Maybe you heard it, maybe you didn’t… but Walgreens is shutting down two generic domain name websites they own and operate:
They acquired the two, plus VisionDirect.com and SkinStore.com from some $420+ million in 2011 time frame.
When I read the news yesterday about the decision by Walgreens, Toys.com popped in my head. Toys R Us, which paid $5.1 Million for only the domain name, killed off that generic/website which I wrote about here.
Two large companies, killing off websites using premium generic domain names. That seems to be the opposite of what domain owners preach. aka, these companies need these generic domains for branding, credibility, SEO and more!
Well, Toys.com appears to have been killed off by a new, incoming CEO and was a decision that I think was wrong. It was likely a “cost saving” measure. Was the site mismanaged and had a big team to run the website, costing a lot of money? Likely!
Walgreens has stated that they want to put more focus on Walgreens.com it self. Again, Drugstore.com and Beauty.com are being killed off, in a cost savings measure, just as Toys.com was.
The domains fault? No, mismanagement of the businesses behind the domains IMO!
Again, I think this is a mistake by Walgreens, just as I did with Toys.com. This time I was able to grab some data behind the two sites shutting down and they are nothing to sneeze at. Alexa data:
Beauty.com Alexa Rank 6,437 in US, 19,267 Global 32.3% BR, 6.60 PVPV, 5:05 on site 59K indexed
Drugstore.com Alexa Rank 1,129 in US, 4,201 Global 36% BR, 7.21 PVPV, 5:31 On site 1.9M indexed pages
Walgreens.com Alexa Rank 229 in US, 936 Global 24.7% Bounce Rate, 6.6 Pageviews per visitor, 6:11 on site
Looking at the Alexa data, Drugstore.com is a very active website. The 1,129th most active website in the US according to Alexa. IT should be turning a profit and a nice one at that.
Drugstore.com and Beauty.com never co-branded itself with Walgreens directly and I think they should have. Drugstore and Beauty co-branded with VisionDirect but never with the big brand. I think it would have helped. Having the multiple websites helps in more ways than one and an important factor often over looked is “owning the search”. Walgreens.com is only going to rank well for so many keywords. Using Drugstore.com, Walgreens.com and Beauty.com allows Walgreens to “own the search” for a huge ray of keywords they want to focus on.
For an example, I did a couple product searches using keywords I know both Walgreens.com and Drugstore.com offer. I was getting results from Drugstore.com and seeing nothing from Walgreens.com. That is a problem for Walgreens, when Drugstore.com is gone at the end of September… because those rankings are going to be gone!
It would be wise for Walgreens to keep Drugstore.com, co-brand it with Walgreens and get a better handle on the sites other than just closing the two down. Again, this isn’t a domain problem, it’s a management problem of the sites!