Another five-figure expired domain sale is in the works at Go Daddy…and it’s a head scratcher


The summer of 2018 might be remembered as a magical time, where five-figure domains were expiring and the top ten sales had an even distribution of .COM and non .COMs. It’s a strange time, but an exciting time since there are some pretty fun domain auctions and sales to watch. The latest auction that caught my eye is a bit of a head scratcher – the domain is and it’s currently north of $46,000 on Go Daddy with more than eight days to go.

First things first, this is another case where Go Daddy’s “Estimated Value” seems to be way off. The frustrating thing about this is that whoever buys this will have to deal with the fact that a prospective buyer later down the road might think the domain is only worth ~$7,000. That being said, at first glance I couldn’t understand why this domain would even be worth that much…what was I missing.

So I put on my trusty old detective hat and started to dig deeper, what the heck was on in the past? Using my good friend, The Wayback Machine aka here’s what I found:


What did I find? A whole lotta nothing. Seriously, I’m perplexed here. It doesn’t look like there has been much development activity on this domain since 2003. I’m officially confused, why is this domain getting bidding activity close to the $50k range? What am I missing…because I’m certainly missing something.

This is where you, my reader can probably chime in and set me straight. Why is so valuable, or I guess, why do a handful of people seem to think it’s so valuable? I want to hear from you, comment and let your voice be heard!

{ 33 comments… add one }

  • Yinan August 12, 2018, 9:14 am

    Google ‘Hetian Jade’

  • Jon August 12, 2018, 9:43 am

    Hetian is a city in China, also known as khotan/hotan

  • Tony August 12, 2018, 10:10 am

    A five minute google search reveals Hetian is a pinyin romanization of Hotan, a city in China of 322,000 people.

  • claude dauman August 12, 2018, 10:13 am

    Hi Morgan,

    Great find! I think Hetian has relevance in Pinyin. It can be used to describe Hoten or Khotan city (和田). I believe this city is the biggest producer of Jade in China. I believe 和田玉 is Chinese for Hetian jade. In my humble opinion, this is likely the basis for the generous bids.

    All the best,

  • John August 12, 2018, 10:25 am

    It sounds like you didn’t do a search on the word.

  • kevin August 12, 2018, 10:36 am

    hetian is a provincial city in China, famous for producing jade. it’s a geo-domain play. godaddy estimate is based more for English context.

  • @domains August 12, 2018, 10:37 am

    Guessing it has a Chinese meaning.

    • sohail roshni August 15, 2018, 4:37 am

      im sure the buyer was chinese.deep pockets.
      sohail roshni

  • Michael August 12, 2018, 10:51 am

    My guess would be this:

    “The pinyin romanization Hetian has also been used on some maps and airports”

    Google has a ton of results related to the region in China and to Hetian Jade. Not saying that really justifies the mid $xx,xxx price tag but that’s the only reasonable explanation I can find.

    Good detective work shouldn’t stop at 🙂

  • Mark August 12, 2018, 10:54 am

    Hetian is pinyin for the Chinese city Hotan.

  • K.J.Haroon Basha August 12, 2018, 11:11 am

    All I can say now is that the winner of this domain name will be a loser. That is it.

  • fizz August 12, 2018, 11:23 am

    Morgan it’s probably because of Hetian jade.

  • Nicholas Pierce August 12, 2018, 11:35 am

    It’s the alternate name for the major Chinese oasis town ‘Hotan’–at least I think that’s what’s happening

  • Ray August 12, 2018, 12:27 pm

    Here’s a clue, Hetian is another name for Hotan.

  • z42b August 12, 2018, 1:05 pm

    This is the name for a Chinese city.

  • sd August 12, 2018, 2:00 pm

    a very expensive white jade from Hetian (Hotan) County , China

  • Brian Kimball Abbott August 12, 2018, 3:23 pm

    Mike Mann

  • Hello August 12, 2018, 3:35 pm

    It’s because it’s 5 characters and a .com. I wish there was more to it.

    • H August 26, 2018, 3:48 am

      It might surprise you a bit, but there are actually 6 characters in this name.

  • cmlusco August 12, 2018, 4:23 pm

  • Snoopy August 12, 2018, 5:13 pm

    Shill bidding?

  • Jason Raffa August 12, 2018, 5:56 pm

    I will have to look at this as curiousity about these domain names strikes me all the time

  • Drew August 12, 2018, 6:55 pm

    Hetian appears to be another name for Hotan, which is a somewhat historically significant locale in China, but that’s about all I could find.

  • Stephen August 12, 2018, 7:02 pm

    Maybe it’s a tourism site for Hotan (aka Hetian), China. That region is also known for “Hetian Jade”, so I guess it could be some sort of jewelry exporter as well.

  • Aaron August 12, 2018, 7:19 pm

    Hmm. My only idea was that it means something in a different language.

    In Malay, ‘hentian’ translates directly to “stop”.
    In Hindi, ‘hen ti an’ translates to “they are”.

    I mean in English, I could see stop (dot) com fetching a pretty penny, I’d assume it’s equally as desirable to people who speak Malay.


  • Kassey Lee August 12, 2018, 10:59 pm is 2-pin, a very popular naming pattern in corporate China. He Tian may refer to many Pinyin phrases, such as 河田 (river and field) which can be an excellent brand.

  • Wolfgang Möcklin August 13, 2018, 4:09 am

    I’d say this is about jade, but Hetian has several meanings in Chinese. must be a bit like for westeners, and may also have a meaning like “celestial harmony” but you would have to ask this a native Chinese person. Hetian is registered in a lot of tlds.

    Hetian jade

    Fifty shades of jade: Why Chinese buyers spend millions on this stone:

  • M.Menius August 13, 2018, 6:50 am

    It’s does seem questionable. Then again, there are many high dollar domain sales over the past 15 years that don’t add up.

    Great domains are true assets and command a justifiable value. The issue is the volume of 5-figure domain sales of arguable low quality that still do not resolve to a functional site. An untold story.

  • Albert August 13, 2018, 7:10 am

    I have avaialable for sale now. Some others are also available now.
    Reach out to albertbhf

  • Logan August 13, 2018, 8:45 am

    Google to the rescue: “Hetian, also known as Hotan, is located in northwestern China (Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region) and has always been synonymous with the best nephrite. The area is known for yielding the famous top-quality white “mutton fat” jade. … most of the green nephrite from Xinjiang.”

  • Mike August 13, 2018, 8:56 am

    This is what I found on Wikipedia:
    Hotan, is a major oasis town in southwestern Xinjiang, an autonomous region in western China ….. The pinyin romanization Hetian has also been used on some maps and airports; the city’s former name was written with a different character for .
    Hope that helps, it has a population of over 300,000

  • George In Miami August 13, 2018, 2:31 pm

    Hi Morgan,
    How about this:
    Hetian Jade. Colour:White, yellow, bluish white, grey, black
    Name:Named for the occurrences in Hetian County (Hotan County), Xinjiang Province, China.
    Makes sense..?

  • Nick August 15, 2018, 5:02 am

    The worst thing Godaddy did was get rid of email customer support. The second worst thing: that damn estimated valuation thing. They need to nix that. It has caused so many problems for me selling names.


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