Economy is Bad and PPC is Worse But The Sky is Bright
for These Domain Owners Who Diversified
I posted an item
about increasing evidence that PPC revenue will start
reversing a long decline in 2010. I closed that post
with a comment noting that no matter how much parking
improves domain owners should continue looking
for ways to diversify their income streams and
end their dependence on Google and Yahoo.
If you can find new sources of revenue from your
domains, the inevitable next downturn won't be as
painful as the current one has been for so many.
number of smart domain investors are already
well down the path to diversification and I want
to close the week by recognizing what
a few of those people are doing on the
development front. Let's start with Sahar
Sarid and Jarred Cohen at Bido.com.
On Wednesday they rolled out a major new
update to their innovative social auction
platform. Sahar provided a complete rundown on
all of the changes in a post
on his blog, so I'll point you there
for the many details.
one thing I would like to add is the reason why
I think that Bido has a great chance to break
out in a big way. That is Sahar and Jarred's
dedication to listening to community feedback
and acting on the requests their
customers make - even if it involves making time
consuming and expensive changes to the
impressive site they have already built. As some
of you will recall I was one of the co-founders
of Bido when it launched early in 2008 but left
the project soon
day one Sahar was dedicated to trying
new things that would set the company
apart. But he always emphasized that if
customers didn't like an idea he incorporated,
we could scrap it and reshape
platform as customers dictated along the way. It
is obvious from Bido's new makeover that his
philosophy remains the same as the company nears
its second anniversary. A
lot of business owners give lip service to the
old axiom "the customer is always right"
but few really back that up with their actions.
Bido keeps doing it and that engenders a lot of
customer loyalty and positive word
of mouth buzz that will serve them well as they
continue to build a truly unique sales platform.
Internet Real Estate Group
you talk about building full-blown businesses on
domain names, few can match the record of
success that Andrew Miller and Mike
"Zappy" Zapolin have has at Internet
Real Estate Group (we profiled them
in a 2005 Cover
started and sold several websites and businesses
based around category defining dotcom
domain names, including Beer.com, Diamond.com,
CreditCards.com, Shop.com, and Luggage.com
and they currently manage and are shareholders
in a stunning collection of names and
websites including InsuranceQuotes.com,
have accomplished a lot in the four years since
our Cover Story ran. If you would like an
update, you're in luck because our Australian
friend Ed Keay-Smith has just released
podcast interview featuring Andrew at OzDomainer.com.
Ed is an excellent interviewer and time spent
listening to Andrew talk about domain
acquisition, development and sales is always
time well spent so do yourself a favor and check
it out this weekend.
with veterans like Andrew and Zappy, this
industry has been blessed by a wave of newcomers
who are bringing new ideas, passion and
unbridled energy to the business. One of those
Marler of LocalTek.com
who has developed a successful statewide
geodomain network at Missouri.me.
A lot of people are taking note of that
including the folks at iSupportServices.com
who liked Marler's project so much they called
on him to partner in the development of their
own state domains, starting with NorthCarolina.me.
wrote about the new partnership on his blog
and also noted that Localtek business is booming.
"We have been providing website development
and geo targeted online advertising to our clients
for the last year. The response from our customers has
been tremendous and we are now growing beyond our
wildest projections,” Marler said. So, there's another
guy who won't have to worry about how much Google or
Yahoo decides to pay their PPC partners.
I'll close with an update from Rob
Grant on his just-for-fun RecessionWreaths.com
(a development we told you about earlier
this month). Rob is not selling
anything (but good cheer) with his site but it
is proving how far a little development work and
some marketing elbow grease can carry a new
launched the web site with a fairly aggressive
PR campaign and a national
release distributed through PRWeb.com,"
Grant told me, adding that "Tuesday
afternoon we did a live TV remote interview with
the largest New York regional news station
- Time Warner Channel 10 News.
is showcased on their website now."
have also been picked-up nationally by a number
of online publications and continue to gain
traction with the media. But what's so
about all of this is that we are
purely a concept wrapped around a provocative
domain name - we don't sell any
products, and don't try to make
money. We are just an idea - with an
interesting story line - that has great
appeal to the public during these tough economic
times," Grant said.
reporter from Fox News asked, "how do you
make money...I don't get it. Do you have wreaths being
made by your agents that you are selling to support the
business?" This is really a fascinating case
study in the power of a 'concept domain name' coupled
with a unique story line and imaginative marketing.
I just love doing this stuff!," Grant exclaimed.
are just a few examples of things people are doing with
their domain names besides parking them. It is great to
have PPC as a revenue stream and everyone is rooting for
it to come back in a big way, but there are many other
possibilities and opportunities to make money (or in
Grant's example - just a big splash to show what can be
done). Domain names are such unique and versatile assets
you just have to love them!