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Tracking 1300 type-in domains

 6:06 pm on Jan 13, 2006 (gmt 0)


1. 1300 domains for type-in traffic only
2. All domains 301 redirect to a single principal domain
3. The owner wants to track the value of this investment.
4. Currently the 301 adds a query string -- so all 1300 go to example.com?ti=something

Seems a bit off to me, but I've never been hands on with this many domain names before -- any opinions or ideas?



 7:25 pm on Jan 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Park them all at sedo (or a similar parking program) with appropriately targetted ads. You will certainly get a base-line idea of how much they are worth. Not only will you see the visits (with bots sorted out) but you will see how many people view the offer (assuming you set them all for sale). Not only will you get the above tracking but also make some money in the interim from visitors clicking on the ads.

FYI- You can list them for sale with no price or a really high price.

If these are really good domains that generate significant traffic see if you qualify for Google's domain parking program.



 7:33 pm on Jan 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Sorry, I guess I should clarify. These domains are intended to provide type-in traffic for the core domain. There's no intention of monetizing them through ads or parking, which would most likely drive business to their competitors.

The tracking is needed to see whether each domain is earning its keep.


 7:35 pm on Jan 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Easiest way would be to store the tracking variable at example.com in whatever db you're using.

It's then a matter or just sorting by frequency.


 7:59 pm on Jan 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

In that case... I assume your client tracks the ROI and should know "statistically" how much each visitor is worth.

Simple math (worth x visits from the domain) will give you an estimate to work with. Just make sure your tracking is not counting bots as a visitor.

Overly simplified but quick.

For more complex and detailed stats make sure each visitor from a domain is tagged so you can track them all the way to conversion (whatever that may be).



 8:15 pm on Jan 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

your tracking is not counting bots

A special thanks for that.


 9:13 pm on Jan 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

It seems like a basic php script in the place they all get redirected to will do the trick. If they redirect to example.com?ti=something then put something like ...

if ($ti!= null) {
//Step 1 connect to database
//Step 2 record $ti, time/date

... in the example.com index page.

Then you could export that data and play with it in Excel to see who is referring to you and who isn't being used.


 9:54 pm on Jan 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

. . to see whether each domain is earning its keep.

That's a bit trickier than simply tracking clickthroughs. I would suggest tracking:

1. Conversions by domain.
2. Value of PPC for "keywords in domain".
3. Stickiness of traffic by domain. (How many pageviews? Hit and go might indicate confusion with other website, etc.)
4. Actions by domain. (Can you get someone to fill out a form or perform other action? Might want to try an A-B-C test. Test to see if any domain(s) in the collection have a built in "call to action", such as "BuyGreenWidgets.com")

I'd suggest that your domain savvy traffic builder segment his/her domains, if possible, by their "nature" and then build segmented stats. It may be that a smaller traffic segment actually yields greater net outcomes. It is a frequent lament that many high traffic domains yield 0 conversions or clicks. Your client doesn't want the analysis to stop at clickthroughs. Also, he/she may want to consider whether lower performing terms might produce better results under varying market conditions or future scenarios. Also, 10 clickthroughs on a domain that is pulling in clicks that would cost $1.25/click is performing better than a domain that yields 30 clicks that might cost $.10/click.

Lots to look at and digest.


 11:07 pm on Jan 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Lots to think on here -- thanks, all. Webwork, some very good thoughts there. I'm pretty sure they can do conversion tracking all the way from that first "primary domain" hit. It's just that they are completely redevloping and I need to make sure nothing important breaks. So I'm wondering if the query string url is the best way to go.


 1:18 am on Jan 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

2. Value of PPC for "keywords in domain".

I can see doing this for a handful of domains manually. Are there automated tools to track this for a large number of domains?

Would you have to do this once or does CPC vary enough by season to have to repeat often?


 10:02 pm on Jan 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

Frequent wrote:
"For more complex and detailed stats make sure each visitor from a domain is tagged so you can track them all the way to conversion (whatever that may be)."

I have a site that i am on a pay per lead agreement with another person,i have no ftp access etc...
If i understand you then if the domain is tagged i will be able to track how many leads are filled at a certain page and not rely on whatever stats i get monthly from the guy, please explain how/what is a tagged domain... and if he adds it to the code of my domain..can he play with results or is it reliable etc...



 2:54 pm on Jan 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

You need to set a cookie containing the referrer info and then track the cookie as the user moves from page to page.



 3:17 pm on Jan 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

Yea, query string is the best way to go for this IMO.

I'd also track the referers of the type-in domains. And do a second 301:
maindomain.com?ti=something --> maindomain.com

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