Domaining MBA Monday: Not All Niches Are Created Equal

Domaining MBA MondayHello, Happy Monday, and welcome to another Domaining MBA Monday here on MorganLinton.com. Today I wanted to talk about a topic that isn’t covered enough but can’t be emphasized more. What I’m talking about is the complexity of selling domains to end-users in particular niches.

I had to learn this lesson the hard way through trial and error and looking back really wished that I had read a post like this. So hopefully this post will save you time prospecting in low-liquidity niches and also serve as a wake-up call for those of you still buying heavy in these areas waiting for your next big sale.

Ready to get started? Let’s dive in!

Like the title of the post says, not all niches are created equal. While search volume and CPC are great metrics to look at when you’re buying domains, the potential buyer that would want to buy the name from you is more important. There are some areas online, take law for example where search volume and CPC is high but liquidity is relatively low. The reason is that there really aren’t many active buyers and while lawyers may spend a fortune advertising on Adwords, that doesn’t mean they’ll spend a fortune buying domains from you.

When I first started in the Domaining world I was really interested in legal and credit/debt-related domains. What I learned over the years is that these two niches are very hard to see repeatable sales in. Here’s the issue with each potential buyer:

Lawyers – if you’ve tried cold calling or cold emailing lawyers then you already know that they really don’t love salespeople contacting them out of the blue. Lawyers may charge $500/hour but they typically won’t shell out very much for a domain name and they really don’t like being told that they “need” something to take their business to the next level. Buy as many geo-targeted lawyer names as you want and while you might be able to sell one or two, the liquidity just isn’t there at price-points that will make this very profitable. Now I’m not talking about names like Law.com or Lawyer.com, those are of course incredible names that have definite buyers in the six and seven figure range. What I’m talking about is your regular run of the mill names that are still good, but will be harder to sell than you think, things like CityNameLawyers.com or CityNameAttorneys.com.

Credit Bureaus – next up is credit/debt related domains. These always throw new Domainers for a loop because they have incredibly high CPCs often in the $20+ range so the assumption is that a big credit bureau could easily afford to buy a domain for a few thousand bucks. The issue here is that selling to credit bureaus is hard, so hard that just like with lawyers, while you may close a deal or two, you can’t build a business with repeat sales every month, it’s just not realistic. Don’t be deceived by high search volume and CPC in the credit/debt space, these names are hard to sell and if you plan on developing and monetizing be prepared to put at least $20,000 into SEO or content marketing if you want to rank well.

These are only two niches that are hard to sell-into, there are many more and most you’ll have to find through trial and error. That being said, I think legal and credit/debt are two of the niches that get pumped-up the most in the domain industry that are much harder to profit in than many people would like to believe.

I hear a lot of people say things like, “if I can’t sell this credit/debt domain I’ll just develop it and throw up an affiliate site, credit/debt offers pay a lot.” What people miss here is the amount of time and money it takes to rank well in these incredibly competitive niches. You see, bit credit bureaus might not spent $10,000 on your domain that exactly matches a keyword they want to rank for, but they will spend $20,000/month advertising for that exact keyword.

No matter how much you try to convince them they need the domain, they really care about having their own brand on the first page of Google, not building an ancillary site on a completely different domain and taking the time and money that is required to make this profitable.

So while I don’t mean to burst your bubble too much, I do hope this serves as a bit of a wake-up call to those of you who are buying heavy in niches like these thinking you’ll be able to find a repeatable business model here. Yes there are some great domains that have sold for big bucks to lawyers and credit bureaus, but doing this repeatably and building your business on it is not going to be as easy as you think.

{ 9 comments… add one }

  • R Shaw August 26, 2013, 1:39 pm

    domaining sucks i have been in it for close to three months and i have some decent domains that should have sold already but i haven’t made a dime the only people that seem to make any money are the big guys at the top who can afford to spend big bucks to acquire top of the line names that they can flip in a quick second this is not a game for the small player ..they feed you all this crap and tell you to read an learn and research before you buy but it doesn’t help in the end because you are gonna end up scraping the bottom of the pot anyway..this game can never turn into a profitable and viable business for a regular guy looking for a real opportunity…you are better of sticking to your 9-5 job

    Reply
    • Morgan August 26, 2013, 3:10 pm

      @Louise – don’t worry, I’ll be covering that in a future Domaining MBA Monday.

      @RShaw – so sorry to hear about your experiences so far. Most people start in Domaining by buying domains they think are valuable but unfortunately end-up being junk. When you say you bought domains that should have sold already but you’ve only been doing it for three months I think that’s the disconnect. It takes a lot longer than 3 months to learn this industry and most of what you buy your first few months will be junk. That being said, I started late and had a small budget but after years of hard work quit my day job and am proud to say 100% of my income comes from Domaining.

      Moral of the story, if it only took three months to learn how to build a successful business in Domaining so you could quit your day job then everyone would be Domainers 🙂 Building a real business takes time and if you want to see success in 3 months I don’t think Domaining is for you. Takes time and hard work but if you stick with it, there is a lot of money to be made.

      Just remember, the domains that you think are valuable and should have sold already are probably complete junk that you hand-registered for $8…

      Reply
  • Louise August 26, 2013, 3:03 pm

    Great, but incomplete, article! Those are two niches hard to sell into – where are the niche examples of good to sell into?

    Reply
  • Ms Domainer August 26, 2013, 3:38 pm

    *

    It takes YEARS to learn this biz, and even then it can be unpredictable.

    *

    Reply
  • Mr K Weed August 26, 2013, 9:28 pm

    I’ve put a list of my domains for sale on killerweed.biz which should sell for 1 million each. 😉 Even though I’ll be a millionaire within 30 days…

    I would ready be interested in reading an article by Morgan on how to sell a domain to end user with No traffic, No rank, No website, No nothing.

    Surely this is done ‘daily’ with domains much more crappy than mine. 🙂

    If you are, “proud to say 100% of my income comes from Domaining” there can be no doubt you’ve had many experiences selling zero value domains for a profit and I for one sure would Love to read about it!

    Maybe I should take a few days to read through your archives. 😉 Think I will, Thank you!

    Reply
  • Arseny August 27, 2013, 12:38 am

    Completely agree on lawyers. Be also prepared to see them threaten you with UDRPs (actually more domains advanced ones), accusing you in cybersquatting, etc.

    Reply
  • sem August 27, 2013, 1:24 am

    Law.com, Lawyer.com,Lawsuit.com – all 7 figure domains. Maybe 8 for Law.com. What you say is true – only money domain/sites in the law niche are the super generics. Attorneys, attorney, mesothelioma lawyer, divorce lawyer, eAttorney, eLawyer, eLawsuit, eLaw, personal injury, eDivorce etc etc are great. Outside of these types, wouldn’t recommend buying anything else.

    Reply
  • Joe August 27, 2013, 11:57 am

    Today see your post to be on holidays and writing again occur on a Tuesday.
    Well for me this is all new lawyers about buying domain names and credit agencies as well.
    It is a time of surprises from the days ago for me, be good to know this market is not done in three months.
    I to know this market and needed three years and I still learn a lot more,
    You probably already know that Google already started with your new set of search keywords, I look back and see that it’s a little busy to say much, but it gives the result Approximate CPC U.S. $ for a keyword which just change this difernecia, the restro this only change what described above.
    I also believe that Google will be much stronger and is only prepared to win more with Adwords.

    Reply
  • Joe August 27, 2013, 12:06 pm

    Hi Morgan. apology but send my comment with correction in: this difference, the rest
    Clears the other review.
    Thanks
    Best

    Today see your post to be on holidays and writing again occur on a Tuesday.

    Well for me this is all new lawyers about buying domain names and credit agencies as well.
    It is a time of surprises from the days ago for me, be good to know this market is not done in three months.
    I to know this market and needed three years and I still learn a lot more,
    You probably already know that Google already started with your new set of search keywords, I look back and see that it’s a little busy to say much, but it gives the result Approximate CPC U.S. $ for a keyword which just change this difference, the rest that only change what described above.
    I also believe that Google will be much stronger and is only prepared to win more with Adwords.
    Interesting start as keywords to find two high, and low with many users in U.S.. Credit and lawyers.
    What to do, buy or wait?

    Reply

Leave a Comment