Rob Monster: “a worldwide bull run on domains has started”

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In a Twitter thread started this morning, Epik CEO Rob Monster said, “I am increasingly certain that a worldwide bull run on domains has started. What is driving this?” I certainly hope Rob is onto something here because that would come as good news to domain investors, but that is not really what I have been seeing right now.

For the past few weeks, I would say that inquiries have been fairly steady, but most are lowball offers for high value domain names. This is not much of a difference from how things normally are, but there has been a bit of an absence of offers on the average inventory that makes up the bulk of my portfolio. My business regularly goes through ups and downs, so I am accustomed to going for a bit of time without substantial deals, but I am not really identifying this as the start of a bull market. Of course, my portfolio is relatively small, so I may not have as good of a view of the market as others.

Here’s the tweet thread from Rob. I would also welcome your observations and thoughts about the current state of the domain name aftermarket:

27 COMMENTS

  1. It is as accurate as his predictions of New TLDs taking off a few years ago. Aftermarket activity is caving from what I can see.

  2. Don’t forget how he predicted how his company DigitalTown was going to revolutionize how cities were run and how commerce was transacted. Where is it today? Bankrupt.

    Rob is like tRump in that he hopes and prays for the best. Something we all should do, but nothing for anyone to bet their hard earned money against.

    If Rob had any data supporting his prediction, then that’s one thing. Otherwise, it’s just his usual flavor or bs.

  3. I doubt this is specific to Epik. The other marketplaces and landing page providers are almost certainly seeing the same pattern. This is a tale of 2 markets: Offline is getting thumped while Online is rising.

    Zoom.com and Docusign are going through the roof on new customer signups, for example, as companies re-tool for digital. With billions of people being forced to engage digitally, this should not be a shock to anyone.

    ICYMI, the spot price of gas dropped to $0.44 per gallon today. That’s crazy:

    https://markets.businessinsider.com/commodities/rbob-gasoline

    However, doom and gloom aside, this is not a sign of deflationary collapse. This is simply the predictable consequence of sentient humanity adapting to a life that does not center around driving and flying.

    Check the poll:

    https://www.namepros.com/threads/is-the-surf-way-up-for-inquiry-volume-or-what.1182369/

  4. I can confirm that inquiries on Casino/gambling domains are up. Also I noticed that people don’t overreact (replying back with crazy or lol or other shit) to the prices I quote as before. it appears that a reality (at least among corporations) is taking hold that they need good domains to setup/expand their businesses. I have quotes 35 million to two different parties in last two weeks for one of the casino domains (it is a category defining name) and both replies were we will discuss internally and let you know instead of usual overreaction. So don’t know about all kinds of domains but yes I do see a little difference in gambling/betting/education/news/tv/tube/media kind of domains.

  5. Hi DomainBoss! I can confirm the same. We are up by 600% or so for inbound queries, and have had one of the busiest months I’ve seen in years. Rob’s comments about stimulus likelihood, and his prior reflection I read on waste reduction and efficiency upgrades are both pretty spot on from our view on a financial side. Even the secondary markets are very active in the VC world. I’d have never expected that. Maybe it due to the inability to use profiteering through speculation that hurt us all, more clean ups on what is important, and more organic developments. Which means 1) turning towards smarter online work flow 2) revisiting projects placed on prior back burners and 3) cementing relationships that are more aimed towards productivity. I am also finding that executives from traditionally crazy market sectors are much easier to get a hold of, which has helped drive some long outstanding conversations and pitch opportunities. Plus it has been really cool to help match a few domain names even this last few days and over the weekend that can help others with projects that are situated to make a difference. What a blessing!

    Don’t normally come here anymore though as the open attacks by masked individuals like Snoopy just ruin the experience for everyone. It is so past clear there is an agenda here. The comments are also well past clueless in assumptions and judgement of other people, I have no clue why Domain Investing puts up with it. Thousands of people dying, apartment buildings clamped shut, countries trying to decide who lives and dies, everyone doing what they can to come together… and all some can do is pinpoint hate they know nothing empirically about? What would you possibly have to gain by dumping all over an individual with rare optimism as he literally tells domainers that they can stay positive given everything that is going on? Personally Rob has helped me with hundreds of domains – including new gTLD’s – that have made a difference to peoples lives. You are going to judge him now for his past optimism? For his fearless courage to try?

    You must be very mighty indeed! Even for the cities initiative literally TODAY a team and I were able to use one of the technology components that came from his vision to help connect people from around the world. Some projects are simply ahead of their time. You are mistaking innovation, vision, and the courage to try something new, and literally turning your perception of its outcome it into open character attacks.

    People try new things everyday. Some succeed, some fail. Most that become something greater almost ALWAYS started out as something else. This is before faith and positive expectation are applied to it with the realization that even in our failures mighty things can come from that which we never expected or intended.

    I am sending you mighty love, because I know that you will be judged as you choose to judge. I’d be deleting the posts and go tell your wife and children you love them. #Truth

  6. The quality, service and support Epik provides 24/7/365 you couldn’t pay for it with money for sure not with the margins in domains, have 2000+ names @ Epik and wouldn’t move them anywhere.
    Some people the only thing they know is to bring their negativity, would love to know what business they
    run and show what customers can say for the service they provide.
    When you show me that you pick up the phone or respond emails at 11pm for your customers will talk and
    yes Go Daddy gives an excellent service too but to me they are 2nd best.

  7. Last time i checked, you need to have money in order to buy domain names.
    People have lost their life savings, jobs, homes etc.
    Businesses are closing and corporations are cutting dividends and canceling salaries.
    There is and always will be a demand for domains, but a bull run on domains right now or for the foreseeable future, is probably not going to happen IMO.

    • For a lot of domainers this will take a while to sink in. For the domain industry “salespeople” they will rarely admit it even though they know it is true. Whilst people will spend more time online over the next 6 months that is because they no longer have a job.

      Situation is a little similar to the dot com bust, usage of the internet grew as investment and valuations slumped. This is on a much smaller scale though (I hope).

    • That might be a general rule. At the same time, businesses sometimes have cash that is bound to be lost – either spend on something for yourself and have it deducted from tax or give it to your government as tax. And this is where the earlier plans for something like real estate for a new office can get replaced with digital property.

  8. Last week got 13 inquiries through Afternic / GD/ Epik / Sedo 8 low ballers 180, 2 5K, 2 1K 1 500
    for me is not down yet, the higher are also low offers because they are single words.

  9. ” The world economy has gone fully digital and there is no turning back. ”

    I agree with this. If you have good names big companies want you are in luck. If you have average to less than average names small businesses want you are out of luck.

    I have noticed a lot of inquiries attempting to use the virus as a negotiation tool for a lower price.

  10. Domain TV,
    Thank you for your comments. Spot on.

    What I have seen is corp world increasing outsourcing and a rather incredible stream of new all digital business.
    Agree with Rob the transition will pick up pace.
    This environment is definately a catalyst to increasing demand very different from the dot com bust when few were actually online.
    A great time for new G’s and cc’s !
    Save it Snoop…..the only thing falling is a biased demand for dot coms.

    Thanks to Epic for the forward focus!
    keep your mind healthy and family safe
    Cheers

  11. I don’t normally visit Morgan Linton’s blog anymore for reasons I won’t go into, but for some reason felt like it just a little while ago. This post from Sunday addresses a huge related point I’ve been advocating and doing my part to get people to see the light about in the domain blog comments for years now:

    https://morganlinton.com/after-taking-pricing-advice-from-rick-schwartz-domain-investor-lands-his-biggest-sale-in-seventeen-years/

    Note this part in particular:

    “One of the best videos Rick has put out is about how so many domain name investors are under-pricing their domain names. In the video he makes a good point – business owners have a lot of expenses and even the sign for their business could cost $20,000+ so a domain name, the home for their brand online, should be worth a lot to them.

    First, stop what you’re doing now and watch this video, it’s two minutes and seventeen seconds long and is absolutely spot on. Okay, now back to the topic of my post.”

    And that too relates to why my first comment above is just simple straighforward candor and completely serious. (And no I am not alluding to a long or multi-word domain above either. Snoopy.) As I just wrote under Linton’s blog post there, an extreme issue with regard to “upward sanity and for real world, real end user realisim vs. out of touch and defeatist “domainer think” regarding domain valuation and pricing” has been harming the industry and bringing it down. Some of the reasons which led to that are known and acknowledged, but some of the most important ones are largely not. A little “vision” can go a long way towards getting back on the right path.

  12. I’m down from 30-40 inquiries per month to 2 inquiries on a 300 domain folio over the last 3 weeks. A lot of these new inquiries some are getting might be from domainers trying to get a sweet Corona deal for their own portfolio.

    There are of course too many derranged bidders going all-in on ‘average’ domains on Godaddy during the last year, paying at least double a sane wholesale value, so seasoned investors are likely to overpay for ‘good’ domains.

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