Domain investing business: Brands are in, verticals are out

Somehow, the notion that registering a series of domains in a vertical can lead to an endless generation of income, has become the Golden Chalice of domain investing.

Perhaps that was true in the early to mid 2000’s, but the game changed once Google decided to end the game of high payments for arbitration traffic.

Verticals were abused by those that figured out the game early on, and the mines have been sucked dry.

In other words, no matter how well a single keyword pays, tagging random words to the keyword is a great way to waste registration fees.

The only traffic worth perusing these days is from domains that retained it past a drop; these domains will often retain residual traffic for up to a year – so keep that in mind when going after them via a drop-catcher.

On the other hand, investing in brands and meaningful domains is the smartest move for any domain investor who wants to make good money via a sale, and repeat the feat consistently.

Time and again, I’ve taken domains offered for sale for $20 – $200 and turned them into solid sales in the upper four, and even five figures. Investing in quality domain names is something that can be learned with time, and requires being able to recognize keywords with potential strictly by looking at a domain name.

This concept will expand in 2014 and beyond, with the introduction of  TLD-agnostic brands. Your strategy can be replicated by looking at the keyword + gTLD as a whole; it needs to make sense and to serve a specific need that you can exploit by developing content it relates to.

Of course, getting in early will guarantee you access to the best keywords for the particular gTLD you’re after. The beauty of the new system is that although it opens up an entire universe of TLDs, those that are valuable investing in are recognizable by following the keyword + gTLD approach: it has to make sense.

Domain investing is not for the weak or the timid, and challenges will await those resisting to adapt to the new reality of the Internet namespace.


  1. I knew it all along …
    Brand is the most important

    You are the brand
    your name is the brand
    life is a brand
    Look at all my domains, they are all brands and very very memorable.

    Why let google dictates your life?

  2. Leonard Britt says

    I find it disheartening that when doing a query for aged expiring .COM domains that the list is well – not very appealing. And yet someone renewed those domains for ten years or more? Wow….

  3. great post Theo,

    and that’s why we are getting in to Brand space.

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