DAN.com

My biggest mistake EVER! I underestimated the potential and the requirements.

Located in General Domain Discussion, started by TheBaldOne, Nov 14, 2020

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  1. TheBaldOne

    TheBaldOne Top Contributor VIP Gold Account ★★★★★★★★★★

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    A few months ago I acquired on the aftermarket the domain name 'Go.LA', a fantastic purchase with outright potential, but as it turns out just too much potential. I now am sitting on a domain name that following months of research is proving just too big of a project for me to handle.

    I guess it was stupid of me to treat such a potentially huge 'geo domain' as just some normal geo domain. Almost immediately upon starting the research to build the site the size of the project expanded daily as new spheres of development would hurl themselves forward. Of course initially I was thinking along the lines of Tourism, Real Estate, Social site, market place, news site, sports site, an 'Olympics' site for 2028, road traffic site, and the list just expanded more and more.

    In the end I had to admit that not knowing LA made any planned development by me impossible, anything I attempted to do would always be sub-prime at best. Obviously I will not let the domain drop but I will now just hold it until someone in the years ahead comes along who can do the domain justice - something I obviously cannot do.

    Having a domain with literally huge potential can be a real headache. :inpain:

    (And before anyone asks although my investment was not an insubstantial amount, at least it was not a six figure sum. Thankfully! :xf.embarrassed: LOL)
     
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  2. Cush

    Cush Established Member ★★★★★★★★★★

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    It sounds like you are trying to start too big and bite off too much. Why do you need to launch with tourism, real estate, market place, news, sports, etc, etc??

    Start simple, then grow. Look at Facebook for example. The site was simple social posting, and over time grew to include a marketplace and more. Same with Google. At first it was just "search", and now it covers nearly everything.

    If I owned this name, I'd focus on Tourism/Travel, and over time add other things. No offense, but sports should be the least of your priorities. If people want news/info on sports, there are 10,000 other websites where they can get that info.
     
  3. NickB

    NickB Wales.org VIP

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    I faced the same thought process with Wales (org) had/have big dreams for it......

    65.000 words of content written, the site is still under development, though will be be done completed shortly - lost track of the hours spent reading up on SEO, Social Marketing, Social Media, Travel affiliate income, Business directory listing plans, advertising income etc etc etc etc.....

    Now it is a case of getting the site live, indexed and monitoring the traffic with regular weekly articles going onto the site, daily social media posts and then from month 2 or 3 doing outbound to companies to list on the site - from next summer onwards will start to focus on travel affiliate income streams....

    Lessons learnt for the next one.....

    Don't get bogged down on the small details and the grandiose visons of what could be......

    Get a block of generic, original content done, get the site developed and then fix the problems that arise - don't look for problems that don't exist yet

    Nothing is to big, it is just a case of breaking it down into small manageable chunks and not getting distracted by the vision and the small details - which I was doing and seems that you are/where

    Start small, keep working at it and dream big........lessons learnt
     
  4. bmugford

    bmugford www.DataCube.com PRO VIP ICA Member ★★★★★★★★★★

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    It is also not the best time to be launching travel and tourism sites, especially in the US.

    COVID is not going away any time soon.

    Brad
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2020
  5. NickB

    NickB Wales.org VIP

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    Disagree - very good time to build out a travel/Geo site, get regular content on it, build a social media following, build a mail list, a target audience as well as improving your rankings on Google......this all takes time and when the restrictions start to ease what are people going to want to do? Travel will be right up there....

    Just a question of budget, patience and strategy.......
     
  6. bmugford

    bmugford www.DataCube.com PRO VIP ICA Member ★★★★★★★★★★

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    There have been many failures even on amazing domains like SanDiego.com for instance.

    Taking on a project the scale of LA, just because of the domain name, is a massive undertaking.
    It is not a one man operation.

    Brad
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2020
  7. NickB

    NickB Wales.org VIP

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    That is why the timing is fine, take the time to build out and keep it simple - it is very easy to be put off by the size of the Geo region.

    If you focus on small gradual increases in income via business listings for example you can start to generate monthly revenue which can be used to to expand the operations side, requires phone calls to businesses within that region which can be done by 1 person, from there you can up the ante in regards to content generation, social media, maybe employee someone on a commission only basis to make the calls, get an SEO company involved down the road, look at other income streams etc etc
     
  8. NickB

    NickB Wales.org VIP

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    Also the Gig economy means nothing needs to be a one man/woman band anymore - I have outsourced everything for my site....I just come up with the ideas
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2020
  9. equity78

    equity78 Top Member TheDomains Staff TLDInvestors.com PRO VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Taking on these kinds of projects are time consuming and expensive.

    You need to decide what you are trying to accomplish, back in the day many owned great Geo .tv names in the .TV sub forum. Everyone had grandiose projected websites.

    No one did anything of any substance or made any money.

    @bmugford is spot on that so many great names with people who had experience in the space failed.

    Look a lot of major media companies, with newspaper distribution etc... and could not make money. They have resources no domainer has.

    Secondly, are you a native? I mean I know Philadelphia, I have been to Hawaii, I loved it greatest 8 days of my life, but I could not do Oahu.com or Maui.com any justice. I don't know the in's and the outs. What will locals want? What do tourist want, need?

    So if you are local you have at least an insider advantage. I have never been to LA so while I know a lot about LA sports that means nothing, people have ESPN, Barstool, Fox, CBS, NBC, ABC, etc...

    I think you need to find a hook, because if you offer everything, A) I don't believe you can deliver on that, it's just too hard, it requires so much time and money.

    B) the money is really not there, why do you think these bigger companies are moving out of the space or complaining they can't make any money?

    Development is hard for the juice to be worth the squeeze.
     
  10. garptrader

    garptrader Top Contributor VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Years ago I launched several geo .TV sites but focused more on the one where I actually lived. While the process was a learning experience, as others have said projects like this are much more involved that one may realize initially.
     
  11. winst

    winst Established Member ★★★★★★★★★★

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    The idea is to start something simple, small, it doesn't have to be perfect or great. Test out some ideas, experiment, after it gained some traction, then start to add more features, capabilities, capacity.

    Good luck.
     
  12. gold lover

    gold lover Established Member

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    yes, i have similar experiences, do be more careful next time, wish you all the very best in future(y):xf.smile:
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2020
  13. Cush

    Cush Established Member ★★★★★★★★★★

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    One other thought to add to my comment earlier. A few years ago I launched an iPhone app for a unique game that had zero competition. I lacked funding and brought some friends on board who had an interest in the niche and most importantly, money.

    The app/site launched and it took off. People loved it. They were hooked. I did this startup the right way. A bare bones basic version to gauge market interest before diving into something massive. Once we saw the potential, we poured everything into a totally new version. New design, new this, new that, and a ton of new features.

    It got to the point where we had more than enough, and the rest of our funds needed to be spent on marketing, because we hit a point where we needed more money now. Unfortunately, our main partner disagreed and wanted to keep "over developing" the app/site instead of focusing on growing the userbase for what we already had.

    It made sense to all the other partners that the key was marketing and growth to make more money, then when people began losing interest, throw new features at them to retain interest. The main partner didn't agree, revoked his investment, and walked away. At this point, without his remaining funding, we were on fumes. We couldn't pay winners, we couldn't afford our overhead, and closed operations less than 2 months later.

    It is sad, because had we kept it up, the laws/market changed, and we could have sold for insane money just 2-3 years later... Live and learn....

    In short, the thing to take away from this is, start small, gauge what the market wants/needs, and once you gain some traction, then further your development.

    Look at it this way. Say you go to your favorite restaurant down the street and they offer the same few items on the menu. You don't mind because they are SO good. After a while though, you get bored/tired of the same food, lose interest in the place, and decide to find somewhere new. That is when you want to strike with new features, to keep people coming back when they are beginning to tire from it.
     
  14. JB Lions

    JB Lions Top Contributor VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Geo sites in general.

    You should go niche if you want to have a chance. Not cities, countries, super competitive tourist attractions etc. because you're jumping in the water with some sharks, big companies. I think some people who try to go this route, get frustrated. Simply type those places into Google to see who your competition is.

    An example of niche that I was going to do myself but then sold the domain: multnomahfalls.com

    They did a good job. Search for it in MSN/Yahoo:

    Page 1, number 1 result Yahoo/MSN
    https://www.bing.com/search?form=MOZSBR&pc=MOZI&q=Multnomah+Falls

    Page 4 Google
    https://www.google.com/search?q=Mul...EiFkKHQ1TDKw4ChDw0wN6BAgHEEg&biw=1536&bih=694

    That's where you have a shot.

    Very easy site to do, if you check out the site, there's not much to it because there doesn't need to be. It's a waterfall/tourist attraction. Not something that requires pages and pages of content.

    And Yahoo/MSN are eating exact match domains/sites. Started 3 niche sites this year, all #1 spot for the keywords in the domain like the example above, multnomah falls.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2020
  15. WhoaDomain.com

    WhoaDomain.com WhoaDomain.com Gold Account

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    LA = Los Angeles but also state of Lousiana
     
  16. Ostrados

    Ostrados EpicName.com VIP

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    I had a failed startup before it was a big website & mobile app. Actually the failure of our startup is what brought me back into domaining in 2018.

    The main reasons for failure were:
    1. Very saturated and competitive sector
    2. Over development: we wanted every feature to be included in the website.
    3. Perfectionism: we wanted everything to be perfect, the design should be top, the code should be super optomized.. et.
    Lesson learned was to do the lean startup approach, but we learned that lesson too late
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2020
  17. alcy

    alcy Top Contributor VIP

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    most here are domain flippers so this problem is either unnecessary or very easy to solve... well.. as easy as finding a buyer that is..
     
  18. TheBaldOne

    TheBaldOne Top Contributor VIP Gold Account ★★★★★★★★★★

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    A load of very good and constructive comments, thank you all. (y)

    If this had been say a 'London' (UK) website it would have been up by now and continually growing. (I am not a 'native' of LA as 'equity78' rightly asked above, indeed I am British. A VERY big incumbrance to developing an LA site, I do not know anything about the area.)

    I do agree with the best bet is generally to start small with a nucleus of a site and build from there, even eBay started like that. :xf.wink: But it is the lack of inbuilt knowledge of the area that hinders even this approach. Take for example 'Tourism' - including hotels, flights, attractions, restaurants, etc., not having the foggiest on these subjects prevents this approach. Consider 'Real Estate' as another example, here not knowing the area is perhaps an even bigger disadvantage than with tourism, and this is especially so when to my sensibilities the American Real Estate market seems absurd (I should say only because of my lack of familiarity of it). The area of Sports leaves me dumbfounded as I do not know basketball, American Football, Ice Hockey, etc., etc.. and if I tried writing about them the best I could hope for is any readers laughing at my ignorance - but they would never return to the site.

    I should also say that I had reached out to others (including some on here) who know LA or the area to see if they were interested in helping develop the domain into a site, unfortunately the answers were in the negative, and that is if I got an answer at all. But this was only to be expected in reality.

    As it is I over the past week just sat back and thought this through and my conclusion is that this time I just bit off more than I could chew. In some ways that self realisation is quite liberating. Now I will enjoy my retirement without the hassle of constantly working on the site. :xf.smile:

    As I say it will just sit there, I can afford $27 a year for the next few years I think. LOL

    My one great relief is that as each day goes past we are approaching closer and closer to 2028 and the LA Olympics which will continually grow the prospect of a sale. (Oh and I have arranged for the domain 'Go.LA' to go into a family trust should I peg it before before hand - i.e. die! :xf.grin: ) I just wanted everyone to know why the site wasn't developed when I had such great hopes for it when I acquired it - and to stop the rumour mill of course!

    Thanks again everyone for the great constructive comments made above. (y)
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2020
  19. NickB

    NickB Wales.org VIP

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    Nothing stopping you hiring a local content writer, local seo specialist and setting up a business directory website.

    Hire a local sales person on commission only, pay them 25% for each business they get to list and your up and running 🏃‍♂️ 🙂
     
  20. TheBaldOne

    TheBaldOne Top Contributor VIP Gold Account ★★★★★★★★★★

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    @NickB - I approached several but unfortunately the result was in the negative (and I offered more than 25% LOL).
     
  21. mayazir

    mayazir VirtualNameMarket.com VIP

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    the site will need 1 year to start working and bringing traffic, so its the time to start building the site
     
  22. Jimmysun

    Jimmysun Established Member

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  23. DigitalRoar

    DigitalRoar Investor & Creator VIP

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    It happens, I also have tried to go big on a few projects but it ends up being a lot more work than expected. It's natural for us to want to rush things and see the big results fast.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2020
  24. Cush

    Cush Established Member ★★★★★★★★★★

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    I don't get it. Why would content writers not want to work for your site? Here are my two cents.

    If I owned this domain, the only thing I would place on it now is travel/tourism info. A basic site with some articles about the main sights to see, top places to stay, top dining establishments, and a few major events (pre-covid of course).

    The domain screams "TRAVEL" and is so easy to setup/maintain. I run a lot of travel sites and it is easy to find good content writers for a few bucks to post some really nice content.

    I feel like you are reading way too much into this. A domain name is just a domain name. What was "Google.com" before they owned it? Nothing. You can have LosAngeles.com and someone else can have TopFunLosAngelesStuff.com, and the latter is more popular. Your name is "ok", but i feel like you are over valuing it a bit.

    Build a simple travel site, place some ads to make a few bucks, and figure out your approach for the future.
     
  25. Blueforever

    Blueforever Established Member

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    Is it a good idea to build something small, get a mailing list, get some backlinks and maybe a community on social media just to show what potential it has in hoping a company or someone with more resources will purchase and build.
    I’ve so many domains that I’d like to do this with.
     

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