I want to invite everybody anyway, welcome into million dollar domains. We’re just getting the, uh, the chairs set up here. We’re getting the mix, uh, getting a mix.
Thanks for coming in. We’re about to get started here on million dollar domains for Wednesday, November 10th, 2021.
I had about seven or eight more invites to send out.
All right. Thanks everybody for holding on.
Hi, Rachel. How you doing? I see you there. Uh, Rachel runs start-up club and I hope everything’s going on. Great and startup clubs. So thanks for chime and coming in to do the work. And having your team take care of that. I appreciate it. Thanks, Paige. You’re very welcome. Alrighty. Well, everybody welcome to million dollar domains and you will see the red dot on there for those in what we call our studio audience that are here in, um, hearing clubhouse.
And this has million dollar domains that we’ve been going for about six months, every Wednesday, talking about the million dollar domain market. And the reason that we set up a separate show here in domain club was in most of domain club we talk about really all the issues that affect anyone who owns a domain name.
A Domain Name is a valuable digital asset. It’s going to be your brand and your identity and your email address. And, and you need to understand what you’re owning, just like you would own your real estate or equipment or, or trademarks or other intellectual property. So domain clubs. To be a resource for anyone who owns a domain name, it’s also set up for people that are investing in domain names, either investing in high quality domain names, a low number of names or people that are investing in a large number of names….. Buying them for lower prices and realizing hopefully some great returns. And I think the other category that we see for investing is kind of a, as kind of a hobbyist or kind of a, a tech industry person where, um, you know, you may have see different things and different ideas and, and buying a word in the.com is a way to, to wrap it up, to do a project later or to be in the mix with a group of people that do a project.
And so you just up end up owning names, you know, over the years, And then some you may develop and some you may sell. And then the third group we do domain club for is the domain industry where a lot of companies are located throughout the world. And you can have inner company sessions, but a lot of times the, the places to get domain industry information inside your company, aren’t that great.
Everyone’s got a specific job or a task that they’ve got to do. So we try to do domain club for those that are working full time in the domain industry, to be able to encourage innovation, encourage creativity and partnerships.
Million Dollar Domains
So with that regard at million dollar domains, we’d like to talk to about domains that can sell or have sold for a million dollars or $10 million or a hundred million dollars.
And that may mean that you would like to buy a name for 50,000 and sell it for a million. But it’s definitely different from the total and most of the 130 million, I’m just going to say for.com names that are out there, we’re talking about, not just the 1%, but the 1% of the 1% then I’ll, I’ll talk a little bit today about just how far that decimal goes.
But I think, um, what we try to do is just talk about million dollar domain. So we don’t mix in things that I do in other shows like appraisals or, you know, advice for someone just getting started or, um, or things like that. And I think that let’s see, let me just, uh, let me just pick up what’s it. So a million dollar domains is done here on clubhouse each Wednesday, and then we record it and we amplify it across a domain club.
And so we’ll have this recording come out as kind of. Grand reopening of billion dollar email@example.com uh, next week. And I think normally we get, uh, a multiplied effect of the, the, the viewership, um, from people that aren’t able to be here Wednesdays at one Eastern, but can still take in the information.
And specifically what I’m trying to do is provide a resource for companies out there that are wondering, should they be buying a million dollar domain name? Should they be buying a $5 million domain name? And most of the time they’re only going to be contacted or get information about the whole domain name industry when someone’s trying to sell them a specific name.
And that isn’t always the best way I believe to educate companies and buyers on a market, because most people don’t want to go in and make a big move. A multi-million dollar. Without understanding their environment that they’re in. But if the only time they’re learning about the domain name industry is when it comes to someone offering or selling a specific name or when they’re tying to buy a specific name.
So a lot of times that information might be skewed toward that name or toward the attributes of that name. So we want to provide kind of a, uh, a basis of information so that someone is then ready when they need to buy a name for a marketing initiative, for a division, for a startup or to rebrand the whole company.
And so that’s really been the inspiration behind million-dollar domains, and it’s supposed to show one clubhouse it’s part of domain club. So I’d ask you to follow domain club here as you’re listening. And then it’s also, we set up its own website, which will be million dollar domains.com to be able to provide further resources and information.
So the billion dollar domain market has grown incredibly in the past year and a half. But even in the last six months, I think the velocity of million dollar sales has gone from one quarter to one a month to two a month to at least two a month. And usually discoveries about sales that have happened in prior months or prior years that are only being discovered now.
And I think what’s important about that is that a lot of times companies want to control the publicity around them buying a domain name. So they may want to control the timing of how much they paid for a domain name with if they’re entering a new market for when they’re actually ready to go to market.
And so I think that you do get a great initial publicity pop in your industry. From buying a million dollar or more domain name, because it is the type of information, press release that I think most publications and newsletters will pick up because it’s got a new fact, it’s got something that happened.
It isn’t just a company saying, Hey, we’d like to grow or we’d like to do something. And I think it’s the type of thing that you can get as much earned media or earned publicity as you can. Not that it’s ever going to rationalize the million dollar purchase price. Um, let me just type in one thing here.
Um, but it is going to be a part of the equation. So when we look at million dollar domains that have sold, I think one of the biggest wins that’s happened in the past week has been it.com. And what was interesting about it? Dot com is two letter domain names. One of the rarest. Scarcities that we have in the domain market.
There’s only 676 of them. And so you talked about, you know, 9 billion people in the world buying 676 domain names. And even in the weakness time. So the domain market or the industry or the economy, or the financial crisis, two letter domain names have always kept extremely high values. But what’s interesting about the it domain name is not only it, a two letter name, not only is it a dictionary word, one of the shortest dictionary words you can ever have, but it’s also an abbreviation for information technology and an action word it where people can say, I want to buy it.
I want to sell it. I want to see it. I want to value it. I want to go to it. And so you really got a lot of things coming together and what’s interesting is the company that bought it.com rather than just having one company called it or it. What they’ve decided is we can almost invent our own internet once they own it.com, they can then sell people, domain names related to it.
Dot com. I could be page.it.com or page that it.com. I’m not sure how they’re doing it, but they’re, well-funded, they’re bold. And if you read the story on Ron Jackson’s DN journal, which is a great resource to go do, to learn about domain names, you’ll see that they’re going to trade shows. They’re actually interacting with people to show off what their plan is to build relationships and to build registrations.
And if you think about the fact that that a registration really has very little incremental costs at their $50 price point, it’s not going to take him that many registrations to look even at that $3 million investment. And be able to be earning it back maybe each and every year, and then who knows what it’s going to lead to.
But I think it’s an example of so many things coming together and potentially the type of name where you look back and they may be saying when they go public or this, that, and the other, wow. We started this just by buying it for 3 million, which was, you know, a super high price at the time. But for those of you that are listening to this, it’s, it is going to feel a little risky.
It is going to feel like you’re buying at the top of the market to get a name. But once you take it off the market, I can’t imagine anyone else trying to buy a substitute for this name and trying to come up with another two letters that would, that would potentially be as good. And then the fact that one company has announced that they’re doing it any seller now might say, well, we need 5 million or we need 8 million.
So I think as much for those of you that are looking at buying million dollar names for your company or startup, as much as it looked may look high, looking. Once you buy the name and you take it as Andrew Rosemary likes to say it, media options off the market forever. Whoever’s now looking is going to be looking for maybe the second best name to achieve the exact goal that you want or they want, and they’re going to have to pay more.
So some of the things that happen in the million dollar space, don’t apply to lots of other names. If you’re buying a brandable name for your company, like Boothy or Woofy or Zulu or something like that, you might have a lot of substitutions. If you’re buying a local name like Philadelphia electricians, well, maybe you can get Philadelphia repairman or some other things.
But I think in the million dollar space, you’re looking at taking something off, you know, that may not be available that may not be available again. So I thought it.com was a great example of someone buying a domain name, not just for its value, uh, but what it could become as a company. The other big comment we had at the end of last month that I didn’t get a chance to really talk about it was, um, Kevin O’Leary has built his brand to become one of the most famous investors out there in a society that’s really moving toward investing, making up a bigger percentage of people’s time and money and entertainment.
Um, it’s really invaded the sports world. If you look at the big crypto companies with some of the biggest movie stars and sports figures in the world, endorsing them, um, and, and, and it’s become more and more what’s going on. I think, um, you know, because of his, his shark tank persona and his Mr. Wonderful moniker, which really hides a very cutthroat, you know, show me the money, show me the property person.
He’s done a really good job at building. And then, you know, he actually runs a series of NFTs and a, and a large hedge fund. So he manages a lot of money, but he came out, um, uh, with one of his investments was a company called immutable holdings and it has various blockchain investments and he was talking about it.
And one of their investments was nft.com. And I think as much as for the past 20 years, those of us in the domain space have talked about, well, I can’t believe a big company doesn’t own a certain name, or I can’t believe a big company wouldn’t go out and get it here. We have NFTs or nft.com. One of the biggest trends, that’s all of a sudden become billions of dollars of day of trading.
And we do have a respected, learned company with respected, learned advisors going in there, uh, and buying it. And it was interesting because Kevin O’Leary, Tommy says I invested in mutable holdings to get a diverse portfolio of blockchain operators. Including in Ft com this is his quote. Um, one of the most important and valuable domain names and crypto assets, nft.com is where the puck is going.
The opportunity to build profiles was such a powerful and important name is why mutable holdings is, is, you know, his holding is so valuable. And I think what’s important to remember here is when you’re talking about applying a domain name, which maybe can give a company a 1% or a 3% or a 5% edge in name recognition.
That means it’s going to give a company a five or 10 or 20% more efficient advertising campaign. Cause if someone could ever document that you have to be in front of someone with advertising or awareness 10 times to get them to follow through. Well, there’s a chance that with an easy to remember domain name that not only exudes credibility, but as easy to remember, and they can find you and transact business direct with you.
What if that was cut down to eight times? So now you’ve got a 20% more efficient spend to whatever you’re spending on advertising, a million dollars a year, $5 million a year, $10 million a year, $20 million a year. So I think the, the, the domain space looks at itself, in my opinion, from zero people, think I should be able to get that name for $10.
Um, I miss getting that name for $10 that’s registration fee. So I have to pay 500 and they’re whining about it. And then I have to pay 3000. Then I had to pay 50,000. I have to pay a hundred thousand. So there’s no doubt that that happened. I wish I would or look back, you know, you’re going to say, well, you know, what am I going to do?
But there’s a lot of business savvy that says it doesn’t matter what happened in the past. You’ve got to look at now, you’ve got to look at going forward and what’s the domain name going to do for you? So if you can, if you have to pay a million dollars or $2 million a domain name, but your company’s worth 50 million or a hundred million or 2 billion, or we had, we had an electric vehicle manufacturer go public today for $122 billion valuation.
And we used start making moves that have to do with identity, um, and remembrance and prestige and placing yourselves in very competitive markets. I think we’re going to look back on this time and talked about, remember when domain names traded one word domain names. So maybe that. 30 to 50,000 domain names traded for only a million dollars, you know, and I, and I think that time will come.
So one of the things I wanted to do today was I wanted to introduce Neil Bostik. He came on as a guest today, and we’ve exchanged emails over the years and I’ve seen his different ventures and he’s got an interesting new company, um, that he’s going to tell us about. And so that’s part of the message I want to do today.
And the second thing I want to do is I want to see if I can test out putting a link up above here, let’s see pen oh, Lank and it’s to the site for this show today, which is million dollar domains.com. And what I’ve done is every couple of weeks, I try to go to a different marketplace and look and see, um, what are some of the new domains that have been.
And so I hope that that link is going to work, but if someone can message me, if it doesn’t I’ll edit it, um, maybe I need to put the HTTPS or something like that, but if you go there, I did a post today with a hundred recently listed names on one of the Google. One of the marketplaces say, do, say, do domain names.
And the reason I did that, oh, let’s say those were resolved. All right. I’ll work on. This is, I wanted to give you an idea of what’s out there. What’s coming. So we’re just going to go with million-dollar names.com. All right.
All right. We’re going to go with million dollar names, doc, Tom, and see if that goes. So if that doesn’t work, let me know. So what I did was I went ahead and picked out a a hundred names that have gone up for sale recently in the past week on. And that’ll give us, uh, a chance to review the different types of names that trade for a million dollars.
Um, and then the other, uh, the other names that were announced this week, that that was interesting was on the 24th named bio, which is a site that tracks, uh, publicly available domain information. And we had a sale of a two word domain name for $600,000. So 0.6 of a million dollars, and it was zero carbon.com.
And I think that this was probably one of the areas that’s moved the most and the million dollar domain space. And then I’ll say, hi and welcome Neil, and ask him what he thinks about it is that it used to be kind of automatically when you had a two word domain name, you would have to think 50,000 or a hundred thousand, even for some of the best, two word names.
And that I think what we’ve seen happen, starting with GoDaddy sales report in January, Of some of the prices they’re getting for two word domain names and what some of the brokers are getting as we saw it, the less, less, or more often than a hundred thousand might be eclipsed for a good two-word domain name, going to accompany who wants it, they’re ready to go.
They know how they want to monetize it. Um, you know, they’re not just buying it for someday and it isn’t someone just buying it on impulse that night and sending, you know, the money out of there, you know, the escrow.com or something like that, but they’re really ready to go. And I think we have found that sellers have started to expect more and buyers have met them for two word names, like zero carbon.com, which went for $600,000.
So that’s kind of the, the market update is one word dot comes have gone near a million and above. And in most cases, names are being delineated as to whether there a one, a two, a five, or it’s. If there one word names, especially if they’re short and especially if they’re in a category where there’s only 20, 30 or 50 of something, and then we’re seeing two word names break out from being in the 10 or $15,000 range to numbers that are going higher.
Well, Hey Neil, I went in to know when you saw the dot com for 3 million and maybe some of these other recent sales, um, what’s your impression of what’s happening now in the market, and then we’ll get to green.com and how you got started, but welcome to you. Yeah, thanks page. No, I appreciate you having me on, um, it’s the first time I really used to clubhouse, so still getting used to it, but, uh, yeah.
Um, I think the it.com is cool in a few different ways. Um, you know, I think it’s, you know, everyone in, especially in the high value, uh, part of the market is looking for, you know, how to monetize, you know, their purchase because, you know, plenty of people spend a lot of money on domain. If they’re not directly using it for a company and just kind of sitting there.
So especially them taking the initiative to, to brand it where, you know, with the domains, I think it’s really great. Um, I actually think it’s something like that seems to be the future of actually, uh, I didn’t think about this before, but really like the Squarespace Wix kind of model where like, if you’re a website builder and you, you know, add on to the fact that you have sub domains as part of like the way you structure your service, I think that’d be very helpful.
Um, cause right now, if you ever tried to make a site on Squarespace or one of these other ones, um, you create the site, they give you the sub domain, but it’s, you know, like XYZ, pollen count, uh, dot squarespace.com or something. But you know, if they’re doing this this way, you could do it like your store name.it, dot com, which, you know, I think it makes a lot more sense.
Um, so yeah, just some commentary. No, I appreciate that. And what was interesting is when we have these latest registration crazes for things like ETA. There’s a lot of publicly available names that are reselling with two letters. A lot of times they’re trying to emulate a TLD, like a us.com or a uk.com or a br.com.
And I think people reach Stephen into those spaces to try to take almost everything, you know, possible because it is only adding. Um, again, I know a lot of people think direct navigation is dead, but you got to remember, it’s not just putting it into the browser bar. It’s when you’re, when you’re texting someone, Hey, go to this site or you’re texting someone, your email address, you’d like short.
So if you can be short, even with the dot and two extra letters, Neil there’s, there’s a lot of functionality there isn’t there. Yeah. And I totally agree. I think it’s really smart of them. I don’t know if they’re going that direction, but I think at the very least, you know, sub-domains is interesting. Um, a lot of space to build up.
Yeah. And then I think the second thing is even if it doesn’t work, if they’re sitting there in three years and they get. You know, 110,000 email addresses or something like that, then they’ve still got an asset that can be repurposed a bunch of different ways. Um, and I think as I mentioned above, um, and for those of you who don’t know me, um, I’ve been in the business about 20 years.
I sold a couple of domain names for over a million dollars that at the time were some of the top hundred or 200 names sold that since Ben eclipse, but you know, there’s, they’re still pretty high up there. And a lot of the rankings and what I’ve been doing this year with a show is to talk about the idea of framing, a name and, and really trying to get its highest and best value.
Because most of the time, the market for a million dollar domain names is either a buyer initiating, Hey, I want this exact name or a seller saying, I want to sell this name. Now I’ve hired a bright broker to contact the contacts, but then we don’t have too many exchanges or other. Uh, Neil, I saw your announcement of your new site.
Why don’t you tell us a little bit about it, because I think it’s trying to become more of a place that high-end investors can go to see opportunities. Yeah, no, definitely. Um, yeah, so I’m the founder of a grain.com, which it’s a G R a E n.com. Um, and basically it’s the first private domain marketplace. Um, and for, you know, for those who don’t understand what exactly that might mean, it means that instead of, you know, listing domain price or, you know, D domain you’ll make an offer or whatever, we list domains with all their value attributes and their price, uh, but not the domain itself.
And the key is with our, to given software and technology behind it. Uh, you have to work to uncover the domain as we call it. And you sign a NDA basically saying that, you know, if you see a domain on the sites, uh, you’re not gonna find it anywhere else. And, um, it’s basically just a creative way, uh, to.
Make a high value and domains be able to be traded easier now with the current options that exist. There’s no, there’s no private marketplaces. It makes sense for most domains, but for the real top tier million-dollar domains and beyond, um, many, most sellers are very cautious about, you know, sale prices.
They’re very cops about offer prices. You know, if someone lists a domain for sale and they want to sell it quickly and it doesn’t get sold instantly and at that price will, will and can get used against you. And, you know, if you, as a buyer, you, you bet pay like a good amount. You get a good deal on a really premium domain, like two letter, one word or, or whatever.
Um, and it’s public, even if the value is a lot higher than the price you paid for it, you know, any of your future buyers are going to be able to see that price and can use it against you. Um, and so for that model, we, we developed our platform, you know, custom, you know, not really taking into account a lot of the other platforms.
We just tried to create the perfect platform specifically for high value to. Um, and it’s still a work in progress. It’s not fully functional yet, but we’ve, we’ve been launched about a month. We’ve we’ve seen a lot of traction we’ve around, uh, 80 to a hundred, three letter, one word. Um, I think we even have a couple of two letters on there.
I’m not sure. Um, and, uh, yeah, that’s uh, well, that’s pretty good. Well, I know it’s early, but I try to stay on top of early things. You know what I mean? Um, and I just want to encourage everybody. This is not the place to list your hand registration name that you got yesterday. This is not the place to say, oh my gosh, I’ve been renewing these 500 names for three years.
I’m now ready to sell them. Maybe I can get someone to pay me a bunch of money here. I think that there’s, there’s a sense that, that, that it is an educated customer base. And then I’ll talk to Neil about some of the things he does to ensure you know, that the listings, but I think it gives people a manageable subset of names to look up.
Especially where the goal of million dollar domains is to talk to people that haven’t decided what their ultimate name is for their business. They know it’s a digital asset. They know that there’s, that they’re not making any more of these popular words. Although new words can come into the community.
Um, but they don’t know what they can get and they don’t know how much it costs. And I think that the reason I wanted to highlight the site was because I wanted to reward any innovation that’s happening out there, but it’s the idea that people can start getting a flavor for it. You know what I mean? And comparing different names against each other and what, you know, what our names going at and 20,000 and a 40,000 and a, and a 60,000.
So I think that you’re doing something admirable Neil, which is you’re trying to kind of curate the inventory and then also curate the buyers. What’s one of those you think you can kinda came first? You know what I mean, having only good inventory or telling the inventory that you only have good. Um, yeah, I think it’s a little bit of both.
Um, we designed our platform to try to be the most seller friendly in the industry. So we have pretty low success fees, no upfront costs. Um, we don’t have seller exclusivity, so you’re free to list your domain anywhere else. If you list on ours, um, you know, through, and there’s a reason we’re able to do this through our, you know, the NDAs we list so we can make sure that, you know, buyers don’t go around the site.
Um, and, uh, yeah, I think I, I think a main reason that we, we, we set out to make the site is we realized that, um, there’s not really a central place that people really go to, you know, buy and sell really high value domains. Um, I mean, you know, some people will go to, you know, see though, or they’ll go to, um, you know, GoDaddy or flip on their kind of list their domains, but the actual sell through rate of these through the actual marketplace itself is very low as far as my education on the matter goes.
Um, and so we built our platform to try. Taken just premium domains. We’re setting it up so that, you know, it’s very seller friendly, so there’s no really risks to list with us. Um, and, uh, yeah, I liked it. I actually, I actually listed one, I have a name hoped.com. So, you know, I hope for this. I hope for that, but it’s someone hoped for, and I put it in there and you do kind of engage a seller.
Um, after I did a little bit of qualification to say, here’s kind of what we think is a, is a retail rating for your name and where we think there might be some liquidity, you know, and what would you like to do? And I thought that was good because it wasn’t, you know, so many times since there’s world, there’s, there’s so many funnels and qualifications where it’s almost like, you know, you have to go through 21 steps just to find out if you want to list your name somewhere.
So I liked the fact that I could see. You know, in a way where we can have a meaningful discussion real quick. And then I checked it out as a buyer. And I saw that on, you know, names that are maybe a hundred thousand and above. There’s a little question there that says, Hey, we’d like to see if you’re qualified, you know, and, and you’re trying to take away this idea that someone’s trying to make a $10 offer on a, on a million dollar name and, and, and only have maybe valuable discussions.
So I really liked that about it. And then when you talk about other exchanges, yeah. You can go to GoDaddy and type in.com sort from high to low. And as we highlighted on our show, you’re going to get a bunch of names at $20 million, you know, 40 million. And there’s no, there’s no curation. There’s no, um, there’s really nothing.
And then the, the reason I really love the innovation and marketplaces is most of the time, the real world, you know, besides the one to 10,000 domain investors that are around. The real world only finds out what a domain name cost once it’s gone and sold. You know what I mean? So that domain name, if it went to an end-user, it isn’t really available again, but that’s the only time that maybe a lot of the most qualified prospects, whatever.
See it. So one of the things we like doing a million dollar domains is as much as we want to report sales, we also want to show what’s available now. And I think, you know, your site does a pretty good job of doing that. Now, Neil, this isn’t your first venture in the domain business. How did you get into domains and what have you been doing?
And I did this, somebody domain show kind of take us from the dinosaurs, roamed the earth or whatever, all the way up to pre pandemic. And then maybe we’ll talk about the last couple of years separately, but, but how did you get into the domain name seal? Oh, that’s a good, that’s a good question. Um, actually, uh, in the year, 2014, I had founded a small pile hosting site and it was doing really well.
And I had a couple of partners with it and, you know, it’s, uh, eventually we got to the point where we wanted to sell it, and that was kind of the business person of the group. So I was in charge of, you know, doing the sale and it kind of went through the process of, you know, trying to find buyers and, and this and that.
And, uh, I eventually sold the website, the business behind it, and it was such a pain for like every part of the sale, you know? And if, if you ever done like some sort of business sale before, um, it’s not the, you know, the funniest part, you know, in terms of due diligence, you know, migrations and, and whatnot.
But I realized, um, it gave me a lot of appreciation when I finally finished all the other bureaucratic stuff and really just transferred the domain. I had such an appreciation for the simplicity of it. And, uh, you know, in retrospect, comparing the other aspects of, you know, selling a business to selling a domain, it was, it was very easy and, and careful.
Um, and from there I did a couple years of investing and you kind of with my, you know, as like a side hobby from like 2014 to 15, um, and I think late 2015, uh, I made the formal transition over and I became a full time, uh, broker, um, with my qip.com business. Uh, we’ve been brokering high value domains, uh, ever since then.
So around 2015, 16 to, uh, to today. Um, and just give me more perspective on that. Uh, one of the main considerations around, you know, launching grain, um, has been really trying to take a lot of the work I do in domain brokerage and really trying to automate it. And what I found is I mentioned that, uh, a lot of the high, there’s not really a central place for, you know, high value domains to be bought and sold.
But the reality is if you’re looking to buy high value domains in the current market, some of the best places to look are broken. And, you know, in any market, you know, if there’s, if brokers have a lot of control, there’s, you know, there’s something going on, you know, kind of against my own, uh, incentives here, you know, brokers can be an inefficiency in some markets, you know, some domains.
I, I make the argument they’re, they’re doing more good than bad. Uh, but still there’s, there’s so much things that can be automated. So grain is really a, what I call a curated marketplace, um, which is halfway in between being a broker and halfway between being a marketplace. And the fact that, you know, it’s all application only, um, we handle that each listing, we handle buyers professionally when needed, but it’s still a lot of technology behind it so that you can manage every step of the way as an owner, whether you, you have your applications that you can see, you know, what they’re made to be applied for.
What’s the status when they get accepted their listing and your listings, when someone makes an offer, it’s listing your thing and you can reply. If someone wants to ask a question, it’s listed there too, and we’re available for support and everything else, but, um, yeah, that’s, that’s a little bit of a tangent, but, um, yeah.
That’s okay. Well, terrific. I mean, I think you’ve done some of your marketing through a newsletter, which I think I’ve gotten for awhile, but I noticed that you were also doing a lot of innovative things with videos or LinkedIn and things like that. So I’ve appreciated watching you. Um, I think you’re right about the broker thing.
I think that, you know, I’ll, I’ll say to anyone watching this, this, if you’re looking to make the one in a million deal where you want to buy a million dollar domain name and get it from the little old lady, who’s had it in their antique, uh, you know, uh, you know, some buried away somewhere and comes out and you’re going to get it for $5,000, you know, that that’s probably not going to happen here.
And if you’re a seller and you think, oh my gosh, I’ve always wanted to get $5 million. You know, this probably isn’t maybe the place to go, just to speak frankly, to top ticket. But I think it is a place where if you’re leaning toward wanting to reposition capital versus. You know, or move it, or if you want to buy a name, you know, you’re not poor, you’re not cheap.
You’re willing to pay good value. It seems like you try to get rid of those extremes and put names where they’re most likely to be bought and sold. Yeah. Um, so what do you think about the last couple of years? Have you seen an uptick? Uh, you know, we talk about this. A lot of people were forced to do more online.
They’re forced to control their own identity online, not be dependent on maybe a social media company or, or, you know, spending money with Google each months. Um, whether it was the pandemic and people, you know, needing not being able to do as much business at their physical location. What have you kind of, you’ve seen in the last couple of years, um, and maybe even, you know, this year, which was kind of pandemic year two in the domain.
Yeah, that’s a great question. Um, yeah, I mean to start, I think with my experience in broker, uh, I, I feel like w when people are talking about, you know, buying and selling high value domains, especially at the end user level, the main reason that, you know, deals get done at this stage of the internet. I mean, you know, a lot of the companies that are older, you know, they’ve seen the internet for, you know, 25 years or maybe more, and they have to have a pretty good reason to acquire domain now versus, you know, 10 years ago, 20 years ago, you know, et cetera, et cetera.
Uh, and within that, I, I think I find some of the best end user deals. We do a lot of times, you know, the seller is one of two for the buyers, one of two people, and they’re either, you know, a startup looking to did, they just, you know, started out, they want a great brand, they’ve got good funding. Uh, they’re ready to, to really expand and in the growth stage.
Um, and then the second is some of the more established brick and mortar companies, um, And who, who looked for upgrades. And so I’ve had, you know, companies from, you know, the 18 hundreds or earlier, you know, common, you know, 20, 21 and, you know, spending, you know, 50, 150,000 around sometimes more than that range, just because of the one that acquire like a, uh, uh, basically usually a simple, I call it an upgrade, but it’s usually a simpler version of their given domain.
So sometimes like if you have, uh, like initials, um, I’ve seen a lot of those and in other things, so I think that’s the, that’s the first consideration you’re working with, but with the pandemic itself, um, I would say that, you know, the first month it depended on that, cause I’m sure a lot of people would tell you, um, there probably wasn’t really any deal flow or it was pretty closed off, you know, maybe March, 2020, uh, but then come, you know, April, may, uh, throughout the rest of 2020, um, there was a ton of deals and it was a really good year.
Um, I think, uh, my assumption on the, on the time period. A lot of startups and a lot of companies being forced online that were flexible, all tried to buy up all the ones that they could, um, strategically that is. So I think, I think it’s a lot more of the smaller companies that we’re doing in 2020, where they might’ve had good funding or this and that, but they wanted the upgrade.
Um, and then transitioned that to 2021. I like to think that a lot of the companies that might not have invested a ton of in their marketing, 20, 20, some of the bigger ones who have budgetary concerns, where everything’s planned out, they probably used in their 2020 budget to make sure that in their 20, 21 budget, that there is enough money for, you know, digital improvements, different things for online branding.
Um, and with that, we, I actually saw 20, 21 is an even better year than, uh, 2020, uh, in my experience. Um, and, uh, yeah, it’s, it’s just been keep continuing and, um, I’m not quite sure about, you know, how 2022 is going to look, but, you know, with the Amani. Yeah, the CSP is everyone’s spending right now. It seems that a lot of this money is going to need to be spent pretty soon.
Um, so I have some good outlooks on the next two years, I’d say, well, thanks for that. I really appreciate that insight now, Neil, without giving out all my personal information, uh, you’re a little younger than I am. You know what I mean? Uh, I don’t remember the Beatles, so I don’t go that far back, but, uh, I think I’m the last year of the baby boomers, but Neil, you’re a little younger than I am.
I think the one thing that, that if someone had to classify 20, 21 is a truly the year that I think we got a lot of people that hadn’t been any investments face in it, whether it’s through crypto or NFPS or this Reddit crowd buying. And they’re not following the same rules as before, they’re not going everything on the New York stock exchange.
They’re not doing everything with a big bank and a broker. And did you go to the right college and really a lot of the normal. That kind of controlled the last 40 years got poked around a little bit. And again, I’m just going to say with maybe your connection to this younger generation, um, have you, have you seen them discover domains?
We’d like to think that most people saw them in the year 2000 did like them and they were never going to come back. What do you think some of the younger investors are looking at when they see this digital asset called a domain name? Um, that’s a good question. I think, I think in the last two years there’s been a lot more people, investors getting involved.
Um, I mean, I work a lot of the work probably half or more of the work I do is in the investor space, which is, you know, helping investors to buy high value domains, which they’re going to sell later for, you know, a million dollars or more. Um, and, uh, yeah, I, I, uh, around the mix, you know, there’s a lot of unemployment and nymity, uh, with, uh, you know, high value domain purchases, especially, you know, Confidentially confidentiality on all of our sales.
Um, so really looking at the demographics of the people buying, um, is, is not, you know, easiest thing for me to analyze. Yeah. I th I think in general, your comments about, um, the, you know, the breakdown of, you know, 20, 21, uh, kind of took, you know, all of these, a lot of the establishment kind of out the window.
I think that, that, that, that’s, that’s fair in a lot of ways. And I think there’s definitely a lot, a lot less consideration about those sort of things. You know, now that people don’t, you know, their main consideration is can this person get the work done? Are they self motivated? Do they want to work? It’s not as much like, oh dear, you’re going to look pretty in the office or, you know, or, you know, something around those, those lines.
Um, yeah, it has become a more results-based, um, uh, you know, system in some ways, I think 20, 22, I had thought that we would have been more toward a new normal, I have the thing, the domain show that I did last year called the new new. And, and hope. And I think if we do see anything in 2022, it’s going to be less surviving the pandemic, surviving the disruption and saying, okay, this is now with us.
Digital is with us, you know, what do we do? And I think as you know, those eyes come on our space, you know, I just have to remind everybody out there that again, we’ve talked about the reveal and IPO today of a company that went public today was valued the whole company, $122 billion. And this is a company that raised money three years ago.
That was almost a unicorn at 850 million. So they went from a unicorn or whatever you call a 122 unicorns together. Um, you know, in two and a half years. And, and in some ways I’m not saying that domains are worth the same amount of companies, but you know, for a lot of people, 1, 2, 5, 10 million, Uh, strong assets.
And do you know, that’s the market that you’re in when you’re in million dollar domains, it’s not, you know, it’s not a cheap skate market. It’s not a, what can I get away with? What’s the cheapest I can build my product for? You know, what’s the cheapest my company can look, what’s the cheapest I can get away with.
I really think it is people trying to get huge amounts of margin. And the way you get margin is by making emotional connections with your customers. And if your brand and your domain name, this is what I do on the name game each week on start-up club. Helps you do that then. Um, then I think that’s where a domain name can be valuable.
So I want to let you guys, uh, Neil, can you stay with us for a few questions? Sure. Alrighty. If you’ve got a question, go ahead and raise your hand. I want to remind you that we are being recorded today. And then I’ll ask you Neil, just a quick question. Um, how do you go ahead and close out your transactions and have you noticed, uh, investors wanting to pay with crypto.
Um, yeah. Yeah, I think, I think the, so first question, um, we close out our deals, uh, on grain. We, we do it via our own escrow system. Um, so we try to make it the most efficient, you know, if someone’s really, really worried and wants to do it direct, you know, escrow.com or something, that’s fine, but to make it more efficient, to really do deals, we do it all on site.
So in order to make sure that, you know, people don’t submit offers that they can’t, you know, pay for, we only sell domains when we received the funds in our escrow account. Um, so basically the process to sell a domain with us, or buy a domain with us as you, you send a wire, you, you press buy. Now you get wire transfer instructions with custom code, just like escrow.com.
Uh, but you, you press mark payment is sent, you send wire, we receive it, we mark the payment or we mark the domain as sold and we attribute it to your name. Um, and your second question about paying in. Hey, any crypto? Yeah, I think, I think crypto right now, I, I doubt this is how it’s going to be in the future, but it’s still kind of in the monopoly money sort of frame.
When I think I’m dealing with buyers where, you know, I I’ve had some people where they’d be like, yeah, I’ll, I’ll, I’ll, I’ll pay like, you know, a hundred thousand in Bitcoin or something, but they won’t pay, you know, 50,000 in cash. And it’s, it’s like an interesting mindset. Um, I think that’s, that’s the difference between you using crypto for deals?
I think currently you can maximize a lot of potential with it. Um, I, I feel like I’ve seen a lot of people using it for a little bit backhanded tax, uh, ways to, especially in the U S but, um, that’s probably another conversation. Um, but I think there’s a lot of opportunity, uh, with it, especially if you’re a seller.
Um, and yeah. Oh, fantastic meal. Hey Todd. Thanks for coming up. Hope you’re doing well. I’ve heard a lot of great things about your legal room yesterday, but. Do you have a question for Neil or for me? Yeah. Paige. Hi and hi, Rachel and welcome Neil. I have a question for Neil. Um, hi Neil, my name’s Todd Ryan. I am a domain investor.
Now I wanted to ask it since we always talk about as domain investors, the radio test, pass the radio test. How did you land? And so end up selecting grain.com. Considering you’re going to have to always say how it’s spelled for the first time people and you know, of course there’s, domainers we always talk about the radio test, but how did you land on that and why did you select it?
Yeah, no, that’s, that’s, that’s a, that’s a fair comment. Um, I think my brand and strategy, you know, it’s, it’s not necessarily the same one that I tell other people, but I think one, one decent granted drag that a lot of companies will utilize, um, is, you know, uh, making up your own term. Um, and I like to do it in the, in the scarce domain factor.
So, I mean, the three companies I’ve founded, um, is, you know, grain QIP and. Uh, my last one, which I didn’t talk about is fih.com. Um, so once, you know, five letter ones, four letter ones, three letter, um, green, actually, I didn’t talk about this, but it was, it was actually a spinoff of fih.com. Um, and so we were kind of testing the waters when we were first, you know, battling around the idea and we got some good feedback from a domain investors that they, they really liked it.
Um, so we went ahead and launched it. Um, I’m not going to say for sure if we’re going to be using that domain in the future. Um, but it’s just, it’s kind of here to stay for the next short term. Um, but yeah, good consideration. Good feedback. Well, fantastic. Thanks Todd. Um, I wasn’t sure if I, if it was an offshoot of green, you know, like the money green or all the other ways, the word greens is, um, I know I went to the reverse of it and I think that forwards to crypto sides, hopefully people will, if they type the E and then the AE there’ll be able to get, get back to your name.
Um, I did list some as a buyer list, some as a seller. And I think, well, Neil, we talked about the past, um, you know, I wish you a lot of success. W what do you see maybe happening in the future? Do you think there’s anything that’s going to be new about domaining or if we talk to each other a year from now, you think we’ll just be talking about maybe prices within a certain range of what they are now.
I assume we’re probably going to talk about a somewhat inefficient market where it’s mostly through brokers and confidential transactions, or, uh, you have anything that you think will change our industry. Um, that’s a good question. Um, I think in the last, you know, since COVID, especially, it’s, it’s been a pretty big, uh, w what I’d call a, a sellers market.
So, you know, it, there’s a lot of buyers for all different kinds of domains right now, which is, you know, a lot of the reason why you’re seeing a lot of deals go through, um, which, you know, I think there’s a lot of different factors going on it between all of these new companies for. The new budgets, et cetera.
I think big other things are like inflation. So, you know, with any seller’s market, I think it’s a sellers market until, you know, pricing wheat re you know, equalizes. Um, and I think inflation’s, you know, hitting on that a little bit also, you know, the intrinsic demand of, you know, these, these premium domains.
Um, but I could, so that the real question from my mind is, you know, is it a seller’s market? It’s gonna turn into a buyer’s market again, um, is, and you know, it, it seems like that would be likely, but it just going to be at a different price range. So a lot of, you know, once all the buyouts of this year and next year complete themselves, um, maybe most sellers are gonna raise their pricing for most of their, no.
So most like owners of like three letter or two letter.com, one word, um, and even some of the more targeted ones that might be, you know, less, you know, um, attractive and that those ones would still make the mark. But I think, you know, pricing is going to be higher and that’s going to make it see maybe like a more buyer’s market.
I’m not quite sure. I mean, yeah, well, I, well, the one thing we know is we’ll, we’ll let it play out. Um, I think that it’s a buyer’s market for the highest of quality names because the sellers expectations are based upon the past. And even, even someone like Rick Schwartz who may be since 1995 has imagined a domain name could, could be worth two to 5 million and held out for it.
I think in some areas we’re getting industries that could meet even his asking price and then take the name and make 20, 30 times that much from, from operating a company on it. So I think where a buyer, um, knows what they want and the seller’s expectations are based upon the. I think there’s some good deals again, when I’m talking about discount investing or you know, how to, you know, buy something for, you know, 10,000 and sell it for 200,000 the next day, although it’s maybe possible.
But I thought what I do is I go ahead and go to the million dollar, uh, names link. So we put that back up, let’s see I’m going to penalty. But if you do have a question for Neil, let me know I’m going to put up, uh, million dollar names. And the other reason I kept an eye out for your marketplace, as we do expect, you know, million dollar names to maybe be a marketplace someday.
Um, and I just liked that there’s any innovation out there, you know, of any kind. But we went ahead and did, is I went ahead and looked at, say two for names that were, um, a hundred names. And I, and I curated a list of about 6,700. That were registered in.com and they were registered in 40 or more other extensions.
So, um, for those of you that are listening to this show and you may be new to domains or million dollar domains, when you try to quantify, you know, everybody wants to make decisions based upon data. Well, what data do you have about how popular a word can be? And we’ll close our show today with this. Um, and so I put three examples of data that you might be able to use or that I might use and trying to differentiate what is a really good name or a super good name or a fantastic name.
And, um, so what I did was I would have had downloaded the stats for each one of the names. I found a million dollar names, and it’s on the first blog post there, um, of how many extensions they’re registered in and that’s in the first column. And then what is the search volume for that term? And then what is the amount that advertisers are paying.
Uh, to reach somebody for that term. And I think that’s an idea for what you’re going to have to pay as a business, to reach people. And so if we just look at the first page, you might see a name like beep.com B E p.com, which I kinda like, and it’s $670,000. Again, this is not cheapo domains. This is million-dollar domains, but the idea that you could have a name that represents a sound, um, that becomes so easy to brand with the idea of a car horn or just a sound or just a one syllable, easier to remember phonetic word around the world, that you could name your company.
Beep no matter what you did, social network, software, clothing, brand currency fund, chat room, whatever you did, you would get this recognizable name. And I, and I thought at 670,000. Th that compared to what a seller might ask for that name three or 5 million, that, that wasn’t terrible. But anyway, the cost per click for that name is 16 cents.
And the reason is there really isn’t any easy to understand reason that people would want to get traffic where people were searching for beep you know, there, there isn’t anything out there. Now you compare that with the name that’s $9 million on the top of the list, invest.com. Well, now you do have a category where people are having to pay a lot to acquire a customer, and they might be willing to pay $3 to get someone to come to their site.
And if they have to pay a hundred times to get 300 people or to get a hundred people to come and pay $300, but they know that a customer’s. Over the lifetime of relationship and a crypto or a stock trading from, you know, five or 10 or a hundred thousand dollars, then I think that’s, that’s an idea of another data point that people can use.
So I put on here, I put on here, us both high value names and names that I thought were, were reasonable for a price. So I thought beep was interesting at six 70, I’m going to scroll down. I put pleasure on there at 800,000, that was in our March madness tournament. Um, and then I put, um, let’s see, I put, it was interesting, happy birthday.com was that a million dollars?
And that used to be a two and a half million dollars. So I saw that come down in price. So if someone has been looking for a name under a million dollars, uh, interesting name and Todd, if you’re still around, I’d love to get your take on this one. And YouTube Neil, I saw digitals.com. And I know a lot of people shy away from the plural and they’re like, oh, I think the plurals are terrible, but I think everything’s relative.
But digitals.com was at 195,000. I mean, isn’t that such a huge word in our space where it’s not terrible or is it like, no, I just look past it. What do you think of someone came to, to grain with, uh, with digital stock, Tom Neil? Uh, I think we definitely represent it. I think that’s a good price. Um, let’s see.
I think, I think the, the only issue there might be the fact that, you know, in these kind of domains, you know, from just like a pure investor view, um, digital is such a popular word because it’s, I think primarily used as an adjective maybe. And so when you make a plural of an adjective, you know, it might not seem, I think digital can also be a noun, which I think that’s like the reason that, um, maybe, um, they might be thinking, I don’t know if it’s the most grammatically correct, but I think.
Definitely an interesting term. Yeah. And they’ve had to come down in price, probably not come down, but I mean, compared to the difference between say car and cars or hotel and hotels, I think there’s a big gap between digital, which has maybe a $5 million name and digitals, which is 200,000. And then you say, well, huh.
I wonder if there’s opportunity there. Well, I think this is a big reason. You’re not to keep, you know, touting my grain horn here. But, uh, I like to think there’s like three in my mind, there’s three, you know, smart ways to, you know, there’s three main ways that people list domains for sale in the market, especially these marketplaces.
And, you know, they either have like, you know, a make an offer. So imagine digitals.com you know, make an offer and, you know, seller doesn’t stay price kind of waits for offer in, in my experience in a low chance of sale, as you know, buyers are wary of being priced. Yeah, but this is a way that a lot of, you know, brokers and marketplaces do it to maintain because they don’t want exposure, risks.
Cause exposure risk comes when you post pricing and people are liable to use it against you, especially if you post pricing for long periods. Um, and then, you know, if you, if you, if you do post pricing, so say, you know, they list digitals at like 400 K or whatever. Uh, the Mo the moment it’s public, you know, in classic psychology sense, um, buyers are gonna be less, um, less interested in it.
I mean, cause anything that’s publicly available where, you know, anyone can see it. Um, they don’t really have a big reason to buy now, unless it could just got posted and they want to get the deal before anyone else sees it. Um, but also knowing that even if they do buy the sale is going to be public since it’s on a public marketplace like that.
I mean, from my perspective, a lot of investors would see that. And even if it’s a great deal, they wouldn’t jump at it because of these, these factors I’m talking about. But you know, if you switched it around, you put the value attributes, 142 extensions, taken hundreds of thousands of uses and other domains, you know, be a.db.com.
Um, I think it’s very attractive and you know, if you switch the model, I think people might be just as interested in it. Um, just depending on how it’s listed and, uh, you know, you’d be more comfortable as a buyer, but there’s some side commentary. Yeah. But I think on your side, even you guys really don’t post name and price.
There’s kind of a sense of first you have to just be interested in the name. You know what I mean? It’s not like, right. I mean, I don’t think you show them all the inventory and all the price. I think there’s kind of a limited amount of people that, that get to see the price that’s being asked. Is that about right?
Well, no, no. So you have to close, but so, um, we, we, we make sure to show all value attributes and price. And so a big part of it from my experience is price. We need to make price public because the problem, uh, the linking of price and domain is where the issues happen when it’s public. But when you post publicly domain attributes and price, there is no problem.
Okay. And the key is that, you know, a lot of brokers and many of the industry leaders will we’ll use the factor of, you know, the lists say they’re selling digitals.com. They’re gonna say digitals.com and they’re listed for sale and the deck, Hey, ask us for the price. And, you know, mostly, usually just, you know, the more comfortable buyers and be like, oh, I’m going to ask them, I know this guy, I’m friends with them.
I’m going to see what the price is. Uh, but even then, you know, especially coming from a new buyer, your likelihood of being price gouged and not understanding what the true value is or what their actual listing prices is high. Um, and you know, through our model, we, we make sure to list price. Every listing has a price on it for our, for our platform.
Um, and any user can actually uncover any domain up to a hundred thousand on our site. And in the future, we actually might make it easier for ordinary people to, to, to uncover things. Because, you know, currently we have identity verification and fund verification through different APIs, but that’s not really a part of our core model, even if it kind of makes itself known in the current model.
But, um, yeah, I hope that makes no, no, I think it does. I think what’s interesting. And I think you’ve dealt a lot in the investor space where people are able to make instant decisions. They’re pretty aware of the market. They’re especially aware of the name’s been listed elsewhere over the years and kind of investors as your buyers have an idea, maybe it would have named should be or should go for.
But what’s interesting is when you expose it to, like, if I was going to speak at like a, you know, a CEO club or something like that, and I had a hundred people there because they’ve, they’ve maybe never seen a name or million dollar domain name and the price that’s available for not even one, you know what I mean?
Um, that to be able to show them inventory, I think you find that some of them, because of the familiarity with their industry would be like, oh my gosh, I could absolutely use that. You know what I mean? I looked at a couple of names on this list, like, uh, uh, I was trying to think of one that would really play toward, uh, Uh, an industry, um, and this isn’t a great one, but say it was exports.com and most people at 60,000 would just kind of run right by and go.
That’s an old word, that’s an old word or something like that. But if you were actually in the export business or something like that, you know what I mean? Um, I mean, you have to look at that and say, well, that’s my ultimate name right there. And it’s kind of thrown into the mix with a bunch of other stuff.
And so we’ll see if that happens. So let’s see. You see anything else on the list there? I don’t know if the list came up for you, Neil or anyone else. Um, but, uh, the other ones I thought I still go back to this name and it did really well in our tournament. I still go back to nipple.com for $500,000. And I don’t mean that.
I just think for a variety of reasons, when you talk about ease of remembrance, um, and a number of different uses, I keep putting that on these lists. Um, I thought Eli was interesting at $200,000, just because if you start thinking about virtual worlds and social media, and I know the E was kind of a big thing back in 2000, but you know, you can do a lot worse than come out with, uh, with, uh, all encompassing second life or, or E portal or crypto site, and talk about being the Eli right.
For $200,000. Yeah, I think, and then I thought, yeah, that in-home was interesting at 250,000, I thought, uh, wrong.com. I don’t know exactly what you do with it. And I know that everyone wants to say, oh, negative words are terrible, but it’s still a pretty recognizable words. If you made a street brand or a, or, uh, an urban brand or who knows even an NFT.
To be able to get a word that most people know by the time they’re five years old, for $200,000, relatively speaking in the universe of one word names. I thought that was interesting. So anyway, if you’re watching and you’re listening to this podcast, you’re listening to the replay. Um, we put the list on million dollar names of a hundred names that have come up for sale in the past week.
I can’t vouch for every one of these listings. Sometimes the marketplaces don’t do a lot of what we talked about here on Neil’s company, qualifying the seller. Some names can come through that the seller doesn’t even own rarely are you ever going to, especially when dealing with a major exchange, actually pay your money and not get the name.
But I mean, there’s always a chance. These listings aren’t real. Someone is a, it’s an old listing. Maybe they’ve already sold the name, but it’s, it’s all, you know, we have out there and it’s all a buyer would have out there. So anyway, I put a hundred names on it. Uh, the first 50, I did put a link to say, to, to see how many people over the next month do you go look at the name and it stats and, and there’s an affiliate link, but that just helps me track of this had new attraction.