Comparing a .com Sale vs. a .net Sale

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People have occasionally asked me if I can help them assess the value of a .net domain name. Although I follow the general domain name aftermarket closely, and I track sales across a variety of extensions, I don’t really have a good pulse on the value of .net domain names. Because of that, I can’t really offer any insight when it comes to the value of .net domain names, even when compared to .com domain name values.

Joshua Schoen shared an interesting comparison of a .com domain name auction sale against a .net domain name auction sale, and I think it is worth highlighting. The discussion that followed on Twitter was also interesting:

Geode.com sold at GoDaddy Auctions for $17,750 in January of this year. As someone who has always been fascinated by geodes, I liked that domain name and was an underbidder. The domain name sold above what I was willing to pay for it.

Like the Geode.com domain name auction, Geode.net also sold in an expiry auction (at NameJet) for $504 this past week. As Josh pointed out, the sale of Geode.net was 2.84% of the value of the .com sale.

Of course, there are outside factors that need to be considered when looking at these two auction results. The difference in exposure on GoDaddy Auctions vs. NameJet could have played a factor in the result in favor of the .com. On the other side, Geode.net might have sold for more because people had recently followed the five figure sale of Geode.com.

From my (biased) perspective, I think it is safe to say that most businesses would prefer to operate on a .com domain name and if they can’t get that or can’t afford it, they will either go with an off brand .com (GetGeode.com for example), ccTLD (Geode.io for example), or a new gTLD domain name (Geode.Site for example). I can’t recall the last time I saw a business or startup using a .net domain name. Actually, I do recall – it was Packet, and I only know this because Packet spent $350,000 to buy Packet.com and no longer uses Packet.net for its website.

I think we would have to look at many other sales involving the same keyword .com and .net domain names to really get a statistically significant idea of the difference in value between .com domain names and .net domain names. We don’t usually see an example like this though, so it was worth highlighting Josh’s tweet.

About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the DomainInvesting.com Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

7 COMMENTS

  1. Additional outside factor might be that the domain market was a lot hotter in January than April, 2020.

    The old rule (15-20 yrs ago) was a net is worth approx. 10% of the com.

    Just like your example, Today I figure a net is worth 1-5% of a com. I still renew the nets I still own (one word or 3 letters) but I have not reg’d or bought a net is 10-12 yrs. And, I have reduced my selling price for my nets a lot over the past couple years.

    • 10% was never really a thing even though many used to claim it, 2-3% was more the norm even 15 years ago. Always exceptions in both directions though and most buyers wouldn’t be interested in .net even at 0%.

  2. I have two very short .net’s one of which is pretty cool and one of the only ones I like. I use them as an end user. Otherwise I normally don’t like them but for only very rare exceptions. When I reg .net’s it’s almost always only defensive and just a necessary thing I’d rather not even do.

  3. I own some single key word .net domains. Rarely get offers.
    I see a few fairly large companies using .net, and I suppose it’s OK if the company is called _____Networks,but .net domains rarely fetch high sales outside of the betting, casino, gambling arenas.
    I prefer cctlds over net, and of course, .com is the gold standard

  4. The final auction price (for investment) is higher than I expected for this one, and I was monitoring this in the other extensions before this came up for auction. I think I would have stopped bidding before or near $7k on the .com, maybe because I think a 30k retail (4x return) was a fair if lame outcome, however 70k would be achievable though overly optimistic (10x return). I could image some crazy bidding taking it to 10k, but 18k is ridiculous. Given I would scoff at less than 30k, I might be sitting on it forever unless I really needed that money. The .com is now parked at Godaddy, and I see a blank page due to my ad blocker.

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