I thought now would be as good a good time to get a pulse on what the industry sees as a success and failure in the new domain name extension space. First let me just say, it’s still early, very early, and this will undoubtedly change over time. Also what metrics are important?

We all know that registries make money when people register and renew domains, but I personally think that the number of websites (quality website not made-for-adsense minisites) really gauges consumer interest in a new extension. I think it also comes down to team – a registry with a good team behind it has a much better chance of success than one that doesn’t.

So what do you think, what new gTLD has really hit it out of the park so far and why?


I’ve called this weekly feature Flippa Friday for a long time now, so I decided now would be as good a time as any to give this a new name. So I’m going with Morgan’s Flippa Five, this also means I am focusing on five domains…but there’s a twist. I’m going to pick my names as follows:

3 domains I think have good resale potential

1 domain I think has good development potential

1 domain I like personally but may not have much investment value

Boom! Let’s get started. Enjoy, here is my very first Flippa Five

3 Domains with good resale potential

LocalDeals.com – solid name in a huge market. This could be either a great potential resale opportunity or development candidate, either way it’s a great name which is why I put it first!

Tasks.com - this is a monster name. Very meaningful one-word .COM with many different uses and markets it could be applied to. I could see this as a name that sells in the high six-figure range a few years from now, but my crystal ball is as good as yours.

Halifax.com - nice geo name, very well-known Canadian city. I’ve seen pre-season hockey in Halifax, beautiful place and a nice domain. 

1 Domain I think has good development potential

OnlineStorage.com – this is such a huge market and one that is seeing a lot of innovation. Sure, Dropbox is king of the hill but there are a a lot of solutions and a lot of consumers trying to pick the right one. This could be a great directory, blog, or review site focused on online storage solutions. 

1 domain I like personally but may not have much investment value

Paid.io – I’ve made it no secret that I’m a fan of .IO domains. This is a nice short one and given how hot the payment processing space is right now I like it a lot. I don’t have a lot of experience selling .IO names so I can’t tell you much about the resale market but I can tell you I do like this name.



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This year TechCrunch held their annual conference in San Francisco (there is also a Disrupt NYC) and picked a winner from 26 “Battlefield” companies. The winner walks away with a check for $50,000 and the everlasting glow that comes from winning Disrupt.

Alfred Club

The winner this year is Alfred (www.alfred.club or www.alfredclub.com) another startup with a great use for a .CLUB domain and a service that is definitely needed IMO. Think of all the awesome services that have disrupted industries and allowed you to do just about everything from your smart phone. What if all those services were bundled together into a kind of virtual robot named, Alfred.

By joining the Alfred club you essentially get your own personal assistant that takes care of your errands so that you can do all the things you probably want to be doing. As someone that does as much as possible online I’m excited to give Alfred a try!

If you want to learn more about the service make sure to check-out the video below:


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Decoded.co Spends $50,000 to get Decoded.com

There are plenty of options when it comes to domain extensions, after .com many a start up has chosen the .io, .co, or the .me to name a few. Yet for many there still is that desire to trade up to the .com. Today was another example of that with Decoded.com selling for $50,000.

Decoded.co has been regged since July of 2010 and the company has offices in New York, London and according to their website, Decoded operate popups all around the world, recently heading to Shanghai, Singapore, Hong Kong, Palo Alto, Atlanta, Dublin and more.

Decoded teaches people code in a day, taking people from zero skills, no knowledge and low confidence to coding a multi-platform geolocation-based app using HTML5, CSS and Javascript. Decoded believes that everyone can and should understand what goes on behind the screen.

Wired covered the company back in June of 2012

Learning to code is no easy task. Learning to code in just one day, well that’s not possible, right? Wrong. Co-founders Kathryn Parsons, Steve Henry, Richard Peters and Ali Blackwell joined forces in 2011 with the aim of taking people from zero skills and knowledge through to coding a multi-platform app using HTML, CSS and Javascript, in a day.

The .com was registered in 2003 and has been under privacy for awhile, the domain looked to be parked for many years. So even in a world with so much choice and a perfectly working .CO another company felt they needed to spend $50,000 on getting the .com.

Congrats to buyer and seller.


Fashion Metric Featured on Product Hunt

Today is an incredibly exciting day for us, along with presenting at Techstars Demo Day we also just found-out that we have been featured on Product Hunt. If you don’t know what Product Hunt is, suffice it to say it is one of the best places for startups to get exposure for their products. A company can only be listed once so this is our one time on there.

I would like to ask a huge favor of my readers, many of you who have been following along with my adventures for 7+ years. You can really help make a difference if you upvote us on Product Hunt, simply visit this page - http://www.producthunt.com/e/techstars-austin-demo-day-s14 and create an account by simply logging into Twitter. To upvote simply scroll to where you see Fashion Metric and click the up arrow, it should take no more than two minutes!

This is also something that can benefit you as you can also list your own product on Product Hunt now or in the future.

Thanks in advance, I couldn’t be more excited!


Big Day Tomorrow

Fashion Metric and Techstars

Well tomorrow is a big day for Fashion Metric so I’m going to keep this post incredibly short. Daina presents to a room of about 1,000 people along with ten other companies that are part of our Techstars class. We also just found-out that Fashion Metric will also be featured on Product Hunt tomorrow and I will do a post once we go live to ask for your vote.

These are exciting times and the company that was once just the two of us is now growing into a full team with a pipeline of clients we could only have dreamed of. It is these times that I have to pinch myself to make sure it’s all real, so much hard work has gone into getting us to where we are now, and we know that our journey is still just beginning.

At times like these I would like to thank all of you, from my regular daily reader, to the mentor, advisor, or investor who reads my blog from time-to-time. None of this could happen without all of the incredible people who have supported us along the way. I can’t wait for tomorrow, this is the moment we’ve been waiting for…stay-tuned, as usual I will keep all of you in the loop!

If you’re a Twitter geek like me make sure to keep an eye on twitter.com/fashionmetric to follow along with the excitement!


Two Easy Ways To Setup A Directory Website

Directory Websites can be a great way to generate passive income, especially if you have a good domain name to go along with it. At the same time, it’s important to understand that unless you already have a steady stream of traffic just putting up a directory won’t suddenly send people to your site – that’s your job.

There are entire books about how to get organic traffic to your website so I’m not going to cover that here, but I do want to make one important point before going any further. Most directory sites never make any money because the owners put up a directory with no listing and then “hope” that people will just start populating it for them. Even with traffic your initial listings really aren’t going to just appear, you have to do some work.

The most successful directories start by putting a few hundred listings up themselves for free. Then they often make an investment in advertising (or build-up organic traffic over time) so that when people come to the site they see listings there and feel comfortable adding theirs.

In case these three paragraphs still didn’t hit it home, let me make my point very clear. It is very hard to make money with directory sites, it takes times, and often and investment in marketing to get them off the ground. On the plus side, it is easy to setup a directory website and no, you don’t need to know how to write a single line of code. There are two solutions I recommend for building directory websites and I’ll cover each below.

Vantage for WordPress

Vantage Directory Theme

Vantage is a great way to put a well-designed directory website on any domain name powered by WordPress. Vantage is fully responsive so it looks great on smartphones and tablets and it was built by a professional designer so it looks great. If you are comfortable with WordPress this will be an easy one for you – just install the Vantage theme and set it up in the good old WordPress Dashboard.

PHP My Directory

PHP My Directory

Not a WordPress nut? Don’t worry, there’s a great directory solution for you. PHPMyDirectory is one of the most robust directory platforms on the planet and yes, you guess it, it’s written in PHP. Luckily you won’t need to know PHP to use it but you might need to know some of the basics for setting-up and installing code and databases on a web server.

If you really want to run PHPMyDirectory but you don’t know much about server configuration there are plenty of people who can set it up for you all for under $50 so there are other options. The big advantage to PHPMyDirectory is speed since it does have a very low page load time and less bulk than WordPress.

No matter which of the two solutions you pick above it’s a reasonable expectation to have your site up and running in a day. Just remember that you’ll need to be responsible for getting the initial listings up, attracting visitors to your site, and building-up more traffic over time. Both Vantage and PHPMyDirectory have great ways to easily charge for listings and listing upgrades so that once you do build-up traffic it’s easy to layer on revenue and kick your passive revenue generator into action.

Just don’t expect it to be easy. Most people I know who built and run successful directory sites spend over a year and a few thousand dollars in marketing to get the site off the ground, and no, they’re not planning on striking it rich. That being said, if you have a dormant domain sitting around that you think would be a good fit for a directory site, this could be a good way to generate passive income over time, if you take the time to do it right.


Weekend Musings – Techstars Demo Day

Techstars Austin

The last two weeks have probably been the busiest weeks of our entire lives as we prepare for what’s coming on Wednesday – Techstars Demo Day. As many of you know, we have been going through the Techstars startup accelerator here in Austin. Techstars is the #1 startup accelerator in the world and has a significantly lower acceptance rate than Harvard. It also happens to end with a massive event called Demo Day. Forbes has a pretty interesting article for anyone trying to understand startup accelerators a bit more.

This year they are expecting close to 1,000 people to attend the Techstars Austin Demo Day. It will be a mix of Venture Capitalists, Angel Investors, Press, along with other Techstars founders and staff. Techstars is famous for teaching founders how to pitch their companies in five minutes in a way that nobody else does. You can see an example of a Demo Day pitch for Keen.io here, Keen just raised $11.3M and was also part of a Techstars program run by Jason Seats, our Managing Director.

Fashion Metric is at it’s absolute peak with more clients who want to license our technology than we’ve ever seen including some massive companies we didn’t think we’d be working with until much further down the road. It is an incredibly exciting and intense time and Daina has been practicing like crazy getting the pitch just right.

I’ll make sure to share our Demo Day video on here, for now just know I’ll pretty much be in hibernation until Wednesday so don’t expect any in-depth posts on my blog until Thursday. After demo day we’ll be heading back to LA and then Silicon Valley, I couldn’t be more excited and as always I am looking forward to bringing all of you along for the journey!


So this morning I discovered a video that is honestly too good not to share with the rest of you. If you go back in time to the 1980′s, 1985 to be exact, a revolutionary computer hit the market – the Amiga. Following a number of Amiga computers with descriptive names like 500, 500+ and 1,000 a company called Apple took-over and well, the rest is history.

Amiga Computers

Now sadly when you go to the Amiga website you’ll find this once potential computer giant has become, well, a Blackberry game-maker with a very 1994-looking website. It just goes to show that companies poised to take over the world now could disappear before you know it. Remember Netscape? Or Rio, who dominated the portable MP3 player market?

One wonderful piece of history that does remain is this incredible promotional video for the Amiga computer that honestly you should watch because, well, it’s awesome. Enjoy!

Did you have an Amiga? What was your favorite game? Do you still have it?


Hello, happy Friday, and welcome to another Flippa Friday here on MorganLinton.com. As usual I have scoured Flippa for what I think are some of the best domain deals. This week I’ve found some pretty solid non .COMs and while I think the past couple of weeks have been .COM heavy, this week I see a bit of a change.

That being said, I don’t want to mislead anyone. Without a doubt both on Flippa and anywhere else .COM has the most liquidity and will always sell for the highest price, period. Still that doesn’t mean non .COMs make bad investments and this week I’ve seen some pretty stellar non .COMs that I wanted to highlight. So let’s rock and roll.

Flipped.net – nice one-word .NET - could be a great marketplace for flipping houses, domains, or whatever else people flip…just not coins, that’s a bit too 1980′s or is it 1950′s?

Sailing.info – I absolutely love sailing and so do a lot of other people. Sailboats aren’t cheap and .INFO names have been selling like hotcakes, I really like this name and to give full disclaimer I might be bidding on it too.

OnlineStorage.com – this is an absolutely monster industry and it’s only growing by the day. While I do like brandables in this space more than literals it’s still a solid name and given that many names sell for wholesale on Flippa this could go for a very attractive investor price.

HouseCleaners.com – HomeJoy is crushing it in the online house cleaners booking space, this is a great name in a growing space.

GiftCards.org – like I said, I’ve seen some solid non .COMs I like this month and this one rounds it out to end my list. Gift cards are a huge business and it’s not just during the holidays.