I told you
announced they were spinning off their massive
portfolio of domain assets into a new company
called Archeo (this
.pdf file has details on what the
new company will be doing), Marchex also
released, for the first time, the
prices they received in each of their top
500 domain sales over the past four years.
49 of those sales hitting six figures,
ranging all the way up to $700,000, obviously
many of the newly revealed transactions would
have ranked high on the annual Top 100 sales
lists we publish at the end of each year (you
can see all of those in our Domain
Sales Archive - scroll down past the
weekly headline links to the last section with
links to the annual Top 100 charts).
Marchex did not release the dates their
sales were made I couldn't assign qualifying
sales to a specific Top 100 chart so I had to
decide how to best recognize this treasure
trove of new sales information and fit it
into our existing data covering tens of
thousands of sales reported over the past
decade in a way that would make it easily
accessible to our readers going forward.
have never had a situation like this come up
before, so I considered several options before
deciding the best route would be to add a special
entry in our Domain Sales Archive detailing
how the Marchex sales, made over a span of
several years, came to be released, including a permanent
link to their complete Top 500 list - just
as there is a link to each of our Top 100
the years over which the Marchex sales
were made, I found that it took a
minimum of $73,500 for a domain
to qualify for any one of our
annual charts across that span. 72 names
on the Marchex list beat that number.
With a lot of detective work it
may (or may not) have been possible to
eventually run down the years in which
those sales were made so they could be
put on existing Top 100 charts - but
that would have meant that an average of
18 names on each of the present
charts since 2008 would be deleted.
our purpose is to try to bring you more
sales information rather than less, I didn't
think that was the best option. You could have
still dug through hundreds of weekly columns (all
of which are linked to in the Archive) to find
the 72 notable sales that would have been
bumped, but that would take forever rather than
having them readily available to you where they
since none of the Marchex sales were reported
when they happened, none were included in our weekly
reports over the years - another
reason to make their list a permanent
special entry, otherwise the 428 Marchex
that would not have qualified for one of the Top
100 lists, would never be seen again in our
not least is the fact that the Top 100
lists, with or without Marchex sales,
are still just a sampling of the
sales that have taken place over the
years. We all know that publicly
reported sales represent just a
fraction of aftermarket activity.
Most sales, especially at the high end
of the market, are never reported due to
non disclosure agreements. For that
reason we have always taken pains to
note that our charts are meant primarily
to be an educational tool that allows you to see how much
specific domain names have sold
for - not a complete list of every sale
that took place as such a list is
impossible to compile due to the
majority of sales being kept private.
The vast number of significant sales
Marchex made that went previously
unreported is a perfect example of that.
We only see the tip of the iceberg.
being able to detail the specifics from
a broad range of public sales is helpful
in giving all of us a better
understanding of domain values and sales
trends over a long period of time.
Through the links in our Sales
Archive to all of our
weekly columns since 2003, the annual
and now the Marchex list - all of that
information is readily available to you
in one spot.
final point while I am on the subject of
reporting sales. I am often asked why we don't
publish an all-time top sales chart. The
reason is that I have always refused to vouch
for any sales reported prior to the fall of 2003
when we began collecting, verifying to the best
of our ability and publishing reported sales.
Prior to that a lot of people were claiming
to have made big sales - many of which were
later proven to be bogus -
comprised of either "funny money"
deals that involved more worthless stock
than cash or even worse - numbers that were
nothing more than someone's vivid
imagination. At the time no one (that I
know of) was attempting to verify whether some of
the sales claims being thrown around were real.
As a result, I am not comfortable including
pre-2003 sales on an "all time"
chart with my name on it. I'm sure there
were many legitimate and sizeable all cash
sales made in earlier years, I just can't tell
you with enough certainty which ones fit that