In today’s globalized world digitalization keeps moving forward on a continuous basis. There is hardly any sector where this development does not show its impact. Almost on a daily basis, new Internet platforms are emerging which provide users with the opportunity to go shopping in online stores or to simply get informed. A major success parameter is a proper Internet address i.e. an address which is formed with a top-level domain. Yet, since many domain owners use their top-level domains only temporarily, they are often willing to sell them to companies that could use those domains more profitably for their businesses. This is where domain marketing comes into play.
First Things First
What Is A Domain Name?
Simply explained, a domain name is an easy-to-remember name that refers to the website name. A domain name can be any combination of letters and numbers, and can be also used in combination with various domain name extensions, such as .com, .net and many more. These characters can signify the country the website address is associated with, or the type of organization. However, this is not always the case.
It is important to point out that the domain name must first be registered before being used or just being sold.
Why Having A Domain Is So Important: Advantages
It is not a surprise that more and more of the new small businesses created in the last decade are turning to the Internet, offering their services online instead of in traditional physical stores. And when that happens, location is the number one rule. On the Internet, your location is basically your domain name. In the World Wide Web, the domain name represents a unique identity. Each and every domain name is absolutely unique, which means that no two websites can have the same domain name.
Moreover, domain names are much more than just a technical shortcut. The selection of domain names is a major consideration when doing business online, and it is often one of the first issues to be dealt with. In case of a business site on the Internet, the domain name is an online brand and, in a sense, it can be used as a business card so that a professional look will be created. A clear, short and memorable domain name can make the difference between creating a successful Web presence and simply getting lost in cyberspace, which can have a negative impact on almost every aspect of online business. A registered domain name is a way of how a business can be introduced so that it will be easier for users to find it even if the web hosting site is changed over time. Having a proper registered domain name gives internet users an idea of what the business is all about and allows potential visitors to the website to feel confident in that particular brand/company.
Have You Heard About Top-Level Domains?
A top-level domain (TLD) is the last part of the domain name. The top-level domain is the letters that immediately follow after the final dot in an Internet address. A top-level domain identifies something that is associated with the website. A top-level domain easily and quickly gives a website viewer an idea about the purpose of the owner of the website or its location of origin. The allocation of top-level domains is regulated by an identified organization that has been directed by ICANN (the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) to do so.
Top-level domains are the highest-level domains. There are three major categories of top-level domains:
- ccTLD: country code top-level domains, e.g AAAbusiness.co.ke, AAAbusiness.co.za
- gTLD: generic top-level domain, e.g BBBbusiness.com, BBBbusiness, org
- IDN ccTLD: internationalized country code top-level domains, e.g CCCbusiness.de (for Germany), CCCbusiness.uk (for the United Kingdom)
Choosing the right top-level domain is generally a simple task to do; however, many people get confused when they have to decide which top-level domain to use in their domain name. Respectively, the first factor you should consider is the purpose of the website. A .com or .biz top-level domain would work better if the company itself has a buyer/seller mode of raising capital. If the goal of the organization is only to promote itself online, then a .org extension would work better.Choosing the right top-level domain is generally a simple task to do; however, many people get confused when they have to decide which top-level domain to use in their domain name. Respectively, the first factor you should consider is the purpose of the website. A .com or .biz top-level domain would work better if the company itself has a buyer/seller mode of raising capital. If the goal of the organization is only to promote itself online, then a .org extension would work better.
If the website viewership is targeted at a specific geographical area, obtaining a country code top-level domain is the option that is most preferred. This captures the local area entirely whilst also creating an online presence for the business. Another important factor that you need to consider is search engine optimization and how the chosen top-level domain might affect a website’s rankings in search engine results pages.
Throwback To 1985: The First .com Domain registered
In March 1985, Symbolics Inc., a computer manufacturer in Massachusetts, registered the domain name “Symbolics.com”, making it the very first appropriately registered .com domain in the whole world. Symbolics.com remained under the same ownership for 25 years. In 2009, it was purchased for an undisclosed sum by XF.com Investments. As it stands today, Symbolics is a strange hybrid: part-online museum, part-advertising space, having a new address: symbolics-dks.com.
Want To Be A Domain Holder? What Comes Next: Registration
Every business with a good website needs a catchy and memorable domain. After inspiration strikes, there is another step that needs to be taken before you can actually use it online – the registration process. If you already have an idea and want to purchase a domain name for your website, you will have to work with a domain name registrar to purchase a domain name and pay a fee to the ICANN; ICANN is an organization that regulates domain names and creates new top-level domains. Depending on the top-level domain, websites can range from $1 specials to around $35 dollars. Some domains have a high cost because they are short or represent popular ideas.
While the term "buying a domain name" is also commonly used in relation to purchasing an existing name registered to someone else, again, the purchaser isn't buying the domain name as such but just acquiring the rights to get a lease on that name and continue to re-register it. Therefore, once you have “bought” a domain name, you haven’t actually purchased that space, it is more appropriate to say that you have leased the name or are renting the space. You have to pay the amount you purchased the domain name for on a yearly basis. Thus if you paid $10 for your domain, you must pay $10 to renew your domain name registration. Be careful though because if you forget, someone can snatch up from underneath you.
How To Choose The Right Registrar
Choosing the right among thousands of domain name registrars will definitely take some of your time. Many domain registrars also offer hosting as an extra service, but hosting companies can also register domains. There are cases when registration can be even for free when you buy hosting. But at the end of the day, how do you know which company is the best one exactly for your needs? When choosing a registrar to put your trust in, there are a few important features that need to be considered:
- Customer Service: Do they have a knowledgeable staff which can provide individual support? How fast can you expect a response?
- Price: How do they compare to the competition? After their introductory offer expires, what prices are you actually going to pay over the long term?
- Ease of Use: How much technical know-how do you need? Is the domain manager page clean and easy to navigate?
- Features: Some registrars offer a variety of features beyond simple domain name registration. What features are offered and will they actually be useful for your specific needs?
Keep in mind that a stark contrast is noticed in prices when registering a new domain name. Some domain extensions are generally cheaper while others cost hundreds of dollars. So why are some domain names expensive when they all function the same way? There are a number of factors that affect the cost of a domain:
- The type of a top-level domain: certain top-level domains are definitely more expensive than others. Currently, the .com domains are the most expensive, right after them in the list are the .biz and .org. domains.
- The length of certain words or word combinations: Using popular keywords or phrases will make domain names more expensive.
- The term length of domain name registration: on average, registering a domain name for one year costs $2-$20. Renewing a domain costs around $4 more than the registration. If it is possible, you can try to register a domain directly for two to three years instead of one, because that will save you the renewal costs.
- Add ons: Along with domain registration, subscribers can opt for add ons such as domain privacy and web hosting. This is possible if you are willing to pay an additional price.
- Buying a domain name that is already owned: It is possible that you buy a domain currently owned by someone else in a bidding process, but keep in mind that this usually costs more than registering a new domain.
- Domain registrar discounts: Sometimes, domain registrars have some special offers and discounts. For example, a .com domain name that usually costs around $10-13 per year can go down to as low as $ 2-3 during special discounts.
Top-level – Top prices: The Top 10 Most Expensive Domain Names Sold in The World!
Domain names are extremely lucrative on their own. Because of branding and potential profits, people will put up millions to gain rights to a specific name. The main reason the right domain name is so important involves the traffic which it can generate, and also how closely the name might be associated with a personal name or brand. For instance, if you are looking for an e-book to buy online, you will instinctively visit ebooks.com. And this is only one example. That is a step and a strategy that doesn't require any research for customer needs. Clear, simple, memorable. By having the right name, a company’s profitability can skyrocket. And businesses nowadays are aware of that and so it’s worth the millions they invest in domain names to stay visible and relevant. Domain flipping is popular, but there are a few domain names that have gained popularity due to their expensive price tag. But what is the price for the most expensive domain names purchased in the world and what are their names? Check out the list below.
- Insurance.com — $35.6 million
Insurance.com is at the very top of the list as it was sold for $35.6 million in 2010. If you visit the site, you’ll see that it serves as a home base for insurance comparison as well as sales. It includes auto, home, car, life and motorcycle insurance information. Researchers suggest that because the domain was supported by a website with content and a name that was great for search engines, it made sense for it to be so lucrative. It was purchased by Quin Street, Inc. who also purchased a few other sites on this list.
- VacationRentals.com – $35 Million
- PrivateJet.com – $ 30.18 Million
- Internet.com — $18 million
- 360.com — $17 million
- Insure.com – $16 Million
- Sex.com – $13 Million
- Hotels.com – $11 Million
- Fund.com — £9.99 Million
- Porn.com — $9.5 million
What About Renting A Domain Name?
When you rent a domain name you avoid the financial risk associated with buying your own domain name. Depending on the rental company, domain names can start at about $20 a month. Compare that to the cost of a “good” domain name, which might cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars. When starting a business, less capital expenditures can be critical. Also, with a domain name rental, you have the flexibility to cancel the monthly commitment at any time.
On the other hand, if your business flourishes, that flexibility can become a huge liability. The person who gives you permission to your domain name can also cancel the contract at any time. In the case that the site you created has started to generate some good traffic but the owner of the domain name might decide to monetize the domain himself, ending the rental agreement and leaving you with empty hands.
Further, a domain name brands your company. If you build a successful company on a rented domain, you would not have full control over your own brand.
However, it is not that common nowadays to rent domain names. Another option is to have a domain name through the so-called hire-purchase agreement. That means that you will be paying the price for the domain name in installments, and at the end of the contract, after the whole amount has been paid out, it will be yours. Of course, the installments amount and the duration of the contract may vary, depending on the whole price.
Domain Name Registrar Superstars
World’s Largest Registrar – GoDaddy.com
When it comes to size and market domination, GoDaddy seems to be the largest domain registrar. It is also the most commonly used company for domain registration in the USA. In fact, GoDaddy has 30 percent of the domain registry market share. Their customer support is another key feature. You can reach live support 24/7 via phone. If there’s ever a problem, you don’t have to sit around waiting for an email response. This company has provided more than sixty million domain names registered throughout the world. GoDaddy provides many services including email aliases, online marketing tools, search engine optimization, privacy protection, as well as sub domains.
Their initial offer is great. Your first month can cost as little as ninety-nine cents! After that trial offer is over, however, you’ll need to make sure you’re not signing up for high-priced services you don’t want. The registration of a .com domain with GoDaddy runs at $ 11.99, where the renewal costs $14.99. Overall, GoDaddy is a reliable and secure site to put your trust in when building a business on the Internet.
Listed really high on the registrars ranking list, Namecheap is another very big name in the industry we can hear about, and only for good reasons. The company was founded in 2000 and was listed as the most popular domain name registrar for 2012, which is only two years after it first appeared. That says more than enough, doesn’t it?
Today, Namecheap is a leading ICANN-accredited domain name registrar. They offer affordable domain pricing, and on top of that – they have a huge selection of top-level domains such as .com, .net, .uk, etc. that you can choose from. The only thing you need to be aware of is that Namecheap only offers online support via its ticket and live chat system. The chat support system is responsive and customers have praised both its system and support staff. However, you won’t be able to call someone for help over the phone. Namecheap has provided over four million domain names so far. Although Namecheap’s core business is domain registry services, it also provides additional services to its customers, including web hosting, email hosting, security and cloud-based services. Both the registration and the year renewal feel are equal to $10.69.
To keep registration and renewal cost down, be sure to check the registration and renewal prices with the registrar you chose as some may have hidden cost or they up-charge certain services.
Domain Flipping: How to Make Money With Domains
One of the easiest ways to make money online is by buying something for a low price at a particular time and then selling it for a much higher one. But let's explain in more detail what domain flipping is all about. Simply put, domain flipping is the process of purchasing a domain name with the intent of quickly or not that quickly selling it at a significantly higher price to someone else. It is actually very similar to the house flipping process, where a home is purchased, fixed up and sold in order to make a quick profit. Acquiring a valuable domain name before it is tagged with a premium price is the key to a successful domain flip. Being in the right place at the right time is the most crucial aspect when it comes to domain flipping.
First Step: Finding Good Domain Names That Will Bring Profit
When searching on legacy domain extensions such as .com, target at least three to four keywords to keep your options open. Since recently, there have been many new top-level domain extensions, so the opportunity to find good ones is much bigger than before. Some of the top new ones are: .tech, .store, .online, .fun, .site, .website, and .space.
Platforms – Where You Can Flip Domain Names
There are many online platforms where you can flip domains, besides fresh new ones from hundreds of domain registrars. There are specialized domain marketplaces that focus on that business, often offering tips to new domain flippers in terms of best practices for better results. For example, you can flip domains on Sedo, the leading domain name marketplace.
Sedo (Search Engine for Domain Offers) is a worldwide domain name marketplace as well as a domain parking provider. It was founded in Cologne, Germany in 2001, and has headquarters also in Cambridge and Massachusetts. With over nineteen million domain names listed so far, Sedo is the domain name company that offers the largest trade platform for domain names, where you can purchase or sell domain name fast and easily.
Flippa is an online marketplace for buying and selling online businesses, but it also allows domain names to be exchanged on its platform.
The listing provides online visibility for your domains and you will surely receive offers for your listed domains. Respond to these promptly, in a timely manner, and take note that domain value can be negotiated.
Keep in mind that it is important to study any marketplace you plan to use, get acquainted with its policies, types of inventory (just domains, domains with content websites, online businesses, etc.).
There Are Different Ways of Domain Flipping
Domain flipping offers several methods. Find out about which method suits you best!
Traditional Domain Flipping Method
The traditional domain flipping method is the simplest way of domain flipping. After you obtain a domain name, you are able to put it on auction on different domain flipping websites and sell it. The thing that you need to keep in mind is that bidders should be aware of the domain's true potential, so an excellent description would be needed. You have to prove your sales presentation skills and grab potential buyers' attention. This method is quick and can provide you with returns in no time.
Optimized Websites Flipping Method
This flipping method is the one that will bring you the highest profit but also requires much more effort. What you have to do is find a niche specific domain, increase its optimization and the organic traffic, and last but not least, work on the social media presence so that the website will look popular. The idea behind this is, of course, to sell it much faster and for much more money. It could consume time and efforts, but the returns you get are surely worth it.
Domain Parking Flipping Method
For this method you have to obtain an expired domain name or a completely new domain. The main point is to have a domain name that gets traffic, a lot of traffic. However, you have to get that domain which is pretty similar to other reputed websites and has some minor differences only. After obtaining these types of domains, you must put on some advertisements on the website so that you will be able to sell it to the potential customers.
All the above was about the process to start a domain flipping business. You can use different tools to select the domain name and make things simpler.
Remember, It Will Take Time!
Many people fall for the marketing gimmick that domain flipping can be mastered in your spare time. Several self-proclaimed gurus promise aspiring domain flippers mind-boggling returns in as less as a few months’ time. Well, that is not possible. The truth is that you require at least one year’s time to only get the basics of the domain flipping business. After that, you have to learn about the main part, which is making money from it. During this time, you’ll make several mistakes, buy useless domain names, lose out prospective deals and much more. Domain flipping is far from any get-rich-quick method. If overnight results are what you’re after, domain investing may not be your piece of cake. This business involves a real and steep learning curve which many people find difficult to climb.
Thinking of domain flipping as a leisurely business on the side would not be the best motivation practice if you really want to start making money at some point. It takes a lot of effort to find good domain names that are available to buy. Therefore, being a successful domain flipper requires your active involvement. You need to have your research skills, negotiation skills and networking skills to be on point. There are some useful tools, such as the Google Keyword Planner, Kwfinder, Namebio and EstiBot that help you search for high-value domain names and suitable alternatives.
So here comes the question: Can you make money by starting or “buying” a niche website, building it into something really good, an income source, and then selling it to someone? In fact, many people actually do that as a side job or even for a living in general. You can turn a profit this way, but you need to remember that it will take serious work and time. It can happen, however, that you can even lose money if things go wrong, so as with many other businesses, there is risk involved. But again, that is part of the learning process, so staying positive is a requirement for a success.
What To Consider: Useful Tips
Take some time to market your domain names actively. In order to sell a domain name, there are plenty of ways to market it. Sell your domain name by using article marketing. If you want to make a business out of this, consider the option of buying domain names for different niches, hire content writers to create good articles on them that are keyword targeted and after that, putting up the site for sale. Those types of pages can sell for up to a $1,000 if you carefully pick out the niche, of course.
Another way is to use auction sites to list the domain name. Put the sale in your forum signatures. Write sales ads for the domain names that you have. Put the name of the domain that you have listed for sale in a domain name directory. Be creative! Expose your domain name more and you will sell it more quickly and more importantly – for a higher price!
Get your purchased domain name appraised. You can use some of the free and paid appraisal services in order to get a feel for how much your domain name is really worth. Getting documentation that supports your asking price is the main reason for getting a domain name appraisal. The point is that possessing an appraisal makes it more difficult for potential customers/buyers to argue about your price. Thankfully, it doesn’t cost a lot to have a domain name appraised. You can get free evaluations of your domain names from some websites, including GoDaddy and EstiBot.
Put your domain name on a website. If you can prove that the domain name has been earning money so far, you will be more likely to make a profit than by simply holding on to it and trying to convince people that it is a good investment. Truthfully, it is easier to sell a website than a stand-along domain name. Of course, it takes time to build even small websites, even in the easiest way, without developers. If you don’t have enough time to do it, then building a website may not be the right thing for you. At the same time, do not forget that websites do earn more money than just names.
You Need Business Savvy Skills!
Flipping domains may be a web-based product, but still, it is a product. Therefore, in order to succeed in the field, you need to determine when you’re at a loss for a particular domain and decide when to call it quits. For large-scale operations, you should have advanced bookkeeping skills to keep your business afloat. It’s not too late to flip domains for profit, but this kind of business isn’t for everyone. You need a workable plan, business-savvy skills and willingness to invest money, time, and effort to make it big in domain flipping.
If you have respect for the domain flipping business and take it seriously, you will succeed in it, sooner or later. After all, nobody can create a good website for a new company without the perfect domain name. Wouldn’t you be happy to be the one selling it to them when the right time comes?