January 29, 2008 | DomainInvesting.com
Neustar Domain Names

CircleID: ICANN Fee Will End Domain Tasting


According to a post on CircleID this afternoon, the ICANN Board of Directors held a vote to impose the non-refundable $.20 fee on ALL domain names registered from the moment of registration. The unanimous vote which took place on January 23 was noted in sections 5 and 6 of the ICANN meeting minutes, which were recently distributed. According to the notes,

the Board resolves (2008.01.04) to encourage ICANN’s budgetary process to include fees for all domains added, including domains added during the AGP, and encourages community discussion involved in developing the ICANN budget, subject to both Board approval and registrar approval of this fee.” – Preliminary Report for the Special Meeting of the ICANN Board of Directors

By charging a fee on all registrations, people will be much less likely to buy large amounts of domain names with the intention of dropping the unprofitable names. This should close the loophole that was created to protect people who registered a domain name in error. In exploiting this loophole, some people were buying thousands of domain names (and more), keeping them for under the 5 day grace period to test the traffic, and dropping the names that didn’t receive traffic. This led some companies to register and monetize trademark domain names and quickly drop them to avoid being detected.

Dell recently filed a lawsuit against companies they believe engaged in this act, and the case is still pending.

TreatmentCenters.com – $100k Domain to $1Million Website


TreatmentCenters.com is a great example of a company buying the domain name they needed and building it into a million dollar website. TreatmentCenters.com was sold for $100,000 by Afternic/BuyDomains as reported in DNJournal. This domain name informs visitors about exactly what they will find when they type it in to their browser, and it doesn’t disappoint upon arrival. For this business model, there probably aren’t any better domain names out there.

Using a directory model, TreatmentCenters.com provides paid and unpaid listings for various health and mental treatment centers and counselors throughout the country. Visitors can search by condition, by state or by provider name to find what they need. When a website like this is able to provide names, addresses, contact information, and data on the topic of interest to the searcher, it builds stickiness, and the searcher will probably return. This provides a positive experience for the visitor, and it also provides an ROI for the advertiser.

Kudos to the people behind TreatmentCenters.com! This is an aesthetically pleasing, well-functioning website, and it looks like a million bucks! I hope to emulate it with some of my entries down the road – including Lowell.com.

Domain Appraisals: What’s The Value?


Domain appraisals can vary by huge amounts depending on where they are done. Whether using a professional service like Moniker or Sedo, or asking for a free appraisal on a domain forum, the amount of the various appraisals can vary by tens of thousands of dollars and huge percentages. People often wonder if appraisals are motivated by outside factors – either by people wanting to buy a domain name, so the appraisal is much less than they sincerely believe, or they want to sell someone a domain name by convincing them the name is worth much more than name would actually fetch.

For the sake of curiosity, I would like to know how much deviation there is when domain investors look at one name and place a value on it. I am reaching out to you to give me an appraisal on my DebtCollectors.com domain name. I don’t plan to publish the appraisals (or post the names of the appraisers), but I will give the average and the outliers. I know how much I paid for it recently, and I have an idea about how much it would sell for if I would put it in auction.

I know there are various factors that can play into a domain’s sales price, including the buyer, the seller, the market conditions and the venue, but I am looking for a single dollar figure. Not only do I want to test my own ability to value a name, but I want to see what others think in an unbiased venue.