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Domain Name Selling: Why it Shouldn`t Work
By: Akinola Akintomide
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    Table of Contents:
  • Domain Name Selling: Why it Shouldn`t Work
  • The beginning
  • A common problem
  • The dark side of common name domains

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    Domain Name Selling: Why it Shouldn`t Work - A common problem

    (Page 3 of 4 )

    Have you ever looked for a site you found once, didn't bookmark or note down, and didn't find it again? No matter how many key words you typed into the various search engines, you just couldn't find it? Why didn't you simply type the name into the address bar? You couldn't remember it. Why couldn't you remember it? It was either too long, too boring, too generic or all three. The majority of names that are sold have these faults. They are actually forgettable.

    Buying names because they have generic key words makes it difficult for web surfers to form a mental association between the name and your site. People find it easier to remember weird and off the beaten path names than they do common place terms and names. Everybody knows how to type in Google.com, but you may as well forget it if you are called search_engine.com -- or is it searchengine.net? Or rather searchengineinfo.org? The mistakes that would arise from misspellings of your name would probably get searchers to another page entirely different from one on your website.

    The forgettable generic

    Consider www.sexproject.com, www.sex_info.com, www.sexinfo.com, and www.sexinfo101.com. Unfortunately I can't remember any of them over any period of time; there are so many variations that it is virtually impossible for any of them to register in the mind of any searcher that is typing directly into the address bar. It would take a miracle, literally, for any of these web sites to make an instant impression based on their name alone.

    The same cannot be said for www.clickz.com. Compare the name clickz to such websites as www.searchenginewatch.com or  www.searchengineland.com (don't forget that there is still www.searchenginenews.com) and take it for granted that search engine anything in a domain name is sure to be for sale for over a thousand dollars minimum, and to what end? To join the hundreds of sites jostling for sandbox positions in the SERPs? All the above have generic terms in their name, and all the rest with such terms in their names will be viewed as good buys. But isn't there a mix up somewhere?

    Is it a good name or a good brand? 

    When buying a site that has a prior reputation and a prior standing in the market for particular key words (for example Developer Shed buying up http://www.seochat.com/ or Google buying www.jotspot.com) the buyer is actually buying the brand. No matter how cluttered the domain name is with key words, what is relevant is the way the site is identified in the minds of its searchers. Incidentally, the number of surfers is usually counted by using either registered users or daily number of page views.

    Now let's look at the usual situation where a buyer, simply because s/he believes that a domain name is "key word rich" (my translation is generic), buys that domain name from a speculator for a hundred times the original price or even more. With no real idea of what to do next to get the domain name into the minds of users, apart from hoping they will type it into the address bar, such a move is sure to be counterproductive.

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