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March 10, 2007


Sahar Sarid

"Gut Instinct" - From day one, this is how we bought as well.
Also thanks for pointing out why snapnames is an appealing proposition to you. The info you disclose here gives me a great insight into a related business we are developing.

***FS** my pleasure pal.

Franky Tong

VERY well thought out answers Frank! I especially agree with you on everything you said about Snapnames.

Adam Strong

Frank, one other reason for using snap. Great people. The people you work with in any business make life easier and snap has at some of the best.

***FS*** True that! Except for that Nelson ;) *jk* Snapnames wouldn't be the same without Nelson Brady.


I especially like your answer to #5. Just getting into domains (commercially), after having worked in the industry for a decade, it feels good to have some validation. Thanks for publishing the entirety.

***FS*** I'm genuinely glad you find it useful.

Hairy Ape

I'm not even sure whether you realize the magnitude of your appaling contradictions Frank.

In the same paragraph you encourage people by saying that domains are gold, how even now anyone can clear 50k a year, how there's still "room for tens of thousands of individuals (maybe 100's of thousands globally)",

and YET in another sentence you piss all that down the drain by saying that you are NOT buying from small guys or as you like to call 'em "weak holders" (on forums, chatboards etc.) just because you don't feel chasing the sellers for autho codes (Excuse me, but that's one of the weakest "serious" excuses I've ever heard. And why would you chase them for such codes anyway? Most forum sellers will provide you that info readily, will push the name to you in an instant, and will go above and beyond to fulfill your wishes) etc.

And then you dropped that jaw-slacking bomb >> "I paid you 15k because I am hoping to develop the name at one point in the future, that assumes I'll be able to renew it.."<<

with which you quite literally implied that the only clean names (names with "good provenance") are the ones that you snapped upon their expiry and ess than what I spend on Snap, I shalthat no other names can be relied upon. In addition, you also explicitly implied are all small sellers are less than honest (if I buy a name from someone on same forum, even if it costs me 20 times ll assume that I will not be able to renew it??? And you literally gloat in the fact that you'd rather spend 15k on a name in Snap than $500 for the same name in forums. ).

With this glaring contradictory stataments not only you appear as someone who doesn't even realize how big of contradictions he is saying, but you are also encouraging other big player to approach such elitist positions that run in total contravention of your "anybody can make money in this" cheerlead song you are throwing around at the same time. If everbody took your approach and bought names only at Snaps or Sedo or Traffic auctions there wouldn't be this amazing opportunities industry you speak of so fondly.

***FS*** Wow quite the vitriol.. I read your comment 3 times and do not see the contradiction. I do what I do for practical reasons.. I have had personal experiences that make me do what I do. That doesn't mean you have to do it. There is a time component involved in trying to do onsey twosey deals that doesn't make sense for me. That said, if you're smaller, or just getting started in this biz, or you have more time than money: then beat the bushes for private chatroom deals. My statement is not an indictment of those populating chatrooms or flipping names.. just an observation of the challenges in building a large potfolio that way. With Snapnames, I never have to worry about title.. If title is bad, Snap indemnifies me. Try getting a refund from a seller who didn't have authority to sell.. I did. I'm still trying. Try buying 40 names at once and getting authcodes in a timely manner.. not all sellers of multiple names are as accomodating or altruistic as those you envision. Again I see absolutely no contradiction in my statement. You can have a thriving industry with hundreds of thousands, while at the same time I (one person) continue to buy names predominantly at Snap.

Lastly .. I encourage you to keep reading and take what you like while discounting the rest of my comments as you wish. If you read this stuff long enough you 'will' find me contracting myself in some ways (opinions that change over time) but more or less you should find the tenor of my posts fairly consistent.


Ramiro Canales

Your insights are greatly appreciated. I agree that persistence and "gut instincts" are key in this industry. I started domaining 8 years ago as a hobby. It has turned into something very different today. Thanks for sharing and inspiring others!

Hairy Ape

I'm not gonna dwell on this, and am not gonna comment on others'. Since this is your blog it just hard to understand that you paint your world with such broad brush strokes. You had a bad, two or three experiences on the forums (and so did many others) but imo that shouldn't stop you from always keeping an eye on that scene and keep striking good deals when you see them. Why punish everyone forever just because a few have wronged you in the past? That's akin to Bank of America policies, for example, that now require every single one of their millions of customers to go through their silly online identifications process upon login into their accounts online just because a few thousands unsuspecters were victims of phishing attacks previously. Millions are punished because of thousands.

Similarly, you seem like someone who take things personally and wows not to do things that way at all again even if that meant regularly passing up on much better deals than you ordinarilly get. You seem to work heavily on some silly principles rather on business objectivess alone (and on facts that since you have more money than time it's ok to spend more, even though time is relative and can be always better managed; ie. less time on blog = more buying opportunities elsewhere = more buying opportunities elsewhere = more better deals = more better deals = more value = more value = better portfolio = better portfolio = more money = more money = more power....) If that's true even partially, and it's hard to argue otherwise considering the evidence from horse's mouth, that too runs contradictory to your previous claims that you are all business like and tend to keep emotions out of your bids.

Either that or you consistently get some unfathomable inside-delear heavy-volume trader kick-backs from Snap (that only you two know about)?

***FS*** I would love to get an insider deal affiliate dicount at snapnames.. love to .. but I do not. I pay the full sticker price. I don't buy from the forums because A) there is no title insurance/ease of transfer and B) because there is not enough inventory to justify my time. If you were smart, you would encourage me to keep blogging, because if the top bidders descended on the forums it would be harder for newcomers to find below market deals. Again these are just my ramblings.. you don't have like them and I respect your opinion.

Franky Tong

I'd just like to add to Frank's response to Hairy Ape regarding Snapnames. I think it's the peace of mind and ease of transactions, and of course also the great people like Nelson, that make us come back to Snap day after day after day. You win a name and it's yours sitting in your account a few hours later. No back and forth negotiation, no chasing, totally hassle free. With the volume Frank's dealing with this is really the most efficient venue to acquire names. I personally buy from forums too but that's only because I don't deal with the same volume and I'm cheap :)

***FS*** You're smart FT. I should buy at the forums.. (for those of you reading who don't know, the forums are: DomainState.com, NamePros.com, DNForum.com etc.) ..but there is a time value of money Is Bill Gates stupid for not bending over to pick up $500 on the ground because they are lying there? He makes $500 a second in interest. Am I stupid for giving my change away at the store and not shopping from forums where I might get a better deal? Maybe. Its all a matter of perspective.


Buying at forums - vaste majority of domains for sale on forums is rubbish, its time consuming to go through it.


Hi Frank,

I'm glad i found your blog and it's very interesting for a domainer just starting out.

I noticed in your post you mentioned "Anyone can break 50k a year in this space NET NET [with very little work]. " and i would really like to know how in particular you would envision that?

Since i consider my portfolio of names decent and have contacted various (tons) individuals/companies over time and flipping domains to end users is harder then one may like to think.

So the amount of 50K as you mentioned in conjunction with "Anybody" is a bit wishful thinking with all due respect :=)

Should you have the time to send me an email explaining a thing or two about how to accomplish this i would be forever grateful and it would mean very much to me!

Keep blogging Frank :=) Great stuff your posting!


***FS*** Hi Edwin.. if you look at the names selling on DNJournal and you have names like that you can sell them to third parties looking for those types of names. Or you can contact registrants buying good type-in names and sell them to other investors. Years ago before I was a large domain guy (or had a single unique of traffic) I went out and registered 10 generic names "sidingproducts.com sidingproduct.com, sidingmaterial.com sidingsupplier.com they were a bunch like that.. all generic.. all available. I registered them then approached James Hardie and sold them in about 20 minutes for $10,000 ($1000 each) .. You only need to do that a few times a year to get to 50k. You can spend your days contacting existing registrants trying to buy very good names for a few thousand dollars and flip them to other investors for a profit. Alot of companies are greatful for the help.. They don't have the name specialists locating quality acretive names in-house. You can sell paid search traffic from a generic name that you buy. You can build a website with content and arbitrage by selling flat rate banners to targeted companies and then buy related targeted traffic via google or other Paid search engines. There are so many neat things you can do.

I see the biggest opportunity as buying names low in the secondary market (good highquality names, buying privately) and then selling those names to others at a premium. Buy for $1000 and sell for 5-10k That sort of thing.. Generic defensible names.. sold for a premium.


Thanks Frank!

I appreciate your input and the time you have taken to reply.

Your example of the sidingmaterial.com, etc domains was very interesting.
Although you make it sounds easier then it is :=) I mean, it went went well for you but you could also have a business owner who wouldn't feel that compelled to buy those domains. And you could have contacted a dozen more and also no interest even though the domains are decent in form and presentation.

Great for development due to the domain being keyword rich and appreciated by the search engines because of this.

I guess sometimes you have the wind in your back and the sun shining down on your face which is a period that may come sooner for some and later for others :=)

I know i have some decent domains in my current portfolio but i am more going to focus now on development strategies to fund some other ideas to develop my prime domains.

Once again Thanks for the reply and the tips Frank!


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