What’s .NEXT in the Domain Aftermarket?

This year’s hottest topic is undoubtedly new gTLDs, and Afternic is often asked about our involvement in this initiative. While the addition of the new gTLD’s is still in the early stages, and specific predictions about developments in the domain aftermarket are difficult to come by, Afternic is sure that premium domains will play a significant role in many new TLD launches and ongoing business strategies.

Afternic is planning to support new gTLDs and carry new zones on our network as they become available. This new premium domain inventory will empower our partners to run successful Landrush and GA launches for the new extensions, providing more consumer choices and better service. Our aim is to minimise or eliminate extra development cost by re-using existing systems and processes, so partners will benefit from the larger variety of names without the need for additional implementation.

We are also going a step further and working with applicants directly to develop next-generation premium domain portfolios of outstanding quality to be offered for sale through registrars at reasonable prices. Afternic offers a comprehensive service defining premium domains, appraising them, and promoting through multiple channels. Afternic’s extensive industry experience and unique position in the market enable us to provide an unmatched service tailored individually to the needs of each TLD.

If you are interested in learning more about Afternic’s services for new gTLD applicants, or registrars’ benefits from new premium domains, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Willkommen in Deutschland! (Welcome to Germany!)

Afternic continues to drive innovation in the domain aftermarket with the addition of another TLD to its Fast Transfer program: .de domains can now be fast transferred between participating registrars following a successful sale. As the first country-code TLD to make the Premium Promotion list, .de is an important milestone for Afternic’s global partner network, introducing a new class of premium inventory for greater consumer choice and better customer experience. And this is only the beginning, with more TLDs and more local partners to come later this year.

Starting our TLD expansion roll-out with .de has been an obvious choice given the country’s prominence in the industry. The national TLD has over 25 years of history and over 15 million domains in the zone, making up over 15% of all ccTLD registrations across 254 active national extensions around the world [source: CENTR report]. German is also the second most common language in .com, and only the US and China have more gTLD registrations than Germany. All in all, a market with massive potential for global growth!

Our exciting news of the .de Fast Transfer launch has been very well received at Europe’s largest domainer event, DomainVermarkterForum in Dusseldorf. Afternic’s partners are excited to see this new product improve the quality and conversion rates of Afternic’s premium inventory, while portfolio holders are happy to opt into the Fast Transfer network for greater exposure for their domains worldwide.

The initial launch of .de Premium Promotion framework is now complete, and we are beginning to bring partners onto the system. To schedule your .de launch plan, please contact your Afternic account manager.

Weekly AfternicDLS Sales: Sept 17, 2012 through Sept 23, 2012

Weekly Domain Sales Breakdown
Domain Sales for the week of Sept 17, 2012 to Sept 23, 2012

Afternic’s sales totaled $ 1,085,972.

The top public sale for this week was cesc.com, which sold for $36,720.

The Shopping category came in first, accounting for 11.8% of the domains sold, followed by Society at 11.5%, and Recreation at 9.9%, proving that categorizing your domain is crucial!

Below please find the list of highlighted public domain sales.

Weekly Sales

Want to see your names on this list? Join Afternic today.

Upcoming Tradeshows Worth Attending

T.R.A.F.F.I.C. LogoWho needs a vacation when you are headed to the sunny beaches of Florida in October? The TRAFFIC domain conference is quickly approaching and we are excited to be attending. As the domain industry’s premier event, we look forward to making new connections and seeing familiar faces. The TRAFFIC domain auction also offers an incredible appeal, attracting large investors and validating the value of premium domain names.  Be sure to stop by the Afternic booth for a firsthand look at our new offerings, including our completely redesigned site!

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New Domains

The Batching, Metering, and Sequencing of new gTLDs.

While the domaining world carries on with business as usual, many gTLD applications are still in the process of being reviewed. Some of the panels are fully allocated, including the geographic name panels, string similarity panel, and DNS stability panel, while ICANN continues to work diligently to allocate the remaining applications to the financial, technical, and operational capability panels.
New gTLDs
So what’s the reason for the delay? Of course interruptions in the evaluation process were expected, and the outrageous number of applications and numerous batching possibilities is one cause of the hold up. There also is a question as to the best policy to reveal the gTLDs to applicants and the market. Should it be done on a rolling basis, releasing information about the results of the initial evaluations? Or is it best to complete the entire procedure before moving forward with any announcements at all? Not only is ICANN split on the decision, but so are the applicants. Certain applicants who applied for hundreds of gTLDs would like to hear the verdict on the initial evaluation, while others had no comment to share on the matter.

In an effort to prepare for the eventual new gTLD launch, the initial evaluation may help larger applicants by giving a larger lead time to develop approaches for their newly approved gTLDs. As the launch of new gTLDs are new territory for everyone, understanding where you stand in the process as an applicant may prove to be beneficial for some.

Regardless of what ICANN determines to be the best evaluation procedure, it is only a matter of time until we start being introduced to the new extensions and their proud new owners. The most recent updates can be found on the ICANN website and can help to answer questions about whereapplications stand in the release process.

Hikers.com – The one time you can tell customers to take a hike!

While hikes vary in length and intensity, the Appalachian Trail attracts many adventurous hikers. In preparation for this five to seven month thru- hike, hikers can spend anywhere from $2,000 to $4,500 on hiking equipment, food, maps, and more. For these adventurers, hiking is a way of life and a worthwhile investment. Hikers.com has numerous development possibilities and presents the perfect opportunity to tap into this outdoor sports passion.
With nearly 61 million searches for terms related to “Hikers” each month, Hikers.com has tremendous search potential. The competition for keywords such as Hikers, Hiker, and Hike is relatively low, offering the opportunity for Hikers.com to easily dominate search results and ensure an immediate ROI.

One of the biggest challenges in hiking is the preparation. In order to have a successful hike, being prepared is essential, which is why the Sporting Goods industry continues to grow. The industry currently earns 39.8 billion dollars in revenue and is forecasted to grow to 44.2 billion dollars in five years, indicating continual popularity in sporting equipment. Hikers.com will allow it’s new owner to take advantage of this growing market, and develop a site revolved around this popular outdoor sport.

Hikers.com is now available, exclusively at Afternic. For more information, please contact Aaron Visaggio at 781-839-2849 or by e-mail at avisaggio@afternic.com.

.com Domain License Plates?

Gain an advertising advantage with your domain.

There’s always room for improvement in your marketing strategy, so why not think outside the box and try something different? Whether you have a .com domain or one of the many other extensions such as, .net or .org domains, there are unlimited possibilities to gain more visibility.
.com Domains
Recently, a three letter .com domain was spotted on a driver’s license plate. Choosing an unconventional place, like your license plate, is a great way to get people’s attention. While states vary in what they allow for vanity plates, the initial minor cost is well worth the exposure. If you are lucky enough to have a short domain, take advantage of this opportunity to share it with the millions of drivers on the road. Whether you are making a short commute to work every morning or on a long road trip, all passengers are confined in a small space with nowhere to look but out.

Unique plates are a great way to grab attention and promote your domain! Increasing visibility both online and off is essential to the success of your website and therefore business. If you don’t have a domain or are looking for a new one, check out the inventory at Afternic. With millions of domains available, there’s sure to be a fitting, three letter domain that would work nicely on a new vanity plate!

Weekly AfternicDLS Sales: Sept 10, 2012 through Sept 16, 2012

Weekly Domain Sales Breakdown
Domain Sales for the week of Sept 10, 2012 to Sept 16, 2012

Afternic’s sales totaled $973,508.

The top sale for this week was CashLady.com, which sold for $36,000.

The Business category came in first, accounting for 11.4% of the domains sold, followed by Computers at 11.0%, and Recreation at 10.6%, proving that categorizing your domain is crucial!

Below please find the list of highlighted public domain sales.

Weekly Sales

Want to see your names on this list? Join Afternic today.

Inbound Marketing for Your Website

Inbound vs. Outbound Marketing Strategies

One of the largest challenges in marketing is determine the best approach. With the evolution of technology and the burst communication possibilities, marketing has changed drastically over the years. While some individuals would argue that the availability of the internet worldwide has made marketing an easier task with the incredible potential to reach consumers, there are others who would disagree, arguing that technology has only made targeting the right people more difficult and cluttered.

This is where the shift from outbound to inbound marketing can be observed. Outbound marketing was the original marketing approach for many companies, focusing on gaining the most visibility as possible with television ads and billboards that the masses would be exposed to. It seems, however, as though Inbound marketing is the up and coming trend for the marketing world, encouraging interaction between businesses and the consumer.
Inbound Marketing
Hubspot recently hosted an Inbound marketing conference, which highlighted potential solutions to the new challenges that marketers face with connecting to consumers.  Industry experts spoke about topics  ranging from social media marketing to search engine optimization and how leveraging online activities can help increase business if done correctly.

Rand Fishkin, CEO of SEOMoz, delivered an exemplary keynote speech about search engine optimization that anyone online could benefit from. Whether you are developing your website, or updating your blog content regularly, SEO is important to the success of your online presence. It seems, however, as though many of us are assuming too much when it comes to our SEO approach. Fishkin’s speech revolved around twelve irrational biases and how rejecting them can help your SEO strategy. Of these twelve biases we were most interested to learn about the following:

  1. “Ranking Position is All That Matters” – Who would have thought that being number one in search results is not the only thing that matters to consumers?
  2. “There Can Be Only One (Topic)” – When it comes to blogging, it is easy to get caught up in one topic, but there’s no restrictions in topic potential, so why do we limit ourselves?
  3. “Only Target High-Search Volume Keywords” – Keywords are definitely essential when it comes to ranking in search results, but trying to compete for the most popular keywords may be difficult, so why not attempt a long tail keyword that is similar?

While these are only a few highpoints, Rand’s other nine biases could lend a significant boost to your SEO approach. If you’re just beginning to develop a new website, revamp your blog, or in the market for a new domain for a fresh new start, now is the time to seize the opportunity to improve your online, inbound marketing strategy.

Announcing Our New Czech Republic Partner

We have expanded our global reach again!

As the world’s largest domain marketplace, Afternic attracts a global audience and connects millions of buyers and sellers on a daily basis. In order to promote quick and efficient sales, you want your domains to gain the most visibility as possible, which is why we are constantly working to partner with more of the leading registrars and resellers around the world.

Just this week, Afternic announced a new partnership with Czech Republic registrar Gransy, opening up more opportunities for our networks. This new premium partnership will allow for instant transfer sales on Gransy’s sites: Regtons.com and Subreg.cz. The opportunity to grow our presence in Europe is advantageous to all parties involved. Afternic is happy to gain the exposure that Gransy offers, and Gransy is “proud to offer clients an increased portfolio of domain that are eligible for Fast Transfer,” according to Jan Horak, CEO of Gransy.

Learn more about the partnership here.