Ramblings On My Current Thoughts

I haven’t done a ramblings in an article for a pretty long time, so I thought I would do one now to share what rolling around in my brain.

Buyer brokerage. I offer this service to help people acquire domain names they want but do not know the ins and outs of the domain business. I love doing this and if I had to stop everything and do one thing, it’s domain name buyer brokerage! The one thing I struggle with is “getting my name out” to get the businesses and individuals in need of the service the help they need. I’m working to improve this and the more people I help, the more my name spreads and the random emails that come in for the help.

A couple things related for you domain investors. I will find you, but making it really hard to do so, not only makes my job harder, you may be also losing a sale. Be responsive. When or if I do email you, don’t ignore it. Not only me, any domain inquiry as you never know. Most people come to me with a specific domain in mind but that domain is often followed up with a few more domains, just in case.

Your minimum offer amount has an effect. I can’t count how many times I have had somebody say, well the minimum offer amount is $x. Many people take that number and think they should be able to buy it close to it, which is very often not the case. Just something to think about.

I work for my client and they have a budget but I often times end up working for both you, the domain owner and my client. What do I mean by this? Sometimes the offering price is over budget and a deal can’t be done because of it. Since I want to earn a commission and get my client the domain and if I think the domain is still in realistic value range, I often work to get the buyer to increase budget. In turn, I’m trying my best to please all parties involved. Be flexible and if you are happy with the number, take the deal and don’t try to extract every penny you feel you can. Everybody has a budget no matter the size of the company. Trying to extract every penny you can can lead to a lost deal and often does.

Domain market. It’s strong right now! Not just the Chinese buyers but for main brand names, advertising and product related in the corporate world, startups and businesses in general. This is a very positive thing for domain owners as it does appear that companies are starting “to get it”. If the domain isn’t realistically priced, it’s not likely to sell though. The under $10K market is the strongest and I’d also say the $50K and under is strong as well. There really is some great inventory available, so also keep that in mind when you are considering the value of your asset.

Domain Movers. The series I love to hate. It’s really like I’m addicted to know what’s going on but it’s also important that I do the series for the domain industry as a whole. It puts a strong pulse on the corporate side of domain names and how companies are using the domain names and what they are buying them for.

I mainly “track” these movements in two main forms. Registrant and Name Server. Registrant focuses on email address and I have to monitor specific emails related to corporations. I do this both with DomainTools.com and our friends at DomainIQ.com. This yields some finds for me. The next is Name Server. When domain names are acquired from somebody, it’s often that the name server will change to a hosting provider, corporate domain provider, off a domain aftermarket server etc. Since I can’t monitor all registrant email addresses, name servers help me to find other movers. Through research, I have build a pretty strong list of name servers used by large corporations. It’s limiting to the tools I use though, so the more active a name server is, the less likely I can track it (search it etc)!

It’s getting harder to track! This isn’t good news for the series! After DomainTools.com increased its prices, that almost killed the series as I highly rely on DomainTools.com and its great services they offer. I couldn’t afford the rates for the volume of whois history searches and monitoring I need. Thankfully for the series and the domain industry, DomainTools was very kind and offered me a strong membership package to continue my efforts at no charge. To note, something took place yesterday which greatly hurts my research tools and my 15 registrant monitors I had, which dropped down to 5. That’s a big deal and I have an email in to find out the reason for the drop.

Another DomainTools.com tool I use is DailyChanges.com to monitor and research Name Server movement. About  a year or two ago, DT drastically reduced results provided to only 50. Consider some name servers have thousands of movements daily, I can only see 50 of those per type of movement (new, in, out, deleted). That was something hard to adjust to and Domain Movers was negatively effected by this. Thankfully there is one other service that I use for this but it’s delayed by 24 hours more than DomainTools. No big deal? Well, consider that the already hundreds of thousands of domains I look at daily, well many of those are now “doubled up” because I see many the day before. It also reduces my time to publish. If the changes keep reducing my ability to publish the articles, the series will be forced away.

Reach. DotWeekly is fairly known and has been around since 2008 and I put out what I feel is unique and fresh content on a regular basis that is worth your time in reading. On average, a Domain Movers article gets about 200-300 views when I post them. I push the articles on Twitter and Linkedin as well as my listing on Domaining.com. I feel these numbers are low and should be higher but they are not. Numbers normally drop to around 100 the second day and then xx following. In general, DotWeekly doesn’t really make any money, as I do not have paid advertisers. I have tried doing it but most only want to pay $100 or so a month and never really seemed to be worth the hassle of pleasing them and feeling the need to publish. Sometimes affiliate links work well and if DotWeekly makes any money directly, it’s from those links. I know I could convert DotWeekly to a GoDaddy Auctions highlighting website and do well, which I did early on. It’s tempting because I know I did well with it before. Increasing readership to DotWeekly is something I’d like to improve because the blogging part of it has me question, what’s the point. I do 7 days a week research, 3-4 hours a day for the articles and make little to no revenue from it.

Fun. Sometimes I do outbound on a few select domain names. Really good ones! In doing so, I get to chat with many high profile, successful people. Even though I got the 3 word reply the other day of: “Not interested. Thanks” it still made me feel good knowing the person that read my email and replied was the founder of Oakley and RED.com James Jannard. I know he’s human like me, has passions, owns a rocking domain name in Red.com and more. “Famous” people don’t really get me excited, they put on there pants one leg at a time just like me but I always appreciate a reply and when you get one from a very successful person, it still makes me feel good. Many years ago I spoke with Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak and still remember it to this day.

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15 thoughts on “Ramblings On My Current Thoughts

  1. I rarely comment on blogs, but i try to keep up on your domain movers edition. I do understand your feelings on whats the point? You are giving readers great insight and i appreciate that and thats why im commenting..But Do what you got to do…to make that Dot $$$

    1. Thanks Tommy! I do appreciate the comments as they are helpful and are something that keeps me going.

  2. My thoughts on your ramblings on your current thoughts — cool stuff.

    I am probably your biggest fan following “Domain Movers”. I find it fascinating and it always gives me good domain name ideas and occasionally some great opportunities in the market on which to capitalize. So, thank you. And, I hope that you can keep it going — insofar as you get emotional utility and/or cold, hard cash from doing it.

    DomainTools.com truly has done a disservice to its (former) loyal customer base by raising prices, cutting services, etc. all in the name of catering to the lucrative cybersecurity industry. And, I am not sure why — their system should be scalable enough to handle all its customers and surely our customer service demands were not that onerous on the organization. It seems from the outside that keeping the domain industry customers on their original subscriptions or slightly higher priced subscriptions would have been a simple way to keep the monthly cash flows coming in over and above those coming from the cybersecurity industry. But, clearly, DomainTools.com did not care about its domain industry customers and chose to stick it to them price-wise and features-wise. Hopefully for you that recent down turn in features was a mistake and they will get you back to where you were — or even better!

    1. @Logan,
      Thank you for your continued support, phone calls, messenger chats and more! Its always nice speaking with you. As for DomainTools, yes, I agree they really hurt many in the domain space and I wrote about that when they made the pricing and service reductions. I have been a long time paying customer as well and I simply couldn’t afford what I would need, so I am thankful that they give me free access for what I do for the domain industry as a whole. Today, that took a bit of a hit, so we will see.

  3. Has your Domain Movers series investigations, and any other similar work you do, ever helped you find and register or buy domains yourself for investment? Thinking this because it gives you insight into what kinds of domains are selling behind the scenes.

    1. @domains,
      It certainly helps me in many aspects. I do register a few domains from time to time and I actually work with a few different people sometimes on an “alert” basis. Again, I try to play fair and share as much data as I can. From time to time I will find something but I rarely chase current domain owners for an example where I certainly could. I do send out many emails during a week as a “heads up” to findings.

  4. Jamie – I think you are doing a great service to the industry. I love stopping by your site every few days.

    Can you clarify what a fall from 15 to 5 registrant monitors mean? Those email or names exist right? Did they restrict you account?

    I am actually pretty upset with domaintools as an 8-year $100-per-month paying customer. They showed no respect to paying customers and what they did was really out of line. They deserve no paying customers.

    I hope you continue this great service. I truly enjoy it. Please let us know about the fall in your registrant monitors once you hear about it.

    1. @Memo Villa,
      The reduction in the registrant monitor alerts I had, will certainly hurt my research. The correct numbers were as follows: 13 active registrant alerts, down to 6. So I lost 7 registrant monitor alerts overnight. What does that mean? A registrant alert is an email address but using just @emailaddress.com allows me to cover technically the root domain and any email address. For an example, I use @escrow.com to detect any movements that way from them. Any domains that move onto that root domain or off, then I get a report showing those domains. If I had 100 alerts, I’d likely use them all and I could monitor specific people, more companies etc. The wider you monitor, the more you see. So of the 13 that I did monitor, now I have to be very selective and pick marketplaces, companies etc to remove, Sedo, Afternic, NameFind portfolio, CSC, MarkMonitor etc. but in general I will simply miss more movements due to the reduction of the monitors. I was told this reduction is because I’m on a media account and the allowed amount for the whole account is taken. Not sure why ones that I had monitored for a long time were removed over somebody else adding new ones, but I do not control that. I’m still thankful for the access that I do have, because whois history is almost as important as the registrant monitor.

  5. I read each and every “Domain Movers” post. I even used to wait for your post daily. So interesting to read this unique blog. I will support you my way. Thanks.

  6. Jamie,

    I love your work. You find some incredible info. One thing I don’t get though is this. If DomainTools is so valuable to you and you are getting it for free, why don’t you have a banner or something to thank them? You want them to give you a service for free. A service that costs them a lot to gather but you’re not helping promote them in return. I am saying this not to be an ass but trying to keep your article going. If you would thank them for their tools at the beginning of every article , put up a promotion, or both, I would think they would be more likely to let you use them. As you stated, the tools are the drivers here and you need them. And you are showcasing each and every day how useful they can be. Your partnership could be and should be very strong. Just my two cents, and again, I love your work.

    1. @Shane,
      I totally agree with you and I should do a better job at promoting DomainTools and the services they offer. I will put in more effort to do so, so thanks for the friendly reminder.

  7. Hi Jamie,I have been keeping read your blog more than two years, I like it and love your writing style, what you do is really a great work.

  8. I’ve been reading your blog for the past year and it has been very inspiring for me. I think the 200-300 views for each post are not bad, especially because your posts are mainly interesting for domainers. Maybe, we as viewers, have to be a bit more engaging. I also think the tip of Shane on promoting DomainTools is a good one (Ambassador).

    If you want to have more visitors to your website or highlight your services more, you have to work on addressing your content more to businesses (end-users) and creating ‘snackable’ content on domain names. But it all depends on the goal and target groups of your website.


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