There are thousands of part-time, full-time, or hobbyist domain name investors across the world from all walks of life. Some are new to the domain industry and some are veterans dating back to the early days of the Internet.
Success, however you want to define it, is not something reserved for investors that have been active since the 90s, early 2000s, or even 2010s. Regardless of when you entered the industry, I believe there are certain things that any investor can do in order to become more successful as a domain investor.
How do you choose better names? How do you know what you should pay to acquire specific domain names? Where do you find the best domains to buy? How do you sell a domain effectively? How, in short, do you become a better domain name investor?
As with most skills, hobbies, or professions, you need knowledge in order to thrive. The domain industry is no different. Before you can build a masterful portfolio of domains, the basics have to be learned. There’s no substitute for developing a domain name knowledge base.
Fortunately, the domain name industry has several resources that will accelerate your learning.
The first resource that you should consider is DNAcademy. Created by hall of famer and 2021 Lonnie Borck memorial award winner Michael Cyger, DNAcademy offers a comprehensive course on everything you need to know about domain investing. There are some added extras, too, including an SOP library, negotiation case studies, and even a domain auction simulator.
DNAcademy is a premium resource. As of publishing, it’s $499 for a year’s membership or $949 for a lifetime membership. For readers of this article, I’ve managed to secure a 5% discount for new members.
If you’re interested in DNAcademy and want the 5% discount, click here. A JamesNames discount will be applied during checkout.
DomainSherpa is another resource created by Michael Cyger. Since 2010, DomainSherpa has been uploading new content weekly, usually taking the form of a video and a podcast equivalent. Now owned and operated by Media Options, DomainSherpa is an authoritative and free platform that will certainly help with your domaining education.
The DomainSherpa website has a treasure trove of content covering end-user perspectives, advice, and portfolio reviews.
Have you ever heard the quote “Your network is your net worth”? Networking can be one of the most beneficial time investments and can open new avenues of thinking or provide new opportunities.
To be clear, networking is not your ability to cold-contact successful domain investors looking to sell a domain name. Networking is the art of forming professional relationships with others within the industry.
These relationships could be formed via social media, via private domainer group chats, or privately. I think that to a certain extent, a good domain investor is a good networker.
A network filled with the right people that you’re regularly in touch with can open your eyes to opportunities, new ways of thinking, and ultimately lead you to become a better domain investor.
I believe that another important trait of becoming a better domain investor is to test different services and products. Take AbdulBasit Makrani as a prime example. In January 2020, AbdulBasit, a full-time investor, took the decision to switch his sales landing pages to Afternic and tested the Afternic service for several months.
As it happens, the Afternic sales experiment was largely successful, with his September 2020 domain sales totaling an incredible $99,028. Would this figure have been possible without switching? Perhaps, but by testing a new service, AbdulBasit was able to conclude that it had a largely positive effect on his business.
There are many services that you could experiment with to see what, if anything, helps to improve your domain investment activities. These could include, but are not limited to:
- Landing pages
- Marketplace choice
- Pricing – BIN or Make Offer
- Registrar choice
- Expired domain & auction inventory searches
Domain Sales Data
How do you know how much a domain name might be worth without studying data? Although the wide majority of domain name sales go unreported, we’re fortunate to have NameBio and DNJournal as two resources that give snapshots of industry trends, comparable sales data, and more.
In the domain industry, data is your friend. Getting to know what sells, and more importantly, working out why, will make you a better domain investor.
If you’re willing to test your domain sales data knowledge, why not try the free NameBio Domain Game app, available on iOS and Android.
Choosing Where to Spend Your Time
Everyone has 24 hours in a day. How do you fill the time that you allocate to domain investing? Where do you spend your time? Working out a way to stay productive during the time you dedicate to domain investing might help you focus to become a better investor.
Keeping track of what you do, and which sites you frequent the most may help you to change habits that might not be as productive as you’d like.
For example, in March 2020, I found that I was spending too much time on Twitter. Time that could be better spent elsewhere. My response was to block all social media on my phone and computer. I know only use a Twitter desktop app to keep control over my Twitter habits, making sure that any time I do spend on Twitter is productive and purposeful.
Domain Name News
Keeping abreast of domain name news allows readers to get a sense of the biggest stories of the week and how those stories might affect you. The domain industry blogs are also often packed with helpful articles that may introduce you to tools, services, or practices that you’d like to test out.
Using Domaining.com, you can keep track of all the domain investing feeds in one place, allowing you to review news stories daily or weekly. A useful tip: if you create an account at Domaining.com, you can customize your feed to see only the blogs that you’re interested in.
What are your tips for becoming a better domain name investor? Comment below.