Monday, November 24, 2014

.CM Domains - The Rich got Richer

News - Opinions

CM Domain Registrar - Buying and selling CM domains

This post is a follow up to Elliot's "Why I Didn't Bid on .CM Domains" and Chad Kettner's DomainNameNews editorial "What are these domains really worth?"

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.

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