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Domain Names Forum

Should I buy the .NET if the .COM is parked and not for sale?
I made an offer but the owner wants way too much for it.

 1:13 pm on Feb 24, 2009 (gmt 0)

I'm starting a new site, and I found the perfect domain name. The only problem is the .COM is taken (as expected) but is parked. I inquired about buying it, and got a response. Made an offer and found out I am not in the same ballpark as the owner. Which is fine. I have a budget that I can't stray from.

So here is my dilemma. The .NET version is available as a resale for a decent chunk of change (about my budget limit). No other extensions are available.

The name is exactly what my site is about, and a very common searched term by folks that would like to find my site (I hope, at least.. =). Do I go for the .NET and try to brand around that taking the chance that being "first to market" will help me solidify my domain as a trusted source before the .COM ever gets bought, branded and surfaces?

No one can say for sure if the .COM will ever surface, but I would like to assume someday it will. Seeing as I would be the first to take advantage of the name, could I presume that my name/site would be safe from any trademark problems if some bigwig, deep pocket company came along down the road and bought up the .COM and developed it in the same marketplace?

Typically I try to stick with .COM domains, but I am being tempted by this very spot-on keyword .NET. What would you do?

Thanks for any feedback/thoughts on this.



 1:38 pm on Feb 24, 2009 (gmt 0)

It's all a case of how long is a piece of string. Just how perfect is this name, and why are you so sure? How many letters, and is it a dictionary word or does it include one?

It's over your budget, but the fact that the .com is taken suggests that type-in traffic is a possibility. I think what it comes down to is, are you prepared to gamble? Not just with your money, but the time and effort it would take to backtrack if you change your mind later and need to rebrand due to trademark or other issues. The general rule of thumb is, don't gamble more than you can afford to lose. What else could you buy with that chunk of change?

If it were me, I'd start thinking of another name. But I'm probably more risk-averse than most people.


 2:12 pm on Feb 24, 2009 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the feedback. It is a two word domain (10 characters total), but the two words define exactly what our site is about... Both are dictionary words. Google's keyword tool shows an almost full green bar for the search terms that is exactly those two words. So from that perspective it appears folks are searching for information on this topic...

I'll see what other names I can find in the meantime. The site is not completed yet, so I have some time. And I do already have a domain I bought as a backup (.COM, but is three words).


 3:57 pm on Feb 24, 2009 (gmt 0)

While the .com domain remains parked, it isn't a big problem (unless people type in the whole name and don't remember it's a .net). Real confusion only arises if someone else starts to use the .com, however, if you are established by that time, and someone else attempts to profit from the confusion, you might be able to stop them - tricky though, and probably not cheap.



 10:27 pm on Feb 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

I think it depends up to what scale you expect to grow your business. A big business that does not own the dot.com extension looks like an amateur. For a smaller business it may be OK just to have the dot.net. I've made that mistake myself: I chose the dot.net for one of my sites, and the dot.com kept getting more expensive as my business grew.
My advice: keep looking for a different name.


 11:53 pm on Feb 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the good advice. I think I will hold off and look around for a better name that I can secure the .com.

My gut tells me to get a .com. But my emotions want to get the cool .net. ;-)

Thanks again.


 12:56 am on Feb 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

get the net and get started on the build as it will rank as good as the .com besides you said it yourself the name is a perfict fit.


 2:26 am on Feb 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

My largest site is a .net site. It's 9 years old now but it's very popular in it's niche, gets as much traffic as the next biggest competitor that's been around for 12 years (it's a .com). Traffic stats are real (directly measured in quantcast).

Go for it. Worst case is you develop the .net site and down the road you 301 to a "better" .com domain, big deal. Best case is it's so popular there's no need :-)


 3:17 pm on Feb 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

Now you have got me thinking about the .net again. ;-)

This is my problem. There are decent arguments both ways. I do think there is long term potential with this site. It is not a new site or niche. But I am focusing on a sub-niche and hoping to provide a better service in that area.

My goal is really to build up an great resource of information, but not necessarily a brand. Does that change anyone's opinion?

The .net is being offered for 1k. It would the most I ever spent on a domain. Can I afford it? Yeah sure. If I buy it and the site flops will it break me? No. But it seems like a lot of money to spend on a .net for a new site. That is where I struggle.

My wife thinks I should just stick with the 3-word .com I already bought for $10 and call it a day. But she does not care much for investing in keyword domains beyond those that are unregistered. Though she is probably right in this case. ;-)


 3:22 pm on Feb 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

I had to do a .net vs a .com for just this same reason. Worked out fine. The parked domain is nowhere to be seen and by the time someone does spend that amount of money to acquire it, I'll have enough history to feel confident that I'm okay for the time being. That is of course they are extremely aggressive, then I may be in for a challenge. :)

Ever thought about adding numbers in the mix? KeywordKeyword411.com or something to that effect? When it comes down to the .com space, there isn't much left from a "prime" perspective. I've seen some rather creative domains come into the marketplace. If you coin the right word, initialism, whatever, you can capture a niche.

I'm fond of the 411 alternative for information sites. You can't get much more relevant than that. :)


 3:25 pm on Feb 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

Maybe I'm odd (!) however I love .net names, to me they should have been the generic international extension.

If it's a well constructed site about the the two word subject then it should rank very quickly which could actually put the .com owner under pressure to sell at a lower price once they've seen the .net take the territory.

Of course they'll say it's worth more since it's the .com however if they try to replicate what you've done, you've got 'em cornered! They'll fight however you will have the upperhand...IMHO:-)


 4:05 pm on Feb 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

Ever thought about adding numbers in the mix? KeywordKeyword411.com or something to that effect?

I did try the standard keywordkeyword101, but that was taken. Hadn't thought about the 411. That is interesting... thanks for the idea.


 4:14 pm on Feb 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

You are better off with the .net than adding digits just to get a .com (even if the digits have some significance).



 4:23 pm on Feb 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

I have decided against adding numbers/digits to the end of the domain. Since I was not even sure what 411 meant (I guessed, but I wasn't that familiar with it), I figured there are probably others like me.

I just found out I could get the .net from another reseller for a few hundred cheaper. Apparently they have it listed at a few resellers... for different prices. Interesting.

Another option, the .org is for sale. I am usually a fan of .org since I think they carry a lot of credibility. I'm inquiring on the price of the .org now.


 12:05 pm on Feb 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

I am usually a fan of .org since I think they carry a lot of credibility.

Is it a commercial site? If so personally I don't like .org being used this way and back out of a site immediately if it is overtly commercial.


 2:22 am on Feb 28, 2009 (gmt 0)

My vote is get the net and get started :)

I am fighting off a .net right now that is 6 years youndger than my .com if that helps ya


 12:45 pm on Feb 28, 2009 (gmt 0)

Thanks everyone. I'm leaning towards the .net, if I can only find a way to keep the registrar create date set to 7 years ago.

Does anyone know if you buy a resale from Godaddy, does the registration information get transferred? Or does it get re-created as a new registration?


 3:21 pm on Feb 28, 2009 (gmt 0)

I'm not sure what you mean by "buy a resale" but...

As long as the domain name has not expired, simply transferring the domain to your account will retain the original creation date. I've done this, I bought a domain from a fellow godaddy user and the creation date stayed. In fact the domain transfer process from one godaddy customer to another is quite easy.


 5:30 pm on Feb 28, 2009 (gmt 0)

Thanks Swanny. What I meant by "resale" was that GoDaddy is reselling the domain. So I would purchase it through them (GoDaddy) but at a premium price since it is a resale, and not a unregistered domain.

I've never done this before, so I wasn't not sure if GoDaddy treats it as a transfer or if they cancel it and re-register it to me if I purchase it?

My guess is that it would be treated like a transfer.


 5:55 pm on Feb 28, 2009 (gmt 0)

You are better off with the .net than adding digits just to get a .com (even if the digits have some significance).

Something to consider is the default .com entry by most, including developers. I even found myself linking to the .com version when it should have been another TLD. It's just habit.

I don't see anything wrong with using numbers in a domain, particularly in this instance. I didn't think about the 411 not having significance in certain regions, I always thought that was kind of universal like 911. It has worked well in the one instance where we use it. The company name is very generic and the .com had been long gone. We were able to secure an 8 letter domain using the company name and 411. That was the target, one word branding along with a "recognizable" 411 by the target audience.

Heck, even Vice President Biden has been known to use the .com when it should have been .org and I believe in that instance, Frank Schilling owned the .com version and had millions of visitors after that mention. Ya, not having a .com can be a challenge in many instances. I've seen it happen more than a few times to give it serious consideration.


 7:46 pm on Feb 28, 2009 (gmt 0)

But the point of my comment was this...

If people can forget it's a .net, they can also forget there are digits in the name (esp if it already has two keywords). You could also register keyword-keyword-net.com and use a redirect from the .net, but it would be pretty pointless.



 7:54 pm on Feb 28, 2009 (gmt 0)

Ya, that was an early Saturday morning reply and I was "attempting" to defend my 411 suggestion. I'll fess up. Not really the best option in this case, eh? ;)

By all means, get the .net and stop fiddling around. You might as well get the .org and any others that are available so the next person thinking like you doesn't work their way down the list. It gets real confusing when there are .com, .net and .org versions of the same name out there.

Robert Charlton

 9:02 am on Mar 1, 2009 (gmt 0)

Like pageone, I've had great success with a .net domain in a situation where my client couldn't get the .com. It's been years now, and the .com is still nowhere to be seen.


 5:03 pm on Mar 1, 2009 (gmt 0)

I didn't think about the 411 not having significance in certain regions,

I hadn't a clue what this suggestion was about and had to look it up, than again, I am only mainly used to Europe, Middle East and Asia!


 6:39 am on Mar 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

I always thought that was kind of universal like 911

911 isn't universal either. Every country has a different code to dial for emergency.
see [en.wikipedia.org...]

In Cyprus you dial 112 or 199, in Turkey it's 155 (for police... fire and ambulance are different numbers), in Sweden it's 112.


 11:51 am on Mar 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

And in Britain, it's 999 (but there was a suggestion a few years ago that 911 should be accepted as an alternative but I don't think anything came of it).

Of course, numbers can be useful in domain names - 911 would be excellent if you sell Porsches but phone codes will only ever be a good idea for sites concentrating on business in one or two countries.



 7:19 pm on Mar 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

The GSM mobile emergency number is 112 for everyone I believe?


 7:37 pm on Mar 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

Okay, okay already, I get the point! I already conceded a while back.

Hey, it's as easy as 1, 2, 3!

Is the 123 universal?

I'm hoping you got the .net already and have begun your journey. We'll just sit here and keep figuring out ways to use a .com instead of the .net when your decision to use the .net is probably the best option.

But, get ready to send some traffic to that .com by default. It is a given. You might even do it yourself by mistake one day. :)


 9:25 pm on Mar 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

Thanks everyone for the advice and ideas.

I've decided to go ahead with the purchase of the .net name and just see how it goes.


 7:57 pm on Mar 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

noticed you already purchased it but gotta share my 2 cents:

if youre not worried about type-in traffic + all other extensions are parked I would go with the .net

I think the main advantage .com's has over other TLD's are type in traffic and I find it difficult to see people typing keyword1keword2.com unless its a short ( < 10 letter ) domain.

For longer keywords many people just Google Keyword1Keyword2.com and hopefully if that name is still parked and your sites active the .net will show up first on the SERP! :) Good luck

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