The Brandable Insider: The Secret Path to Profits (Part II)

“Don’t be romantic about your domains. Don’t fall in love with them. You’re not a collector of domain names, you’re an investor.”Michael Cyger at DNAcademy

Last week we talked about money management and its crucial impact on our success as domainers. Small changes in money management can make or break our business. One of the biggest mistakes we make as domainers is renewing domains that have little chance of selling in the next one or two years.

If you had zero end user sales last year then renewals will likely take you further into the hole. If you had a few sales then renewals can still significantly erode your profits. So it’s a fine line to walk.
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Guest post: My first year as a BrandBucket “seller”

BrandBucket is the leading brandable domain marketplace in the world today. Building a portfolio there can be an exciting proposition, particularly for newer domainers who have no experience selling domain names.

It’s not easy, though; and is by no means a guarantee of success.

I’d like to take you through my first year of experience with BrandBucket, in the hopes that you can use my lessons to get ahead of the learning curve and eventually find your own success with this great marketplace.

First, some things about me:

  • I’m Canadian
  • I’ve been actively domaining (part-time) for one year
  • I have no marketable, professional skills related to domains, web development, graphic design, marketing, business development… you get the picture

What I do bring to my domaining pursuits are a love of words and writing, a sharp mind, a willingness to learn and work, and a friendly disposition.

On to the good stuff! (more…)

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The Brandable Insider: Hand Regged Domains Doing Well in the Aftermarket

There’s been a lot of talk in recent months about the rising demand for brandable domains in the aftermarket. It seems more and more domainers are hopping on the brandable domain train and pushing up prices in the drops and auctions. I’ve noticed that, in some cases, domains that were hand registered less than a year ago are selling for as much as $200.

Here’s a few samples from January 2017, as reported by Namebio, listed by domain name, hand reg date (month & year), sale price in Jan 2017 and marketplace.

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The Brandable Insider: ThinkCart.com, Wealthio.com and Kantina.com

Right now Doron and I are attending NamesCon 2017 in sunny LasVegas and I’m posting this blog via telepathic artificial intelligence. Yea right! In case you’re not familiar with NamesCon, it’s one of the world’s largest domain name industry conferences and it features presentations by industry experts on a wide variety of relevant domaining topics. It’s also a unique opportunity to network, face-to-face, with the people we communicate with all year long via cyberspace. I’m sure we’ll both be writing about our respective NamesCon adventures next week.

In the meantime, let’s look at some interesting brandable sales, as reported by NameBio, recently:


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The Brandable Insider: Identifying Milestones and Trends from 2016

As 2017 rolls clearly into view I’m looking back at the events and forces that shaped the brandable domaining space this past year. From where I sit there were a number of notable changes and events that impacted the brandable domain niche and could have an influence on our domain strategies moving forward. They’re at least worth noting and considering as we look ahead, evaluate and visualize for the coming year.

Sales & inventory are up
Self-reported sales at leading brandable marketplaces continue to improve. Although they’ve yet to release their 2016 sales totals, BrandBucket reported in their May Sellers Newsletter, that “Q1 sales dramatically outpaced last year’s Q1 and early Q2 sales.” This indicates a potentially strong sales increase year over year. Simultaneously, brandable marketplace inventories increased dramatically with some marketplaces almost doubling their 2015 inventory levels.
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The Brandable Insider: Tips and Tricks for the BrandBucket Marketplace

Its been two years since I started building my portfolio at the BrandBucket marketplace. I thought it might be a good time to share some of the things I’ve learned. Keep in mind that my tips are specifically about BrandBucket and may or may not apply to the brandable space in general. Also, they are subject to change as I continue to learn and the BrandBucket market niche evolves.

Lastly, these are my personal opinions and best guesses, not official BrandBucket guidelines that I’ve been given. As a Brand Ambassador I receive a finite number of BrandBucket listing credits each month. This is compensation for writing two monthly articles for their website and helping new sellers interact with the platform and develop their branding skills. Everything else is pretty much the same for me as it is with other sellers. Alright let’s dig in.

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The Brandable Insider: Meet the Man Behind Expired Domains Dot Net

Thousands of domainers from all over the world go to ExpiredDomains.net to search for deals. If you’re like me you visit the site every single day. With scores of filters and options it’s the premier website for sifting through dozens of marketplaces and TLD’s to find treasure amidst the trash. But surprisingly, less than 15% of its millions of monthly page views originate from the USA. Lastly, the most amazing aspect of the site is that it is completely, 100% free!

For these reasons I see Marco Schmidt, the owner and developer of the site, as one of the unsung heroes of the domaining industry. I thought it was time he came out of the IT closet to meet the people he so generously serves.

Hi Marco! Thanks for agreeing to this interview.

You’re welcome.

First, if you don’t mind. Tell us a little bit about yourself. I think our readers would enjoy hearing about your background, your career and your interests outside of domaining.

I’m from Berlin, Germany. I work as a system administrator, but my passion is software development and that is what I do for fun in my spare time. Finding easy solutions for complex problems and if possible automating them is what I like to do. That is why domains are perfect for me. You can automate almost everything.
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The Brandable Insider: What’s Going On at the Pheenix Marketplace?

To be successful I need an edge over the mob of domainers that are scanning the drops at Go Daddy every day. For that reason I like to snoop around the non-mainstream marketplaces in hopes of finding an overlooked, brandable gem. One such marketplace is Pheenix.com.

Last year DNgeek reported on the drop catcher’s new policy of sending all domains with multiple backorders to public auction. But this week Pheenix released some better news. Tan Tran, the CEO at Pheenix, sent an email to account holders announcing that Pheenix had partnered with Escrow.com. He said that this alliance will now allow Pheenix to turbo charge it’s marketplace with new benefits like free escrow service, same day payments, and automatic domain transfers.
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BrandBucket snaps up Keith deBoer as Brand Ambassador

Fellow blogger and part-time domain name investor Keith deBoer has accepted an invitation from BrandBucket to join their Ambassador partner program for domain sellers. He takes the position alongside Jeffery Emerick who became a brand ambassador for BrandBucket in February of this year. According to BrandBucket “Ambassadors are selected for their ability to craft great business names and to properly represent the BrandBucket messaging to future customers and partners. As part of the program, special perks, resources and budgets will be afforded to ambassadors to help them promote their portfolios and help represent BrandBucket’s ever-growing collection of available business names for entrepreneurs, startups, and new businesses.”

Former Ambassador and now BrandBucket’s managing director, Michael Krell, confirmed Keith’s new role via email this week and said that BrandBucket  plans to issue an official announcement in the next day or two.

Interestingly enough the news comes at the same time as I have personally started to move away from BrandBucket (and other similar marketplaces) to focus on selling my names via direct navigation which goes to show that different investment strategies can work for brandable domain name investors. I asked Keith to answer some questions on the news. (more…)

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Efty launches new marketplace themes. Here’s mine!

The idea of offering advertising-free For-Sale landing pages that are built for conversion and enable domain name investors to generate leads from end-users without paying a dollar in commissions has been one of the many drivers behind the success of Efty, the company I co-founded. I’m very excited to share that we just took another important step in building Efty into the one tool that every domainer will love to use!

Everyone knows that having a website is essential to show you, your domains and your business in its best light and look professional and trustworthy. The truth however, is that many domainers simply don’t have the time or resources to create a site, let a alone a full-fledge marketplace to present their inventory. Until now. The two new marketplace themes released today at Efty allow anyone to create a custom domain shop in minutes and start marketing their domain name portfolio using a custom domain and sell domains from a slick, professional looking and responsive marketplace without paying a dollar in commission.

The first two themes to hit the marketplace galley are:

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