20i Domains

..did we kill our own business?

Discussion in 'Domain Research' started by JMI, Jul 7, 2020.

  1. JMI

    JMI Active Member Acorn Supporter

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    What I meant to say in broad terms is - did we kill our own domain industry..

    The rise of modern online start-ups and major brands using made up words and the result of not being able to get the domain they really wanted, which in turn is a self fulfilling prophecy for "good" domains not getting the attention they deserve and fueling more demand for premium one/two word domains e.g.

    lync
    flickr
    facebook
    twitter
    reddit
    skype
    fiver
    tumblr
    quora
    WiX
    SquareSpace

    (all kind of web 2.0)

    Obviously I don't think Kleenex would have been tissues.com thats a different angle.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2020
  2. Domain Forum

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    articles.co.uk
     
  3. jmcc Ireland

    jmcc Active Member

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    Brands are different to generic domain names. The thing about startups and investment is that the investors want to see that the intellectual property is protected. That means trademarks and service marks. Generic terms can often be harder to trademark and defend. It is quite possible for two different businesses to have trademarks on the same term in different classes. Classes limit the the extent of a trademark so that one trademark might only apply to widgets and the other to whatsits. A made-up name is more likely to be unique and easier to defend. This is often a deciding factor in domain name disputes. The industry seems to be still going.

    Regards...jmcc
     
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  4. JMI

    JMI Active Member Acorn Supporter

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    So do you think major brands would not have bothered with generics due to all the IP issues, therefore people holding 20 years waiting for the million $ offer that will never come for their {generic}.com... the boat sailed
     
  5. jmcc Ireland

    jmcc Active Member

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    Major brands can afford generics but they cost a lot of money to market. Good generics can be a category killer but there is still the need for development. You can see some of the thinking of major brands in the way that they bought into the hype about new gTLDs by getting their own .brand gTLD. They think defensively. (Most of that new gTLD insanity was driven by an artificial scarcity of good domain names caused by Domain Tasting with over a billion .COM domain names being registered and dropped over the space of a few years. Domain names containing high profile brands were also being tasted and it was that activity that shut down large scale tasting.)

    Major brands might decide to acquire generics but these major brands are only a small part of the domain name industry. It is the small players that actually drive demand and development in a TLD. These small players have been generally absent from the new gTLDs and that's why most of them have fizzled. The value of a generic is related directly to the level of development and usage in a TLD. The size of the TLD also affects the decision. The million Dollar offer for a generic is very much like winning the lottery for some who have been holding on to domain names for over twenty years. However, there is a trade in strong generics. We didn't kill the industry. The industy just keeps evolving.

    Regards...jmcc
     
  6. JMI

    JMI Active Member Acorn Supporter

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    I'm not so sure about evolving in a positive way, I think a portion of it is now dead and stagnant in lots of ways. I'm not convinced that many a SME did make offers for good domains in the past (not just premium single word cat killer generics) and because they couldn't acquire them (whether it was low ball offer or just seller was greedy we'll never know) this helped the spawn of "make your own name up" (fivver etc) for end users who actually want to start a business. Take something like blue.com its mega but may just sit on the shelf moving only between investors for another 20 years. The domain market is certainly changing - are domains becoming the norm, mundane? at the moment but I think its driven by end user needs and domainers with massive overbought weak/mediocre portfolios are in serious trouble because I think the quality level has gone up a notch as users are a bit more informed.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2020
  7. jmcc Ireland

    jmcc Active Member

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    Some of that has to do with Google's effect on SEO and its greed to keep users on its own properties rather than forwarding them to the relative websites.

    Some of these "make up your own name up" were following trends established by some of the big players. Think of Flickr and all *r domain names that it spawned.

    Some SMEs just don't want generics. This is because they are still, to a large extent, offline businesses that trade on their own brand name. That's why SME registration dynamics are driven by these "one hit wonders" rather than by generics. The other thing that is common with SMEs is that they have geographically defined markets so a national (ccTLD) or even global generic (.COM) would not make much sense. The ccTLD becomes psychologically invisible as people begin to think of the local ccTLD as their TLD and that can make generics with geographical keywords more attractive. The .COM is the de facto US ccTLD and it is actually losing market share at a country level outside the US. The bulk of new registrations each month in most countries are ccTLD rather than .COM or the other gTLDs.

    A lot of domainer portfolios might be the product of the Sunk Cost Fallacy. Since people keep paying the renewal fees each year, the assumption is that these domain names are more valuable. There are approximately 30K domain names that were generally registered in new major TLDs. These are brands, short names and high value keywords. The blue.com example would be a high value keyword domain name but only around 30% of most TLDs are actively developed. The usage and development rates in the new gTLDs are at worst horrific and at best mediocre. The big shift that has happened in the market is the shift away from .COM towards the ccTLDs. It started in 2005 but it has been accelerating lately. It is only the scale of the US market that has kept the volume up for .COM. The users keep changing too. Another trend is that as a TLD develops, the percentage of unique domain names (domain names that only appear in that TLD and no other TLD) increases. Many of these are SME domain names.

    Regards...jmcc
     
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