DomainTools

Domain Tools I Use Daily

There are a number of tools that I frequently use to evaluate domain sales and acquisitions. Some of them are domain-specific, but others are used to evaluate traffic and revenue potential. Here are some of the websites with tools I use just about every day.

  • FreshDrop.net – I use Fresh Drop just about every day to evaluate dropping/expiring domain names on Snapnames and Namejet. There are a whole lot of analytics you can track, including incoming links, domain age, pagerank, number of other extensions registered, and a variety of other options. Members can save filters, allowing them to use the site with more consistency and more quickly.
  • DomainTools – DomainTools is probably the “grandfather” of all domain-related tools. I use DomainTools for my Whois lookups, Whois history search, and frequently the Reverse IP search when attempting to buy domain names. I think everyone who is involved in the domain space should have a DomainTools account.
  • Google Adwords Keyword Tool – Frequently referred to simply as “GAKT,” this tool is helpful in analyzing keyword search volume as well as the cost advertisers are paying per click. There are many search options here, but I prefer to use the local exact match search.
  • Domaining.com – I don’t know if I would really call Domaining.com a tool per se, but it’s a resource I use every day to stay on top of the news in our business.

Whois Monitor is Back

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I wrote about the handy Domain Tools Whois Monitor tool and how I was disappointed that it had been removed from the basic Whois lookup screen. I just received an email from Name Intelligence’s Susan Prosser, who let me know the Whois Monitor is back on the lookup screen:

“Your wish is my command…. Flag is back but no longer a flag, a magnifying glass (more align with watching)”

This is good news because it will make it quicker and easier to monitor domain names. Great to see Domain Tools listening to their clients. I highly recommend that domain owners add their better domain names to their monitor lists to make sure important details don’t change without notice.

Monitor Domain Names

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For quite some time, when you did a Whois lookup using DomainTools, you had the ability to click a little flag icon to monitor the domain name you were looking up. You could monitor for Whois changes, Nameserver changes, Registration changes, and maybe a few other things. Recently, I tried to monitor a domain name, and I couldn’t find the flag icon.

After a bit of searching this morning, I was able to find the URL to monitor domain names on DomainTools. You do need to have an account to monitor domain names, but it’s part of the package for Silver members.

I have been monitoring a wide variety of domain names, although my list hadn’t been updated in a while. I also keep an eye on domain names I own in addition to names I would like to own.

This is a handy tool that I am happy to learn has not been removed from DomainTools.   I just wish they would move it back to the standard Whois lookup console to make it easier – allowing me to monitor domain names on the fly rather than having to go to a separate URL.

Monitor Domain Names with Domain Alerts

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At any given time, I am tracking the registration details for a considerable number of domain names. Most of these names are owned by my companies, and I follow them as a security precaution. Other domain names I follow are names I am interested in acquiring, and yet others are names I follow for other reasons. There are a whole host of reasons why it’s important to monitor domain names.

DomainTools has a good way to keep track of domain names you have an interest in monitoring. The Domain Monitor service is completely free, and it’s easy to sign up for alerts. All of your alerts will be emailed to you, so you can track a variety of changes as the happen.

Some of the things you can track:

  • Ownership changes
  • Registrar changes
  • Expiration date updates
  • DNS changes

If there are domain names you want to follow, sign up for free alerts on them pretty easily and quickly.

Melanie Oudin .com: Protecting a Brand

I frequently see cybersquatters quickly grab the .com domain names of up and coming athletes, musicians, and entertainers. Oftentimes, it happens when sports magazines announce a new class of top recruits or after a great public performance when people buy these names like lotto tickets hoping the athlete/celebrity hits it big and the name presumably becomes valuable.

Melanie Oudin is a 17 year old woman from Marietta, Georgia currently competing in the US Open tennis tournament in Flushing Queens, New York. This afternoon, Oudin won over the pro-American crowd by defeating 13th ranked Nadia Petrova from Russing in three sets, and is now one of the final 8 women competing in the tournament.

I wanted to see when someone tried to capitalize on Oudin’s success by registering the MelanieOudin.com, and I found that her father had registered it back in 2007 – a very smart move! A professional athlete is a brand, and it’s important to protect the brand as early as possible.

With Melanie Oudin’s great performance in the US Open so far, now might be a smart time to add privacy guard to prevent unwanted emails, although DomainTools has already archived the email address by now.

What Tools & Products Do You Need?

Domain ToolsI use a variety of handy tools every day to help make smarter domain acquisition, sales, and development decisions. Many of these tools weren’t created specifically for domain investors, but they work very well for our needs. Some of the tools I use just about every day include Whois History, website archive, keyword tools, reverse IP search, Alexa, and Compete.

Every so often, I wish that a specific tool or product was created and/or was more accessible or better publicized. For instance, wish there was an intuitive tool where I could type in a keyword phrase, and the tool would spit out associated domain names, Whois results, and let me know if the domain name is a developed website. This would save time and generate domain acquisition targets more easily.

On the product-side, I wish there was much more intuitive and easy to use web development software. I would love a program where I could just drag different elements into place, and it would code everything for me. I wouldn’t want something that created websites that look like they’re from the 1990s – I am talking real deal development that looks great and allows me to create cool things.

I know there are thousands of people working to build tools and products that will help web developers and many who are looking to create something that is helpful to domain investors. I am sure a few of them read domain blogs such as this to see what people want and need – and would pay for if they knew the product existed.

So I ask you, what tools or products would help you become a better web developer or domain investor?

Photo Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jannem/ / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

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