY3DPRINTERS.INFO
  • BUY3DPRINTERS.US
  • 3DPRINTERREVIEW.CO
  • 3DPRINTERREVIEW.US
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEW.CO
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEW.INFO
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEW.NET
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEW.ORG
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEW.US
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEWS.CO
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEWS.INFO
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEWS.NET
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEWS.ORG
  • 3DPRINTERSREVIEWS.US
  • 3DPRINTERSUPPLIES.US
  • 3DPRINTERREPAIR.CO
  • 3DPRINTERREPAIR.INFO
  • 3DPRINTERREPAIR.ORG
  • 3DPRINTERREPAIR.US

I hope you catch a trend or create a trend and cash in on some domains – good luck!

99 Domain Names Website Case Study – Number 1

You may have seen that I already built a beta website on a domain for this case study on how to make money with Domain Names and Websites. That was a beta that you can read more about if you are interested.

This is the kick-off/real/first Domain Name using the 99 Domains process where I choose a Domain Name and build a website in 99 minutes every day for 99 days – at least that is the goal…

Since I did the beta site and tried to keep timings I knew this first site would probably take more than 99 minutes as I clean up the process and documentation.

What surprised me most was how long the articles are taking to write – about 45 minutes each at this point! This may have to be something I outsource and I am ok with that practice in general, but not for this effort so I’m going to keep writing my own articles for now and if I change my mind I’ll let you know.

The Domain Name…

RefundAnticipationLoan.net is the domain and site I chose for this first 99.

Refund Anticipation Loan

RefundAnticipationLoan.net


The tax year has ended and people are looking to file their income taxes. Many of them will want their tax refund as quick as possible so this one has to be online and indexed very quick. More of a seasonal domain so it may make a few bucks this year and hopefully quite a bit more next year.

The website and traffic analysis

This domain fits my case study requirements exactly in that there are at least 500 and preferably at least 1,000 exact match searches for the keywords in the domain with a Cost Per Click of at least $1.00.

To be fair, there are 18,500 exact searches which is way more than my minimum. Actually, it may be getting to the range of too many as competition from competing sites gets tougher the more searches there are.

Also, the CPC is around $3.75 which is over 3x my minimum. Again, it is borderline too competitive because if I want to drive traffic with an ad campaing it could get really expensive.

Building the website in 99 minutes

Since I followed the process I established in the beta, this site only took about 23 minutes to have up with analytics, a new theme and the basic pages like privacy and Contact form.

Where it fell apart and what is making me rethink my 99 domains idea is just how freaking long it took to write the articles. Granted, I don’t know anything about refund anticipation loans, but wow! 45 minutes went by like nothing – about 60 or 70 minutes to research, write, SEO and format each article… I have a whole new appreciation for copywriters! 70 minutes each is totally unacceptable.

I say unacceptable because for this to make business sense, I need to build the site and have reasonable expectations that I will get enough ROI based on the value of my time and the domain cost to make it worth it. So in this case I’ve spent less than $25 on the domain and renewals, but I’ve spent about 5 hours on the site. I also need to spend more time on backlinking and some more articles so if you count about $50 an hour I will need about $400 just to break even… I am not in business to break even. I guess I could take that money, pay for articles on a few other sites and pay for backlinking…

Guess I need to talk to some people who have helped me out before and have done this successfully over a long period of time…

Back soon I hope with an update.

Become an Expert Google Searcher in an Hour – Review

Review and notes on a video I watched recently on how to search google in expert mode. If you think you know how to search well on Google and you don’t use these tips, you’re wrong. These will help you with domains, content and much more! Always applying things I watch and learn like this to domain names and this one is a keeper – here’s an hour of content consolidated down into a few minutes for you to read and apply today.

Stephan Spencer had a nice video hosted over on O’Reilly and it is about an hour long as the title suggests – here are my notes on the video and a link to the book if you are interested in learning more.

Tips, tricks and hacks on how to find stuff in Google

Author of Google Power Search

According to Google, and most experts, many searches don’t find the right answer in the SERP’s – up to 30% and probably more since that doesn’t account for searches that don’t find the optimal answer!

Here’s a little pop quiz to see what would give the best answer to “How many women buy cars in the United States?  What’s the best Google search query? Here’s some possible answers from the video:

The answer is 3 or 4, but 4 preferably because the tilde (~) symbol provides a synonym lookup for the word it is attached to and gives a wider set of results.

5 keys to smarter searching

  1. Cutting Through the Clutter
    • Use quotes for exact phrases for things you want exactly
    • Avoid questions – “how many”, “What is”
    • Singular vs plural – if you think plural, but looking for singular you will get wrong “Templates” vs “Template”
    • Word order is very important to Google in the SERP
    • Boolean logic is very useful -,+,(),OR,|
      • +car gives only results with car and ignores synonyms
      • –car excludes results with that word
    • Search operators like:
      • Filetype:  – this restricts results to a specific file extension like ppt, xls, pdf
      • Site:   – only find/search specified domain – can also specify extension like site:edu
      • Intitle: & allintitle:   – words must appear in title
      • Inurl: & allinurl:  – words must appear in title
      • Daterange:  – only search pages added/updated in that range of dates, but it is in Julian so it is better to use the more options on left.
      • Define:  – get a glossary definition
    • Date based searching – on the left there are “More search tools” option list and use advanced search page
  2. Cast a wider net with synonyms, etc
    1. ~ (tilde) gives Synonyms
    2. * (asterisk) is a wildcard replacement
    3. OR or |  – logical or conditions – either satisfies
    4. ..  used for number ranges 1..10
    5. Related:
  3. Master the google interface including the options on the left side such as date based searches
    • Type in keyword and “I’m feeling lucky” button and  it will go to first result on search
    • Cached version can get you file not found type stuff or if it scrolled off of active page
    • If you wanted images, go to images link.
    • Advanced search page – provides simple interface to many of these options – good to look at results of the engine that creates the query
    • Google Groups – under more – archive of all usenet and google groups postings – some great results in these verticals
    • Forrester research grapevine filetype:pdf – gives you true forrester research documents
  4. Employ specialized search services (verticals such as news, patent search, etc)
    • Soople
    • Google Patent Search
    • Google Books
    • Google Scholar
    • Google Q&A aka instant answers
    • The search box has its own toolbox features
      • Phonebook
      • Calculator
      • Measurement conversion
      • Dictionary
      • Package tracking
      • Airline schedules
      • Atlas of street maps
      • Stock tickers
  5. Assemble your toolbox such as books, references, etc
    • Download and install the Google Toolbar
      • Gives advanced options like PR meter
      • Toolbar.google.com to download
    • Subscribe to Google Alerts – Can specify news results only, frequency…
    • Set your start page
    • Buy a reference book on Google
    • Create a Google cheat sheet
    • Take the GoogleGuide.com tutorial

Domain Name Hot Search Tips!

Tip – +”confidential and proprietary” +”do not distribute”
Tip – 2009..2011 to get only recent ones
Tip – related: on a site www.test.com give related sites…
Tip – use this to find creative commons licensed images and use them with attribution
Tip – Can have more results in page with query parameters – switch from 10 to 100 with &num=100
Tip – Can change your location on left side options – specific for geo is great!


You can contact Stephan by emailing Stephan@stephanspencer.com
You can get copy of his original slide deck by emailing admin@stephanspencer.com

Domain Name Trend”ing”

Domain Names are like most any other business area – trends occur and many downright explode. Most blow over quickly, but a few will make it for the long haul.

Domain Name Trending

Tebowing is a good example of this from the NFL quarterback, Tim Tebow. From a simple gesture to a craze where people are posting pictures of themselves from around the world “Tebowing” on a domain started by a Denver fan. I don’t know how much money he makes off the site, but in a second you’ll see why some small portion of trends succeed and some don’t. A great example of this from recent domains is 3D domains – it would be interesting to see how many 3D domains were registered over the last year or two…

So basically for this word trend”ing” they just took a name, added “ing”, associated it to an action by the person and turned the word into a verb. Simple enough, but it has developed into a highly visible mainstream trend of sorts.

After the superbowl, I heard someone on ESPN or the radio say something about Brady choking and then just sitting on the field just “Bradying”. They mentioned you could see a picture at Bradying.com.

Bradying.com

Bradying.com

Someone had already bought Bradying.com and put a site up… I assumed it would be a Pats hater site and maybe that would be how they made money… But it is just a simple site with some ads and not much else. Personally I think they could make more money on the domain if they’d put up some slam articles on Brady or anti-fan site or whatever with ads for stuff like those fathead wall posters of Eli, Brady, Tebow, Brees or Cam Newton. Anyway, at least they did something.

Tebowing.com

Tebowing.com

If you take a look at the two sites you’ll see they were both based off Tumblr, but a lot more work went into Tebowing and since that is a trend that has taken on a persona of its own I think it will continue and at the very least they guy will make some money on it. Bradying not so much. I actually like the Bradying logo and slogan – clever and decent graphics, but unless they do something more with it that will be a low income site. I highlighted some of the better parts of the sites and you can see there was much more thought and time put into developing and maintaining Tebowing.com.

The most interesting part was a Whois lookup… they actually bought the Bradying domain only 3 days after the Tebowing.com domain was registered. I looked at several other domain names with NFL Quarterback + “ing” and they were all taken Flaccoing, Breesing, Newtoning, Manning(I didn’t look for this for obvious reasons or Manninging because one guy’s site had Eliing and Peytoning) – not interested in buying them, just got my curiosity up. All were registered, some by the same person and of course some of the common names or names that made sense with an ing were registered long ago. One person had registered several and had even gone as far as putting simple wordpress sites on there letting people know they were for sale. I doubt they’ll sell, but maybe some end user who loves an NFL team quarterback might want them. Who knows, but it is interesting that almost all of them were registered within a day of one another.

Domain Name Trending

Domain Name Trending

Another example of this is a recent article about Jeremy Lin – the NBA guard making a big splash in his first few games.

Jeremy Lin Linning

Jeremy Lin Linning

The article references Tebowing and that they are just waiting for Jeremy to come up with a signature move or pose to call Linning. Getting that domain may be harder for someone since BuyDomains.com owns it and it has been registered since 2004. The alternate spelling to that is Lining which has been registered and used forever – why? Because there are more than a couple Li Ning’s in the world…

As far as trends go, usually only the first one in who starts the trend and a few who work hard at establishing a brand will ever see any benefit. A few 3d domains will survive, Tebowing will survive, but that is all. If you can get in early and recognize trends before they go mainstream you have a chance to make money on the domains related to them especially for product domains directly related to the trend (3dtv, 3dglasses, 3dcamera…), but don’t waste your money if you are in even a day or two late… too bad I didn’t think about Domain”ing” before Francois… wonder if Domaining”ing” is available? (it is… don’t buy it…)