I always enjoy following what a new buyer does with a domain name. For me I always think there is something you can learn from one someone decides to do with a great domain name. I’ve been following the top five sales this year, checking-back periodically to see what’s going on and when a developed site/business is put on the name.
I’ve also found it interesting to see how long after purchase a name gets developed, and if the buyer takes any interim steps. Some buyers put-up mini-sites, others landing pages, and others are ready to go with a full-fledged business. It’s always painful to see a great domain with absolutely nothing on it, I think that at the bare minimum buyers should put a simple landing page with a text box for email addresses should people want to know more. Heck, even if the brand doesn’t exist yet, why would you not want to at the very least capture leads of potential customers?
Many SEO Pro’s that I’ve seen buy higher value names tend to immediately switch to a platform like WordPress and start pumping-out articles. They know that getting lots of good solid content on the domain is a great first step, and they’re usually building backlinks in the background to enforce the effort.
So today I thought it would be fun to look back at the top five domain sales (from DNJournal YTD Sales Chart) so far this year and see what’s going on. Let’s get started with a monster – Social.com.
1. Social.com (Sale Price: $2.6 million)
Social.com was sold on July 7th so the new owners haven’t had much time but I’m still surprised there isn’t just a basic landing page with an email capture form. That being said I am sure that big things are happening behind-the-scenes given the incredible potential of a name like this. Still – there has to be a nice amount of traffic coming to the site, why not just capture an email address, allow people to like you on Facebook, or follow you on Twitter? This seems like a no-brainer to me!
2. DomainName.com (Sale Price: $1 million)
This is a domain that I think is near and dear to all of our hearts, DomainName.com. The domain was purchased in May of this year and right now there is a basic registrar site on the name. I would imagine this is just up there right now to get some initial clients while they build-up the full site. Of course a registrar is a perfect fit for this name and it will be great to see where they go from here.
Unlike Social.com the owner here created a path to build customers and collect leads even while they’re building the final site. Still I think a Facebook fan page and Twitter button couldn’t hurt. There is definitely some nice type-in traffic coming to the domain and if someone doesn’t decide to register domains through the site they could at least become a fan or follow DomainName.com on Twitter.
3. Aktien.de (Sale Price: $725,000)
Aktien.de, which means “Stocks” in German currently has an info product on it. This is actually a great way to monetize traffic and definitely a huge step up from having a basic parking page on the site. This also takes care of lead capturing as well since you can make a sale and capture the email address during the same transaction. As for the long-term plan for the site I’d imagine they’ll be putting something more substantial on this, but since the name was bought at the end of July this isn’t a bad way to start.
4. RunningShoes.com (Sale Price: $700,000)
This was a great purchase and is now a hot online business. The purchasers did a great job putting together a solid business and exactly what a consumer would want to find on this domain name. Really great call-to-action for the newsletter and social media buttons front and center. This is one of those deals where you absolutely know that $700,000 was a great deal for the buyer as I’d imagine they’ll do much more than that this year alone.
5. Puzzle.com (Sale Price: $500,000)
Puzzle.com was purchased in May of this year and right now it’s just a blank white page with this tiny info box from Hensel Hosting. This is a great name with a ton of potential so I’m sure there are some very cool things going on behind-the-scenes here. My guess would be that they’ll launch this closer to Christmas to get some buzz and maybe take-place in the holiday shopping madness.