Someone sent me a LinkedIn message this afternoon asking me to appraise some “premium” new gTLD domain names. I told him “no” because I am not really active in that part of the market. It is difficult enough to give a meaningful (accurate) appraisal of a .com domain name, but I think it is pretty much impossible to appraise new gTLD domain names with any level of certainty.
If an appraisal can’t be at least somewhat accurate, it doesn’t make sense to even try. I want to share some of the reasons for why I think it would be impossible to give an appraisal of new domain extensions:
There is a lack of public sales reported. Yes, there have been some publicly reported sales and public auction results, but those are a tiny fraction of domain names that exist. Believe it or not, there are now over 17 million new gTLD domain names in existence, according to nTLDStats.com. I see few new gTLD domain name sales reported weekly.
Domain registrars privately sell (or work out deals) on their premium inventory. This means that we have an even more limited amount of data available to look at to get an idea of appraised values.
There are a ton of alternative extensions that may be very similar. How can you even hazard a guess about the value of a domain name when there are several similar extensions that can be registered, in addition to even more keywords. If someone wants to open an online pet store on a new gTLD, all of these might be fairly equal: Pet.Shop, Pet.Store, Pets.Online, Pets.Website, Pets.Site.
Premium names and different extensions may have high renewal prices. Pet.Store seems like it could be a five figure domain name to a buyer perhaps. However, if the registry is charging a huge annual renewal cost, the value to a company would likely be less if they have to shell out a fortune each year to renew it. Without that information, it is silly to hazard a guess about the value.
These are just a few of the reasons off the top of my head why I think it is impossible to put a value on individual new gTLD domain names. Yes, I still think there are good reasons for people and companies to use the new gTLD domain names, but I am certainly not in a position to offer my thoughts on how much any of the names are actually worth on the market. I don’t think anyone can appraise the new domain names.