I learned a great way to make money with a generic domain name by forwarding your domain’s traffic to an affiliate url of the website that may be the intended target of some of your domain name’s traffic. I don’t want to say where I learned this because I didn’t ask permission from the domain owner I saw doing this, but I’ve seen it many times and it’s fairly common although I haven’t done it yet myself.
Let’s say you own the absolutely generic domain name BestDomain.com and there happens to be a home cleaning products company that operates on BestDomain.co.uk. You know some of your type in traffic (especially UK traffic) is from people looking for this other website, but since your domain name isn’t related to the industry in which the other company operates, it would be risky to create a cleaning site without infringing on the rights of the company with the co.uk.
If you park the name, it could piss the other company off that their competitors have a chance to convert this traffic via PPC link, especially because the parking company may display cleaning-product advertisements, which could be considered infringing. Additionally, if people are looking for a cleaning product on BestDomain.com, the conversion rate would be pretty low if you built a domain name-related website.
The next best thing to inquire about is signing up with the other company’s affiliate program, and forward your traffic to the affiliate link. The other company should be happy because they are paying for converted customers, which may have been lost, and you are happy because you are able to make money by giving people what they want with relatively little effort. In addition, if conversion rates are great, the other company may even choose to try and buy the domian name from you.
If you wish, you can also build your own website or company on the domain name, but using a service like ComWired, forward the traffic from the UK to the affiliate link. You can then use your domain name in a way you like, while not losing out on potential revenue from others.
Looks like a good way to generate revenue if you ask me! One caveat I recommend is to speak with an attorney about doing this first to make sure you aren’t violating the rights of the other company, potentially jeopardizing the domain name.