Throughout our Domain Data series, in association with NameBio, we have explored new gTLDs, surnames and four-letter .COM domains. In this article, we'll be looking in detail at one-word, dictionary .COM domain names to see exactly what they're worth, what their average return on investment is, and how the figures compare throughout the past few years. The data for this article has been provided by @Michael from NameBio.com, and we're specifically looking at one-word, dictionary .COM domain names with less than 10 letters. The original data file contained 5,183 dictionary .COM domain name sales, with around 76% of those names being 10 characters or less, meaning that we have 3,958 domain name sales to analyse. The Highest Prices & The Average Prices We scoured the list to find the highest price and the average price for all domain names in total, as well as the highest sale and average price based on the length of the domain name. Here's what we found: Domain LengthAverage PriceHighest Domain SaleOverall$81,216Sex.com - $14mm2 Letters$1,064,187We.com - $8mm3 Letters$499,012Sex.com - $14mm4 Letters$213,704Fund.com - $9.99mm5 Letters$128,088Porno.com - $8.88mm6 Letters$48,685Casino.com - $5.5mm7 Letters$54,082Diamond.com - $7.5mm8 Letters$33,281Software.com - $3.2mm9 Letters$23,495Investing.com - $2.45mm Dictionary .COMs at Different Sales Venues Thanks to the data at NameBio.com, we're able to see where each domain name was sold. When you're analysing a lot of data, you can get some fascinating statistics from this information. Below, we've compiled a list of domain sales venues to see exactly how each venue compares. Sales VenueAverage PriceAfternic$23,649Flippa$12,205GoDaddy$8,558NameJet$7,173Private$803,617Sedo$55,340Uniregistry$54,336Private sales stand out by quite a way in this comparison. Remember that the majority of seven figure sales such as Sex.com, We.com and Porno.com have been listed as private sales, so these will increase the average sales price. We can also see that marketplaces such as GoDaddy, NameJet and Flippa attract more investors than end-users, which means that the average sales price is kept fairly low. On the other hand, Uniregistry and Sedo have average sales prices in excess of $50,000 for any dictionary .COM domain, which is impressive. The Average ROI Out of the total of 3,958 domain name sales we analysed, 349 contained duplicate domain sales. This means that the same domain sold more than once. This direct comparison allowed us to calculate the return on investment (ROI) of each of these names. We concluded that the average ROI amongst all 349 names is 117.05%. The lowest ROI listed was an incredible -96.44% for the 2008 sale of breaks.com on Sedo for $68,000. The same name sold two years later for just $2,422. The highest ROI was 4,900%. This was the sale of Diamond.com, which sold for $150,000 in 1999 and then again in 2006 for $7.5 million. Throughout the ROI analysis, we found that there were a number of domain names that looked to be failed flips. These were names that sold at marketplaces such as Sedo or NameJet, and were then resold for a slight loss just a matter of weeks later. I think this shows that while these domains can be excellent long term investments, they are not always great for short term flips. The Average Price Per Year Since the introduction of the new gTLDs, have dictionary .COM domain names gone up, or down in value? It's said that since there is more choice, that dictionary .COM domains may have lost their value somewhat. We analysed the sales from 2011 to 2015 to see whether there was any sign of a pattern emerging. Please note that for this data, we removed the few seven-figure sales that were reported during this time, as their presence skewed the data by quite a way. This chart shows the average sales prices from 2011 to 2015. The years 2011 and 2012 had fairly steady averages, but the average increased in 2013, which may have been down to more high five- and six-figure sales. The average for 2015 was $19,638, compared to 2014's $26,559. 2015 may, on the surface, look to be a poor year for dictionary .COMs, but while the average sales price was lower, there was a total of 475 sales, compared to 2014's 278. Sales Proportions To find the sales data, Michael from NameBio.com ran a dictionary data script that had a total of over 76,000 words. We noticed that the most common length for a dictionary word is 8 letters, with 16.172% of all words being 8 letters in length. Four-letter words accounted for just 3.359% of all words. However, when we compared this to domain name sales, it seems that four-letter .COM words account for 6.116% of all dictionary .COM sales. This is close to double the proportion of four-letter dictionary words, which would seem to suggest that four-letter, dictionary .COM domain names sell twice as frequently as we would expect. This is a trend that we see in other categories, too: The chart above shows an abnormally large frequency of three, four-, five-, six- and seven-letter dictionary .COM domain names being sold. The popularity of longer eight- and nine-letter dictionary .COM domains are less than expected. This shows that short dictionary .COM domain names are in high demand, while long names have less of a demand. -- Thanks to @Michael for providing this data, and to @Eric Lyon for the original idea. Do you have a suggestion for a future Domain Data article? Submit your ideas to [email protected].