Brandable Trends and The Rise of FemTech

The bottom line is you have to work way smarter and harder now. Don’t fool yourself into thinking you can go out and buy a few domains and that’s it.”

—  Tia Wood, Domainer and web consultant 

The brandable domaining landscape is always in flux. It’s an evolving business environment in a slow, but constant, state of change.  New technologies and cultural shifts create and destroy consumer habits, interests, fads, emerging markets and brandable domaining sales trends. 

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How I Evaluate and Acquire Expiring Domains


“In my years of scanning expiring domain name lists I’ve found that only 7% – 12% of all names, that expire, mean anything to more than one person”

– Frank Schilling , founder of Uniregistry

There are many resources for acquiring brandable domains such as hand registration, a fellow domainer, or “the drops”.  But one of the most popular methods is trolling the vast pool of domains that expire daily.

Aside from the expiring domain auctions at places like GoDaddy and SnapNames many domainers look for gems in the GoDaddy Closeouts.  This is a precarious task since all the domains that reach the Closeout marketplace have already been examined by dozens of other domain investors and been deemed unworthy of a bid at auction. 

Therefore to be a successful Closeout domain buyer one needs an eye keen enough to see treasure where others saw trash.

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What Kind of Domainer Are You? Part Two: Riding the Trends

I don’t have some secret method to my madness.  I have a wheelhouse that I feel comfortable with and I usually stay in it.

– Domain Shane

In the stock market there are different kinds of investors and traders. There’s short term day traders and then there’s a style called, swing trading.  In this approach the trader doesn’t attempt to anticipate every market move but instead takes positions in stocks that have established a clear trend. The swing trader maintains his/her short/long position for as long as the stock stays within their preset parameters.

In this style or system of trading the investor misses out on the beginning and end of the trend but, when successfully executed, he/she will capture the meat of the move and obtain a handy profit.

A swing trader in the stock market has a correlate in domaining. It’s what that I call a “trend rider.”

Whether they know it or not, this niche is where the majority of domainers reside, most of the time, and it’s the place that I call home as well.

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A Quick Guide to Artificial Intelligence Domains

Successful domain name investors buy domain names that other people want. – Michael Cyger

One of the biggest, current and future, trends in technology is artificial intelligence (AI).  Whether you realize it or not AI is already embedded in your daily life and it’s increasing all the time. 

Each time you contact Amazon customer service, make a banking transaction, use your smartphone, your Echo virtual assistant or a late model car, some type of artificial intelligence is at work.  Already some 47% of all companies have embedded some type of AI into their business model.

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Cashing In on the eSports Craze

“[The] booming eSports space….. I think that is going to be the next ‘crypto wave’ for domains. I’m seeing so much action in that area.” Drew Rosener on Domain Sherpa, Oct 2018


One of the fastest growing industries of our day is eSports. Startups in this space are spawning faster than Fortnite warriors and, more importantly, established corporations like Google, Sony, Microsoft, Doritos and Coca-Cola are investing at an increasingly rapid pace.  Money is on the move. Just this week Epic Games announced it’s putting up $100 million dollars in prize money for competitions in 2019. The July, World Cup alone, will include $30 million in total prizes.  But it gets better…..

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Hot Companies with Horrible Brands

Not too long ago, dictionary word domains were considered as exact match, category killers for various products and industries.  For this reason you’ll find fiber optic products at Fiber.com and air travel services at Fly.com.  But things have changed. The rules have been disrupted. Now dictionary words have become a premium vehicle for branding in a wide variety of industries. Sometimes this creative application of a single word domain has been a hit. Other times it’s been a disaster.

Let’s take a look at some examples of companies who have succeeded despite what I consider to be questionable, single word, branding choices.

  • Lime – A bike sharing company  at LI.me
  • Igloo – Domain advisors at Igloo.com
  • Sumo – Web marketing solutions at Sumo.com
  • Amazon – Global eCommerce platform at Amazon.com
  • Lemonade – Insurance app at Lemonade.com
  • Uber – Ride sharing app at Uber.com
  • Gusto – Payroll services at Gusto.com
  • League – Health benefits management at League.com
  • Bird – Scooter rentals at Bird.co
  • Apple – Global tech company at Apple.com
  • Toast – Business operations software at Toast.com
  • Purple – High tech mattresses at Purple.com

On the flip side there’s a bunch of one word brands that I really like.

  • Agenda – A scheduling app at Agenda.com
  • Advance – Global media at Advance.com
  • Great – A Swedish charity to help the impoverished at Great.com
  • Slack – Team collaboration tools at Slack.com
  • Ledger – Crypto asset management at Ledger.com
  • Casper – High tech mattresses at Casper.com
  • Pax – Vape and cannabis devices at Pax.com
  • Ring – Home security systems at Ring.com
  • Timeline – Modern history at Timeline.com
  • Freedom – Mortgage company at Freedom.com

What’s on your list of heroes and zeroes for startup branding?  Let us know in the comments below.

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Let’s Get Rich – Investing in the Next Big Thing

Ninety nine percent of finding the next big thing is discounting all the noise of those that want to convince you that what they have is the next big thing.
Rick Swartz, The Domain King®

We all wish we could have registered the 1997 gems that are selling now for 6 or 7 figures. So why didn’t we? The reality is that most us were online in 1997. I know I was. And yet we didn’t buy. Since then other opportunities have come and gone. But often we haven’t seen or responded to them in real time.

Don’t believe me? Take a look at these 2018 sales.
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Tech Startup Brands: What’s Hot and What’s Not

“We now live in a world where one-word domains with massively broad use cases and brandable one and two-word domain names have won [the race against product-related domains]. – Morgan Linton, July 2018

In a prior post I talked about 349 recent sales from three brandable marketplaces. I assessed them as a group and analyzed them in terms of length, style and keywords. This week I’m looking for trends in the brand names of 200 tech startups that were recently covered in news reports on TechCrunch.

Let’s see what we can discern from the trends, tendencies and nuances of this random list of 200 names.
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10 startups that launched with a premium domain name in 2017

A lot of startups struggle with the naming process when they start and an even larger number fails in acquiring a great domain name for the company that they just launched. Having a good digital presence is important in this technological age so whether it’s getting custom software development Chicago or a hard-hitting domain name, it’s all important to the success of the startup. The general sentiment among these startups is that they can always go through a rebranding if needed or upgrade their domain name when they gain healthy traction and raise more funding. But not all startups. Every now and then we’ll see newly funded startups launch with a killer, ultra premium domain name. Right from the start.

Here are 10 of them that announced funding this year: (more…)

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Digital pharmacy startup ScriptDash rebrands as Alto, acquires Alto.com

Digital pharmacy startup ScriptDash got a new name this week, along with $23 million in Series B financing. The San-Fransisco-based startup will now go by Alto to reflect its intention to go beyond just delivery.

“We started ScriptDash to simplify the pharmacy experience for those in need. Over the past two years, it’s been our privilege to serve the San Francisco Bay Area community. We’ve learned a lot about what it means to provide you with the world-class care you deserve. In that time, we also began to feel that we had a larger story to tell than just a pharmacy that delivers. Our new name, Alto, better embodies our company’s mission to build the world’s most patient-centric pharmacy.” co-founder Mattieu Gamache-Asselin writes in the company blog announcing the news of the name change. (more…)

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