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This 38 message thread spans 2 pages: 38 ( [1] 2 > >     
Local Search & Zip Code URLs: A Domain-Search Model That Works in .US gTLD?
Newly launched .US Zip Code Network Challenges Marchex's .Com Zip Code Network
gpmgroup




msg:3068231
 12:06 am on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

New nationwide zipcode network of sites in .us is launched

www.91009.us
www.98009.us

etc etc.

 

walkman




msg:3068255
 12:25 am on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

and? I don't see how this anything but an ad farm. Good luck with Google

gpmgroup




msg:3068295
 1:25 am on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

and?

its a huge network around 25,000 zip.us names all registered 31/08/06.

Webwork




msg:3068330
 2:26 am on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Interesting that some entity has chosen to piggyback on the model first put in place by UltSearch/Marchex.

I almost prefer the "flavor" os .US zip codes versus .Com zip codes.

I also keep waiting for the USPO to somehow weigh in about anyone deploying their proprietary (?) system of assigning numbers to locations.

Wouldn't there be a bit of fun if the USPO somehow chose to rewrite the system, a bit like the telcos keep shifting area codes around.

ccDan




msg:3068376
 2:57 am on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

I used to have my local zip code as a .COM, until I forgot to renew it... and was busy with family issues at renewal time, so didn't see the reminder eMails until it was too late.

I wish I had thought of this .US scheme. Dang!

But, the USPO should probably have thought of it too, and registered all those domains. Every US mailing address could have an eMail associated with it. You know: John.Smith@123.Happy_Farm.Rd.Any_Town.State.99999.US. Send letters online! Compose your letter, pay 50 cents and the post office will print and deliver your message to the recipient.

Then again, maybe John.Smith.123.Happy_Farm.Rd.Any_Town.State.99999@USPS.dom would be easier. ;-)

trader




msg:3068378
 3:02 am on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Only a few days ago I reg'd a few zip code .org's when the .us was still available but today they are gone (of course, the com's were long gone). However, what with this surprising us portfolio I am now wondering why I selected org over us and if org is as good? Any opinions?

ccDan




msg:3068381
 3:04 am on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

In this case, I think .US even beats .COM!

So, yes, join the Kicking Yourself Club. .US would have been the better choice.

smells so good




msg:3068432
 4:24 am on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

There may still be time for all of the UK and Canada postal codes.

A9Z1X9.can
A9Z1X9.uk

Ready, set, go...

Webwork




msg:3068701
 12:08 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

I think this is an example of a multiple domain network model that makes perfect sense. This is also a perfect match for .US since zip codes ARE US, as in USPS United States Postal Service.

This was an opportunity just sitting there in the domain realm.

This is also an intelligent play in the emerging local search realm. Nothing quite so local as zip codes. It's not a perfect model but it has legs.

Price for a shot a significant penetration in the local search market? Less than $200,000 in domain acquisition costs. (25,000 x ~$7.00). Less than the cost of a single significant City Dot Com.

I'd say that in the big money game this play is small change, significant risk, big potential gain. Sooner or later the big players in local search will be lookinig to consolidate the field, gain traction, hold their position, etc. This is a buy out candidate right out of the starting gate.

A big problem that the local search players have is the challenge of search engines and mounting PPC costs to play the search engine game. This is a "the heck with search engine love" play. This model is easy enough to promote, inexpensively, in a variety of media or in guerilla fashion. It's easy enough to master as a search concept: You know mom's zip code. Want flowers delivered to mom? ######.US.

"The search system" is easy to master. It works.

[edited by: Webwork at 12:23 pm (utc) on Sep. 1, 2006]

Leosghost




msg:3068759
 12:57 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

<Slightly OT ..but for information ..

lest anyone get any ideas about .FR ..the postcodes ( about 36860 ..one per "commune" ) and the names of town are ( along with thousands of other terms and expressions ) prohibited under the dot FR registry ..also applies to the .re ( Reunion ) ..

Regulations ...in English ..[afnic.fr ]

/return to immediate topic>

I presume that the US zipcodes are very specific and can narrow down the person or building reasonably specifically ..? Although 25 k for all of the US seems to be "broad targetting" ..

The UK as I remember it is much more specific ..usually the specific precise postcode applies to only 3 addresses at max ( was the case when I was last in the UK ) ..and is therefore much more targetted ..albiet much more expensive to get them all ..there must be millions of them ..

I have a UK office ( with postcode ) ..but never thought to ask how many different postcodes there were ..:)

burgi




msg:3068821
 2:05 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

In Germany, you can't register all numeric URLs. They have to have at least 1 letter in them, which sucks, because I love the basic idea behind registering the zip code for local searches!

OptiRex




msg:3068825
 2:11 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

I have a UK office ( with postcode ) ..but never thought to ask how many different postcodes there were ..:)

There are supposedly 27 million postal addresses and about 2.1 million postal codes according to the Post Office!

Leosghost




msg:3068869
 3:07 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Well OptiRex..I might have tried for all the french ones at 10.oo a peice if they had been available ..( although I can think of better things to do with my money ) ..but given our relative wallet sizes I 'll leave the UK ones to yourself and whoverer might be lurking on their yacht in le vieux port du Cannes ..or Monaco ..;-)

[edited by: Leosghost at 3:08 pm (utc) on Sep. 1, 2006]

WolfLover




msg:3068922
 4:03 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Well, this really sucks! I just went to see if some zip codes in my area were available and this is the message I got:

3***4.US
is an invalid domain name.
Reserved name error

I received the same message for every .US zip code.

For the .com zip codes, I get "this domain is already taken".

You can find some zip codes available, but every single .US zip code I tried says it's a Reserved Name Error.

Exactly what does this mean? WHO reserved it? Can you reserve it and not actually lease it?

I could understand if they were all reserved by the US Post Office, I have no problem with that, but if some company is allowed to buy up that many, then why can't our companies buy any?

[edited by: WolfLover at 4:04 pm (utc) on Sep. 1, 2006]

WolfLover




msg:3068931
 4:14 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

New nationwide zipcode network of sites in .us is launched
www.91009.us
www.98009.us

I just checked out the first one posted by the OP. Very clever. They state that to get listed in their directory you must have a .us domain name and they give you a link and show the many domain sellers where you can purchase a .us domain name from. Wonder if they are affiliates of all of them. If so, very clever indeed!

Very cool idea, think I'll go do something like that. I already have some local city domain names, however, I like the zip code idea.

What do you all think is better? Get a zipcode name with .net, .biz, .info, or .org since the .coms and .us is not availalbe. OR get a zipcode+someword.us?

Please give opinions and why you feel this way.

IMHO:

Since the .com's are all taken and very unlikely to get type-in traffic on other tld's anyway, I say may as well go for the zipcode alone under any tld you can find it. However, may be clever use of a .us to use zipcode and a short keyword in your niche?

WolfLover




msg:3068934
 4:19 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Also, every single zip code I tried (at ramdom) with the .us are this exact same company.

They said they are going to be the biggest directory of local clubs, restaurants, businesses, etc.

Dang! Always a day late and a dollar short! :-)

jtara




msg:3068937
 4:28 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Exactly what does this mean? WHO reserved it? Can you reserve it and not actually lease it?

I noticed this too, though through a different route - WHOIS.

I did a WHOIS on <my zipcode>. I expected to see the registrarant for the scheme announced in this post.

Instead, it's listed as registered to:

NeuStar
.US Reserved Domain

There's an IP address, and it resolves to a web server that is serving a blank page.

On the other hand, the specific examples cited in this post are listed as registered to:

Vendare Media Corporation

So, it looks like they didn't snag ALL of the US zip codes.

Were these "reserved" prior to yesterday?

Sounds like perhaps not just anybody could (or can) just register these domains through the normal registration route. I think maybe they had to negotiate some special deal?

It seems odd, then, that they didn't get all of them. I checked my zip code and a couple of adjacent ones - all really good demographics, and they are listed as "reserved".

WolfLover




msg:3068945
 4:38 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Exactly what does this mean? WHO reserved it? Can you reserve it and not actually lease it?

I noticed this too, though through a different route - WHOIS.

I did a WHOIS on <my zipcode>. I expected to see the registrarant for the scheme announced in this post.

Instead, it's listed as registered to:

NeuStar
.US Reserved Domain

There's an IP address, and it resolves to a web server that is serving a blank page.

On the other hand, the specific examples cited in this post are listed as registered to:

Vendare Media Corporation

So, it looks like they didn't snag ALL of the US zip codes.

jtara, actually, it is the same company, just a different name in the whois. If you click on the link in this paragraph:

Note: You must have a .us domain name to be part of the directory. If you would like to register a .us domain mame, visit getmy us.

Above quoted from that site, but removed dots so no actual url listed.

If you go to their link of the getmy dot us you are redirected to neustarDotUs to a "register page" with all these different well known registrars listed with their links.

Seems to me a huge deal made what with them linking to all these registrars and you can only be listed in their directory if you have a .us domain name.

Again, VERY clever indeed. What I also wonder though in light of all ICANN's doings, I wonder if this company with various names involved somehow with close ties to the registrars? Just a good business idea and they made a deal to reserve all those .us zip codes OR something nasty afoot? Not being paranoid here, just wondering outloud. :-)

jtara




msg:3069004
 5:15 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

actually, it is the same company

Neustar operates the .us registry.

Vendare Media, the company listed as the registrant for those zip codes that are not listed as "reserved" has a web site, with quite a bit of information. They have "a complete portfolio of solutions for advertisers and web publishers". They list under "search programs" that they have "revenue generating opportunities for registrars..."

Did Neustar contract Vendare to do this? If so, though, why is Vendare the registrant, and why are some of the zip codes still reserved?

Maybe it's just a scheme on the part of Neustar to flog .us domain sales. They certainly haven't produced anything useful for the public on the web pages.

WolfLover




msg:3069066
 6:07 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

jtara, upon doing a little more checking I also found this out:

ALL .us are reserved if they even begin with a zip code. For instance, I tried my zip code and put in every kind of gibberish, words, none words, typos, etc. ALL are reserved. This makes no sense to me as I know there is no way possible that with some of what I typed in that someone reserved that exact combination of letters with the zip code first. This means us average people cannot register a .us domain name if the zip code comes first. Now, we can register the keywordzipcodeDotUs domain names all day long, the zipcode can be in the middle or the end but all zip code first in the .us is reserved.

I have not read everything on this but does it say this in the .us charter or whatever official document that you are not allowed to register zipcodes in the first part of a .us domain name?

NeuStar, Inc. - The official .US Registry operator for .US domain name registrations. ... Final .US Locality Compliance Report published by NeuStar. ...

The above was from doing a search. This company is listed all over the searches under many many domain names.

They all have the same list of all the registrars where you can purchase .us names.

Vendare Media and Neustar/Neulevel have something in common at least. They were both among the participants, sponsors, and speakers at the domainroundtable conference in 2005, not sure about 2006. They are closely intertwined, at least that is what it seems to me. Not sure yet if they are owned by the same company or are the same company. Not saying there is anything wrong, but it is looking like a monopoly of .us zipcodes, IF the zipcode is alone or first in any domain name.

Again, I'd have no problems or issues if it was the US Post Office who had all these reserved. But these are companies with close ties to ICANN, registars, and everyone IN that business.

Please remember, I am not a lawyer, nor a detective, but this is what I've been able to come up with searching the internet.

What is your opinion about this? Do you think that one huge company should be able to buy up or "reserve" every single .us zipcode name? Remember, you can get the zip code in a .us name as long as it starts with a letter or word first.

webwork, I hope my post here is within the Charter. I am not maligning them, I'm just questioning what is going on. If you need to edit this post, I understand.

moishe




msg:3069068
 6:08 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

OK, I'll join the kicking myself club. In the 90's I registered a bunch of ZIP codes here in Texas, settup a free webmail service for each one and tried to phycially sell advertising to local businesses, after failing to monetize them, I let them all go...

SIGHHHH

lexipixel




msg:3069091
 6:24 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Unless they host 50,000+ unique sites, with decent / unique content related to the specific zip codes they will be lost in the SEPRS.

Plus they need to compete with the existing #####.COM sites for type-in value, ie;

07101.com/ - Newark NJ
01701.com/ - Framingham, MA

Here's just some of the 71 zips I have in my database just for Boston, MA: (Most large cities have many --- New York, NY, 168 zips ---- Los Angeles, CA, 95 zips)...

ZIPCODECITYCOUNTYSTATE
02100BostonSuffolkMA
02101BostonSuffolkMA
02102BostonSuffolkMA
02103BostonSuffolkMA
02104BostonSuffolkMA
02105BostonSuffolkMA
02106BostonSuffolkMA
02107BostonSuffolkMA
02108BostonSuffolkMA
02109BostonSuffolkMA
02110BostonSuffolkMA
02111BostonSuffolkMA
02112BostonSuffolkMA
02113BostonSuffolkMA
02114BostonSuffolkMA
02115BostonSuffolkMA
02116BostonSuffolkMA
02117BostonSuffolkMA
02118BostonSuffolkMA
.
.
.
02292BostonSuffolkMA
02293BostonSuffolkMA
02294BostonSuffolkMA
02295BostonSuffolkMA
02296BostonSuffolkMA
02297BostonSuffolkMA
02298BostonSuffolkMA
02299BostonSuffolkMA

And you can be sure as soon as they make a few bucks the USPS will shut them down if they mention "Zip Code", (a tradmark).

This should be a fizzler. I'd opt for a name <that suggests finding info by zip code>

[edited by: Webwork at 7:21 pm (utc) on Sep. 1, 2006]
[edit reason]
[1][edit reason] Delinked and removed specific "for sale" domain [/edit]
[/edit][/1]

WolfLover




msg:3069133
 7:00 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Sorry for all these posts, but it's very interesting to me and perhaps to others.

I found a pdf publication online that gives some information. Still not sure yet if both companies are owned by the same company, but they are mentioned quite often in the same articles, etc.

Here is the PDF document if you are interested in reading it. Page 107 is where I got the below quote from:
[www7.national-academies.org ]

From the pdf I've read it states:
September 2004 ***.net was acquired by the Vendare Group, an online media and marketing company, as the basis for a division offering search services, while continuing to offer domain name registration.

About NeuStar it states:
... the new registry and registry operator for the .us TLD is a commercial company, Neustar, which also is the registry and registry operator for the new gTLD .biz

So, very interesting in my opinion. The pdf document goes further to say:
... in the .us case, the manager, the U.S. DOC, decided to change the operational model from a deeply heirarchical, mostly geographic, extensively delegated structure to one that would be exploited commercially at the second level.

So, what does this all mean?

[edited by: WolfLover at 7:05 pm (utc) on Sep. 1, 2006]

walkman




msg:3069137
 7:09 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

sorry but I see 0 (as in ZERO) value to this. 99% of their info will be identical (good luck getting unique info and listings for each zip code), presumably all interlinked, same DNS, same server, same owner, same templates, and they are begging to get penalized. I'd rather have a catchydomain.com/zip-code/ than this, and with the money they spent registering the names, they could have gotten one. Even if they got 0.25 unique links for each zip, that would mean thousands of them to the main domain, giving it and its pages a nice rank. Good luck ranking, or even being indexed, without dozens of links for each zip-code.us.

it reminds me a company who had registered 1000's of names with a 4 before it (4cars , 4watches etc.)

[edited by: walkman at 7:16 pm (utc) on Sep. 1, 2006]

ccDan




msg:3069141
 7:13 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

Unless they host 50,000+ unique sites, with decent / unique content related to the specific zip codes they will be lost in the SEPRS.

Or 301 redirect to:

[superdomain.dom...]

Plus, in the case of zip codes covering multiple cities, you'd have a page asking, Were you looking for... (POPUP LIST).

ccDan




msg:3069145
 7:16 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

So, what does this all mean?

That a whole bunch of smart people here didn't think to do this already, if not across the US, at least in their own local search area!

If some big company beat us to the punch on this, kudos to them. But, if there is some relationship with the registry, I don't think that's quite right. (Unless it's at the direction of the USPS, for which we've so far seen no evidence.)

Perhaps we need a separation of registry and domain name registrant clause in the ICANN constitution! ;-)

[edited by: ccDan at 7:18 pm (utc) on Sep. 1, 2006]

Webwork




msg:3069159
 7:25 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

The local-search-by-browser model is still sorting itself out. Right now there is a lot of room for experimentation and to find a model that works.

This is a bit unlike the past "attack of the mass domain" models, such as the clever 123BlahBlah or Biz2BlahBlahBlah models. This system is far more intuitive, less contrived.

toddski07




msg:3069170
 7:33 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

I do not believe the USPS is going to be able to come after these people (or others) for using the word "zip code". ZIP Code was originally registered as a trademark by the U.S. Postal Service but its registration has since expired according to the trademark website. See link below:

[tarr.uspto.gov...]

Todd

jtara




msg:3069185
 7:40 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

a whole bunch of smart people here didn't think to do this already

I don't think that is the case. These domains were all "reserved" by Neustar, and unable to be registered by any of the smart people here.

Looks like Neustar finally decided how they are going to (try to) monetize these domains.

There certainly seems to be something sneaky about this. It doesn't quite smell right. One day they are all "reserved", the next day they show up registered to some company with at least the appearance of an arms-length relationship.

BTW, zipcode.us, zc.us, and I imagine a few others are shown registered to Neustar (as opposed to reserved). There are no web pages up there.

FWIW, the zip codes in .us that are still "reserved" (at least MY zip code) is listed with a create date of 1/5/2005 and updated on 1/4/2007. That's right - updated in the future!

ALL .us are reserved if they even begin with a zip code. For instance, I tried my zip code and put in every kind of gibberish, words, none words, typos, etc. ALL are reserved.

It's not consistent. For example, <my zip code><gibberish>.us is NOT reserved, and apparently can be registered. That also seems to be the case for the example zip codes given in the first post of this thread.

Looks like in most cases you can register <zipcode>zipcode.us, <zipcode>shopping.us, <zipcode>houses.us, <zipcode>bargains.us, etc. Maybe this is just a scheme to get the "smart people" here thinking and registering those domains. Viral marketing at it's finest. ;)

Perhaps we need a separation of registry and domain name registrant clause in the ICANN constitution!

Ditto. Registrys should hold registration data for others. Registrars should provide registration services. Neither should be able to take advantage of their special status and responsibilities by cherry-picking domains for themselves which are withheld from sale to the public.

[edited by: jtara at 7:54 pm (utc) on Sep. 1, 2006]

ccDan




msg:3069201
 7:52 pm on Sep 1, 2006 (gmt 0)

I don't think that is the case. These domains were all "reserved" by Neustar, and unable to be registered by any of the smart people here.

It's not consistent. For example, <my zip code><gibberish>.us is NOT reserved, and apparently can be registered. That also seems to be the case for the example zip codes given in the first post of this thread.

Curiouser and curiouser.

[edited by: ccDan at 7:52 pm (utc) on Sep. 1, 2006]

This 38 message thread spans 2 pages: 38 ( [1] 2 > >
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