NEW YORK, NY – There have been many changes over the last five years when it comes to Internet domain names. I will say that this pertains to the average domain (web address), not so much a super-premium domain name, but your average .com two or three word domain name. For the most part, pricing has gone down, for whatever reason.
Some changes you may have noticed such as:
- The EMD Penalty: Where Google will not simply rank the domain at the top of search for its exact match keywords in the URL, for that reason by itself.
- The Domain Age Myth: Which is actually – now – finally a myth, where Google will give credit to a domain simply because of how old it is. Goodbye. See-ya-later. Godaddy and all these drop catchers auto-renewing the domain name before the clock strikes 12 ruined all of that. Google’s hip to this and most other tricks now.
- Link Building through Acquisition: The process of buying expired domains to acquire their back-links; this probably still works with Yahoo and Bing because they are still fumbling around, but Google is too smart for this now, and this will probably hurt you rankings instead of help you now.
- Ad Revenue Shares Down: Publishers are, and have been for years, seeing declining revenue on both parked pages and developed sites as multiple changes take hold including ad blockers, mobile issues, AMP preferences, lower shares for publishers and more – as well as ads being displayed more on search habits and/or user interest and less on content, making predictions for earnings even more difficult, not to mention less likely.
These above changes are just a few things that have contributed to declining domain name values, especially in the wholesale market such as domain name forums; but there are more. These are just some examples of why you are seeing domain names on drop lists that were once sold for very large sums of money. It’s all just nonsense now.
We’ve also got much more choice in domain alternatives now (with new gTLDs – even if you personally do not like them, many people do), and some of that old money which was spent on .com (and other legacy domains including .net and .org) domains is being sprinkled around.
So here are the three new reliable ways to know you’ve got a great domain name:
- The domain name is a single word or super-premium domain name, in a high commercial value niche, and it will immediately lend credibility to any business using it. In other words, it will boost sales immediately just by having it and using it, rebranding the business with it.
- The domain name is actually making money, and I mean profit, so it’s basically, worth, 12, 24, 36 times whatever it is making, depending on how easy it is to keep the gravy train running. It’s worth money because it is making money, and it’s worth more if the business behind it isn’t going to evaporate and isn’t entirely dependent on search engines.
- The domain name is receiving lots of web traffic, preferably type-in traffic, but any traffic which will not easily evaporate and is of similar interest or commercial value, is good, may help sales or stats, and is valuable.
So that’s it folks. There you have it. That’s why Estibot tells you a domain is worth $17,000.00 (based on the norm) and Sedo suggests you list it for $940.00 (what someone will actually pay you for it). Gone are the days when domains are sold for what they might or could be one day. Domains are hard work because they need to be developed into great web businesses. They do not just top the search engine charts for no reason anymore. They need a good business model behind them. And people actually have to appreciate the service the site provides, because GOOG can tell.
Domains are now sold for what they are, providing right now, or what they can immediately provide to a bottom line once acquired. If the answer is Zero, that is exactly what the domain is worth.
About The Author: John Colascione is Chief Executive Officer of Searchen Networks Inc. and Internet Advertising Inc. He specializes in Website Monetization, authored a ‘how to’ book called ‘‘Mastering Your Website’, and is a key player in several Internet related businesses through his holding company Searchen Networks®