Lead Generation on Targeted Domain Names | DomainInvesting.com
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Lead Generation on Targeted Domain Names

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I know there are a lot of successful domain investors who are using their targeted domain names for lead gen, and I am thinking about trying it. Instead of selling a key domain name or spending time and effort building the site fully, I could reach out to one of the main companies in the field and work out a deal for the leads my site brings. Depending on the typical CPA, this could be very beneficial to both parties, and if successful, could actually lead to the domain sale.

The general premise is that I would take one of my exact match domain names where people are looking to buy an expensive product (probably a custom product or financial product), and I would do a one page website with general information about the product for SEO purposes and have a well-placed information request form.  For those who aren’t adept at web development, Wufoo is a website that allows people to create custom forms, and I think it would work well for this type of project.

What got me thinking about this was that for the bike tour in which I participated, the Ronald McDonald House provided its riders with custom “Team Ronald” technical bike shirts. I was thinking that the RMDH organizer probably did a Google search for “custom bike shirts” or something like that in order to find a company that made the shirts. If I owned CustomBikeShirts.com and they requested more information for 25 bike shirts (cost of around $2,000), it would be a nice commission check for just sending the lead to a shirt company.

One thing that I (and you) should consider is that there may be privacy issues with sharing personal and contact information, especially if it’s health, legal, or medical-related, so be sure to have a well-placed terms and conditions notice as well as a privacy policy. These are good to have in general, but if you are sharing or selling this information, it’s essential.

Perhaps some of the experts who are doing lead generation on their domain names can share some tips with those of us who are interested in trying!


About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has sold seven figures worth of domain names in the last five years. Please read the DomainInvesting.com Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest.


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Comments (34)

    Leonard Britt

    Thanks for the Wufoo mention. I tried inserting a lead capture form using XSitePro2 & couldn’t get it to work (support couldn’t help either). I have seen companies which buy targeted traffic using Adwords, capture leads (real estate, insurance, wedding, etc) using a simple form and assumably sell these leads to end users.

    May 30th, 2010 at 2:03 pm

    Ezio

    Nice mention there Wufoo Elliot.

    I’ve wondered why the parking companies don’t tackle lead generation.

    Assemble a sales team provide the lead forms for our domains, approve the ones that will bring in great converting leads, and take a cut of the pie for admisitering the lead business.

    It could be an alternate income stream for them. The only thing I can think of is that they have an noncompete clause stopping them.

    Why else is the parking industry just sitting still while other companies whittle away at their base? DomainAdvertising.com, Octane360, RootOrange, etc….are looking to take some of the biz from them yet they are complacent to keep making less and less from Yahoo and Google.

    If it is not a noncompete then there is something going on that most of us domainers are not aware of b/c 2+2 is not equalling 4 based on their actions.

    Are they just happy with the arbitrage they are doing and care little about the regular domainers?

    Sorry for the rant, but I’d like to see some squeeze pages added by the parking companies. I don’t want to do the phone work or administer sales folks….I’m too busy.

    May 30th, 2010 at 2:27 pm

    don

    Lead gen can be extremely lucrative, but there are probably only a handful of industries you could enter today with a one page website and hope to have a nice roi…if you are starting local or going for a geo/service play then you may have some success reaching out to industries that are willing to pay $100-200 per call, they certainly exist and some may be willing to pay a percentage of the revenue generated…fields such as insurance, mortgage, credit card, payday loan all are super competitive for lead gen but have nice earning potential, although the mortgage space has changed dramatically over the last 2 years…

    the challenge of trying to be an independent publisher in a niche vertical is you then have to spend the time/energy finding the advertisers or companies willing to pay out…I would suggest reaching out to your non domain sphere of influence to find out what businesses may be willing to pay for a lead for their biz and then do some legwork to see how competitve their field may be to get in for lead gen..

    May 30th, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    Domain Naming Guy

    I’m definitely going to do some research into lead generation, this has really piqued my interest. Thanks for the information!

    May 30th, 2010 at 6:46 pm

    Duane

    CPA is probably the best way to monetize a Domain/Webseite.

    But act with caution, because searchengines bann you when using affiliate forms/links or if they catch on that all your doing is selling leads.

    I am speaking out of experience.

    Sucsess in lead generation sites only goes with direct sales to companies buying the leads straight from you. Cut out the middleman and there is money to be made.

    1. Build a 5 page website.
    3. Give the user product options (Color,quality,size etc.)
    2. Rank it for more than one keyword term
    3. Make the website easy to navigate to the leadfrom
    4. Dont put the leadform on page 1 /Homepage !!!
    5. Use the common heatmap spots on a website!
    6. Put max 2 adsense ads on a terrible spot so companies providing the product or service which you are selling leads for will find your site and browse it.

    Once all this is up? Forward all leads to max 10 different companies interested in such leads.
    YOU do this for FREE!!

    After a few leads the will contact you automatic give them your price for the leads and sign them up.

    If they dont contact you, move on to the next companies. Do the same over and over again.

    1 Year later you will have 10, 20 or more firms buying leads from you. By then you are providing them with business north of $1 million per month and you will be making $40, $70, $100 or more for each lead because you only sell the lead no matter if it turns out to be actual business or not! If they can’t sell on a perfect lead? That’s there problem.

    It’s that easy. It’s my story.

    Been doing it for years.

    May 30th, 2010 at 6:55 pm

    Sean

    Duane

    Was interested in reading your comments as i’m just about to put some lead generation forms on one of my sites.

    Do you contact these 10 companies first before you send them leads, or simply just do it unannounced?

    regards

    Sean

    May 30th, 2010 at 8:15 pm

    Duane

    @ Sean
    Certainly, the best way is to contact them by phone first and try to reach some one in a better position than just the receptionist.

    Once you have someone on the phone, just simply tell them that you run the plattform XYZ.com. Unfortenantly you havent connected a company providing such service for your lead-customers geographical area yet. Ask them if they would please serve the lead (customer) so your website can keep on providing quality service.

    You can be sure they will thankfully take the lead and maybe ask you right then if it is possible to get into business with you.

    If they dont ask? Dont go forward in bombing them with lead cost’s.

    Simply thank them for helping you, then hang up the phone and send them the lead by email.

    Be sure to have all your contact information above the lead info and write them that you are looking for a provider to handle all your customers.

    May 30th, 2010 at 8:36 pm

    Tim

    Nice info Duane. Thanks for sharing.

    That’s more than a lot of people are willing to do.

    May 31st, 2010 at 9:41 am

    Duane

    Thanks Tim.

    Elliot runs a great blog and puts in great effort in educating others of how he try’s out different way’s of making his bucks.

    The more domainers understand and market there domains as actual business platforms? The more companies ( endusers ) will understand the value.

    I your just trying to make a quick buck on flipping domains or smoking the stuff Rick Schwartz is ( hooked on PPC )?

    Your dead meat and wont realize it until others start smelling you.

    When domainers start building businesses, for example websites which generate leads that end up in business transactions? Thats when mainstream will actually recognize domaining and domains as assets worth investing.

    With lead gen you are building an actual business.

    You dont have to rely on any blood sucking parking company.

    You dont have to rely on any affiliate network screwing you out of money by not forwarding your cut of the cake.

    You dont have to rely on any ad provider serving ads on your website property for penny’s.

    With a lead gen platform you are in total control and your building a business which will sell multiple times more than a quick flip parked domain.

    PS: Sorry about all the screwd up numbers and text on the last comments. It was 2 a.m. in the morning when writing and to much “single malt”

    May 31st, 2010 at 4:25 pm

    Adi

    @Elliot,

    How is the trip going?

    May 31st, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    Al

    What’s about such services as leadpile.com? Aren’t they the golden mean between PPC/affiliate and handling lead data on your own? At least you can get the quicker start in lead generation business firstly; and you should bother less with forms, privacy, disclaimers etc.

    June 1st, 2010 at 10:34 am

    Michael

    @Duane

    Hey Duane – great info. Appreciate you sharing your experiences.

    Did you have any example sites that you could show be they yours or someone else’s that you think does this approach correctly?

    Also would love to ask you more questions directly if that’s at all possible!?

    June 1st, 2010 at 2:28 pm

    Duane

    @ Michael

    Below is a perfect example of a great lead gen site and this setup can work with many service products/company’s.

    I have no idea of the stats of this site, but I would imagine it is making atleast 200 – 300 leads per month.

    I am sure you understand that I am not realy interested in publishing my sites.

    check this out : officecoffee.com

    Another example is copier.com

    June 1st, 2010 at 5:57 pm

    Michael

    @Duane

    Thanks Duane. Sure understand you not wanting to publicize your own sites.

    Thanks for the example sites you gave.

    Do you find that offering the consumer multiple quotes is harder work i.e You would then need to source 4 suppliers that are willing to buy the lead even though they know 3 others are willing to pay for it too? Do you find it easier from your experience to just sell it to one provider, if of course you can get the user to fill in the form without saying they will get 4 quotes, which i know is an incentive?

    Plus is there a way / method to discover what a lead may be worth if it’s an industry that I have no experience in?

    Many thanks,

    Michael

    PS If you have any more ‘examples’ that would be great

    June 1st, 2010 at 6:43 pm

    Duane

    If you have no idea of the price you can quote or have no idea of the industry?

    1. Build the site
    2. check the cpc of adwords / click price
    3. Run a ad campagne for 2-3 weeks on adwords

    After 2-3 weeks check your conversion rate.

    example of calculation:

    cost per click = $5
    If a conversion/lead cost you 10 clicks ( $50 )

    You could then sell each lead for aprox. $30 – $50

    The cheaper way is to rank your site and calculate your conversions per visitor.

    Mentioning several quotes could also be negative. Nobody likes there info and email address passed around. Connecting 1 supplier for each area is giving more exclusive leads which is seen as higher quality for the supplier. Makes less work for you and higher price per lead.

    At last if you have no idea of the industry, connect with someone who does. Give them a bonus, like a free banner on the site for a few months or something. The better you are informed of how sales and most important what “Customers” & “Suppliers” expect, the better your site will convert.

    It’s all about learning by doing and never giving up.

    June 1st, 2010 at 7:32 pm

    Michael

    @Duane

    Great info again Duane. Once again – thank you for sharing your experience.

    Yeh I do agree that from the suppliers perspective they would want exclusivity and it does make life easier.

    I guess what I am trying to get my head around is would someone fill out a form if they knew it was just going to one supplier i.e if the site doesn’t say “get 4 quotes”, which is an incentive to some users as they feel they just need to write it once and get 4 quotes back. If this 4 quotes type ‘offer’ was NOT mentioned on the site would the user not just prefer to pick up the phone as opposed to filling in a form for a website with no company name, address or phone number and then wait for someone anonymous to get back to them?

    Thanks,

    Michael

    June 1st, 2010 at 8:01 pm

    Duane

    @Michael

    What if your website said:

    ” From New York to LA, from Miami to Seattle or any other area inside the United States! We are connected to the best service providers in all geographic areas. If your looking for quality and service for a great price get your quote now. ”

    You mentioned Phone number?

    Put a call back form on the site with just 3 fields. Phone, Name, zip.

    Now you have another lead!

    Did I mention this yet? I take $600 per hour for consulting.

    June 1st, 2010 at 8:28 pm

    Michael

    @Duane

    That makes sense. Apologies for the 101 questions.

    If you’re ever in London Town, UK then I’ll gladly show you around and buy you beers all night lol.

    Hey – if you’d be interested in teaming up with a UK partner let me know.

    My email is michael.b.news@googlemail.com.

    Many thanks again for your info. No more questions lol.

    Michael

    June 1st, 2010 at 9:06 pm

    Mac

    Duane,
    You and George P have opened a window into a new world for many of us who are gathering PPC pennies. We appreciate your help. A few more questions until Michael reassumes the questioning:

    Do you drive traffic to your lead sites with Adwords ?
    Do you use press releases to help SEO ?
    What is teh rate of leads per visitor: 1 in 15, 1 in 20, etc ?
    Do you lead generate across many topics or stay focused ?

    Thanks,
    Mac

    June 2nd, 2010 at 12:10 am

    George Pickering

    I can answer for us:

    Do you drive traffic to your lead sites with Adwords ?

    Yes, at a profit. That is the key advantage to the lead gen model. Scalability.

    Do you use press releases to help SEO ?

    I don’t. Probably should

    What is the rate of leads per visitor: 1 in 15, 1 in 20, etc ?

    For landing pages, goal is 1 out 10 or better. Depends on category. Highly competitive categories will have lower conversion rates

    Do you lead generate across many topics or stay focused ?

    If you look at the lead gen model, in 1990 there were two ways to attack the problem. Horizontal and Vertical. Most of the Horizontal companies went out of business. The Vertical lead gen companies (like Servicemagic, Lending Tree, etc) excelled

    Would like to go wide, but the key is to pick a category and expand into natural cross sell points when branching out. Also make sure you “core” vertical is running to optimal efficiency when branching into related verticals.

    June 2nd, 2010 at 1:59 am

    Al

    I’d also like to ask a few questions George and Duane if I’m allowed :)

    First of all thanks for that interesting information!

    Guys, what mechanism of lead processing is it better to use – manual or automatic? Does the model used on officecoffee.com really work? I mean fully automatic putting sellers/buyers together? Or some direct calling job is still needed?

    And what is usually the algorithm of leads forwarding to the list of subscribers(lead buyers)? All at once, next in turn, or something more refined?

    Once again – do such services as leadpile.com take really bigger share from your money when you forward leads to them? I’m asking because those guys already have the base of lead buyers ready to pay, don’t they? Then isn’t it more convenient strategy to start with such a middleman in order to concentrate just on one side firstly? And as you start getting the steady stream of leads you can proceed directly with lead buyers.

    Thanks in advance!

    June 2nd, 2010 at 3:45 am

    Duane

    @ George

    Thanks forgiving me some help. I agree 100 % to all your answers for Mac.

    @AI

    1. “Guys, what mechanism of lead processing is it better to use – manual or automatic? ”

    Automatic forwarding takes a load off of you. Also from the Sales perspective, shortens the response time for your lead/customer which ends in higher rate of business transactions for the supplier recieving the lead.

    2. “And what is usually the algorithm of leads forwarding to the list of subscribers. ”

    The Answer is all at once and as quick as possible or when geographical targeted giving exclusivity to suppliers ? Route the leads by zip code, this is also better for signing up smaller businesses which provide there service only in certain geo areas.

    3. “Do such services as leadpile.com take really bigger share from your money when you forward leads to them?

    While these modells are convinient, you are in no control of your leads. The personal connection to your suppliers can help better understand there needs. If searchengines catch on affiliate forms or links, say goodby to your rank!

    By using a middleman, you are loosing all your lead/customer data. Ever thought of after sales and upselling? ” Via simular products & services” ?

    There is much more you can do but I dont plan on writing a book here on Elliots blog.

    June 2nd, 2010 at 5:21 am

    Duane

    @ George
    Thanks for stepping in even though you probably see everything which I have written as old beans. I agree 100 % to all your answers for Mac.

    @AI
    “What mechanism of lead processing is it better to use – manual or automatic?”

    – Automatic forwarding takes a load off of you. Also from the Sales perspective, shortens the response time for your lead/customer which ends in higher rate of business transactions for the supplier receiving the lead.

    “And what is usually the algorithm of leads forwarding to the list of subscribers.”

    – The Answer is all at once and as quickly as possible or when geographical targeted giving exclusivity to suppliers? Route the leads by zip code, this is also better for signing up smaller businesses which provide there service only in certain geo areas.

    “Do such services as leadpile.com take really bigger share from your money when you forward leads to them?”

    – While these models are convenient, you are in no control of your leads. The personal connection to your suppliers can help better understand there needs. If search engines catch on affiliate forms or links, say goodbye to your rank!

    By using a middleman, you are loosing all your lead/customer data. Ever thought of after sales and up selling? ” Via similar products & services” ?

    There is much more you can do and will eventually find new ways of optimizing your site. Just focus on 1 site at a time and put the effort in until it starts generating to your expectations.

    A lead generating website is, and should be like a Salesman. It’s all about acquisitions of bringing in new business. If it is correctly optimized, it is providing service for the customer/user and the supplier. Both are then thankful for you providing such website and making a business transaction this easy.

    Remember you only need 1 web address / domain and website to build a full blown business which in the end can generate and secure a steady income for life. Not ever needing to sell unless it’s a offer you cant resist.

    June 2nd, 2010 at 8:55 am

    George Pickering

    Guys, what mechanism of lead processing is it better to use – manual or automatic?

    In 99, when I first started – it was all automatic. Lots of lead quality problems. Today, you can use a service provider like TargusInfo to confirm the name and number match – plus augment the lead with demographic. We phone screen 40% of our leads to maintain quality. One person, it is a very quick process to make sure the person is real and the need is valid.

    And what is usually the algorithm of leads forwarding to the list of subscribers(lead buyers)? All at once, next in turn, or something more refined?

    We use several variables including lead price (advertisers can bid), proximity, filters, etc

    Once again – do such services as leadpile.com take really bigger share from your money when you forward leads to them? I’m

    I’ve never used LeadPile or another third party. I cannot comment on their service.

    I will say that I have purchased a company that was an affliate of another lead provider. We launched our own lead program and grew the revenue 5X-6X due to increased lead volume and payouts from our internal program WITHOUT INCREASING traffic

    June 2nd, 2010 at 9:51 am

    George Pickering

    To clarify one comment, we were able to grow leads 5X-6X from the same organic footprint. We did buy traffic, but to other domains we owned. This traffic was significant so we didn’t elected to build out another domain that had better long term SEO potential. Sorry for the confusion.

    June 2nd, 2010 at 9:57 am

    Duane

    @ George
    Thanks for stepping in, even though you probably see everything which I have written as old beans. I agree 100 % to all your answers for Mac.

    @AI

    I tried answering your questions but gave up after the 4th time trying. Something is blocking my comments here on the blog, dont know what it is. Maybe elliot can fix it.

    Maybe this comment will go through.

    June 2nd, 2010 at 11:55 am

    George Pickering

    One suggestion is to service the leads youself and use a third party as a backstop. For example, in Home Improvement, Servicemagic is a backstop used my many lead gen companies that service contractors. But with 100s of Home Improvement categories across 3000+ US counties, if they don’t have 100% coverage, they will sell their excess to Servicemagic

    @Duane No problem. Your follow up comments were spot on. Thank you for preaching the lead generation message. Hopefully it demonstrates that the model is fairly easy to run, provided you are willing to put in some work to build a real business.

    June 2nd, 2010 at 2:15 pm

    Al

    Duane, George – thanks a lot for the awesome answers! This page is definitely worth bookmarking :)

    Duane, I just haven’t understand your following point enough:
    “If search engines catch on affiliate forms or links, say goodbye to your rank!”
    There’s really a number of sites with affiliate links that rank fine for the target phrases. It seems that the problems with search engines are possible just in case of little/no original text content there. But I don’t think you are speaking about such a case? Strange, I thought that just “thin” affiliates were considered evil by search engines…

    June 2nd, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    Duane

    @

    One of my lead gen sites has been running for 3 years. It ranks on page 1 on the 2 major search engines for over 70 different search/ keyword variations.

    During this time I tested additional up selling strategies while using different affiliate forms, textlinks and banner ads. Funny thing is, shortly after implementing affiliate codes flew out of the search index for all keyword phrases except for the exact match search of the domain.

    The big G guidelines say:

    „Thin affiliate sites: These sites collect pay-per-click (PPC) revenue by sending visitors to the sites of affiliate programs, while providing little or no value-added content or service to the user. These sites usually have no original content and may be cookie-cutter sites or templates with no unique content.“

    And

    „There is no problem in being an affiliate as long as you create some added value for your users and produce valuable content that gives a user a reason to visit your site. For example, you could create product reviews, ratings, and product comparisons.“

    Exactly 3 times I had to ask for reinclusion at big G. The process takes up to 6 weeks. That’s loosing a lot of business. It can’t be coincidence that every time some affiliate code is put on a site you suddenly disappear for 70 search terms. This site has original content and 20 pages. I never had more than 1 affiliate code on the site.

    Conclusion:
    Big G does not accept anyone making money unless they get a cut or some other profit.

    Just my experience. I would real be interested if George Pickering has similar experience with big G.

    June 2nd, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    Mike

    @Ezio: “I’ve wondered why the parking companies don’t tackle lead generation.”

    No need to wonder. Its because the parking companies do not want you, the domain owner, to know ‘too much’ or else you could theoretically put the parking company out of business.

    I once tried to ask my Afternic sales rep where my leads were coming from and, let me tell you — I saw dancing that would win ANY contest out there. He would NOT even come close to answering my question. I had to leave Afternic after that, with 1500+ names! They couldnt give a damn.

    Park your domains yourself and screw the parking companies – they’ll never be honest with you about traffic OR about the actual PPC you SHOULD be earning!!!

    June 2nd, 2010 at 10:30 pm

    Mark

    I’m a little late to this thread… Elliot provides such a valuable site, I’m hoping I can contribute back some info.

    In 1999 I founded HouseValues.com from my home office. We were the first to do listing lead gen for real estate agents and combine the leads with web based CRM tools and training. HouseValues grew in to a $25 million a year business, then we added JustListed.com for buyer side lead gen and added another $25 million in revenue. It get’s more complicated after that, but the company had an IPO in 2004, I was Chairman at that time. I left in 2006 and later the company changed it’s name to Market Leader (NASDAQ: LEDR).

    Anyway… The early days of growth were fueled by zip code EXCLUSIVITY. An agent could subscribe to buy all of the leads generated from a zip code. The exclusive zip code subscription was for a flat monthly fee. So, instead of charging on a per lead basis, we charged a monthly subscription fee to own a zip code. It was super effective and gave us predictable cash flow. Of course we had to buy enough advertising to generate enough leads to keep subscribers happy. The business model eventually changed to cost per lead, but the exclusive zip code subscription worked great for several years.

    One question I have for Duane and George – How do you handle billing and collection for each lead generated? I can see this creating administrative nightmares for a small domainer that doesn’t have the scale to build an automated system.

    June 10th, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Kyla Jane

    Nice one Duanne, that will certainly help a lot of business man using websites, but can you do this process if your using a blog(?) or something related to it? Just asking, by the way, I like this thread, hope more will share their skills and experiences.

    July 13th, 2010 at 1:48 am

    Sales Lead Generator

    Yeah….thats true..but might be costlier idea…!!!

    January 6th, 2012 at 6:32 am

    millions4us

    I have just bought a domain name with traffic on it, only paid for the registration fee. I still haven’t decided if i should park it or simply build a niche site. Still am looking for the big one though.
    Elliot , great post.
    Frank Z.

    December 10th, 2012 at 3:07 am

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