There are a multitude of sites that will “appraise” your domain name based on a variety of factors (leapfish.com was the most popular, but it appears to be dead). I checked into a particular five character domain name in early 1999 and it was open. I made a mental note to obtain it and forgot about it. Shortly thereafter, it was obtained by a large, international corporation. I chalked it up to experience and forgot about it.
Fast forward to 2007. In roughly 8 years I’d checked the 5 character domain name about? three times. The company that owned it let it expire in 2006? and it was picked up for mere registration costs by domain speculator Warren Weitzman (firstname.lastname@example.org). Here is where it gets good: I picked up the same name in “.net, .biz, .info and .name” all for registration costs? – not a very sought after five character name – obviously.
I figured I’d contact Warren to see how much he would part with the .com version for…. He offered to have it “professionally appraised” and suggested that it would cost “several thousand” dollars as five character dotcoms are very rare. All of that is entirely true, but there is an entirely different dynamic at work these days: As all of the .com TLD’s have been obtained, you’re starting to see A LOT of great sites that are registering in the other TLDs (.net, .biz, .info, etc…) and the value of all .com domains are going to start going down. The frenzy is over.
The domain in question presumably wasn’t worth anything to the large corporation and thus they let it expire. It relates to an obscure last name that no one saw fit to watch and it was picked up in 2006. Check ebay and you’ll see tons of five character domains dotcom that people are trying to profit from…..(often not going at all or going for < $20).
The moral of the story? Stick it Warren. Keep the domain. I’m perfectly happy with all the variations. I was briefly willing to pay high 3 figures ($999) for this. Thankfully, my sanity caught up with me and he didn’t offer it that low.
My advice? Don’t fall for the “Domain Name Appraisal” scam. Register a good domain name and don’t pay attention to the TLD. Then focus on building great content and a great website. There is no reason a domain purchased in 2006 for $5 is suddenly worth $5000 in 2007. It’s all supply and demand.
Wise Man Say, “Just like Bush Presidency, Dotcom Heyday is fast coming to an end.”
Wise Man Also Say, “Don’t bid yourself up!”
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