James Iles

Five Things I Wish I Knew Before Starting Domaining

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By James Iles, Jan 30, 2017
  1. James Iles

    James Iles NamePros Writer PRO Business Account VIP Trusted Blogger

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    I am a regular Reddit reader, and one discussion that caught my eye was a Life Pro Tip (LPT) that recommended searching for “things I wish I knew before starting” before starting a new venture or hobby. This way, you’ll typically find useful tips to taper your expectations when starting something new.

    I wanted to create something similar for domain name investing, so here are five things that I wish I knew before I started domain investing. Feel free, as always, to add your own suggestions below.


    1. Quantity Doesn’t Necessarily Equal Quality

    It’s a trap that many new investors, including myself, have fallen into. The idea of buying up hundreds or thousands of domain names with the expectation that no matter what type of domain you’ve acquired, a buyer will come along and make you an incredibly high offer.

    This is unlikely to happen. If you’re like me, you’ll find that it is far more likely that you’ll keep the majority of these domain names for a year without selling a single one, before letting them expire upon realizing that you can’t afford the renewal fees.

    I’ve personally found that starting small and growing is the best means of developing a successful portfolio. This may mean that you need to conduct outbound sales to keep a cash flow going so that you can invest in new domains.


    knowledge.jpg
    2. It’s more time intensive than you may think

    I had no idea that domain name investing would be such a time consuming venture. Domaining certainly doesn’t involve rich investors registering a few domain names, only for them to sit back and wait for the six figure offers to come in.

    There is a lot of work that should go in to finding investment grade domains, and that might involve looking through lists of hundreds of domain names to find a single name that you are likely to go on to acquire. If you have a day job, be prepared to spend your lunch times and evenings at a computer screen.


    3. Don’t fall for domain appraisal scams

    I will admit to something now that I’m not proud of at all, but we all make mistakes. After I bought my first ever batch of domains, I received a supposed inquiry that gave me an offer for my domain, but they needed it professionally appraised. Of course, this led to me paying for a domain appraisal, and the buyer soon disappeared.

    New investors can be vulnerable to the domain appraisal scam, which is why I think that this deserves a mention. You can find out more details on domain appraisal scams by searching NamePros. Morgan Linton also wrote a useful article about spotting domain appraisal scams that may be of interest to new investors.


    4. Don’t buy domain names straight away

    If you do consider domain name investing as a hobby or a new money making venture, it’s likely that you found out about the industry through a high profile sale, such as a seven figure Rick Schwartz sale, or a story boasting an extraordinarily high return on investment (ROI) within a short space of time.

    Of course, this will no doubt immediately motivate you to spend some of your hard-earned money in the hope of becoming the next Rick Schwartz overnight. Don’t rush in. Spend some time researching what a good domain name is, take advantage of the thousands of public sales that are available for you to analyse, and give yourself a basic understanding of domains and the domain industry before you contemplate buying a domain.


    5. Continually educate yourself

    The domain industry is constantly changing, with new companies, new opportunities and new domain extensions appearing regularly. Five years ago, the domain industry was a completely different space than it is today, and it will no doubt look completely different again in five years time.

    There are a number of people who regularly publish blogs, give advice and are generally extremely helpful. It’ll pay in the long run to read a handful of blogs regularly, while monitoring daily or weekly domain sales statistics.





    What do you wish that you knew before you started domaining?
     
    The views expressed on this page by users and staff are their own, not those of NamePros.
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  4. James Iles

    About The Author — James Iles

    Writer for NamePros.com, domain name investor and broker. For all inquiries relating to stories and interviews, please email: [email protected]

    This is James Iles's 320th blog post on NamePros. View all blog posts

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  5. Comments (32)

  6. VaibhavA

    VaibhavA Active Member VIP

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  7. AndyM

    AndyM kingdomDesign.com Web design and development VIP Trusted Contest Holder

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    Great article, James. Couldn't agree more with you on all your points.

    The one thing I wish I knew was how to pick really good 2 word brandables.
     
  8. mrfreak

    mrfreak Established Member

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  9. Enwych

    Enwych Established Member

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    One thing I wish I knew was that GoDaddy has a 5 day grace period to return a .com.
     
  10. AndyM

    AndyM kingdomDesign.com Web design and development VIP Trusted Contest Holder

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    2 and a half years domaining and I didn't even know that!! Thanks.
     
  11. EmotiveDomains

    EmotiveDomains Active Member VIP

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    Thanks for posting. This will make a good thread to direct newcomers to when they ask for tips on getting started in domaining.
     
  12. Sdomainer

    Sdomainer Established Member

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    thanks @James Iles given time to write valuable information.
     
  13. behindsun

    behindsun NameClix Business Account

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    evaluating the domains is tough part.

    When i dropped few domains, Some members from namepros picked them from expired auctions and sold for thousands. some of them went for $1000+ in auctions itself.

    Certainly, One man's trash is another man's treasure
     
  14. RCO

    RCO Established Member ★★★★★★★★★★

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    The good old 'domain tasting' days :)
     
  15. CHB777888

    CHB777888 Established Member

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    Thanks James! Very good pointers! I think DomainSherpa.com is an excellent resource. Cheers!
     
  16. Keith DeBoer

    Keith DeBoer BrandBucket Brand Ambassador PRO VIP

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  17. Julio

    Julio DominioNombres.com VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Lucky for me I haven't fallen for 1, 3. I enjoy 2, 5 because I like to feed the brain everyday. I have fallen for #4 a few times to realize later that the domain is worth regfee. :(
     
  18. ScalableDomains

    ScalableDomains ScalableDomains.com Business Account

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    I like the article but it is "after the fact". The question then becomes:

    What are you doing different today to avoid yesterday's mistakes?

    1. Set criteria for purchasing domains and stick to it
    2. Hire a research assistance or use a service that sends you selected domains quires.
    3. Just ignore completely
    4. If following Point # 1 buy the right domain names. Just face it, you are going to buy crappy domains. Just limit the crap.
    5. Read, Learn, Apply.....


    Good stuff!
     
  19. DefinitelyDomains

    DefinitelyDomains Business Member Business Account VIP

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    Great article.... thanks for sharing (y)
     
  20. OneOfTheseDays

    OneOfTheseDays Account Auto-Closed

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    Great stuff and an invaluable read for the likes of me.
    right now I'm spending as much time as it takes researching this business, have a kitty of $10k
    but im going to hang fire on spending any of it until ive done as much homework as possible.

    I run a real world business, a health food store but ive set aside a sum to start domaining as a sideline
     
  21. A G CHAUDHARI

    A G CHAUDHARI Established Member

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    Nice article... Real advice's that every domain'er should follow..
     
  22. Sulabh Sharma

    Sulabh Sharma Active Member VIP

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    Great article! Thank's for sharing it.
     
  23. Sumit Agrawal

    Sumit Agrawal Established Member

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    Excellent article I must say!
     
  24. elevator

    elevator Active Member VIP

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    I wish I knew all these in my early time when I entered domain business. Though I love reading of anything pertaining to domaining; be it sales strategies, what makes good domain names etc. But to my supprised, I recently knew expireddomains.net even when I have being hearing of it; I never knew it was a tool that encompasses many dropped markets in one place. Might be because I do not as such have interest in expired domains.
    I found this your article a master peace for a succeful domain biz.

    Thank.you so much. Cheers.
     
  25. WatchDogue

    WatchDogue Active Member VIP

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    Well reasoned and well written, an excellent primer for both the neophyte as well as many seasoned in domains!

    In response to what did I " wish " I knew, well, in retrospect I wish I knew how infrequent reasonable mid/high four figure offers appear and how even less frequent appearing are five figure offers.
     
  26. Elon Swift

    Elon Swift Account Auto-Closed

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    Thanx a lot for sharing this. Other than this i would also add that it is a very simple business with large profits. Firstly never accept below than the value of a domain when you know it's worth. Also always think of money dont fall for emotion for a domain name.
     
  27. pablohc86

    pablohc86 Active Member VIP

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    Thanks for this article.
    2 things that should I knew before:
    If you want to start your domain business, be prepared to talk to many accountants that they don't know anything about how to categorise online businesses.

    Be careful of UDRP, also if you are in the right, you could end in a loss if you can't demonstrate it.
    Also If you win the UDRP, you have to pay the panel.
     
  28. DomainPluto

    DomainPluto Dashawn R.

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  29. youaintme

    youaintme Established Member

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    Wow ..Thanks bro. This is what we, beginners, need to know.
     
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