General Domain Information

Domain Names – One of The Crown Jewels Of The Business

1

The Crown Jewels of The Business

Matt Kramer of The Bulletin, a local Philadelphia newspaper, discusses the 15 most valuable assets a business owns that many owners don’t understand. Among assets such as Customer List (#1), Building (#5) and Trademark (#8) is a company’s Domain Names (#9). According to Matt:

“A client of mine bought hundreds of domain names that would attract individuals looking for a mortgage. As the mortgage market declined, so did his business. One day, one of the biggest mortgage banks in the country came in and made him an offer of millions of dollars for all of his domain names. My client knows that the mortgage business is cyclical, but the amount that was offered allowed him to retire.” –Source: The Bulletin

This writer is on point. With targeted generic domain names becoming more valuable over time, sometimes a company’s domain name may be worth much more than a company realizes. There are many examples of companies using their domain names simply for email addresses and not having a website. This may be due to the owner’s reticence to spend the time and money developing an online business plan. Whatever the case may be, the company is almost certainly leaving money on the table. While a domain name may simply be an afterthought to some companies, others are willing and able to use the domain name as the centerpiece of their business. This is the root cause of a domain name being an overlooked source of value for a company, but in reality, it could be a large part of its net worth.

Registrant

0

Many thanks to Bob Conner who quarterbacked the creation of a Domain Registrant

Overcoming the Cybersquatting Label

0

http://www.ricksblog.com/my_weblog/2007/07/the-c-word-expo.html

No matter what you personally think of Rick Schwartz, he is on spot with this recent blog post. Domain owners and investors hold valuable pieces of virtual property, and some people who didn’t have the foresight to buy domain names while they were relatively cheap have been attempting to tarnish the image of generic domain owners by publicly labeling this group as “cybersquatters.” What has caused domain names to increase in value has also caused domain owners to be the target of what Rick refers to as “cyber bullies.” Fortunately, I believe domain owners are better equipped to protect our domain names than those who lost large land claims out west, but we need to be vigilant and support organizations such as the Internet Commerce Association. I have pledged to become a member as soon as they take Paypal or AmEx!

According to the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act, a law amended to the Lanham Act in 1999, cybersquatting

“is registering, trafficking in, or using a domain name with bad-faith intent to profit from the goodwill of a trademark belonging to someone else.”

The term “cybersquatting” is clearly derived from the word “squatting,” which is loosely defined as people living in a property in which they have no right to live, frequently without the owner’s knowledge, and certainly without his approval. The owner in the case of cybersquatting is the trademark owner. When people refer to generic domain owners as cybersquatters, they are either slandering this group or they are ignorant about the topic they are addressing. Generic domain name owners pay for the right to use their domain name in any way they choose. If they want to develop their domain name into a huge brand like Hotels.com, they have every right to do so. If they wish to place relevant advertising links on their page, they have the right to do that, too! Just because a domain name isn’t developed, doesn’t mean someone else should have the rights to the name. It doesn’t work in the case of physical property, and it doesn’t work for cyber property either.

Domain names such as Devices.com are considered generic because a company can’t claim ownership of that particular word as there are far too many people who would conceivably have the rights to that term as well. Assuming the domain name is generic, nobody has the right to decide whether one particular company or person deserves to own that domain name over somebody with equal rights. “Cyber bullies” attempt to sully the image of generic domain name holders in a slanderous way, and whether it is intentional or just uninformed writing, ignorance is never a valid defense.

Kudos to Rick for writing his post, and kudos to Ron Jackson of DNJournal for including this in The Lowdown section of DNJournal.com.

Honesty in Negotiations

0

In my opinion, honesty is one of the most important qualities in negotiating a domain sale. Since a majority of the domain investment business is done online, the important handshake and face to face encounter is eliminated. If a potential buyer or seller catches you being dishonest, you can kiss your deal goodbye. You may be the most sincere and kindest person in

Thinking Ahead to Buy Domain Names

0

http://frankschilling.typepad.com/my_weblog/2007/06/christmas-on-th.html

Reading Frank Schilling’s blog got me thinking about buying holiday-related domain names right now. Oftentimes our minds think about specific types of domain names because they are triggered by seasonal events. We think about acquiring shopping and Christmas-related names in October, November and December, and we think about beach related names in July and August. Well, it’s time to turn that upside down. Just like it’s better to buy a new pair of skis in the spring rather than in the fall, it’s the same way with domain names. There is no way you’ll find a bargain buying a high traffic Christmas name in late fall. Also, you won’t even have time to build a website in time to capitalize on the traffic (if that’s your plan).

You need to be at least two or three seasons ahead of your target acquisitions. If you want to create a Christmas themed portal, now is the time to buy (well, probably a month or two ago), but you get the point. I attend the NY International Gift Fair with my parents in the Spring when they are buying for the holidays, and the big retailers are doing the exact same thing. It’s important to think like consumers, analyze like marketers and act like businessmen.

Importance of a Generic Domain Name

0

Although there are several things I consider when selecting a domain name to target for acquisition, I believe the most important thing is the generic nature of the name. I believe that owning a generic, industry descriptive domain name is the most important thing someone can do to build their online business. It is even more important to own a generic domain name in a smaller niche industry, especially if an industry leader does not exist.

In my opinion, if you are entering a market without a dominant industry leader, the greatest thing you can do for yourself and your business is to purchase a generic name that describes the industry in the shortest way possible. To illustrate my point, let’s take an industry that is well established with many industry leaders. For example, let’s say you want to check out the score of the Red Sox game. Chances are good that you wouldn’t go to BaseballScores.com, but instead, you would either hit up ESPN.com or RedSox.com knowing that you will find the score of the game, box score, and maybe even a summary. Sites like these are dominant industry leaders, so although a generic domain name is good, it would still be difficult for your company to thrive with huge competition already fully developed and well known by web users.

However, let’s say you are interested in buying a flag for Independence Day. If you were to directly navigate to a website, chances are good that you might go to AmericanFlags.com, as there isn’t a well-known industry leader in the flag business (to my knowledge). AmericanFlags.com surely receives a good amount of type in traffic from patriotic Americans (and probably from anti-American people as well). This traffic is inherent with the domain name, and the company doesn’t need to expend advertising dollars to attract these highly motivated visitors who want to buy American flags. There is nothing better than when a customer knows exactly what he wants, and he finds himself on a website that can provide the product for him.

The other distinct advantage of building a business around a great generic domain name is that it is easier for a business with a generic domain name to get higher search engine placement than a company with an unrelated “brandable name.” To continue using the example from above, AmericanFlags.com has top placement in Google for “American Flags.” This is a HUGE advantage for an online company like this because consumers who choose to use a search engine instead of direct navigation will see the company right at the top of the unpaid search results, and many will trust this company, without knowing anything else about it. There is a good deal of comfort in a consumer’s mind knowing that they are clicking through to a company that is built around the term they are searching.

Could the people from AmericanFlags.com be successful without this domain name? The answer is probably yes because they have a great leader and team, however, it would have been more difficult and much more expensive.

Recent Posts

Hilco Streambank Marketing Thomas Cook Domain Name Portfolio

British travel company Thomas Cook Travel Group had a highly publicized bankruptcy that ended up stranding hundreds of thousands of customers who were abroad...

Video: “Innovative Entrepreneurs of the .CO Generation”

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_i0FlcOvak] There are many startups that use .CO domain names, and Neustar has been active in highlighting and promoting these companies and businesses. I...

DAE.com Sells for Six Figures in Expiry Auction

The DAE.com domain name expired in mid-October, and the domain name went to auction at GoDaddy Auctions. The auction for this 24 year old...

ICA Responds to Rick Schwartz Call for Action

Earlier this morning, Rick Schwartz posted an "Emergency Industry Alert in the form of a tweet to generate awareness for a proposal from an...

OKBoomer.com in Pending Delete Status

'"OK Boomer" is a catchphrase and internet meme that gained popularity throughout 2019, used to dismiss or mock attitudes stereotypically attributed to the baby...