|Classic Domainer Fail|
How to do it all wrong
I've been stalking the dot com domain for IncrediBILL for over a year now when it transitioned to a domain park. Not sure what was going on with whoever owned it last, but the domain park version of the site went offline, no way to make a purchase, and the email address in the WHOIS record for the owner of the domain park bounced. So here I'm sitting with a credit card in hand, willing to spend money within reason, but no way to contact the current domain holder whatsoever.
Patiently I waited, as I figured since it expired in 2012 that nobody was going to renew it if they weren't even bothering to make it available for purchase and didn't keep any active contact methods available.
Sure enough, like clockwork it expired and nobody bid on it, whew! I put the obligatory $10 bid on it for a placeholder, and walked away with a domain for pennies on the dollar that I'd obviously wanted and was willing to pay more.
The funny thing is had the owner ever just checked Google they would've run across my name at the top of the search and contacted me. Most likely, unless they were too greedy, would've easily made a lucrative transaction instead of letting it just slip away for free.
C'est la vie!
Maybe this lesson will inspire a few of you domainers out there to step up your game as I'm sure there's a lot of money being left on the table by being either lazy or too greedy :)
Congrats - they probably went out of business some years ago. Good fro you :)
Guess you aren't famous in England, IncrediBILL, :)
Seriously though, there's a number of contact e-mail addresses in the historical whois data for that domain.
Yup, there were contact e-mails, I got bounced when I tried a couple and the company originally behind the domain seemed long gone. However, that wasn't the point, the point is whoever owned it did a bad job of making it available in their domain park and literally wasted all their efforts by simply not keeping things current.
Who knows, their loss, my gain, but I thought I'd let others consider they should make sure their domain parks are current and contact info works as it's potential money left on the table if it doesn't.
There's a lot of that happening and not just in the domain name parking side of things. I'm currently building an Irish web directory/Irish search engine and have been analysing Irish websites by category and also by timeline indicators such as Last-Modified and other cues (there are about 300K sites in the set). Some sites have not been updated for years and have old timeline indicators (book now for Spring 2009 etc) in the body text. There was a similar issue with the .co and .eu surveys (approx 2.5 million sites in all). The 1 year update percentage (sites that have not been updated or changed in a year based on comparing historical snapshots with the current website snapshot) was about 23% on the Irish sites set.
The high profile domain parkers tend to keep the contact details current but there are many small scale domainers and web developers who register domains and then leave them on their registrar or hoster's PPC landing pages and forget about them. It is easy enough to detect PPC sites but the small web developer sites tend to take the most time for categorisation.
This is what the hosting history of the domain looked like:
SERVE.CO.UK DOMAINCONTROL.COM October 2008 2008-11-01 Transfer
SERVE.NET.UK DOMAINCONTROL.COM October 2008 2008-11-01 Transfer
SERVE.CO.UK February 2002 2002-03-01 New
SERVE.NET.UK February 2002 2002-03-01 New
MYDOMAIN.COM September-October 2001 2001-11-04 Deleted
MYDOMAIN.COM August 2001 2001-09-01 New
ONESTOP.NET May 2001 2001-06-09 Deleted
SHOPPINGART.COM May 2001 2001-06-09 Deleted
ONESTOP.NET December 2000 Epoch
SHOPPINGART.COM December 2000 Epoch
Perhaps somebody had plans for it back in the DotBomb era but it was dropped like millions of other domains about then.
It has had history in com/net/org/biz/info/co.uk over the years (well since 2000 anyway).
I know this story too well as I run a decent sized directory and there's been a lot of sites just left out there waiting for years to be updated again.
What was even scarier is the number of sites that just vaporized in the last 2 years.
They were dropping like flies and transitioning to domain parks which is why 200 OK as a result code for a link checker turned almost useless for external links.
incrediBILL, most likely the domain was owned by a domainer that owned tens of thousands of domains--and therefore didn't have the time to focus on domains that weren't hugely profitable.
|why 200 OK as a result code for a link checker turned almost useless for external links. |
Maybe it's about time to build a better link checker, huh? Personally, I use a spider that allows me to input a list of URLs to spider(check) and it grabs the title tag and other meta data of the page, as well as the server header info. I can easily see which ones are gone.
Yep IncrediBILL. The amazing thing about the web is the way that websites appear and disappear. Just on that small set of Irish sites, there are thousands of domains that drop each month and thousands of new ones registered. Taking that up to the gTLD levels gets into the millions of domains per month. The other problem with the transitions to domain parks is that it is often the registrar that is shifting them and there is no visible change on the nameservers for the domain. Sometimes it is possible to determine a transition from just the IP of the site compared to the active IP.
@bhartzer Doesn't look like the previous registrant was a major player. Large scale domainers, especially those that target keyword domains, tend to be a bit more diligent. With PPC parking revenue dropping, each parked domain has to bring in at least the registration fee.
Domaineers have been dropping domains in a steady stream for a while, I've been dropping domains as soon as they come up for renewal unless they're due to be developed by me
Any from time to time domains I've been wanting for ages but dared not try to buy simply crop up free for reg
If the domaineer reviewing like 1000 domains for profitability, those with zero income probably go first,
plus I see a huge number of brandname included domains dropping
I was just speaking to someone today that wants to dispose of their site/domain.
They have just let the domain sit there, online, for the last four years as it has been relatively cheap to host and renew the domain.
They told me they cannot make a go of the business as they were too busy with other matters.
I guess that's what happens.
Post Panda, it's quite likely many more domains and sites will remain in that same state of limbo, although this particular site didn't rely on advertising income of any kind.
Well done on acquiring yuor domain for a snip!
Tangential thought: This is the www analogue of orphaned books. They're under copyright so nobody can use them-- but the owner is unknown or unreachable, so nobody can ask to use them. Gets to be a bit dog-in-the-mangerish doesn't it?
The last thing guys who bulk register+park domain typos, TM squats, etc. want is human contact.
Much like email spammers, hackers, rebillers, online pharma, etc. It's not stupidity. It's a business model.
P.S. You only got incredibill.com. I snagged incrediBILL.com.
|The last thing guys who bulk register+park domain typos, TM squats, etc. want is human contact. |
I know that, nut there are ways to solve the problem without losing sales.
It's not rocket science, the email address can easily be nothing more than an auto-responder with a link to a site where you can bid on the domain in question. No human contact or spam for that matter, only valid bids that have been verified to be a human posting them.
Like I said, the guy only needed a valid contact a year ago, or even a form to "buy this site", and I was willing to pay a decent price for what I wanted but his 'business model' didn't allow for it and it ended up giving it away in the end.
Money left on the table.
I'm sure there are ways, like I described above, that people with 10s of thousands of domains can at least make it available to pay off without making it difficult to deal with by people on either side of the coin.
FWIW, the sites that have a minimum bid of $1K always crack me up because many of those domains are worth hundreds, not thousands, but their failing business models aren't allowing them to cash in.
|there are ways to solve the problem without losing sales |
I don't know, since I'm not "one of them", but from what I've gleaned it comes down to a) there's far more unproductive engagements than successful ones when it comes to selling aftermarket domains, so depending on tolerance and wealth levels, some folks just don't care to engage; and, b) there's that thing about "follow the money", by which I mean some folks simply prefer to leave fewer money trails OR engage inquiries that might be strawmen for entities, such as trademark holders, looking to build a case.
YMMV. I understand your point/argument. I also know and understand some of the folks who just don't care to engage. Some might consider your offer chump change not worth or worthy of their time and attention. Some leave bigger tips than your (likely) offer or often bet more on a single turn of the cards.
Again, not me, but I'm also a bit foolish and don't always answer the email knock on my door . . 'cause I'm sometimes a bit grumpy or cranky or self-possessed or just don't want to be bothered . . quite unlike . . oh, nevermind . . :P
Just an aside:
|Word Mark INCREDIBILL |
Goods and Services (ABANDONED) IC 038. US 100 101 104. G & S: telecommunications services, namely, providing the resale of telephone services, television transmission/broadcasting services, and global computer network connection services
|Word Mark INCREDI-BELL |
Goods and Services IC 028. US 022 023 038 050. G & S: Exercise weights
Standard Characters Claimed
Mark Drawing Code (4) STANDARD CHARACTER MARK