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Inc. Magazine Reveals Price of


Soon after rebranded to the shorter domain name, the company saw a major decrease in traffic. The New York Times published an article about the company’s rebranding and the impact it had on the business, and several other websites wrote about the issue faced by the company after it chose to rebrand. Many of the articles referenced this Google Webmasters Help forum thread started by the company after noticing ranking issues in Google.

With all of the publicity about the rebranding to and the search engine problems that seemed to follow, I did not see any coverage of the acquisition cost of the domain name. An article in the December / January edition of Inc. magazine reveals information about the negotiation and the purchase price.

According to the article, Jeff Braverman, the CEO of, spent quite a bit of time tracking down the owner of the domain name and negotiating with him. Two years after the initial failed negotiation, he saw that the domain name was listed for sale, and he bought it for a hefty $700,000.” In my opinion, $700,000 seems like a fair price for a domain name that is truly a category killer. The aforementioned NY Times article stated that the domain name was purchased in 2011, and if Ron Jackson of DNJournal is able to confirm this sale, it would tie as the fifth largest sale of the year, along with and

As will see when you read the entire Inc. magazine article, the purchase turned out to be quite a savvy acquisition for the company. seems to have overcome the search engine ranking issues it faced at the outset, and things appear to be going well for them. In fact, when I searched Google for “nuts,” is currently the #1 result.

If you ever go through a major rebrand where your domain name is changed, you should definitely read about the rebranding. In addition, you should keep in mind in case your rankings suffer as a result of a rebrand, knowing that it might be a temporary issue that takes time to overcome.

Thank you to George Kirikos for sharing this with me.

About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has sold seven figures worth of domain names in the last five years. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest.

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Comments (12)

    George Kirikos

    I think the critical aspect of the article is that the domain name paid for itself “in less than a year.” That demonstrates that the buyer got a bargain!

    December 7th, 2014 at 6:56 pm

      Elliot Silver

      I agree.

      It also shows the value of upgrading to a better keyword brand domain name. Some companies balk at the price of great .com domain names, but in this case, it helped grow the business enough that it paid for itself very quickly.

      December 7th, 2014 at 6:58 pm


      It’s not as simple as that. Where is for the “candy” keyword?

      The SERPs of generic keywords depend a lot on proper SEO. If you break the rules, Google penalizes the domain. On the other hand, brandables are easier to rise to the top, e.g. “skull candy”.

      In reply to Elliot Silver | December 7th, 2014 at 7:38 pm

      Elliot Silver

      On the other hand, It is far more memorable than Melville Candy Company. ๐Ÿ™‚

      In reply to Acro | December 7th, 2014 at 7:43 pm

    George Kirikos

    BTW, the Inc. magazine article was quite biased, in my opinion. They describe legitimate domain name registrants as “hordes of shady prospectors.” I’m sure Inc. magazine doesn’t describe real estate or property investors as “hordes of shady slumlords” in their articles.

    Indeed, the act of domain name buyers creating a fake identity for themselves (to try to get a lower price from a seller) *wasn’t* described as “shady”! I think they need a rewrite.

    December 7th, 2014 at 7:03 pm


      Always treat any inquiry as an end-user acquisition with ‘ulterior’ motives.

      In reply to George Kirikos | December 7th, 2014 at 7:29 pm

      Leonard Britt

      Yes, recently I got one of those “I can only offer you $100 as this domain is for a non-profit organization.” I check out the email address for domains under this registrant and discover they are a video production company and their website even lists the charges for their services. That doesn’t sound nonprofit to me ๐Ÿ™‚

      In reply to George Kirikos | December 7th, 2014 at 7:58 pm

    Xavier Lemay

    What’s the value of ?

    December 7th, 2014 at 7:55 pm


    Yes. some nuts online

    December 8th, 2014 at 12:23 am

    Windy City

    …one keyword in this case beats two, so it panned out for the enduser in a good, economical fashion.

    I guess how good your website and marketing departments are determines how you will place on google’s page. I would assume if you have a half-baked company taking care of SEO, etc. it really doesn’t matter how killer the keyword is, you ain’t gonna get much…

    December 8th, 2014 at 8:56 am


    I am not surprised that they describe domain investors as “shady”.

    Inc. Magazine, Fast Company, as well many other publications have disrespected the domain investor as well. They all lean a certain way. A way that failed in the midterms if you get my point. Its OK if they earn money but it better not be anyone else.

    I am sure they describe physical real-estate investors, perhaps even their own parent company, as “shady” too. Oh, except when they’re pulling out their wallet to pay for advertising…

    The author should quit.

    December 8th, 2014 at 3:01 pm

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