Domain Update - 14th Jan 2021

The first industry update for 2021

This is the first industry update for 2021 and the changes that have occurred since the last one in mid-December 2020 have been incredible. The statistics show some big changes in how both Google and the Direct Advertising networks are paying out on domain traffic….and it’s all good for domain investors.

I’m sure that every professional investor will get a lot out of the numbers, statistics and charts as I unpack what is happening in the domain monetization industry. My goal is that with this knowledge you can then buy, sell and earn greater amounts of money from your domain portfolio.

For those of you that are interested in hearing more I will be speaking at NamesCon at the following times:
Wed, Jan 27
17:35    Investing in Domains as a Business, Not a Hobby
18:00    Professional Traffic Monetization
Thu, Jan 28
16:20    State of Domain Traffic Monetization
16:45    Increasing revenue and managing risk through traffic quality
Fri, Jan 29
16:15    Running a Structured Traffic Test
17:15    The Future of Domain Monetization
* all times in UTC

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Domain Industry Update - Week 15

You're going to love the data in this week's update!

Normal 0 false false false EN-GB X-NONE X-NONE It looks like I may have been right....fingers crossed. So what was I right about? The fact that the normalized RPM for the domain industry is beginning to trend upwards at the end June. Given the impact of COVID-19 this isn't completely unexpected but it's always a welcome sign that the Internet is thriving.

As well as the regular suite of charts I went I’d trawl through the archives and pull some data on a monthly basis from July 2019 until today. This really showed a number of the major trends and the fact that domain monetization investors have benefited from an uplift in normalized RPM over the last few months.

I hope you find the information that I’m sharing each week of benefit for your business. Don’t forget to like, comment or subscribe so you don’t miss out on future updates.

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Part 3 - A History of RPM

Two titans inadvertently impacting each other.

Please click on the below link to view the first two parts of A History of RPM:
Part 1 - A History of RPM
Part 2 - A History of RPM

The volume of domains being dropped was so high that Verisign found it was being buffeted by the Google margin grab. During this time, you could track the impact a one cent PPC drop would have on Verisign’s revenue line.

Escrow.com

I remember conducting an analysis that concluded it would be financially viable for Verisign to underpin the entire domain investment industry so domains weren’t dropped. From memory it showed that every domain dropped cost Verisign $73 of market capitalisation. By underpinning the PPC payouts by diverting marketing dollars directly into the monetisation companies Verisign could halt the tsunami of drops from marginally profitable domains.

Several years after the GFC Google had reached rock bottom with the margin grab. I can only surmise that if they kept on increasing their margin then the partner network would essentially collapse. This would not be a good thing to happen right in the middle of rumblings about monopolistic behaviour at the legislative levels.

What we shouldn't miss in this whole saga is that Google's behaviour has been completely economically rational. They have the interests of shareholders to consider and not the domain industry. Those domain investors that moaned about what Google was doing needed to make changes to their businesses and do something different.

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Why Domain Optimisation Never Stops

What to do when flights are delayed...

Once again I find myself in the Melbourne Qantas Club….it’s becoming like a second home for me which in many respects is a bit sad. I’ve just received word that my flight has been delayed by over ninety minutes…..which is not good.

Escrow.com

For those of you that are frequent travelers you will appreciate my angst as I instantly calculated whether I have enough time to get to my connect in Singapore. Since it’s the same terminal I may still just make it…..fingers crossed.

The helpful check-in lady suggested that I may have to stay in Singapore for the night but to not worry as Qantas will foot the bill for the accommodation. The fact that my room at the Park Hyatt at my ultimate destination would be sitting forlornly empty didn’t occur to her. This combined with the fact that I’d miss half the conference I was hoping to attend didn’t inspire me to have many smiles.

So what should I do? Get angry and yell at the world or just roll with the punches. When you’ve traveled a LOT you get used to these types of things and realise that there isn’t much point in getting angry at person number seven at the check-in counter. They’re just doing their job.

Now that I’m in the lounge one of the first things I did was check out the number of flights from Singapore to the Park Hyatt…..there were enough for me to begin to relax. I’m sure that some airline will be happy to take my money.

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Why is Domain Traffic Still So Valuable?

Domain Traffic is like gold.

For many years people have been making proclamations that the domain monetisation industry is dead and yet….it’s still with us. There is a really simple reason why a number of individuals have been so successful in the domain monetisation industry. Domain traffic is valuable because it converts like no other source of traffic available to advertisers.

Escrow.com

Yes, it’s that simple. Quality direct navigation is like 24 caret gold for advertisers that care to investigate what traffic sources are actually generating their profits.

When you think about it, it’s pretty obvious. If a person goes to beds.com guess what? They want to buy a bed! This gold standard of traffic is what also contributes to driving up the price of high end premium domains.

Many years ago, I read a report released by Google that outlined how domain traffic converted better than search traffic. Not surprisingly, the report quickly vanished…. Everything comes back to advertisers…..and guess what, they want this traffic and they want it bad!

Given domain traffic is so valuable, why is it that many domain investors have been experiencing a decline in their traffic revenues? Once again the answer is simple…..if you depend 100% upon Google to provide you with your revenue then don’t be surprised if they reduce payouts.

I’ve seen domain investors get all upset about their revenue declining but do nothing about it. Go figure? The domain traffic IS valuable but someone else is just taking your lion’s share. What’s the point in getting angry with Google and then doing nothing?

The Google domain management team is doing EXACTLY what they should be doing….maximising Google’s profits. They are not interested in maximising your profits. In fact, if any of them weren’t putting Google first then they would be fired…..

So the question I would like to leave you with is also simple, “Given domain traffic is so valuable shouldn’t you take charge of your own profit line?”

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