Congratulations to Ira Zoot on the launch of his TheaterTickets.com. The site looks great and is very intuitive. I know Ira has a nice collection of ticket-related domain names, and I wish him much success with the launch of this great website.
After much hoopla, the final Domain Roundtable live auction list was released at 12:00AM this morning. About 35,000 total domain names were submitted for this auction of only 450 names. Kudos to Jay Westerdahal and his staff for devising a system to rank the best names, and then for manually reviewing the names. I believe that it is essential for a domain expert to review the domain names, which is what took so long for the final list to be released.
While there are a few high value domain names in the auction, there are also quite a bit of so-so names (at least in my opinion). The challenge will be to run this auction without losing the attention and interest of bidders, which is difficult even in a smaller auction.
I believe the top 5 values in this auction are:
AZ.com – $500,000 (just look what the folks at NV.com are doing)
Copies.com – $80,000 (many uses for this great name and a fair reserve price)
Rehabilitate.com – $25,000 (low reserve for hot keyword)
FinancialCounseling.com – $5,000 (owners says it earns $30/month in ppc, valuing it at $3,600 on 10x revenue multiple alone)
Event.com – $165,000 (30,000 visitors/month! Best value in the auction)
Southerner.com – $6,000 (yes, it’s mine, but I think the price is right)
According to Red Herring, Pharmacy.com is for sale. This is prime real estate just waiting to be developed into a business. According to Joshua Bourne, co-founder of FairWinds Partners (and also the President of the Coalition Against Domain Name Abuse), the domain name is worth “way over $50 million.”
While this asking price is fairly unprecedented, a domain name of this caliber could be worth it. I believe sales based on revenue multiples alone are fairly short-sited, and it would appear that the owner’s models take this into consideration. It would be a boon to the industry if they get their asking price, although we probably won’t know the sales price unless it is purchased by a public company such as Wal-mart, who probably has the money to make this happen.
According to the Domaintools Blog, a rumored buyer could be CVS pharmacy, who would consider re-branding the company.
Back in June, I wrote about my first test with the Snapnames Seller Program. Because of the success I had in the first test, I decided to transfer 62 additional names for auction. The difference between this test and the first test was that I did not have any “premium” names listed. All of the names I submitted were generic names that I hand registered within the past couple of years and hadn’t developed.
Out of the 62 names I submitted, 42% of them sold. Although my first test had a sales rate of 63%, I would argue that there were better names in that lot. The only negative this time was that only 3 names went to auction with more than one bidder. One of the names sold for over $450 – not bad for a name that I hand registered about 6 months before.
Because I’ve realized that Snapnames can be a good revenue channel if the right names are auctioned, I have been registering many domain names with the intention of listing them after the mandatory 60 day registry hold period for new names. I have been evaluating the type of names that sold – especially the ones that went to auction during my two tests, and I’ve been registering similar names. Since many people search Snapnames using common high value keywords, I have been searching for these types of names.
Using the Snapnames service, the minimum sales price if only one bidder bids is $60, less 20% commission, yielding a total of $48 for the name. The cost of registering a name is $7 and the cost of transfering the name to Snapnames is an additional $7. The net profit for each name sold is $34. Based on that, I would need just a 38% sales rate to break even, and every one of those sales higher than the $60 minimum lowers the sales rate even more.
The new dashboard created by Snapnames is also very helpful. I can see if a domain name has bids, the date it ends, and who is bidding on the name when it goes to auction. I do have a couple of recommendations to improve the dashboard:
1) When a name is in auction, I would like to see the amount of time remaining rather than the end date. This would be similar to what is seen in the buyer’s dashboard.
2) Also, when names are scheduled, it would be nice to see how many bidders there are for the names that have bids. This could give me advance warning of whether a name is likely to sell for just $60 or if there are multiple bidders that will allow it to goto auction.
If you would like more information about the program, let me know and I will put you in touch with the director of the program.
I would love to have the luxery of passing on a half million dollar offer, but I believe this name is worth more than the offer. Two letter domain names are the rarest .com names availavle (676 total), and on the rare occasion that one comes on the market, it is usually of lesser quality, and those are usually sold for over $100,000.
Most two letter .com names are fully developed and associated with businesses, such as JR.com, BA.com, and NV.com. I think the owner should hold out for an offer that fully values his domain name, and that would probably be over $1 million.