Namemon - Domain Market Monitoring Blog
Written by Ed Muller Monday, 07 September 2009 13:50
GMH.com is on Namejet with 1 day to go. Bidding is already at $12,000 and certain to go higher with almost 200 bidders in the mix.
As three key letters, GMH is very strong and worth its valuation in the open market. But this post is not about price, its about poor domain management.
GMH has been the property of Hughes Electronics Corporation since 1997. Archive.org shows the domain has been forward to Hughes.com since 2000, a fairly typical waste of a domain by a corporation. Nameservers are set to HAC.com, another Hughes property, and domain administration emails are set to tom@gmh and ebm3@gmh. Clearly these have been overlooked for some time. Only two domains appear with these antiquated entries - GMH.com and C79.net. Obviously someone did not document what these email addresses were for and how they were forwarded. Using some HAC.com forwarding servers, it appears that other domains hosted on these servers also no longer resolve.
While it is possible Network Solutions might take pity on an entity like Hughes to avoid litigation, if this error is not caught in the next two months it is unlikely to ever be resolved without multi-party lawsuits in which each entity asserts its right to the expired name.
This will still continue to underscore the lack of use of domains at large corporations. Forwarding, poor management and lack of monitors will continue to plague failed companies until they learn that if they don't hire someone to clean up their act for them, the domain name system will do it for them in due time.
Ed Muller is a registrant specialist and provides consulting and litigation expertise in both Domains and DNS.
GMH.com was won for a top bid of $13,600 on September 8th 2009
Written by Ed Muller
When .CM was announced, I grabbed my resources and started looking for something that could be an earner. I decided to forgo the normal process of buying a domain - evaluation based on keyword + traffic, and instead turned to raw dynamics: traffic only.
To me, it appeared that .CM had no real value as a WORD+Extension purchase. The starting price was too high and the players were too big. With Namejet as Enom's bidding platform I couldn't see costs staying below a cool several grand for even the most innocuous names. So what's a guy like me with a short budget to do?
First I pulled up the Alexa 100 and shuffled through it for domains that might convert well into clicks if traffic was misdirected. Generic names like Gmail (Google was unable to secure this term in other ccTLDs), Amazon, MSN, etc., are all frequently typed into browsers and can easily support very generic ad space. So I applied for top domains in this list that I felt were worth a shot.
What was the result of this application?
amazon.cm Enom Rejected gmail.cm Enom Rejected
So I tried another route.
I own a few typos myself of generic terms that do well - and some are odd enough that they would escape any scrutiny from a simple advisory panel and I felt they were also worth a shot, despite the high price.
I sent in my application for these terms. Result? Rejected again (I won't post those because they are my personal private stash)
At this point it's a week to go, so I decided to try a final route: Alexa's list for .CM domains (yes, Alexa is able to track even typos with bad extensions). At the top were three unregisterables: Ringo.CM (Cameroon ISP), Gmail.CM (I was already rejected), and Google.CM (That is TM territory where I won't tread). Further down the list was the CM Government and CM Registrar, along with a few other terms, including Weather.CM. Well, I thought Weather must surely be worth a shot?
weather.cm Enom Rejected
So what does this tell us about the .CM process?
- You didn't have a chance to begin with
- What is being sold was already proven by Kevin Ham to be worthless
- What remains is worth Keyword value only, and can only be resold for keyword value
- The domains that you should really want are still making someone else money
In the old con man's game we call this the bait and switch. Hold out a gold watch and give them a rotten apple before they can trade it in or ask for a refund. Then run away. Hide in some far away region where no one would ever look for you.
Like for instance, Cameroon.
Written by Ed Muller Wednesday, 02 September 2009 06:46
As Rick posted on his blog titled The Coming Fall Boom, he believes that this season will bring two things: A stock market dip and an explosion of internet marketing prices. While I can't comment on the first I would like to make some observations on the latter.
I have accounts at Commission Junction, Linkshare, Clickbank, Connect Commerce, Google Adsense and many others. Over the past two months I have been seeing more aggressive rate changes in advertising through some of the vendors. Each company you sign up to be an affiliate for sends updates on new commission rates, program changes, new programs available, etc. Lately these have been coming in steadily as advertisers bump up their rates. My CD Storage website has gone from $.40 per click to $.70 per click. Another site, Latex Mattress Reviews jumped from $.60 per click to $1 per click - and those are just my payouts per click. Clearly those advertisers are paying at least double those rates to get listed on my site. Search volume on all fronts seems to be rising, and everyone from mom and pop to major marketing firms are competing for the same customers again, driving up rates. I believe that this will be a period of very solid statistics for most who use affiliate or high-quality click programs. Not to mention the potential for Ebay's channel switch from per sale to per click which I am already testing on a few sites.
Ultimately if you look at the trail of commissions they all have to do the same thing. For each click that is converted to a sale, you get a small piece but all your traffic is likely lost. You have probably not created something for the visitor to return to, just a search engine ranked series of pages destined to earn you some cash. This works fine for the domainer and is in fact, a great way to supplement income that comes in spurts through sales.
However, more often I am leaning towards creating sites with real marketing deals for actual product, where I am the reseller with the order form - not just another ranked page for content without product. If this season is really going to see growth in leaps and bounds, the true beneficiaries will be the ones selling the actual item which is being marketed.
The Auction for 99bb.com completed yesterday (August 28th 2009) with a massive final bid of $12,599 USD. This is not surprising given the volume of traffic shown on Alexa Ranking for the domain.
Some heavy hitters entered the bidding war, with "wowogame" winning the final bid after a long showdown with "who". Also in the bidding war were "buydomains", "cnsun", "iteasy" and "demand", all of whom have very good reputations on the platform - so no shill bidding was happening here (for once!). Below is a screenshot of the final auction page. I bowed out early but had my bid in weeks ago in hopes of getting a shot.
Written by Wire Thursday, 27 August 2009 15:25
As recently posted on Namepros, Google is now allowing .ME domain holders to geo-target like any standard TLD, as opposed to treating like a cctld. Prior to this change, holders of ME domains were unable to switch their geo-target from "Montenegro," the country which applied for and won the cctld several years ago.
This is huge new for Geo Domain Holders. You can see the geotargeting for Nothing.ME in the attached panel.
Last Updated on Thursday, 27 August 2009 17:58 Written by Ed Muller Thursday, 27 August 2009 08:44
Items we are bidding on today at Namejet:
AdaptiveOptics.com - Great generic with about 5000 phrase searches per month and about 10 wordtracker.
I always question potential TM issues but as an observer I'm apt to say they are weak at best. Adaptive Optics Associates formed in 1995 and built their site at AOAINC.com and acquired adaptiveoptics.com some time after registering a trademark for the name of their company with an image mark. The corporation has since been acquired by Grumman. Prior to acquisition they renewed one trademark. After acquisition Grumman allowed a second similar the mark to expire.
While use of this term might have once been attributed to the company with the phrase "Associates" at the tail end of this mark, it seems unlikely that a generic such as this would be subject to TM dispute. Wikipedia is the top search result for this entry, has no links to any Grumman site, pdf or whitepaper, makes no mention of the former mark holder, and there is no record of anyone having pursued this mark as a matter of dispute. Moreover, I do not see any entries for Grumman, AdaptiveOptics.com, or AOAinc.com in any Google, Bing or Yahoo search results, so I am even more inclined to believe that not only is this mark unprotectable (much like try to protect ketchup if you are Heinz), but attached only to the old corporation as a means to protect itself as an entity, not as title-holder and rights-holder to the "Adaptive Optics" generic term.
Conclusion: Acquired successfully
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