By: Raymond Hackney
The new tlds are coming so all the unproductive discussion about whether they suck or they are not needed has been relegated to the trash bin. These extensions are coming out and there is nothing a domain investor can do to prevent that. The important things are to figure out the next moves for investing in domains in general.
There will be domains to drop just as a function of the new tlds coming out, domains that had a very small marginal value are probably better off being sold off wholesale or dropped.
Pricing will probably be needed to be adjusted on alt extensions if you want to make consistent sales. It will be hard to still ask for XX,XXX in an alt extension unless it is a truly great keyword or makes the most intuitive sense. I don't see Mike Berkens lowering the price on some of his top notch, intuitive .me domains.
Paying close attention to what registry providerg ets what extensions, as that may play a big role in how those domains are delegated. Uniregisty run by Frank Schilling has said it will be first come, first served. No auctioning off the best domains for the best price. Other companies may hold back the best domains and auction them and even hold some to be released later down the road. Of course the flip side of high prices is some believing Google may give domains away for free, of course no one knows.
You may want to get some matching keywords in a new tld if that is a niche you have invested heavily in .com. Of course this can be cost prohibitive if that is a very popular keyword that gets auctioned off to the highest bidder. If Frank can remain true to his vision of first come, first served and everyone getting a chance to reg a few this would be helpful in trying to secure some names that help insure your .com portfolio.
The new tlds may be an opportunity as some tlds will catch on at least for a little bit. I remember months before .mobi was released, I thought no one will care about this extension, and I kind of wrote it off in my mind and did not even focus on it. When .mobi was live there was a thread started by JeremyP on Namepros and all of a sudden there was all this talk and excitement, I remember saying to a friend, "Really ?" There were all these threads people were regging like crazy, I looked at what was available in LLL and regged one name, I was able to sell it the next day on Namepros for $300. I thought to myself if only I had 10 good LLL.mobi that would have been a nice payday.
Now of course we know how that turned out in the long run, but I am not talking about that, I am talking about opportunity, get in and get out when interest is at its highest. If people think something is going to be the next .com sell right then and there unless you are also sharing that pitcher of Kool-Aid.
There is nothing wrong with quick flips but you need to pay attention to what is getting the hype and by who ? There is no doubt in my mind that a couple extensions will get hot at least for the short run, I wish I knew which ones that would be. It will only take some blogger or technology rock star to write about an extension on Tech Crunch or Mashable and that extension will be off to the races in the short run.
Keeping tabs of what is going on in the media will be of great importance during each General Availability launch. That may help with knowing which new tld is going to get a significant boost.
Understanding what are real developments and what is just hyperbole will be of great importance. Who knows what Go Daddy will be promoting in commercials, maybe the Super Bowl one year will be focused on .Shop or .Web, you never know.
Registrars are going to be firmly planted on the side of promoting the new tlds and some domain investors may not like that. As extensions pay for placement on the website of a registrar, the extensions (outside of .com) that you already own may be way down the page.
There were some interesting comments by Frank Schilling in his recent video, "Rather than going to UsedCars.com people will go to Used.Cars" Will they ? Do we know that ? Also is Frank saying that UsedCars.com is no longer a good domain ? If people have been using UsedCars.com they will still use it, the only way they stop using UsedCars.com for Used.Cars is if the website using the new tld has superior content. Consumers are not going to make decisions based on an extension, they want the best content that answers their question or provides them with the products and services they want.
After the domaining perspective is exhausted, what about Google and SEO ? That will be for another article.