The New gTLDs Are Like Cellphones In 1974

martin-cooper-cellphone

I can still remember getting my first cellphone, I think the year was 2001. I felt so cool, I was on the bleeding edge of technology, an early adopter, and something that I knew was going to change the world. Almost nobody I knew had cellphones and the reasons to use a landline phone were still incredibly compelling.

I can also still remember what people used to say about cellphones in the early 2000’s, things like:

“I will never get a cellphone, I hate the idea of people being able to contact me anytime anywhere”

or

“Why would I want a cellphone, the reception on my landline is perfect”

Soon, everyone had cellphones. Then Smartphones came out and it started all over again. I was also an early adopter of Smartphones and once again I heard things like:

“I would never use a smartphone, why would I want to write an email on my phone?”

or

“I just want to use a phone as a phone, I have a computer for everything I want to do online”

I can also remember Domainers in 2007 sayings that people were always going to access the web from their computers. Now a majority of people access the Internet from their phones, not their computer, oh and everyone I know (including both my parents) have Smartphones.

I think new gTLDs today are like cellphones in the early 2000’s. It’s so early that there are no meaningful statistics around use, sales, or anything else that comes with mass adoption…but many are only a year old or less.

While I still think that .COM is a great investment we’re starting to sound like an industry of Dinosaurs thinking that there is no way that we could ever live in a world where some new gTLDs actually take off. Sure there aren’t a ton of new gTLD sales out there, or great usage statistics, there also weren’t many sales or usage statistics in 1986, a year after the first domain name (Symbolics.com) was registered.

Did you know that the first cellphone came out in 1973? A whole twenty years went by and still nobody thought they would take-off. So why are we expecting that new domain extensions should suddenly gain mass adoption in one year, or two, or even five?

My point is a simple one. In the near term, and by near-term I mean ten years, .COM will most-likely rein supreme. However for those of us planning on living for twenty years or more, I would find it hard to believe that we could sit here in 2030 and see all the new gTLDs fail and everyone still laser-focused on .COM, it’s so unlikely it’s starting to sound crazy.

Thoughts anyone?

Image Source – GizMag

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Morgan's Flippa Five

ZT.com – two-character .COM domains are the best of the best and even though I’m not crazy about the Z this is still a solid six-figure name with massive investment potential given that two-character .COMs have been known to sell in the seven-figure range.

0845.com – 4N .COMs are valuable and from the little that I know about them 8’s are good, but I think 4’s are bad, you’d have to check with my buddy Domain Shane about the value of this one but I do know that 4N .COMs don’t grow on trees so when I spot one I often recommend it even though numeric domains isn’t an area I’ve invested in much myself.

PrintableCoupon.com – while I do think that many exact-match domains are going the way of the dodo bird now that they no longer provide any ranking advantage in search engines, I like this one and I think it will probably get some meaningful type-in traffic over time. This is a domain much better for buying and developing into a coupon site vs. trying to resell.

Described.com – it’s a one-word .COM which as you know by now, I like a lot. The challenge is it’s a relatively weak past-tense name, I’d much rather have Describe.com, still at a low enough price there is some good resale potential, just make sure you don’t overpay for this, do your homework.

Problem.com – another solid one-word .COM, easy to remember, easy to spell.

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I wrote an article earlier this week about how new domain extensions are selling for more than .COMs. This is a reality, it’s happening, and it will continue to happen. What I think is important to realize is that new gTLDs like Autism.Rocks can sell more for .COMs like AutismRocks.com without implying that .COMs as a whole are less valuable.

I’ve always found it interesting that in the domain community there is a divide between those who support new domain extensions and those who think .COM is and will be king forever.

I think both can do well without actually hurting the other. The reality is that one-word .COM domains will sell for more than one-word new gTLDs 99.9% of the time. As I highlighted in my article earlier this week though, two-word .COMs won’t necessarily sell for more than one-word new gTLDs.

This shouldn’t be a surprise, this is a reality we’ve seen for over a decade now, one-word domains, especially premium one-words, sell for a premium. Period.

So next time you see a one-word gTLD sell for more than a two-word .COM don’t get upset, pay attention, the world is changing and if you think that the new gTLDs aren’t going to have an impact on the domain world you’re fooling yourself.

Just remember that new gTLDs can sell for solid prices without hurting .COMs; you don’t need to pick a side, instead just follow the trends and make good investments, and good investments don’t always have to end in .COM.

What do you think? Comment and let your voice be heard!

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I just read an article on popular domain investing blog The Domains about a trend that I think we’re going to see more and more over the years – a new domain extension selling for more than its matching .COM. The domain name is Autism.rocks and it just sold for a whopping $100,000 vs. only $9,500 last year, and to the same buyer.

When I started buying and selling domain names I was focused on exact-match domains. I didn’t care if they were two, three, or even four-word domains, I just wanted to exactly match popular phrases. Over time I’ve become laser-focused on one-word domains and I think in a world full of new domain extensions this is proving to be the best path.

There are more examples just about every week of the value that one-word domains have in brand new extensions. Just look at Wine.club which sold for $140,000 earlier this month, or Pro.flowers which sold for $50,000. Domains like this beat-out numeric domain sales like 2675.com and 5082.com which sold for $16,500 and $14,500 respectively.

The times they are a changing, and what we’re seeing with new domain extensions is still only the beginning. However I think one trend still holds true, one-word domain names are more valuable than ever, that’s where I’m putting my focus and something tells me five years from now I’ll be glad I did.

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dot-security

The team behind .XYZ is continuing to expand, along with buying Yahoo’s old HQ in Santa Monica and adding .COLLEGE and .RENT today they announced the addition of .SECURITY to the mix.

we’re excited to announce to you first that .Security will be joining the XYZ family! Coming to you in late-2015, .Security will be the domain for security-related entities, professionals, and all companies that would like a secure and authoritative online presence. (Source .XYZ Blog)

It’s no secret that security is an incredibly hot topic lately and this is another solid buy IMO by Daniel who is quickly becoming the Donald Trump of domain extensions. Running multiple extensions isn’t easy but Daniel has a great team and if you’re at ICANN right now there’s a good chance you’ll meet some of them.

Congrats to Daniel and the team, another solid extension and a great way to add even more excitement to an already exciting ICANN event!

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Weekend Musings + A Symphony Fit For Hyrule

Hello, happy Sunday, and welcome to my weekend musings. I usually try to include a photo or two in my weekend musings but today I thought I’d shake things up a bit with a video of what the weather has been like lately here in Austin.




Initially the rain was a bit annoying but now I’ve actually grown to like it. We live downtown so don’t have to drive anywhere, I don’t have a commute, so I’ve actually had the chance to really enjoy the rain and I know the lakes have too.

After living somewhere going through a severe drought I can tell you that this is without a doubt the better problem to have. Now if only I could send some of this rain to California since I think we’re in good shape here now.

Last night I went to see something I’ve been really looking forward to, the Zelda Symphony. If you didn’t know it before, it’s about time you know that I’m a huge Zelda fan, have been since I was a kid and last night was a truly spectacular experience in many ways.

Zelda Symphony

The symphony was amazing and after Austin they’re continuing across the US and then onto Spain, Italy, The Netherlands, and back around the world ending in San Jose. It’s incredibly how much time and care is put into the music of a video game like Zelda and for anyone who grew up playing the game, this will be just about as nostalgic as it can get for you.

Now I’m doing some Sunday afternoon emails getting ready for a big week ahead. The Fashion Metric offices once had just four of us, now we’re approaching ten, these are exciting times and while it was nice to escape to the symphony and into the world of Zelda for an evening, I’m looking forward to the week ahead.

I hope you all had a great weekend, as always feel free to share your own weekend musings or comment on any of mine!

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Morgan's Flippa Five

Hello, happy Saturday and welcome to my Flippa Five. As usual there are some absolutely incredible domain names up for auction on Flippa and I’ve done my best to hand-pick five that I think make good investments. As always, remember that a good investment is only a good investment at the right price, it’s up to you to use tools like NameBio.com and sites like DNJournal.com to determine what that price is.

Now onto the names, enjoy!

Shared.com – as many of you know I absolutely love one-word .COMs, they’re my favorite. That being said, I’m not as much of a fan of past-tense domains however this is an exception. While I would of course rather own Share.com or even Shares.com, Shared.com isn’t terrible and will sell for a fraction of what something like Share.com would sell for.

Sponsor.io – it’s not secret that .IO domains have been hotter than ever lately, and I don’t see this trend dying down anytime soon. This is a really nice keyword and a solid one-word in the .IO space.

1095.com – originally registered in 1999 this 16 year-old domain is hitting along a very popular trendline, short, numeric domains. There just aren’t that many of these available and they have been selling for a small fortune to domain investors in China who have a strong interest in numeric domains. There is some talk of softening in the numeric domain market so be careful with pricing on this one.

Bill.org – I usually stay far away from .ORG domains because they are much harder to sell but this is such a short and meaningful one-word with so many uses I think that if the price doesn’t jump up to high there could be an opportunity here.

DropCatcher.com – so I’m including this one not as a domain to buy and resell but instead as a great domain for anyone that is starting a domain drop-catching service. While I do see exact-match domains as a lot less attractive than they used to be the domain name community still loves them making this a solid name for a service targeting domain investors specifically.

 

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As I’ve said many times before, I think .CLUB is one of the stand-out new domain names extensions to hit the market and with a year behind them I can move the “think” into the “know” category. There are more new domain extensions out there than any of us can name, but if there are five we can remember, .CLUB is without a doubt on that list.

dotClubIt’s not a fluke, and it’s also not because “club” is such an awesome keyword even though it is. Instead it’s the people behind .CLUB and the strategy that they have taken that have made it successful. So I wanted to take a minute to review the last year of .CLUB and some of the things they have done to make it one of the top new domain extensions.

club-awards-620

1. The founders – This is not Colin and Jeff’s first rodeo, these are veterans with an incredible amount of expertise but beyond that an incredible amount of hustle. Go to any tradeshow and it’s not just .CLUB salespeople, the founders are there, and not just there but working the booth and doing everything under the sun to get the word out. They also know how to inspire big names like 50 Cent to rally behind the brand.

2. The companies – Selling domain names is one thing, getting people to build and brand their companies on a new domain extension is the another and .CLUB has broken just about every record when it comes to developed websites.

3. Registrar support – this is really tied to great founders but is still incredibly important to mention. Every registrar knows and loves Jeff and Colin and together they have forged great partnerships. This support means that people all over the world get equal access to .CLUB domains.

While I’m not the first to say it, let me say it again, congrats to the whole team over at .CLUB for an amazing first year and what I think everyone will agree will become the blueprint for success in the new gTLD market. As someone who knows Colin and Jeff personally I can tell you they are two of the hardest-working, most inspiring people on the planet and I couldn’t be more excited for years 2, 3, 10 and 20. This is only the beginning and .CLUB is off to one heck of a start!

(Image Source – DNJournal)

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Techstars UpGlobal

This morning Techstars announced their acquisition of UP Global, the parent organization to events like Startup Weekend, Startup Week, Startup Digest, and the list goes on. What these means for both organizations is a massive increase in the size and reach of both networks.

By joining forces with UP Global, Techstars can continue to accelerate the pace of innovation by strengthening the path for entrepreneurs, providing better support for entrepreneurial communities, and helping to grow the worldwide entrepreneurial ecosystem. We will also continue to collaborate with other accelerators in the UP Global network, as we believe this will benefit all startups, not just those that are part of Techstars. (Source – Techstars blog)

As a Techstars alum and the co-founder of a Techstars company I see this as a huge win for all of us. There’s a reason that Techstars is recognized as one of the top three startup accelerators in the US (and there are over 1,000 in total), and this will only strengthen a truly world-class organization.

The merger makes sense, since Startup Weekend brings aspiring entrepreneurs together for an intense, 54-hour experience in creating a company, while Techstars provides a three-month course designed to get those aspiring entrepreneurs to turn their ideas into going concerns. While the former is heavy on inspiration and excitement, the latter provides some cash and more concrete, practical help in getting startups off the ground. (Source – VentureBeat)

I couldn’t be more excited about the impact this will have and can’t wait to be a part of the continued growth of Techstars. Huge congrats to the entire team and Techstars and UP Global, these are exciting times!

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Morgan's Flippa Five

Hello, happy Sunday and welcome to my Flippa five. In case you missed the big news a few weeks ago, Flippa recently acquired Domain Holdings and predicted north of $70M in sales this year. This of course means that Flippa has some of the best domain inventory on the planet which makes my job even harder picking just five.

Still, just like I do every week, I’ve gone through Flippa’s domain listings and hand-picked five names that I think are worth taking a look at. Enjoy!

QT.com – it’s hard to beat two-character .COMs. This one is 20-years old and could be used for just about anything. Two-character .COMs are pretty much always a good investment and regularly sell in the seven-figure range.

DWILawyer.com – DUI and DWI lawyers are one of the most active in the online lead generation space. It’s an incredibly lucrative niche and this is one of the best of the best.

Continue.com – very solid one-word .COM. Broad enough to be used in just about any niche but I especially like it when applied to the gaming space.

1095.com – while I personally don’t invest in numeric domains, my good friend Shane does and I can tell you he has done very well with numeric domains, especially short ones like this. I’m sure he could tell you more about the value of this particular combination of numbers but I know 4N .COMs are hard to come by these days.

MobileAppDevelopment.com – I’m rarely a fan of three word .COMs and I’d only recommend buying this one if you plan to develop it yourself. That being said, if you own a mobile app development company this domain would definitely be nice to have, very easy to remember and probably gets some decent type-in traffic as well.

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