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|Domain appraisal services: Are automated appraisals worth the cost at any price?|
Analysis of a major service provider's automated appraisal results.
I've been doing a bit of domain name speculating and am now up to about 160 names.
I have been buying the express appraisals with each domain name making the cost for a domain name plus appraisal cost less than buying the domain name alone. In other words, the domain name cost very little.
Most of the domain names I've purchased have been "appraised" in the range of $48.00 to $134.00.
Last night I purchased a few more names, and one of them was valued at much much more. I was doing the "express appraisals" but for this name I upgraded to a "certified appraisal" and am waiting to hear back.
What I want to know is from reading this forum, many are saying that the automated appraisals are not any good and are apparently not accurate? With GoDaddy the express appraisal you get within a couple of minutes and the certified appraisal takes 2 days, so am I to assume the certified gets someone to actually take a look at it?
What is your opinion, could I have actually found a genuine gem of a domain name for such a small price? I'd have thought that there would be some automated system out there that would have snatched up every single domain name that had a high value.
Now, IF I have actually gotten lucky here, my next question is this. Should I build it right now so it can start getting links to it, etc. and hope the value will rise for the name even further? Or are domain names like gold or any other commodity and what may be a high value today, may take a nose dive tomorrow?
Thanks for any help and advice.
Try the appraisal forums at dnforum and namepos. They will give you a good indication of what you can get for a domain quickly (wholesale price) or over time (end user) price.
Though you need to be thick skinned because you may get quite a few "reg fee" appraisals from people not interested in your domain names' niche.
[edited by: Webwork at 3:36 pm (utc) on Aug. 14, 2006]
Just an update. I now have the GoDaddy certified appraisal for this domain name and they put it valued at up to $17,000.00
This is for the domain name alone, not anything else included. I've already launched a website for it and will continue to add pages.
Do you think this appraisal could be real and if so, am I correct in thinking that if I develop the site and get links, search engine listings, etc. then it will become MORE valuable?
What is your take on this?
If this is worth a lot of money, then my plan is to get the site going, get it out of the sandbox and get quality links to it, then perhaps put a link on it advising it is for sale? Or do you think I should just sit on it and see if it makes money on its own from Adsense, affiliate earnings, and products I can sell on it.
I've very interested in your opinions and valuable advice. Thanks in advance.
[edited by: Webwork at 12:09 am (utc) on Aug. 16, 2006]
WolfLover, I've been letting this thread ride for awhile, if for nothing else but its entertainment value. Ordinarily I'd look upon a post saying "I've got this $17,000 domain" as a 1) violation of the Charter; and, 2) someone trolling for bids for their "valuable" domain. This time I'm going to make an exception, in hope that there's some educational value in the effort.
First, though, allow me to say in all honesty that I sure would be happy for you if you were able to unload a recently registered domain for anything near $17,000. I cannot blame you, a newcomer to domaining, for being excited by the appraisal. Such recent success would likely infect many of us with irrational exhuberance and cause some of us to begin recklessly spending our credit limits - save for some well earned cynicism. But who know? There's always a chance . . :)
Now, just for the unruly heck of it - and to perhaps shed some light on the merits of such "almost free" appraisals - allow me to invite you to post up your domain and your $17,000.00 appraised domain only in this thread. Let's all see what a newly registered $17,000 domain name looks like and then we can analyze the merits of the domain appraisal tool that placed that kind of value on the domain.
Who knows? Maybe WolfLover just registered a winner? Or maybe WolfLover totally has the wool pulled over my eyes and IS simply looking to hawk his wares here. :0)
Show your cards WolfLover and let's talk.
Caveat to anyone reading this post: Be advised that anyone who would post up a domain in this forum, at any time for any reason, that is not their own domain name would run afoul of the WebmasterWorld anti-outing policy. Outing of someone else's website OR domain name stands to get you banned from WebmasterWorld. (Read the TOS.) Obviously this would not apply to discussions of domain names in the mainstream media. For anyone else reading this thread be advised that yours truly, sometimes also known in other realms as CrankyOldMan, does not intend to suffer a succession of similar "I just registered a domain and it appraised for $$$$" posts. It just ain't gonna happen. Sorry,(not really. :-P) but this exception applies to WolfLover only - assuming he/she wishes to continue participating in the discussion.
[edited by: Webwork at 1:07 pm (utc) on Aug. 16, 2006]
|Now, just for the unruly heck of it |
This is getting exciting - just like the early days of WebmasterWorld. I would like to know what a $17,000 domain name looks like - just in case I have a few domains that are similar.
Seen this before and have been offered the .com of a domain that I have with a .com.country . THe .com was registerd in 96 and has changed hands 4 or 5 times. I was offered it in 2000 for 5000US, in 2003 for 8000US and last January for 12000US ..... think I'll just keep what I have for 35US per year. Let the speculators speculate.
|I have been buying the express appraisals with each domain name making the cost for a domain name plus appraisal cost less than buying the domain name alone. In other words, the domain name cost very little. |
Good grief WolfLover...can you put this into English?
What does this mean?
I'm not joking, I have no idea what you are writing about.
Still waiting for the "revelation" of what a big dollar domain name looks like.
I figure that if I could nab six of those domains a year I could retire to Florida, drink rum and fish all day long.
P.S. I just looked at motley fool and they do have a lot of advice regarding domains. I never knew that.
Whatever it's appraised for, a domain name is worth as much as the buyer pays. Anyway, it is still possible to catch a valuable name if you're lucky enough to catch the drop. And sometimes, you register it without knowing the fact that the name is actually a drop.
Post your name as WebWork gave you a special permission here, c'mon.
[edited by: Alioc at 6:34 am (utc) on Aug. 16, 2006]
Hello everyone. Before I read these latest posts in this thread, I would have gladly told you my domain name. I realize you do not know me from John Doe, however, I did not come here trying to hawk or sell anything to anyone.
I have no idea what the real value is of this domain, I only know that per GoDaddy, using their Certified Domain Appraisal, they gave it an appraisal of $17000.00 for the high end with $6500.00 for the low end. I am not usually lucky in too many things, so I thought immediately it must be a mistake.
I frankly feel as though I've been made fun of here, being a "newbie" domain name buyer. I've been reading WW for years and I've been thankful for the many knowledgeable webmasters here who have offered their knowledge, their advice, and their kindness to me and many others who post questions here.
I've read with great interest the posts of this forums moderator, Webwork. It was reading this mods posts that actually got me interested in increasing my collection of domain names. It was an inexpensive way of perhaps making an investment much as one might do with stocks, you may get lucky, or you may lose all you invested.
At this time, I am choosing not to disclose this domain name for several reasons. I've now got a website up and running, and I will not be accused of taking this opportunity to hawk or sell anything. I really would not abuse my membership in this forum in that way, nor would I want to take advantage of my being able to post my domain name when there may be many others here who would love the opportunity to do the same.
If I have broken any WW TOS by posting this thread, please do accept my apologies. I did not post my domain name, nor did I ask anyone to buy it nor did I list it for sale, so I'm truly not sure what I've done wrong here, but please do let me know as my intentions were innocent. I was seeking advice from my fellow webmasters, that is all.
Just for anyone who is curious, the domain name has 8 letters, is made up of two words, is a .com and has no numbers or hyphens. According to the appraisal, the less letters, the less words, no numbers, and no hyphens, and being a .com make it more valuable than some. Not sure in particular why this one came back with this type of appraisal as I have domain names with less letters that appraised for nowhere near what this one did.
Again, thank you for your time. Sorry if I've somehow offended anyone.
While I can see your POV, I'd encourage you to change your mind Wolflover.
It's a rare chance on WW to be able to discuss specifics, and a closer look at how these domain appraisal services operate would probably be of benefit/interest to other members .
|Show your cards WolfLover and let's talk. |
I would also take this opportunity to get feedback from a lot of respected Webmasters...
Appraisals very rarely have any relevance to a site's value. Why would they?
A domain is worth what someone is willing to pay, not a penny more or less.
If you go searching for a buyer in the right places, you'll probably get more; if you wait for them to come to you, you'll waste your time on a bunch of chancers with empty wallets and a fast buck on their minds.
Domain appraisal is not an exact science, and it's often a scam. You can go to a well known auction site any day of the week and buy domains appraised at $1000+ for $20 (post free!) - I've done it twice. I reckon one site was worth $20, the other perhaps a few hundred.
This thread could have been a useful exercise in showing how unworldly appraisal is - but it's been a good exercise in "call my bluff" ;)
[edited by: Quadrille at 9:32 am (utc) on Aug. 16, 2006]
Sorry to read about your reluctance to post the domain name, despite my express invitation both here and by stickymail. I'd like to give you a chance to change your mind.
If you are going to stay in the domain game and play it with any success then you're going to have to have a bit more fortitude or "grit". A newbie that exposes their domain choices will invariably suffer friendly "dis"-abuse but, in doing so, is more likley to learn some important lessons a lot more quickly. Domainers will make fun of other domainers decisions, but seldom in a mean spirted way and more often in a friendly, fraternal way. The best newbies recognize that is's (mostly) friendly rib-poking, learn from it, admit they are noobs and improve upon their domain skills.
So far as Charter or TOS violations, yes - you were close to the line but I didn't not infer any bad intention on your part. If I did your post would have been immediately removed like so many other posts I have removed.
It's your decision but I think we all will be better off if you post up the domain name. Otherwise the lesson will be lost, likely at some cost - if not to yourself then to someone else who makes a mistake for wont of the lesson. Personally, I've found swallowing my pride and confronting my newcomer status often leads to valuable lessons.
[edited by: Webwork at 3:51 pm (utc) on Aug. 16, 2006]
|The best newbies recognize that is's (mostly) friendly rib-poking, learn from it |
I remember posting some stuff in the early days that got me some rib-poking and YES I did learn a lot. It does take courage to put some stuff out here for the experts to chew over, but in the end it made me a much better webmaster (I hope!).
WolfLover, I would be interested to see your domain name.
|I frankly feel as though I've been made fun of here |
If anything, it's "express domain appraisal services" that are having fun poked at.
Not their victims. :)
Anyway - 8 letters - two words - certainly is possible!
Post the domain for godsake .. it is not often someone is given this oppertunity and as you have said you've been lurking for a while...
Now you have a real chance to finally contribute and you back out leaving us all high and dry..
Well thanks just thanks...
|Though you need to be thick skinned because you may get quite a few "reg fee" appraisals from people not interested in your domain names' niche. |
I also see quite a few "reg fee" appraisals for domains that are only worth a reg fee or less. You only need to read the first 20 names on any drop list to guess that reg fee is way to much for some domains.
Glad you found something you like, WolfLover.
Please don't let the one time a person gets permission to post specifics go by without taking the opportunity to learn what you really have.
|Thanks for any help and advice. |
Post the domain name and thats what you will get. HELP and ADVICE.
|Though you need to be thick skinned because you may get quite a few "reg fee" appraisals from people not interested in your domain names' niche |
A "reg fee" response is a POSITIVE reponse! Many appraisal requests are just ignored. That's when you know you've got a REAL stinker! :)
So, rumor has it that WolfLover may be prepared to post up the domain - so we can discuss the merits of automated appraisals.
Let's be certain to focus on the auto-appraisal and not WolfLover.
FYI - I am exploring the possibility of opening up the forum a bit - very limited - to dialogue about specific domain names so long as the thrust of a thread offers some general educational value. THAT DAY has not yet arrived, so please don't take this thread as license to post any other domain names for appraisal, comparison or otherwise. There's a bit of policy and procedure that needs to be worked out.
So, let the experiment begin.
Wolflover (btw love the screen name)
I would be interested to see your domain name as well. I have just started learning this little portion of the web, so anything you post in regards is also a learning process for another newb at this.
I dont' have any I wish to or would wish to sell, not that I have that many. I don't think much value is offered on domain love type domain names.
Anyhow, my true love is xhtml css, graphics of which I am off to barnes and nobles to read up on.
Good luck with that nicely appraised domain name, no matter what you decide to do with it.
Ok, I'm ready to tell the domain name in question.
Several points: This discussion is about the merits of the Appraisal given by the registrar, not whether or not you "like" the domain name.
I came here eager to learn and to see if any experienced domainers had advice for me as to whether or not it is possible to buy a domain name straight from the registrar and it be worth much more than what you paid for it.
I asked several questions when I originally posted this thread, most of which was not answered, so I am hoping by taking the chance and throwing my information out there, that perhaps I and others may benefit from the knowledge of those who are more experienced.
I am not posting this information in order to gain a sale. I may be able to make more money by using and further developing the website than I would by outright selling it anyway.
When I purchased this domain name, I had NO IDEA it would be "appraised" for this high of an amount. I happen to have some knowledge in this particular niche and have purchased quite a few names with this particular niche in mind and none of the others were appraised for more than a few hundred dollars. It was unexpected.
These are my questions:
1. Is it possible to still be able to buy domains straight from the registrar and they may really be worth much more than what you paid?
2. In your opinion and experience, is it better to sit on a valuable domain name, and hope the value rises?
3. Is one better off keeping a valuable domain name, developing it, getting quality links, and later offer it for sale at a higher price because it should be worth much more with an established website being sold with the domain name?
4. What price would one put on a domain name with an established website that is earning you X amount of dollars per year? Would you price it at 5 times, 10 times, 20 times your yearly earnings from the site?
5. What is the best method of selling it IF one wanted to sell it? List it with a domain name selling company? Put a link on it with the for sale information? List it with a domain name auction company?
6. Doing a search on G for the two keywords in the domain name, it comes up with 2,760,000 results. Is this any part of the supposed value?
Factors advised in appraisal (according to appraiser): The fewer letters, the better, this one has 8 letters.
The fewer words, the better, this one has 2 words.
No hypens equal higher value, this one has no hyphens.
No numbers equal higher value, this one has no numbers.
A .com has a higher value than other TLD's.
The more generic the keywords, the higher in value as it will appeal to more buyers, therefore makes the domain name higher in value. This particular domain name does involve a niche, in fact can involve two different niches, I will explain this after the domain name.
I just purchased this domain name three days ago. I have put up a website just to get it "out there". Please excuse the fact that it is unfinished, as I've not had time to add nearly the content that will be going on it. It's just some ideas I've had in my mind and I got something put up quickly. Anyway, this discussion is not about the merits of design, content, etc. it's about the domain name itself being appraised for a lot of money.
If it is ok, I will copy and paste the domain appraisal itself to this thread, but I will wait for permission to do so.
Thank you in advance for any knowledge, advice, experiences, etc. that you may have to offer. It's appreciated. I've been given good advice here at WebmasterWorld and I hope that by giving out this personal information of mine that I may have in some way helped others. The domain name is question is:
The two niches that can be used for this site are Gothic or Goth and Roses. Those who are into gardening and roses know there are some beautiful gothic roses. Those who are into the goth or gothic scene know that roses are very popular in gothic tattoos, gothic apparel, gothic art, etc.
My opinion is this. IF and I do mean IF this name IS extremely valuable, IMHO it must be because the keywords are popular in this particular niche, there are quite a few searches.
Checking the Overture Keyword Suggestion tool it shows that the keyword "goth" was searched for 102,278 times in July 2006. This was for various terms including the keyword "goth". Obviously there are many keyword phrases and other keywords that can be used with a site in this particular niche.
Ok, now lets hear your opinions and personal experiences. What is your estimation of it's worth? I realize it depends on whether or not anyone would even want a particular domain name and how much they would be willing to pay. Without that, it really does not matter what anything is worth, if noone is willing to pay it's "worth".
Sorry for the long post, however, I had a lot to say! ;-)
*I realize it depends on whether or not anyone would even want a particular domain name and how much they would be willing to pay.*
FWIW, I've recently had to find a domain name for a new venture, with the initial choice the .com was taken but unused, while the .net was for sale.
My bid in the low 000s was immediately rejected (nothing under $1000 was even considered) so I turned to Thesaurus.
An hour later I had a choice of about 8 possibilities and managed to get both .coms and .nets for four of them.
Much like yours, the one I'll use is a 9 letter two (popular) word combo and is a far better choice than the initial one; thing is, any of the other 3 would have been fine, perhaps not ideal but certainly usable.
My point to this is that I'd need a VERY compelling reason to pay that kind of premium for a domain name, an oversight by a newly signed up and about to be heavily promoted Goth band kind of reason....
|The two niches that can be used for this site are Gothic or Goth and Roses |
I agree that you've got a good combination of words here, but since they're not very commercial by nature I think you'd have a hard time fetching $6'000 to $17'000 for a sale of the domain name alone. In my opinion your best bet would be to develop a site and hope that the memorable name would help to attract and retain visitors. If you can pull that off then maybe you'll be able to offload the domain and site for those prices or higher in a year or two.
That's just my opinion - I'm by no means an expert on domain name valuations!
|1. Is it possible to still be able to buy domains straight from the registrar and they may really be worth much more than what you paid? |
Yes. You might be creative, and also a good marketer.
|2. In your opinion and experience, is it better to sit on a valuable domain name, and hope the value rises? |
Depends on whether a segment is outpacing other segments in popularity.
|3. Is one better off keeping a valuable domain name, developing it, getting quality links, and later offer it for sale at a higher price because it should be worth much more with an established website being sold with the domain name? |
It depends on the name. For someone like me (Who is probably not capable of building an empire), keeping a nice name sounds smarter than developing it. An unspohisticated website might just give people the idea that they can get it cheap. I should park it and make some money, but I won't hire a warehouse and customer service staff.
|What is your estimation of it's worth? |
500-600 end user. That presumes that you're willing to hold it for awhile and hopefully get it in front of the right eyes.
|The more generic the keywords, the higher in value as it will appeal to more buyers, therefore makes the domain name higher in value. This particular domain name does involve a niche, in fact can involve two different niches, I will explain this after the domain name. |
I think gothrose.com has some commercial potential, and I think you are right about there being more connections there. I would see it more likely to become a community site. I also think there's plenty of poetntial for it to be a brand of something like jewelry, leather, accesories, or clothes.
You have to keep in mind that an appraisal is someone's opinion of what you are likely to sell a domain for in the current market. That could be miles away from what you would actually sell it for, especially if you already have some plans.
I think it's a pretty good name to go hand reg.
I love roses, and did not realize that there were ones that were named as such. Just as I did not realize that there were different varities of impatience flowers.
Thanks for posting it along with the information you posted before hand.
from one newb to another, nice work ;)
First off, allow me to say in the local vernacular that WolfLover rocks! It takes a certain amount of courage to face a critical analysis in any situation - to volunteer to "be the subject" - and WolfLover, in agreeing to subject his domain + appraisal to analysis has demonstrated both courage and character. I've had a bit of back channel dialogue with WolfLover about this thread and based upon that dialougue I will tell you that WL is a class act, someone who has chosen to participate in this excercise in the interest of mass education, not personal gain. So, on behalf of all that may learn something from this thread all me to offer a hearty thank-you to WolfLover.
Now, here's some of my initial comments and observations:
Search for exact match of "Goth Rose" = 511 results [google.com]
Bid reflected on Overture Bid Tool = 1 [uv.bidtool.overture.com] "Goth Rose - Try eBay Discover great deals on thousands of women's accessories including handbags and scarves. New or used, you can find it on eBay. www.ebay.com (Advertiser's Max Bid: $0.22)"
Searches for "Goth Rose" in July per Overture Keyword Selector Tool = 74 [inventory.overture.com]
Domain version of phrases employing the word "Goth" that received a greater number of searches in July and that are available, as domains, for registration: (Note: Phrase domains, below, are not "with extension" results. Results numbers are without extension.)
WolfLover - Looking at the numbers I just posted what value would you extract from them? What do the numbers generated by my search indicate? How would you use them? Take a few minutes to contemplate the numbers I posted and then explain how you might use the same data (different search words or "domain candidate words") in the future.
FYI: The search date I posted for "goth rose" is the type of basic data I look at when considering a) registering a domain name; and, b) buying an aftermarket domain name. Why do you think I place great weight on the numbers I just posted?
Do you see the numbers I posted reflected in your original domain appraisal?
WolfLover, take some time to carefully read this thread [webmasterworld.com] from the Domain Forum Library, that discusses how to value domain names. After reading the Library thread compare the valuation factors that the local experts suggest your consider with those factors mentioned in the appraisal. What factors are discussed in the Library thread that are not discussed in the GD domain appraisal?
[edited by: Webwork at 1:17 pm (utc) on Aug. 17, 2006]
WolfLover, as always Webwork makes some excellent points.
This is actually a great example of the differences between generic domain valuation formulas and real world values. Any valuation that focuses more on how many letters/words a domain has than what the domain is, how large the market is for it, and how much competition there is for it will give you skewed results.
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