NameJet.com has always displayed the amount of pre-order bids “Bidders” on PendingDelete domain names, which has been used by domain name investors as an easy tool to find domains they may have missed otherwise, so they can place a backorder on the domain.

Well, the easy part just got a bit harder. NameJet is no longer showing “bidders” below 4 (not an official number). So all pendingdelete domain names that have a minimum of 1-3 backorders will not show publicly on the NameJet site that they have any pre-drop bidders. (update: I want to be clear this is not an official number. It may be 1-2 will not display, I said 4, because, well, see below)

NJ-bids

I reached out to Matt Overman over at NameJet/Rightside and he stated:

It was a conscious choice to improve catch rate for the less sought after names..

The current GM at NameJet, Jonathan Tenenbaum was to get back to me with further details on the reason for not displaying the bidder amount as Matt is in a different role than I thought but I haven’t heard anything from Jonathan.

In general, DropCatch.com is becoming the leader in dropcatching, once held by SnapNames / NameJet / Pool so I’m sure these other service have to try something to stop the bleeding. I’m not sure that this is the answer, simply because it will make it only harder for domain investor to find “the good drops”. I see this resulting in simply fewer backorders at NameJet because the “easy” factor is removed.

This could be good for investors that do backorder at NameJet if NJ does grab the domain, but bad for NJ as the price will likely decrease due to less bidders in the actual auction.

The real way to improve catch rate is through better software and more registrars! Like what DropCatch.com has perfected! The reality is, NameJet and any drop provider should provide ample tools for investors to promote domains that are PendingDelete, because these domains are “products” they are offering and can profit on it they are successful at secure them during the drop.

On the other side of the fence, many people will like the fact that the 1-3 (not an official number) bidders amount has been removed, because it will help them personally in the drop game. This will take “highlights” off many domain names that others wouldn’t see with the handouts NameJet was providing prior and will help others at the game of dropcatching.

About Jamie Zoch

Jamie Zoch is a domain investor, dad and dedicated husband who founded DotWeekly.com in 2008 to bring unique and helpful views on domain names. Jamie is very passionate about domain names and helping others learn and prosper.

13 Responses to NameJet Removes Bid Indicators Lower Than 4
  1. Great analysis on both counts: the non-display of the number of bidders for specific domains that are ‘niche’ and of interest to fewer people, and about the supremacy of DropCatch. My recent blog post describes my experience with the latter.

  2. Great find. I was wondering why the format of the top pending delete backorders had changed and so few domains were in it.

  3. This news is much bigger than most people think.

  4. I currently see three domains on NJ that are pending delete and have three back orders:
    http://i.imgur.com/EAs7krP.jpg

    So I think it was just a coincidence that all the domains had been piled on by at least three other people when you looked. Not sure why Matt would “confirm” something that obviously isn’t true.

    • Michael, it may have been the case today that no domains had “3” backorders when I took the screenshot. So maybe the correct number is with 1-2 backorders placed. Matt didn’t confirm a specific number. I placed his direct quote in the article.

      My full email to Matt was: “I had noticed that PendingDelete domains had shown “pre-bids” prior to the domain going to auction, showing backorders but now I am only seeing PD domains with 3 or 4 pre-bids minimum.

      Was this intentional or can you share the reason behind this change after so many years showing them?”
      I wrote the number “4” in the article today, because that was all I was seeing when I did the search for today’s domains this morning.

      • I also updated the story to make it very clear that the numbers I posted are not official. It may be 1-2 backorders on PD domains that will not be displayed, thanks to the screenshot from Michael.

        • How can you be sure that there just aren’t any domains with 1 or 2 back orders at the moment? If they changed something, why no announcement? The only confirmation is from Matt who isn’t at NJ any more and probably wouldn’t be privy to a change like this.

          If you’re right this would be a very welcome change in my opinion, although it would be bad for NJ. Not that bad though because this mostly only makes a difference on low end names.

          • Michael, it’s the case, at least for now! I did have the “number” likely wrong by stating “4” but they are and actually have been doing this for awhile.. not showing the domains with lower amount backorders that are pendingdelete domains. Matt stated, his direct words in my email: “I’m still involved at NJ but not as much day to day.”

  5. Bad move fellas. We’ll see next month when you release your sales data.
    I’m guessing May isn’t the best month anyway but this is going to hurt you over there at NJ.
    Makes no sense.

  6. I actually think this will help NJ catch more names and better compete with DropCatch.

    When a single bid makes the name show up on NJ list, it’s easy pickings for others. So if a single person finds it and backorders on NJ, it used to be made public. Others would see it and pile on. Everybody would also backorder the same names at DropCatch and SnapNames.

    Now, if NJ doesn’t make it public, or at least has a threshold for making it public, less people can pile on. A name that may have gotten 20 backorders when made public now only gets a few backorders. And so now DropCatch gets less backorders on that same name and has less incentive to allocate resources to catching that name since they have fewer potential bidders.

    In the past 2 weeks, NJ has caught more names on my list than it has in a while. Maybe a coincidence, but they were names with only a few backorders on NJ. Good names still get overlooked from time to time.

  7. Anyway, all of us should not be bidding just because other bidders are bidding on a name. We should be bidding based only on the intrinsic value of each name that we come across vis a vis the minimum bid. Some of my best ROIs have been gained by selling domain names I won at auctions where I was the sole bidder and winner. A $5,000 sale of a domain name purchased for only $69 is pretty sweet in ROI terms. From there, it’s a volume game.


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