NameSilo

Domain Layaway and Post-pay Backorders

Located in General Domain Discussion started by Rob Monster, Oct 30, 2019.

Replies:
95
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3,483

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Should Epik introduce 72 hour post-pay as a feature?

  1. Yes, most definitely and I would use it all the time

    16 vote(s)
    22.9%
  2. Yes, it definitely would help me now and then

    16 vote(s)
    22.9%
  3. Yes, even though I personally would probably not really use it.

    10 vote(s)
    14.3%
  4. No, we have enough payment options already

    3 vote(s)
    4.3%
  5. No, people would abuse it and leave Epik holding the drippy bag

    17 vote(s)
    24.3%
  6. No, and, by the way, this idea is whack

    8 vote(s)
    11.4%
Total: 70 vote(s)
  1. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    In the last few weeks, a number of folks have asked me to register names for them as a courtesy with assurance of settling up a bit later. Usually it was some opportunistic hand-registration that was just not in the budget that day. It caused me to ponder about the need for a domain layaway, i.e. the ability to register a domain and and settle up a bit later, e.g. like a post-pay tasting period of up to 72 hours.

    As for backorders, Epik already has the cheapest refundable backorders around, e g. $8.49 for .COM. However, many folks cannot afford to tie up $8.49 deposits and some do not even have a credit card that works reliably due to increasingly unfriendly banking practices in some parts of the world. This raised the question of whether Epik should introduce the option of post-pay backorders and again have a 72 hour settlement.

    Candidly, I have not assessed the engineering task to deploy these changes but I wanted to assess the market appetite for introducing up to a 72 hour settlement window for approved accounts. To be clear, I don't imagine giving this capability to everyone. However, consistent with our relationship-based approach, I think there might be value in introducing some innovation around these 2 areas to help with bootstrap liquidity.
     
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  2. Bob Hawkes

    Bob Hawkes formerly MetBob NameTalent Gold Account VIP Trusted Blogger

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    I would not personally use it, but it might be worth considering. However abuse by a few or effort to implement might not be worth it considering other innovations of higher priority that your team is working on.
    Bob
     
  3. Samer

    Samer Established Member

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    Like Bob, i wouldn't use it, but If you must
    you should only do for .com. If the program proves successful, expand trial to other exten.
    (Personally, I’d never use, for other extension)

    I’m worried, it might cause weaker finance, You’re taking all the risk.

    How will you judge risk-assessment for $8?
    Have feedback rating successful renewals paid off within 72 hours
    It’s already not a good sign, you need 72 to pay $8.49 registration for whatever reason.!

    Might as well have DN “month option” and pay $1 month com, instead $8 annual which is the antithesis of perpetual DN ownership dream.!
    72 hrs 2 long pay $8- too much... y not 24 - 48

    I like this one tho! Different. Noble! Good luck
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
  4. Leopard

    Leopard Named 150 + Companies . Brand Consultant

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    Seems a smart idea to me, provided there is a limit on the credit per day, authorization to people who don't abuse it and Epik is not loosing money. And i guess only frequent purchasers of domains / domainers would use this more as against someone registering a one-off domain

    (+) Yes there are often credit card and payment gateway processing issues. This can bypass the temporary glitch and domainers can fix it. If not 72 hours. 24-48 hours is also cool to start testing.

    (+) I think this would make the registration super quick, instead of punching in card details or use paypal. It might make Epik the first choice of registering a domain quickly. Especially for newly dropped domains where even a few seconds is also critical.

    (+) This is a new use case. If a domainer sees a name they like, but don't have budget for the day. They can get the domain. They further have 24 to 72 hours to liquidate other domains in the portfolio to raise funds for the new ones. Might lead to a better circulation of inventory.

    (-) Financial Risks for Epik. Not sure if Epik will loose money with the tasting period concept.

    If delivered with caution, this can be quite a game-changer. It can make domainers consider Epik as a first-choice hassle-free way for immediately registering a domain.

    - Leopard
     
  5. karmaco

    karmaco Top Member VIP

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    I would use it. Alot of times I backorder elsewhere because I can pay IF the name is caught not before.
     
  6. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    Great insights there -- 3 times + and 1 times -. I like that ratio.
     
  7. Leopard

    Leopard Named 150 + Companies . Brand Consultant

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    There is one more use case that can turn positive or negative.

    People might book a domain. And try to sell it asap within the 72 hour timeframe. If it sells - Woohoo !!! quick flip with no money invested.. If Not - drop it , nothing to loose.

    Now if Epik can create an aftermarket marketplace to sell these new regs for quick flips, it can become a source of domain discovery and picking up quality domains for mid tier investors. Also a source of quick income, liquidity. Good for people who are good at spotting domains but don't have the sales skills. Epik can make up the money on commissions, etc.

    Again, there will be some who will try to abuse the system. And not sure about the risk and financial equation Epik has to endure in the process. But in positive light, it is one more opportunity to sell a domain and it can be one more reason, why i would consider registering at Epik before others.

    - Leopard
     
  8. NamesMax

    NamesMax Top Member VIP

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    I would not see myself using it either, Rob.

    I think that you would attract the "Bootstrap" or "Newbie" domainers with little to no financial backing. I can see that market as a fit to Epik's efforts to reach domain investors and further develop the domain aftermarket. But unless someone is wanting to buy domains with their next paycheck how would a 3 day delay in payment be a benefit to someone?

    I could see it more of a marketing tool to promote the friendliness of Epik to the Domainer industry than as a true business need.
     
  9. wwwweb

    wwwweb Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Not something I would use, but if you want to think outside the box, and outside North America/Europe, I can't see how it can be a bad idea. All it can do is bring you new business, I guess the downside risk is your tasting/drop % is going to go thru the roof, as it will probably be a 50/50 rate of people who actually come back to close, and others who just change their mind. If they fail as stated above maybe epik can offer them for repurchase for 24 hours, before finally dropping for refund.

    I can't see a downside to helping people out who may need it, and sometimes not need it.
     
  10. Samer

    Samer Established Member

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    Im probably the only one who sees equal:

    72 hour grace for $8.49 .com registrations,
    Monthly fees; with interest, instead flat yearly

    Sometimes, can be too kind, lead to loss... idk

    Hope I’m wrong!!
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
  11. BaileyUK

    BaileyUK Top Member VIP

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    Can't see the benefit in offering a 72 hour promissory note option myself, your either going to get loaded with domain-tasting (refund requests) or dozens of excuses of why it needs extending, late pay check etc, etc. It's really neither here or there being just 72 hours. If there was epik account credit limit for renewals, new regs, transfer-ins with a settlement period then yes, I could see that as a benefit as a single monthly settlement payment option.

    Give an inch then it's human nature to take a mile
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
  12. Lagunaboy

    Lagunaboy Established Member

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    I guess in theory it's a good idea to bring more people to epik. However, how many people have typed in a name to see if it's available and " yay it's available" I'll register that. 24 hours later, OMG what was I thinking. It's not one of your better ideas in my opinion but I guess only time will tell.

    Gary
     
  13. HappyW

    HappyW Owner of NamesMaker.com Gold Account

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    Dynadot has implemented this feature, I often use it
     
  14. Lox

    Lox ----- Gold Account VIP

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    Setting off fireworks with a magnifying glass ... or when drops are too big, the best way to get registrar on the Google red alert list. Good luck
     
  15. Sumeeth

    Sumeeth DomExpert VIP

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    Idea is good and some people may use it but I think better would be better to have 50% - 50% i.e. need to pay 50% while registration and remaining 50% after 72 hours which makes buyer more serious when they register the domain instead of registering crap domains without analysing much on the value of domain because they are not paying money now.

    Also I would like Epik to permanently reduce .com handreg price to 5.99$ forever that will make more people come to Epik instead of hand reg domains at multiple registrars creating multiple accounts..

    Thanks,
    Sumeeth
     
  16. Samer

    Samer Established Member

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    So you epik want go out of business? Prices’ of .com wholesale has been steady at $7.85 since 2012; Epik already lowest fo me,..Even if meet hostage tax club require... Epik 4 life!

    .com price likely up 7% each of next four years VeriSign will impose on all registrars
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
  17. oldtimer

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

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    How about something like this for domain layaway:

    Register 50 .coms and pay for them over six months (like $50/month).

    Meanwhile the domains can point to SSL Sales Landers, and if one sells the layaway balance must be settled first.
     
  18. Samer

    Samer Established Member

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    Anyone know what we’re looking at 7% x4..?
    Long will be the days of $5.99... But it wouldn't surprise if Rob found a way 5.99 promo still (y)
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
  19. wwwweb

    wwwweb Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    I think Rob is trying to tap into countries like Nigeria etc... so if you take the registration of 50 domains that is almost 4 months salary if you take the average workers monthly wage in a country like this, which probably is not possible, so it really has to be 1 name at a time.

    To put it into perspective the average salary of a University graduated pharmacist in Nigeria is the equivalent to about $500-$800 per month in US based on seniority. Where as this same position in the USD is about $8,000 - $12,000 per month on average.

    So I guess Rob maybe has the idea if someone can make $200-$500 per month flipping domains into Western markets, they would be making the wage of a University educated person. I guess it beats sending out those inheritance emails.
     
  20. vravis9

    vravis9 Top Member VIP

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    I think it can be helpful to some people in some scenarios...

    I don't see myself as a regular user of this feature.

    If there is a funds availability issue for me usually it stays same in next 72 hrs...just my case.

    I think it can be useful and many people will utilise this..but the purpose of using this feature is main topic.

    There is always a work around or abuse one feature for different purposes...who can avail this feature can be monitored but what they are using it for can be difficult to determine.

    People can register names and submit to brand marketplaces / try to sell to others(outbound) / registrar names according to buyer request...and the names can be cancelled according to results of mentioned scenarios...

    This is like selling a name before you own it...and there was a thread at NP about this practice...and surprisingly some people supported that model!!

    I think this feature can become a MVP model for this sort of practice...

    I don't think people will find it difficult to have money around to register couple of domain names....but they find it easy to take advantage of the some help provided and misuse it.

    These are just my opinions...

    Thanks,
    Ravi
     
  21. oldtimer

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

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    I believe you are talking about the empowerment project that is designed to help those in developing Countries, but layaway programs are common in the Western Countries too and a lot of people use them at stores specially close to the Christmas Holidays, so something similar might work for domains too, and people can choose the number of domains that they want to put on layaway, like 5, 10, or up to 50 . IMO
     
  22. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    As I see it, there is no shame to use this feature. It is just a cash-efficient way to use the registrar's 5-day tasting window for major registries like .COM. It is not really all that different than a grace period as people use during expiry. They are securing the domain with expected intent of actually making a purchase within 3 days. We'll need some modest controls around credit limit, but I expect to be fairly trusting there.
     
  23. oldtimer

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

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    Rob did you see my post about letting people pay for layaway domains over six months, is that something that can work at Epik.
     
  24. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    Well, I see what you did there. :)

    In all seriousness, the layaway scenario is definitely not limited to emerging markets. Yes, the appeal there might be particularly big, but we all have stuff that comes up, e.g. someone forgets their wallet, or their credit card was compromised. The point is that we already do this type of thing upon request. The challenge is to make it scalable and yet fiscally responsible. That is what I am hoping to solve here. If that ends up mostly appealing to emerging market registrants, so be it, but I know first-hand that the requests often come from US-based folks who use pre-paid cards but did not get around to loading them that day, or some other unplanned event came up.

    As for the differences in salary by country, that is actually what is truly exciting from an economic empowerment standpoint. I have seen guys in Nigeria become financial independent just by learning how to go from bootstrap, to flipping domains, to selling at retail, and finally to selling for a windfall and being able to provide for the needs of others. I am pretty sure that as time goes on we will end up hearing about some life-changing outcomes.
     
  25. Rob Monster

    Rob Monster CEO, Epik Epik.com Staff PRO Gold Account VIP

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    Thanks OT.

    We essentially do that now through interest-free domain loans with the possible addition of Digital Empowerment grants being contemplated by the eRise.org project being led by @Abdullah Abdullah.

    However, yes, that is part of the larger theme of Microfinance. The scenario being contemplated here is more real-time transactional, one domain at a time but also without the delay of a credit check.
     

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