Think All The Good Domains Are Taken? Think Again!

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve received emails and phone calls from new Domainers saying, “All the good domains are taken!” My response usually is – well, all the good .com’s are taken but when it comes to ccTLD’s it really is the very beginning of something big. My portfolio currently spans across 18 different TLD’s and I plan on getting to over 30 by the end of the year.

At TRAFFIC in Las Vegas I went to a very interesting panel about ccTLD’s where Ron Jackson shared some inspiring data. Below is what I found really shows the potential ccTLD’s have an the growth path they are on:

  • 15,800 domain sales were reported in 2008, 1,700 of those sales were ccTLD’s
  • 15,600 domain sales were reported in 2009, 3,777 of those were ccTLD’s
  • ccTLD’s went from 11% to 24% of the market in just one year!

These are encouraging numbers and if you look at the top five domain sales from the last two weeks four of them are ccTLD’s!

So I’ve decided to make some big moves within my company to put even more focus on ccTLD’s and I’m hoping this will help everyone take advantage of what I think is the opportunity of a lifetime.

First – I am launching ccTLDInvestors.com in March. This is a domain that all of you helped me pick and will become a blog written by many Domainers each sharing their expertise on the ccTLD’s they have experience with.

Second – I have re-branded my brokerage newsletter to be completely focused on ccTLD’s. That’s right – this means I now have a newsletter that is ONLY selling ccTLD’s! To get things started with a BANG I will be sending-out the first newsletter in the next few days and it will have five .de and five .co.uk domains that you won’t want to miss. You can sign-up for the newsletter by clicking on the image below:

So get ready for an incredible year. If you think you missed the boat on Domain Investing – you couldn’t be more wrong. You might just be looking in the wrong places. ccTLD’s represent an incredible investment opportunities and I am confident that five years from now you’ll be saying, “I got involved with ccTLD’s before they became what they are today!”

{ 19 comments… add one }

  • Domain Report February 5, 2010, 6:42 pm

    Country code domains have had good growth but you have to be careful and know what you are doing. Some countries have restrictions on who can own their extension, and there are many languages involved, which makes development harder unless you have people working for you who know multiple languages. Registration fees tend to be higher than for .com, so holding a portfolio over time costs more. Just saying it takes some research to see what sells in each country code. A good idea is to start off with your own country code or countries/languages you are familiar with, and see how that goes.

    Reply
  • Morgan February 5, 2010, 6:45 pm

    This is very true. I’ve been researching ccTLD’s for about two years now and my best domains are in the .us and .co.in space.

    ccTLDInvestors.com will feature experts in each space so interested investors can get advice from people on the front lines.

    Thanks for your comment and let me know if there is a particular ccTLD you have expertise in – we are currently adding more qualified members to the team!

    Reply
  • Zack February 5, 2010, 7:12 pm

    The best way to get cheap prices on some ccTLDs is become a citizen of that country. That is what I did.

    If it was worth a million dollars would you do it too? 🙂

    That is how I see it at least and I am tying to be one of the first to really work over a particular market.

    Reply
    • Morgan February 6, 2010, 1:50 am

      @Zack – thanks for the comment. You definitely do not have to become a citizen of a country to invest in their domains. I have a ton of .co.in and .in domains which does not require citizenship. In fact you really only need at most a proxy or in some cases a local business. Becoming a citizen is a time-consuming procedure and you really can’t be a citizen of many countries. Since I want to invest in over 30 different TLD’s I’m not sure your idea would scale well.

      Just look at TLD’s like .me, .tv, .in, .mx and many more that don’t require any hoops to jump through and have incredible potential!!

      Reply
  • Michael Bilde February 6, 2010, 1:46 am

    Sounds great with the newsletter! Will sign up right away.

    I agree ccTLDs have enormous potential, and I am building up my portfolio as well.

    But yes, you do need to research local rules and languages carefully. Some countries do not even allow actively selling domains, and others have quite complicated transfer procedures.

    High renewal fees are also an obstacle. I wonder why some countries such as India have very reasonable fees, whereas other ones charge absurd amounts.

    Reply
    • Morgan February 6, 2010, 1:51 am

      Thanks @Michael – agreed – renewal fees should be evaluated carefully. In general I try to get category-killer domains when I’m looking at ccTLD’s – one-word generics and product categories have a lot of potential. As for long-tails and brandables I stay-away from these in the ccTLD market.

      Reply
  • PPC Ian February 6, 2010, 3:14 am

    Morgan,
    Great post, looking forward to learning more about ccTLDs on your sites. I have some great generic .me domains and looking to expand to other ccTLDs this year.
    Best,
    Ian

    Reply
    • Morgan February 6, 2010, 3:20 am

      Thanks @Ian – that is great to hear! I’m going to have themed newsletters so I’ll make sure to reach-out to your for our .ME issue!

      Reply
  • Leonard Britt February 6, 2010, 3:27 am

    It takes a while for newbie domainers to get the hang of what constitutes a good domain. Regging ccTLD domains in a foreign language where reg fees are higher & the demand lower than .Com is certainly risky. There certainly is potential in the space as there have been more ccTLD sales in recent months. But until your domain portfolio is generating good turnover in .Com/.Net you probably shouldn’t spend too much time on riskier extensions.

    Reply
  • Morgan February 6, 2010, 3:30 am

    Excellent point @Leonard! I would suggest that anyone getting-into the space do their research first. Both CCTLDs.com and Inforum.in are great places to ask questions and learn from people investing in the space.

    There are also some ccTLD’s like .us and .me that are inexpensive to get started with and can be great for monetization. My first domain to make over $500/month was a .us domain pretty early-into my domaining career and the total cost was $4.99 thanks to a Go Daddy special 🙂

    Also with .de you can register one-month at a time so pay less than a dollar for a domain and actually do some domain tasting!

    As with anything in the Domaining world it’s always best to start-out slow and learn from people that are making money in the space – that’s what ccTLDInvestors.com is all about – bringing the experts together to share their advice!

    Reply
  • Rashid Mahmood February 6, 2010, 5:34 am

    Great article and very important point! I’ve heard many people use the “Billboard Test” – if your domain was posted on a billboard and you only had a few seconds to view it – would you remember it?
    I do think this is where brandable ccTLD’s like .me and .co could present solid opportunities for businesses that might not have the killer .com

    Reply
    • Morgan February 7, 2010, 4:48 am

      Thanks for the comment @Rashid!

      Reply
  • bruce J tedeschi February 6, 2010, 2:06 pm

    If you need some help, email me… I own and run http://www.genericcctlds.com so I can give you a lot of info so you don’t have to search for it.

    Reply
  • whoknows February 6, 2010, 11:00 pm

    It isn’t so much about all of the good domain names for .com, .org, etc, are taken, it has more to do with learning the craft of the profession.

    The parent domainers were the ones that did this work when the Internet was new. They are the foundation of the profession. Therefore, I would include people who worked in this profession from around 1995 to 2008/9 the parents of domaining. For the next decade I think we can call new domainors the children of the founders.

    The new domainors that complain about all of the good names taken are not thinkers. Sorry for being harsh, but that is the truth. The parents of the profession set the standards and basically depicted how the profession operates. It is up to the new domainors to evolve the profession from what it is today to what it will be at the end of the next decade.

    I am speaking from the mouth of a new domaninor. Do I care that some person/company owns business.com, ad,com, etc, etc, etc? I’m not even spending a split second in caring about that. Why on Earth would a person want to go into this profession to just own a name? It isn’t the name, IMO, that is the value in this profession. I look at the domaining profession through the eyes of e-Commerce and business. I feel that the people who do the whole “buy and sell” strategy don’t bring any value to the profession since all they do is push a dollar to this and that.

    I have many ideas that will shake up the world of the domaining profession. I will be speaking with Morgan this week for the first round of major changes coming to this profession.

    As far as ccTLD’s go, the Internet is expanding so everyone has access. The stars are the limit, IMO.

    Reply
    • Morgan February 7, 2010, 4:55 am

      Thanks for the comment @whoknows – I appreciate you sharing your opinions.

      Yes there are definitely opportunities in .com, .net, and .org – I have found some great success in this space as have many others. Having started in the industry about 2.5 years ago I have seen the industry grow dramatically over a short period of time.

      ccTLD’s represent an incredible opportunity to get-in at the very beginning of new trends. I particularly believe in the .in and .co.in space where you can still buy a strong one-word domain for under $1,000. I think this market has a TON of growth potential as India continues to flourish and add more Internet users.

      One thing is for sure – we are all lucky to be in the right place at the right time!

      Reply
  • bruce J tedeschi February 7, 2010, 2:50 pm

    As someone who owns 1500 cctld domain names, they sell for big money. In the past 6-months I have sold more cctlds than .com names. I think it is okay if you are a doubter… without knowledge of the industry and how economies like Germany works you would be skeptical. The key is invest in domain names that have governments that don’t interfere in the Internet and have broadband infrastructure. Extensions like .in domain names will take 3-4 years to mature. Billions of people but extremely poor telecom infrastructure.

    Reply
  • whoknows February 7, 2010, 3:17 pm

    Getting into the ccTLD business is important. America has only roughly 400 million people of the billion of people who live on this planet. India, Japan,,etc, are all markets that people should try to tap into. Getting into China will be tough with all of the stuff you need to get around to get into that market.

    Reply
  • Soud May 23, 2010, 5:30 am

    @Zack “The best way to get cheap prices on some ccTLDs is become a citizen of that country. That is what I did.”
    I wonder how many countries do you have to have a citizenship for 😀

    Reply
    • Morgan May 23, 2010, 3:08 pm

      @Soud – haha 🙂

      Reply

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