On several occasions, I’ve helped friends register or acquire a domain name for their wedding websites. A domain name like JackAndJill.com is obviously easier to remember than a longer url from a wedding site like TheKnot.com or WeddingChannel.com, and it certainly looks better on wedding invitations, save the dates, and other wedding reminders.
This afternoon, I was looking at TheKnot.com website to help a friend with her wedding website, and the company is providing some incorrect information on its FAQ page about domain names. According to the FAQ page:
“I searched for a domain, but the domain name I want is taken! Is there any way to get it?
Sorry! If the search says it’s already registered, then it’s not available. Try searching for another domain.”
Obviously, The Knot wants to keep this page simple. Explaining the process of reaching out to the domain owner or contacting a domain broker in an effort to purchase the domain name via the aftermarket would be time consuming. It would also not be profitable because they wouldn’t sell a $19.99 domain registration to someone who wants a domain name they need to buy via another channel. However, the answer that the domain name is not available is simply not true. It may be available with a bit of extra effort.
Perhaps The Knot could work out a deal with a domain broker or domain brokerage to inquire about domain names on behalf of its clients if requested. Maybe TheKnot could hire someone to do this on behalf of clients and make a commission on closed sales.
Let’s say I wasn’t in the domain space and I bought a wedding domain name when I got engaged 6 years ago. For nostalgic reasons, I couldn’t let myself let the domain name expire, so I’ve been paying $10/year to GoDaddy to renew it. If TheKnot came to me and offered me $500 for the domain name, I’d consider selling it, especially knowing another couple was going to use it. They’d make $75 at 15% commission, which is better than their $19.99 domain registration cost.
Of course, this business model is contingent upon someone wanting to spend $575 to secure their perfect domain name, but I would imagine they could make money this way and make clients happier.
At the very least, they should briefly explain that a domain name could be bought on the aftermarket rather than taking the easy way out and telling people that their ideal domain name is not available, which is not really true. It may not be available via TheKnot, but it may be available via other channels.