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Buying Domain Names

My Portfolio by Acquisition Date

One question I am asked quite a bit is about how long it takes me to sell my domain names. This isn’t something I really track, so I usually respond by saying that it can be a week or 10 years – it can be a crapshoot and come down to how motivated I am to sell a particular domain name.

For those who are curious about how long I’ve held names in my portfolio, I did a quick analysis of my inventory this morning to give an idea. Interestingly perhaps, all of the domain names I owned in 2007 and prior aren’t domain names I would sell. For instance, I bought TopNotchDomains.com in 2006 and that isn’t for sale because I am using it for my corporate website.

Here’s an approximate breakdown of domain names in my portfolio by acquisition year:

Honeymoons.com: Domain Name Led to 10x Revenue

Jim Campbell, Founder of Honeymoons.com, published an article on Entrepreneur.com that discussed how a domain name acquisition “resulted in a 7x increase in traffic and a 10x increase in revenue.” For someone like myself, this article reinforces how an exceptional category defining domain name can be transformed into an authoritative brand name in its industry.

According to the article, the Honeymoons.com domain name was acquired in July of 2023 “for mid-six figures.” Prior to the acquisition, the company had been using the less-than-ideal HoneymoonGoals.com domain name. Some of the benefits of acquiring Honeymoons.com that were cited in the article include:

Being Candid on .AI Domain Names

Andrew Rosener and Andy Booth are two domain investors whose opinions I respect. I have known Andy and Andrew for many years, and I know both have had considerable success investing in domain names.

When it comes to .AI domain name investments, it looks like their paths are diverging. Andy was recently on the Domain Sherpa show, and .AI was a topic of discussion.

In addition to this, a recent Twitter exchange between Andrew and Andy show their differing thoughts on .AI domain name investing:

Founders: This is a Good Week to Lock in an Upgrade

The last week of the year is usually pretty slow for domain investors. Decision makers are traveling and people are not focused on domain name acquisitions if they are in the office. This is great because my family always heads south the last week of the year. Because it is slow for many investors, it may be a great time for startup founders and CEOs to lock in a deal on a domain name upgrade.

When I receive an offer or inquiry during the final week of the year, it usually gets my full attention. I may not be working from the comfort of my home office, but I am not balancing 20 other negotiations either. I imagine other investors also have a lull in negotiations and can be available to focus on one important deal.

Why Public Upgraded to Public.com from HelloPublic.com

Public.com is an exceptional domain name that had been owned by Anything.com up for many years. At some point between 2018 and 2019, the domain name appears to have been sold for an undisclosed amount of money. The buyer, as it turns out, is a company called Public. That company got its start on the two word, off-brand HelloPublic.com domain name.

Why did Public decide to acquire its brand match Public.com domain name? One might guess it was for enhanced marketability and/or to convey trust with customers and clients. We needn’t guess the reasons any longer. In a response to Greg Isenberg’s tweet about the benefits of acquiring a premium .com domain name, Jannick Malling, Co-founder & Co-CEO of Public, shared his rationale for acquiring Public.com:

Finally Got DogSitter.com

I have owned DogWalker.com for quite some time. I previously operated a website on DogWalker.com to help dog owners find local dog walkers. Dog walkers paid an annual fee for a listing, and visitors to the website could search for a dog walker in their city, neighborhood or zip code. I later expanded and operated similar websites on DogPark.com, DogGroomers.com, and CatSitter.com. I focused less on those websites, and they didn’t do as well as the original.

For quite some time, I tried to buy DogSitter.com. I thought it paired up better with DogWalker.com than the other domain names and websites. Many dog walkers are also dog sitters, but not many are dog groomers or cat sitters. Having DogSitter.com would make a more logical cross-sell for me.

DogSitter.com had been long owned by Frank Schilling. While his mid five figure asking price wasn’t crazy for a dog sitting service to pay, it was too high for me. With my directory model, it would take a few years to earn that much back if things went as well as DogWalker.com. Over the years, i communicated with Frank and Uni brokers about the domain but never really got close enough to make a strong offer.

I wound down DogWalker.com in early 2021, so DogSitter.com was less appealing to me – particularly at mid five figures. In 2021, I sold DogGroomers.com. At the beginning of 2022, I sold CatSitter.com to someone else.

As you know, GoDaddy acquired Frank Schilling’s domain name portfolio. A couple of weeks ago, GoDaddy listed some inventory from its NameFind portfolio via GoDaddy Auctions. A few domain names caught my attention. One of those domain names was DogSitter.com. The auction concluded yesterday, and I prevailed. Ironically, I most likely would have paid this amount several years ago, but I did not get that chance. For now, it will go into my portfolio and be listed for sale.

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