Maximising Domain Revenue

Maximising Domain Revenue

After publishing the article, “Getting Dirty in the Domain Data”, earlier this week I ended up having an interesting discussion with a domain investor. I thought that it would be worthwhile continuing to pull apart the data from the previous post to help many domain investors understand why optimising traffic across multiple monetisation solution is so beneficial.

Escrow.com

I will be referring to the data from the previous article so you may wish to read it if you haven’t done so already.

Sampling by Changing the DNS

Many domain investors sample different parking providers by changing the DNS. This method is fraught with many problems that largely stem from comparing results from single sources across different periods of time. Some of the challenges are:

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Getting Dirty in the Domain Data

Getting Dirty in the Domain Data

We’ve recently been working with a client to better understand the underperformance of a number of their domain names compared to a few months earlier. What we discovered when we conducted an internal forensic analysis of the data was quite surprising.

Escrow.com

The domain we will look at in this article has been renamed to A.COM for privacy purposes. Since the beginning of the year it has had a monthly revenue ranging from $183 to $1221 and a normalised RPM (revenue per thousand visitors) of $75 to a high of $488. So what was going on with this domain?

Upon closer inspection we found that A.COM was a domain from the travel industry. People were looking for the services the domain offered from May to July and this dramatically pushed RPM rates higher as advertisers competed more aggressively for the traffic during this time. In fact, the peak numbers were achieved by a direct advertising travel company.

So let’s imagine you bought the domain based on those very high July numbers? It wouldn’t be long before you discovered your investment was under water as the typical monthly revenue retreated to 20% of the peak! Our client isn’t unscrupulous so they would never do this…..but always remember, buyer beware!

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Saturday Musings - When Someone Spoils Your Week...

Saturday Musings - When Someone Spoils Your Week...

This past week has been incredible…..so much happening and so quickly that it makes my head spin. I just love it when it’s like this. Development is going full steam ahead, had some great client meetings and the team is working on a couple of ground breaking ideas. Amongst all of this excitement there is always someone or something that rains on your parade….in my case it was Pepper.

Escrow.com

For those of you that don’t know, Pepper is my cat. She’s been a part of the family for over fifteen years and we all absolutely love her.

Whenever I go away she comes and sits in my study and stares out the window waiting for me to come back from my travels. When Roselyn and I sit on the couch to watch television she inevitably climbs up between us and demands a scratch under the chin. Well, this was her behaviour until last week….

About a week ago Roselyn decided that it was time for Pepper to have some worming medicine and after a bit of a fight (which involved a few scratches) she gave up. As far as our cat was concerned we’d crossed the line. No more sitting next to me as I worked or snuggling up on the couch together. She almost stopped eating, banished herself outside and meows pitifully if we come near.

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Is Rightside's Strategy Showing Results?

Is Rightside's Strategy Showing Results?

The reason why I like looking at Rightside is because they are a publicly listed company with the three aspects of the domain industry; registry, registrar and aftermarket. Since my last article on the company have things improved or deteriorated and how does this reflect on the overall domain industry.

Let me say from the outset that Rightside is a nice steady business underpinned by a recurring revenue stream. In fact, they are at pains to highlight the recurring revenue model in their quarterly financial presentations. The problem with the business is they are listed on the Nasdaq and as a tech company investors expect more than the current 4% year on year revenue growth rate.

The charts below highlights where the revenue is being generated by the business. The registrar is clearly the driver with over $44m or 80% of the revenue coming from that business unit. The aftermarket has clearly come off the Chinese fuelled peak of $9.3m in Q4 last year and is now settling down at $7.8m for the quarter.

Revenue by Business Unit

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Saturday Musings - Why Domains Are Like the “One Ring”

Saturday Musings - Why Domains Are Like the “One Ring”

Author, JRR Tolkien, suggested in “The Lord of the Rings”, that the one ring allowed wearers to rule but each time they put it on they tended to spiral down into deprivation and psychosis. The character of Frodo did his best to resist the rings temptations but sometimes he just couldn’t help it. I sometimes wonder whether domains are a lot like this.

Gollum - have you bought the .comRemember when you bought your first domain name? The nervousness of the purchase followed by the terror of what the heck are nameservers and EPP codes. But you were hooked. The desire to buy or sell just one more domain each day becomes an irresistible allure that you just can’t seem to deny. If you don’t believe me then consider the following….

What’ the first thing you do each day? Is it check your domain stats to see whether they are up or down? How about jump onto Afternic or Sedo to check out any domain offers?

What’s the last thing you do before you go to bed? My wife used to ask me whether I’d tucked my computer in as yet….which is a euphemism for have I checked my domain stats?

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