The Brandable Insider: Seven Qualities of a Successful Domainer

One of the myths of domaining is that it’s easy money. The grass is always greener from a distance and success looks easy on the surface. But the harsh reality of this business, or any business, is that it’s wildly competitive. The formula for success is simple. Hard work and talent that’s all you need. But the devil lurks in the details of the execution of the work and the application of the talent.

Here’s what I think are some of the key attributes of a profitable domainer:

Passion – They love the industry, the concept and the process of acquiring and selling domains. That’s what carries them through their bad domain choices, lost auctions and failed sales. If they weren’t wildly passionate about this business they’d never have been able to complete the long, hard trek into the land of profitability.

Fast Learner – Buying low and selling high is the age old formula for success. But enacting that formula is easier said than done. Profitable domainers learn quickly that buying low doesn’t mean hand regging junk names. They know that buying low means buying domains at a price less than their current or future value and they always favor quality over quantity. They know that amassing hundreds of low quality domains is often a recipe for financial loss rather than profit.

Confidence – Successful domainers believe in themselves and their ability to plan and conduct a business. They believe in their resourcefulness. They believe in their domain choices, their price quotes and their negotiation and sales skills. They think independently based on facts and logic. They don’t follow the mob and they don’t base their investment decisions on the comments of anonymous people in domaining forums.

Planning – Before they buy a domain they already have a plan in place for how they are going to sell it. They know the method, the venue and the price. It may not work out exactly as planned but they have a sales plan and they adjust it as needed. They also have a worst case scenario back-up plan that allows them to recapture their initial investment. They are capable of setting monthly and quarterly goals and putting them in writing. They have prior business experience and know how to pivot when their best laid plans go awry.

Money Management – They accept a $500 offer on a hand regged domain because they know they can leverage that $500 into higher quality domains and sales. They use their proof of concept experiences to purchase higher quality names as they develop their understanding of the industry and the market. If they make a mistake they are not afraid to liquidate at the best possible price, take the loss and move on. They keep records. They know how much they’ve spent, how many domains they have and their monthly and annual sales figures.

Timing – Whether they are flipping or investing they know about timing. Successful domainers read the important blogs. They stay abreast of the news. They assess the marketplace and sales venues rationally and know when to sell and for how much. They also know when a decline is in the wind and when to get out of a particular market niche. They’re also capable of acquiring undervalued assets in a depressed market when the news is bad and the crowd is selling.

Relationships – Successful domainers value their fellow domainers. They treat them with respect and avoid making enemies in marketplaces and forums. They use their real life name, they build a reputation and stand by what they say and do. They create lasting relationships and give their opinions in a straightforward, mature and constructive manner. They share what they’ve learned with others and are generous with their time.

These are the qualities I aspire to as a domainer. They are the qualities I see in many of our industry leaders who have served as my role models as I’ve grown and matured in my domaining business.

What’s on your list of attributes for a successful domainer? What advice would you give to a new domainer? Let us know in the comments below.

Some of the brandable sales reported this past week at Namebio:

  • $526
  • $293
  • $150
  • $409
  • $144
  • $787
  • $580
  • $498
  • $393
  • $194
  • 17 thoughts on “The Brandable Insider: Seven Qualities of a Successful Domainer”

    1. Pingback: June domain acquisitions and sales. - DNgeek

    2. Thanks Keith for sharing and that’s really a must for being successful in domaining. However, I would like to add creativity/thinking outside the box and not simply following 100% what others do. Everyone get different and unique opportunities and one should also enhance their ability which is hidden inside.

    3. Thank you Keith. It is another useful posting. I think passion is the most difficult think. Some domainers including me collect domains we love. We are sure about what is beautiful for us, but not sure what are interesting for end users. Passion in domaining is about buying what end users like, not what something only we like. And thank you to you and Doron to share about understanding the trends.

    4. Great post Keith. I think I posses quite a few of these 7 skills now but it’s a very good reminder! I agree with AbdulBasit, creativity is also very important – especially in brandables!

    5. “They accept a $500 offer on a hand regged domain ”

      I must say that all depend of the domain and buyer, I will mostly register domains if I think I can sell them above $1,000. Why? Quality over quantity. It makes it also easier to decide what to drop and what to renew.

      I must admit that it is often good to accept $500 for a hand registered domain because you can reinvest the money and make more sales 🙂

      My best two hand reg sales were $4,000 and $6,000.

    6. Great read. Can’t be written by other than a successful domain investor or someone who love domain investing and trying really hard to be better everyday. I enjoyed reading every word of it.

    7. By the way. I won from your list at the end of your post but it was renewed like many other domains I won recently on GoDaddy Auctions.

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