Domaining MBA Monday: Non .COM Drops

Domaining MBA MondayGood morning and welcome to Domaining MBA Monday. Today’s topic was inspired by a reader who wrote in about some trouble they were having selling some expired domains they had recently purchased. They were expecting the names to be quick flips but the moment I saw them, I knew that wasn’t the case.

It happens all the time but it doesn’t have to happen. The first time I heard advice about this topic was from Ron Jackson at TRAFFIC back in 2010. I was talking to Ron about ccTLDs and he said that when looking at ccTLDs you really need to focus on premium names. At the time I was hand-registering ccTLDs and felt like I was uncovering hidden gems, sure they weren’t premium but the .COMs would have been great names.

Well, they weren’t quite the gems I thought they were and I went back to what Ron had said. Fast forward to today and I can tell you he was 100% right and this is some of the best advice I could have received at the time. While a meaningful three-word non .COM name might be tempting, just think about how much better either one of the words would be on their own? Focusing on premium phrases with high search volume and high CPC means a bigger market that sees real business value in the term.

Now if you’re planning on developing a domain yourself, then pick whatever name you want and make it the incredible brand it can be. However, if you’re looking to flip a domain that might be of interest to an end-user, know that it’s only the most premium non .COMs that see the most liquidity. I’m not saying you can’t sell a decent two or three word non .COM, but I am saying it is much easier in almost all cases to flip a premium one word dictionary domain.

Last but not least, I couldn’t end this post without saying that of course if you’re looking for the most liquidity, go .COM. That being said, while .COM does have the most liquidity and highest selling prices, it doesn’t mean there aren’t great opportunities available in other TLDs. My business has grown a lot thanks to a nice sales of .ME, .CO, and .TV names along with .COM sales and while most of my focus goes into .COM names, I still think there are hidden gems all over the non .COM drop market, you just have to make sure you find the real gold and not the fool’s gold.

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