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Bob Hawkes

What Will 2021 Be Like In Domain Names? 55 Viewpoints

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Comments:
33
By Bob Hawkes, Jan 6, 2021
?

How optimistic are you about domain name investing in 2021?

  1. very optimistic (hopeful and confident)

    211 votes
    47.3%
  2. somewhat optimistic

    100 votes
    22.4%
  3. neither optimistic nor pessimistic

    59 votes
    13.2%
  4. somewhat pessimistic

    35 votes
    7.8%
  5. very pessimistic (hopeless and doubtful)

    41 votes
    9.2%
Total: 446 vote(s)
  1. Bob Hawkes

    Bob Hawkes Top Member NameTalent VIP Gold Account Trusted Blogger

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    I reached out to many people to see what they thought 2021 would hold for the domain world. I made it tough by requiring each to respond in just a single sentence. To get a comprehensive view from many perspectives, I included long-term and newer domain investors, business leaders, domain industry bloggers, podcasters and journalists, domain brokers, and investors with various portfolio sizes and investment styles.

    I sincerely thank all who contributed responses, despite the short response time. In some cases I have edited responses to fit within the one-sentence per reply framework. The responses are arranged in alphabetical form based on the first letter of username or first name.

    Abdul Basit:
    2021 is going to be a record breaking year in terms of sales with more 6 and 7 figure sales than ever, and the increased competition for names will cause expiring domain prices to grow out of the reach of some investors.

    Andrew Allemann, DomainNameWire:
    The general economy will be bifurcated between the haves and the have nots, and the domain economy will be one of the haves.

    Alvin Brown:
    I predict that in 2021.cc domains will become the next .io/.co, installment/recurring payment plan revenue for 2021 will be 20% or more of annual revenue at marketplaces like DAN that offer it, and GoDaddy will launch a domain portfolio liquidation or expiring domain affiliate program for domain owners.

    Arif - Ategy:
    While we saw a surge in domain sales in 2020 as many of the businesses around the world scrambled to survive the pandemic by finally getting an address on the greatest sales platform in history; 2021 in turn will forge ahead with even stronger growth, as emerging and surviving companies focus on the inevitable online and remote realities of a fast-tracked future, where physical presences and real-world addresses become less and less relevant.

    biggie:
    The outlook, has too many words and one sentence is not enough to contain them; therefore, there is not much one can say. ​

    Brad Mugford:
    Quality domain names continue to be a resilient investment, even showing a major increase in need and demand during a pandemic as more people are forced to compete online; and I expect this trend to continue moving forward.

    Braden Pollock:
    Fractional domain ownership will finally come into its own, while wholesale pricing continues to increase squeezing margins.

    Compassion - Chad Laughlin:
    In 2021, premium domains are accelerating in value, primed to be a safe haven for investors who are evacuating uncertain economical calamities.

    Corey:
    Three words, Focus On YOU: spend time and invest in your knowledge and skills, knowledge of the domain, the domain industry and learn a new skill.

    Eric Lyon:
    Prediction: The year of creative, out-of-the-box, micro-niche domain investing with a bigger focus on quick flip returns and sales team building strategies utilizing saturation marketing techniques.

    Dan Sanchez:
    2021 will be the year bitcoin and domains permanently merge as two critical asset classes no individual or enterprise can survive without.

    DnFolk:
    Domain names in the brandable niche will continue to surge, with exponential growth in two keyword names. and the .co and .io TLDs will continue to do well.

    DNGear - Swetha:
    Domain names would be a profitable asset in 2021; please hold on to your super keywords in any popular extension.

    Domain Smoke:
    In 2021, push yourself to the next level by making domaining into a routine and diversifying your portfolio and marketplace strategies.

    Doron Vermaat:
    2021 will be ripe with opportunities for domain name investors and operators as the world starts to remodel after the pandemic and many entrepreneurial efforts will have a strong focus on the digital economy.

    Edward Zeiden:
    A growing number of businesses, especially startups, will recognize that short, memorable names in popular extensions create instant trust and brand recall with their customers.

    Elliot Silver:
    I am cautiously optimistic about 2021 being a good year for domain investors.

    Equity78 - Raymond Hackney:
    I would say those who don't own very good domain names in 2021 are going to have to make some tough decisions about their future in domaining.

    FolioTeam:
    I see domain names having more use cases for new businesses coming online for the first time as some global stability sets in, thanks to the vaccine, by the second half of 2021.

    Giles Coley:
    I predict that LLL.com prices will skyrocket, brandable and pronounceable LLLL.com names will continue to increase in value, and the .co extension will keep gaining popularity with plenty of good sales.

    Gube:
    I see it positively: I would say 2021 will be a better year for domains, many sales, great acquisitions to come and a time to run more domain experiments.

    Haroon Basha:
    Year 2020 was a fantastic year for the domain industry, and there is a general feeling among domainers that year 2021 will outshine the previous year.

    Hawkeye:
    Domaining in 2021 will see a need to be more focused, selective and creative for domain investors, as aftermarket domains will keep getting pricier and pricier due to higher demand and more coming into the space, bidding and buying blindly on them (due to lack of knowledge, direction, insight, and fear of missing out), along with a lot more portfolios unfortunately filled with useless and unsellable domains, due to the same.

    James Iles:
    In 2021, I believe we’ll see more collaborations between leading industry companies and fractional ownership of domains will be far more widespread.

    HotKey:
    Don't count your domains, make your domains count!

    Jason Sheppard:
    In the coming year, I think we will all be thankful for the names that we paid up for in 2020 and I expect they will all seem like bargains in the face of increasing wholesale and auction prices.

    Joe Nichols:
    I think we'll continue to see a steady increase in domain name auction prices in 2021, making it even harder for the average domainer to stay competitive without putting in the necessary leg work to find names that offer the potential for a worthwhile return on investment.

    Johann - Dosebuy:
    With companies finally funding their marketing departments again, number of sales in the $800 to $3000 range will skyrocket.

    Joseph Ciprut:
    Since a descriptive, intuitive and memorable domain name is crucial for having a meaningful digital presence and since having a differentiating digital presence has become an accelerated requirement not only to thrive but merely to survive in an increasingly competitive world; I am very bullish on the demand for good domain names in a broad spectrum of industries in 2021.

    Josh Reason:
    Be ready for domains to take a giant leap forward as mainstream investments in 2021.

    Jothan Frakes:
    Social distancing that was a catalyst for digitalization as well as mergers and acquisitions drew more sales and attention to our industry in 2020, and as we transition to a non-pandemic world and we should anticipate more mergers and acquisitions, and a trend of hybrid remote/in-person business in 2021.

    JudgeMind:
    Brandable investing will continue to be a good entry point for new investors in 2021.

    Kate Buckley:
    Keep your eye on certain verticals that saw accelerated growth due to COVID—it's these that are bringing in funding (and thus acquiring domains!) as they compete to become leaders: eCommerce, Gaming, Digital Media, Healthcare, Crypto, EdTech, Food, Biosciences, and AI, along with the startup sectors of: Cloud, Social, and Delivery.

    Keith DeBoer:
    During this year of profound transformation in both culture and commerce, those who remain smart, flexible and daring, will prosper greatly for years to come.

    Kenny:
    With so many brick & mortars going down, demand for domains will skyrocket.

    MapleDots:
    I predict 2021will have one of the highest recorded .ca sales to date.

    Marek at Brands.International:
    In 2021, I recommend investing in the best possible crypto, blockchain and bitcoin-related domain names you can get your hands on (top .coms as well as top-quality new gTLDs), as 2021 is the start of a whole new era in the crypto space for many years to come.

    Mike - Makbliss:
    Personally, my sales took off in the last few months of 2020, and I'm very optimistic that this trend will continue throughout 2021 for the domain industry.

    Morgan Linton:
    I think that 2021 is going to be a record year for domain names with one and two-word .coms leading the pack and extensions like .io and .co surprising with some blockbuster six-figure sales.

    Nat Cohen:
    ICANN’s inability to efficiently adopt policies in the public interest will come under renewed scrutiny in 2021 as it begins its long overdue review of the UDRP and as industry consolidation accelerates.

    Nikul Sanghvi:
    A memorable domain name is the bedrock of a strong digital brand - that's why I expect 2021 to keep driving growth in our industry, as new startups emerge, traditional businesses adapt and many companies strive to upgrade their existing online presence.

    oldtimer:
    I believe the outlook for the domain Industry is very good as more and more people start an online business due to the pandemic, but if the pandemic is not brought under control soon the continuation of the impact that we are experiencing with the economy as a whole is eventually going to catch up with the domain Industry too, and some investors may wish to be prudent in savings.

    Ostrados:
    If Bitcoins are the gold bars of the future, then domains are the real estates of the present: I expect that in 2021 we will witness a boom in the domain industry, people more and more will start to appreciate domain names as valuable assets and a solid alternative investment option, especially under the current economic uncertainty.

    Rick Schwartz:
    We are all happy to see 2020 behind us, but don’t expect most of 2021 to be much better, the next 120 days may be brutal.

    Riz M.:
    Wholesale price & retail price will definitely continue to rise, and right now we should concentrate and learn how to buy names below wholesale market price, and avoid auctions unless you are not sure you are good in the assessment of the domain name.

    Rob Monster:
    The domain industry will see record activity in 2021 as development-grade domain assets become a preferred non-crypto based safe harbor for storing portable value during what portends to be a year with continuing uncertainty in the physical world.

    Domain Shane:
    Just like the decade before, people in 2022 will look back and wish they bought more great domain names in 2021.

    Silentptnr:
    In 2021 the domain name resale market will surge based on strong crypto and financial markets pumping more capital into small business and startups in general.

    Sten Lilliestrom - trelgor:
    If I were to pick one under-appreciated investment, that neither plagues nor utter madness will manage to disrupt, it’s viable brand prospect domains - because they are the soul and bedrock of modern business.

    The Durfer:
    There are both haves and have-nots who are attracted to domain investing, and for many the field is a struggle to be profitable or even survive, and I think that will continue in 2021.

    twiki:
    The pandemic has changed everything with everyone going digital; it brings more opportunities to the market, including more awareness, and creates scarcity as more domains will already be registered and the result is our good ones will get to be even more valuable.

    Vito:
    2020 has given the entire world much time to think about their online presence, so domain name ownership/usage will become the most important & most valuable digital assets we've ever seen in our lifetime.

    Yogi Solanki:
    I'm very optimistic about 2021, in my opinion more part-time investors will be full-time, which will lead to more outbound sales because, just like in any business, you need a cash flow to survive, and I firmly believe outbound marketing is the ultimate way to achieve that.

    WhoaDomain.com:
    Domaining or making money for 2021 is nothing but family and health is everything, never forget what's important.


    Some Common Themes

    While many views and predictions were offered, I noted the following common themes.
    1. The majority were optimistic for 2021 in domain name investing. Please vote in the poll so we can see if that holds for the broader community.
    2. The transformation of the economy to being predominantly online, and offering services at a distance, will drive demand for domain names.
    3. The focus on domain name quality is a bedrock principle valid for all times.
    4. Many feel that strength in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies will have a significant impact on the domain industry.
    5. While quality .com will continue to have the lion’s share of sales, several see continuing growth in .co and .io as well as some other extensions.
    6. It seems likely that brandable domain names will continue to play a major role for many investors.
    7. Several people stressed the importance of investing in yourself, through acquiring new knowledge and skills.

    So what do you think? Please share in the comments how you view 2021, but in the spirit of these responses, try to summarize in a single sentence!

    Also, what predictions or outlooks most surprised you?

    What do you think was overlooked in the comments above, but is important?

    How optimistic do you feel about 2021 personally? Please vote in the associated poll.

    My sincere thanks to all who responded with quotations for this article.
     
    The views expressed on this page by users and staff are their own, not those of NamePros.
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  4. Bob Hawkes

    About The Author — Bob Hawkes

    Domain analyst, writer and informal educator, with particular interests in domain name phrases and non-business uses for domain names. I am a risk averse domain investor who only invests modest amounts in a variety of extensions and niches. Don't hesitate to contact me - I like to help!

    This is Bob Hawkes's 73rd blog post on NamePros. View all blog posts

    Home Page:
    https://namesthat.win
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  5. Comments (33)

  6. Bob Hawkes

    Bob Hawkes Top Member NameTalent VIP Gold Account Trusted Blogger

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    Thanks so much for everyone who responded super fast with interesting quotations.

    It has been a struggle keeping track of messaging over three different platforms, so in the chance you responded and your quotation is not included, message me ASAP and I will make it right.

    Everyone please vote in the poll. Looking forward to seeing how optimistic overall our community is about 2021.

    Best wishes for success in 2021!

    Bob
     
  7. rohitgoyal

    rohitgoyal Top Contributor VIP Gold Account

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    I am personally focussing more on development in this year , both in terms of micro niche as well as long term blogs.
     
  8. lambo.com

    lambo.com LoveDomains.com VIP Gold Account

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  9. The Durfer

    The Durfer Top Contributor VIP Gold Account

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    love this, lets you know how passionate people are here. whoohoo! :)
     
  10. NickB

    NickB Wales.org VIP

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    The @Braden Pollock comment is quite apt - I got an email from shotput.com about fractional ownership on a 3 letter .com - which I have missed the boat on, I missed the last one they did as well....you snooze you lose I suppose.....

    It's an interesting concept........

    *I'm not affiliated with them*
     
  11. TauseefKhan

    TauseefKhan Established Member

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    E-Commerce Sales Are Predicted to Hit $6.5 Trillion by 2023. And, 2021 will see a surge in domain demand with more players entering the market. The 2020 Namebio overall figures stand at $119.3M which I think may touch $140M in 2021.
     
  12. Way3

    Way3 TheMainDomains

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    Great comment from @Keith DeBoer:
    During this year of profound transformation in both culture and commerce, those who remain smart, flexible and daring, will prosper greatly for years to come.

    We are on the cusp of really big changes in how society operates locally and globally. Once in a lifetime changes imo, domains as digital assets with great value can only benefit from these changes.
     
  13. FolioTeam

    FolioTeam AMDB.tv VIP

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    Thanks for the roundup which was an all-round interesting read.
     
  14. oldtimer

    oldtimer Do some good for humanity and the environment VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    You left Bob Hawkes out of the list.

    I believe everyone here is interested to know his opinion too.

    I hear he is a very smart and knowledgeable person when it comes to keeping up with the issues and events concerning domains and the domain Industry . :xf.wink:

    IMO
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2021
  15. Corey

    Corey GDBR. com VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Learn a new skill 893focuson_you.jpg

    Develop your domain name & add value plus earn possible affiliate income.

    I prefer to use Joomla! to develop my domain names. For example BurbankCafe.com // Cafe in Burbank and ice.supplies

    Cheers
    Corey
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2021
  16. du6262

    du6262 Established Member

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    • Everything will be fine in 2021
     
  17. HotKey

    HotKey Made in Canada VIP

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    Fine collection of outlooks/messages. Rick's is sobering. Thanks for the inclusion. Congrats @Makbliss , you've come a long way.
    Bound to be another interesting year.
     
  18. Ostrados

    Ostrados EpicName.com VIP Gold Account

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    Thanks @Bob Hawkes for this wonderful work!

    I really liked @HotKey quote: "Don't count your domains, make your domains count!" - it sums up everything about domain investing in one short sentence.

    I am very optimistic and I wish the best of luck for all Namepros memeber in 2021
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2021
  19. tomcarl

    tomcarl Top Contributor VIP

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    First 2 quarters of pandemic left a lot of people in a state of uncertainty, so expending money on domains may have been put on the backburner for the non-capitalist types, which is the majority....

    2021 I believe is the beginning of a cultural/societal shift for this pandemic....less panic, more at-home operations being considered the norm. More at-home entrepreneurs, more startups catering to the increase online traffic/business = domaining in 2021? = Good.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2021
  20. Bob Hawkes

    Bob Hawkes Top Member NameTalent VIP Gold Account Trusted Blogger

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    Bob Hawkes
    I think 2021 will continue to offer many ways to lose money with domain names, and a few ways to make money, sometimes a lot - be informed, objective, hard-working and disciplined to have the best chances for success, and not afraid to occasionally step outside conventional wisdom if the evidence supports it.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2021
  21. Reddstagg

    Reddstagg Top Contributor VIP Gold Account

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    Be the one. Be the one who makes it despite having all the odds stacked against you. Be the one who listens, digests information, weighs up the pros and cons and then decides to do it your own way. Don't think outside the box anymore. Be the box. Don't conform to stereotypes but do what only you can do. The future is unknown and scary, yet it is there to be explored. Be the one. The past is gone. Domain for tomorrow as though your life depends on it. Be brave. Take your first step into your new future.
     
  22. oldtimer

    oldtimer Do some good for humanity and the environment VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    That's great forecast and advice at the same time,

    Although you have tried to include a variety of people from different backgrounds and experiences and that the common denominator is that 2021 will be a good year for the domain Industry,

    But everyone should keep in mind that these people all work at different levels and they own or deal with different caliber domains and that each domainer has to find the best strategy that suits their level that they operate at.

    Something that works for a big domainer who is financially well off and has a portfolio of top category killer domains might not necessarily work for a domainer who operates at lower levels and who has limited means.

    Although we are all domainers at heart (like a general who is still a soldier at heart) , but each domainer has to know their rank and also be able to adjust their strategies accordingly as they move up in the ranks. (something for you to write an article about :xf.wink:)

    Regardless of anyone's rank we need to keep in mind that we live in dangerous times in so many aspects and it might be a good idea to have some savings for a rainy day in case the digital World that we all depend on so much somehow collapses and one day we wake up and see that there is no Internet and for this reason it might also be a good idea for everyone to always have their top tire domains renewed for several years in advance.

    Most domainers might be able to survive even if they lose up to 75% of their portfolio if they can save the top 25% of their domains and so even though we all like to see a rosy 2021 for the domain Industry in the forecast, but we also have to be prepared in case things turn out for the worst considering everything that is going on in the World right now.

    Now as @biggie already said it's hard to make all this fit in just one sentence. :wacky:

    PS: it's worth mentioning that I don't belong to any specific rank and as the longest lasting newbie in the history of the domain Industry I am exempt from all the rules. (otherwise if my spirit is restrained in any way I wouldn't be able to bring you such good thoughts.)

    IMO
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2021
  23. Big Mac

    Big Mac Established Member ★★★★★★★★★★

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    @Bob Hawkes, thank you for this topic. The only thing I would add is that one of the possible biggest disruption to the domain name industry in 2021 going to 2022 is Namebase.io/Handshake.org. For the first time, any individual from around the world will be able to own their TLD of choice for pennies on the dollar. I could own ".bigmac" and have Casino.bigmac, Hotel.bigmac, Mail.bigmac, etc. Again, I would own this TLD. Of course, there are a few issues they have to fix such as getting native browser support (I think the CEO of the Brave Browser is working on a solution to implement native browser support for Namebase.io domain names) and making the system a bit more easier for your average jane or joe.

    Have a wonderful day!
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2021
  24. Way3

    Way3 TheMainDomains

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    In the longer term, this could be very true. In the shorter term, the inability of full membership access (can not transfer HNS via address) for US citizens may hamper full-on adoption. I'd assume it's a somewhat influential market?
     
  25. Brands.International

    Brands.International Marek VIP

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    From all the responses I like best following 2:

    @Corey:
    Three words, Focus On YOU: spend time and invest in your knowledge and skills, knowledge of the domain, the domain industry and learn a new skill.

    and

    @WhoaDomain.com:
    Domaining or making money for 2021 is nothing but family and health is everything, never forget what's important.

    100% agreed :)
     
  26. Mytz.com

    Mytz.com Top 4L [email protected] ieie.com CuTu.com NeSu.com QAMI.com PRO VIP Gold Account

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  27. jim h

    jim h Upgraded Member Gold Account

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    very optimistic,why not?
     
  28. iTesla

    iTesla Established Member

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    I predict that, the less we use such sites as FB the more domains we will sell.
    As a result more end users will see value in domains.
    This was said by me first in a FB group, you can include it if you want in your post.
    Thank you.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2021
  29. Bob Hawkes

    Bob Hawkes Top Member NameTalent VIP Gold Account Trusted Blogger

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    I am not surprised that people feel optimistic in an era of increasingly online operations, but I must admit that, both in those I contacted and in NamePros responses to the poll, the level of optimism surprises me. As I write this 89% are either somewhat or very optimistic, and most of the remainder selected the neutral category.
    -Bob
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2021
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