Ok so maybe I am mad – surely this is career suicide to dare write a blog with such an inflammatory title but to be honest I just couldn’t resist, it is a question that has been nagging me for some time and one that I truly have no right or wrong answer for.
I am pretty new to the “domaining community” and from the outside looking in to all extent and purpose it appears to be a pretty impenetrable prestigious group with the biggest accolades being that most of its members were buying domains way back when before most of us had not even heard of the world-wide web. Strategic foresight is a valuable skill and one that is not easily learnt and has definitely paid off for these guys but the internet is a completely different place to what it was 20 years ago, no longer is it the new frontier, it is a densely populated competitive marketplace where the name of your domain really can be the difference between boom and bust for your business ? So how does the legacy of domain investing impact the everyday small business owner who wants to buy the perfect domain for their startup but can’t as it is sitting in someone’s portfolio somewhere gathering dust?
The domain market is often referred to as the Real Estate market of the internet, or the modern-day Wall Street and yes the parallels between both are quite obvious but with more and more small business’s setting up their “store front” on the web before splashing out on a brick and mortar premises it is actually becoming harder and harder for these guys to purchase a relevant domain name at a reasonable price. Unlike in the Real Estate world where if the land or building you wish to purchase/lease is unavailable it is relatively easy to find the owner/landlord and negotiate a deal yourself or find a similar premises with their being minimal impact on your business’s success. In the world of the internet though this is not always the case, your domain name is extremely important and will be directly linked to your online success.
The rise of the likes of Godaddy has lulled the general public into a false sense of ease in this area, I see time and time again in many of the small business forums that I am a member in that it is felt picking your domain and buying it is a far easier job than choosing a logo – but beware this is far from the truth. Honestly unless you are happy to pick some obscure name with an even obscurer TLD, the truth be told the domain you have picked for your business will not be available and if you have your heart set on it be prepared to have to pay a lot of money for it. Now the investor who owns your targeted domain as part of their portfolio knows you want it and will up the price to sometimes even beyond its general market value as they know YOU particularly want it. Even more frustratingly these domains are not even being used and are at best being parked somewhere covered in the equivalent of online bill boards.
To the domain novice, terminology such as SEO, Domain Authority, Page Rank, backlinks, and Alexa Rank can be completely daunting and alien concepts and yes there are many experts out there who will help you for a small fee navigate your way around these concepts too, so this leads me to ask has the seemingly simple task of buying a suitable domain for your business become unreachable for the masses? It could be argued that ICANN thought so hence the unprecedented release this year of hundreds of additional TLD’S, it was and is still hoped that these will open the web to premium and relevant domains that so far have been unavailable and more importantly unattainable to most.
With the slogan “.com is king why drive a Toyota when you can have a Ferrari” prevalent across many domaining blogs it appears that investors are still keeping hold of their valuable .com domains and have a healthy dose of skepticism for the new TLDS . There has been much talk and discussion about how these will impact the value of existing portfolios – will they drag the price up or down? Maybe neither – domain investors can continue to trade these so-called premium domains amongst themselves and large blue chip clients and in the mean time a new group can form – domain mortals, those of us who just want a name to fit and to grow and expand our business’s from..
My part in all of this? – well going back to the Real Estate analogy our site offers everyone the opportunity to see easily the domains that are expiring and have expired e without having to pay for the privilege or have a degree in computer science to mine the data. Think the www.realtor.com of the expired domain world, the more people who have access to these domains, the more competition which is probably a good thing for everyone – investor and mortal alike..!
Check out our expired domains search engine on our Home Page we have millions of domains in our database.