Over the past few years, GoDaddy has built one of the top domain name portfolios. The company doesn’t report internal sales publicly, but I would imagine it sells a higher volume of domain names than almost any other portfolio owner. The company also sells domain names on behalf of domain investor clients via Afternic and GoDaddy Auctions.
Put simply, GoDaddy has the most and perhaps the best domain name sale data that could be helpful to others, including investors who sell via Afternic and GoDaddy. Reportedly because GoDaddy is a publicly traded entity, the company does not publicly share domain name sales data or information about its sales.
With that being said, I think it would be beneficial to domain investors and GoDaddy customers if the company would be willing to share some of its data, even if it does not reveal information that could be used to infer anything about earnings.
Here is some of the information I would find helpful and why:
- % change in # of private (non-expiry) domain name sales compared to the prior year to show current market conditions. For instance, it would be interesting to see the number of sales in October 2018 vs. October 2017. This data, without the dollar amount, would be helpful in seeing how strong the aftermarket is compared to the prior year without revealing earnings info. A month to month comparison is ok, but comparing January to December might be apples to oranges, but comparing December 2018 to December 2017 would be more helpful in seeing trends.
- Show the percentage of .com sales vs other TLD sales would be helpful in seeing any shifts in consumer behavior over time. It would also be helpful to see if this ratio changes over time.
- Share the change in median sale price quarterly or monthly for private domain name sales. I presume this is unlikely because of the potential for too much revealing information, but I am sure it can be done in a way that doesn’t offer too much insight. Because the expiry stream makes up a large and unknown percentage of the overall aftermarket, the median sales number alone shouldn’t be enough to make assumptions about revenue. In addition, if outlier sales are excluded from the data, it would provide less data that could impact the company valuation while helping customers.
- Provide commentary on the types of domain names the company is selling and/or receiving purchase inquiries about.
- Offer commentary about what its brokers are noticing when it comes to offers and inquiries. It would be interesting data to know if counteroffers are coming in higher – perhaps a sign that people are becoming more educated about domain name values.
- Commentary on what buyers are doing with their domain names and how long it takes them to begin developing their domain names.
Domain investors may be able to observe the market by seeing publicly reported sales on DNJournal and NameBio, in addition to their own sales. Many sales go unreported, and individual observations are open to interpretation.
If GoDaddy were to publish a monthly or quarterly aftermarket newsletter, it could share data that could help domain investors with their portfolios. I think GoDaddy has the most domain name sales data – even more than Escrow.com – especially when it comes to low to mid value domain name sales. Sharing its data with its customers can help us with pricing and portfolio management, and I think it can be done in a way that doesn’t reveal too much information.