I have never been very successful with affiliate offers on my websites, but there are plenty of people that use companies like ClickBank and LinkShare to make a whole lot of money. I am confident saying that there are many young millionaires in that area of Internet marketing.
One thing I am also fairly certain of is that many affiliate managers and companies that run affiliate programs tend to think of domain names differently. Take a look through the ClickBank marketplace for example, and see some of the domain names used by affiliate offers.
Many of these domain names are pretty poor (to say the least), but they get the job done. My feeling is that perhaps they could close more sales with a better descriptive domain name because it would have a higher level of trust. What would you trust more – a name like SciaticaTreatment.com or FixYourSciaticaBackPainNow.com? More likely the first, but I digress. In addition to trust, they may also be easier to rank for the keywords, with all things being equal.
That being said, perhaps you can target the companies making these affiliate offers the next time you are looking to sell a good descriptive domain name. Perhaps you can do Whois lookups on these less than stellar domain names, contact those registrants, and pitch your name as an alternative.
I know that many of these people won’t be interested – they do the job with their hand registered domain names and many make good bank. However, someone may see the opportunity in owning a good descriptive domain name at a fair price and jump on it. I think it’s worth a shot and can’t hurt to ask.
At the very least, perhaps you can find some good affiliate offers to promote on your domain name if you end up keeping it.