Domain Auctions

Preliminary Moniker TRAFFIC Auction List

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I just received an email announcing the first cut of Moniker’s auction list for the October 2007 T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Conference. This is the first cut of more than 3,000 domains included in the auctions. From past experience, I believe there will be somewhere around 300 domain names in the live auction, and several hundred names in the silent auction. As always, there are some high profile names in this list. As we get closer to the event and the final list is distributed, I will give my opinion of some great names at low reserves.

WallStreet.com
Taxes.com
StockQuotes.com
Computer.com
Photographers.com
Ethanol.com
Estate.com
Elections.com
Kuwait.com
Copiers.com
ScienceFiction.com
SportingGoods.com
MartialArts.com
Cowboys.com
CrosswordPuzzles.com
GasPrices.com
Debit.com
Podiatrists.com
MiniatureGolf.com
Communication.com
House.net
Technology.org
Manufacture.com
Newlyweds.com
Promotion.com
Dentists.net
PensionPlan.com
Math.net
AutoFinancing.com
Pesos.com
VoiceRecognitionSoftware.com
CaribbeanVacations.com
Invest.net
ChocolateCandy.com
SchoolTeacher.com
TuxedoRental.com
AIDS.net
StMaartenRealEstate.com
EuropeanVacations.com
LibertyBell.com
MortgageRates.org
CysticFibrosis.org
Cholesterol.net
Scores.mobi
CertifiedPublicAccountants.com
HomeMortgageRates.com
SpaghettiSauce.com
Cotton.com
Audit.net
AirlineTickets.org
Lotto.info
Software.info
FreeMovies.net
HomeBudget.com
PrimeInterestRate.com
DiscountAirFares.net
News.mobi
Free.mobi
Email.mobi
PDA.mobi
Cash.mobi
Buy.mobi
Podcast.mobi

Dumber.com – On Snapnames 9/17

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I have put Dumber.com up for auction on Snapnames on Monday, September 17th. The reserve price is only set at $499, so this is a great opportunity to buy a great domain name at a bargain basement price. Back in 2005, the name was appraised by Sedo at a minimum of $10,000 to a maximum value of $30,000.

Place your bids tonight!

Industry Specific Domain Auctions

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In an email to an acquaintance of mine back in October of 2006, I suggested that it would be beneficial for his company to introduce industry-specific live domain auctions. At the time, there had been three (or so) successful Moniker live auctions at TRAFFIC shows, but I don’t recall any industry specific auctions. Although the live auctions found success targeting domain investors, I thought domain owners were missing the sweet spot in selling their domain names to end users.

Although my acquaintance never organized an industry specific auction, there has been some success with domain auctions targeting end users. Moniker created Internext and the Casino Affiliate Convention, which I believe are good starts. However, I believe we should continue to educate end users and ultimately target them for industry specific domain names – possibly sponsoring auctions at their own tradeshows.

Back in a June post on my blog, I suggested that a company work in conjunction with an industry specific tradeshow to sponsor a seminar about the value of domain names. If we teach end users about why domain names are valuable, just maybe they will want to buy great domain names for their business. If we can do this, why not hold industry specific auctions at their tradeshows? There will be a captive and newly educated audience in attendance. In my opinion, it is something to consider, and I think a company like BuyDomains.com or Moniker could undertake successfully.

Below is the content from the email I sent to an acquaintance in October:

“I have an idea for your company. Would you be interested in organizing monthly industry-specific live auctions? With your connections, you could run a live auction once a month, inviting end-users and domainers alike to bid on industry-specific auctions. For example, in January, you could have a telecommunication-specific domain auction. For this, you could invite some end user contacts such as Verizon, Vonage, ATT, SBC

Ebay’s Pulse

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Did you know that you can see the most watched auctions in each category on Ebay? Check out pulse.ebay.com and select the category of your choice. Personally, I keep my eye on the Domain Name section.

DRT Auction – An Historic Event

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The Domain Roundtable Auction has ended, with the highest sales going to Invention.com, Rebate.com, AZ.com, Event.com, eTV.com and Army.org. Some could argue that a majority of the names in the auction were average (or below), reserve prices were set too high, or the auction took too long, but I believe this auction was a watershed moment in domain sales history. It wasn’t so much the names or prices of the sales (and non-sales) that were historic, but rather the auction platform itself.

To my knowledge, this was the first domain auction where there was a live Internet-based bidding tool along with a live video and audio feed. Users at home, numbering in the low thousands, were able to follow along with the auction and bid in real time. This stretched the reach of the auction from the few hundred in attendance to millions of potential bidders. The turnout wasn’t in the millions, but it was a good start.

I have always believed that live domain auctions should be simulcast over the Internet. After all, domain names are valuable Internet properties. Jay Westerdahl and his team at Domaintools deserve a huge amount of credit for being the pioneers in this endeavor. I suspect that other auction companies are going to have to follow suit or risk falling behind in the domain auction business.

With the high cost of domain conference attendance coupled with the expense of travel, attending live auctions can be a hardship on many domain investors. There are also many people who view domain investment as one small aspect of their investment portfolio, and others who buy domain names simply as a hobby. These passive domain investors aren’t likely to attend a domain conference, which was almost required in order to participate in past auctions (or pay a refundable fee to bid). When bidders don’t have to leave their offices or their couches, the domain auction process becomes more widely available to all, and it should bring strong results… and it was FREE to bid!

I will let others evaluate the auction for the names that were listed, the sales prices achieved, the length of time it took to get through 450 names, and everything else associated with the various aspects of the auction. For me, the highlight was the technical advances that were debuted today, and I certainly hope that this is the beginning of a new era in domain sales.

AZ.com – A Great Deal at $500,000

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In my post on August 7th, I identified what I thought were the top 5 values in the Domain Roundtable Auction. According to the live auction interface, it appears that AZ.com has at least one bid for the $500,000 minimum and will sell today. I think anything under $1,000,000 for this name is a great deal for the buyer.

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