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March 23, 2007


Eric Shannon

Frank, i did similar research in adwords using dozens of different name types in my industry and tested .com, .net, .org, .info, .biz and .us against eachother. i spent a couple thousand dollars doing this. it turns our that .org sometimes outperformed .com and in some situations .info performed as well any other extension. the .us also performed reasonably well.

i'd rather have the .com's of course for the obvious reasons, but i got in the game a bit late. there's another reason to own exact match names apart from arbitrage - the same advantage they enjoy in adsense will boost their performance in the organic search rankings (more clicks for the same search ranking for anyone doing development).

my own theory is that this can even offset the leakage from a .org to .com. but it's still just a theory. one, i will be testing later this year.

very glad to hear your thoughts on this matter as it helps me justify thousands and thousands of registrations that are way underwater - LOL.

***FS*** Ha ha .. glad to make you feel better about names without traffic. I will say though.. if you have the correct order "free psychic readings" as opposed to "psychic readings free" you will clearly do better.. the url has to match the user intent as they typed the string. That goes back to the human behavior part. This goes for singulars and plurals too IMO. Interesting color on the .org names. I think in a com/org head to head arbitrage battle com would win. Org folks wouldn't convert as well because they are looking for "freebie info." I want people with wallets open.. so do advertisers. But still orgs may work better for religion/charity categories.

Edwin Hayward

> the power of .com just reaffirmed to Jane Public that she had found the market leader.

That's the ingredient that's still missing in the mindset of most companies doing business online. You can have the slickest office or showroom, with the plushest furniture, but none of that is visible online...

... on the other hand, the first thing that a site visitor is likely to see is your site's URL. So in a field where 50 companies offer basically the same service, owning the exact generic domain corresponding to that service is like setting up business at the heart of the most prosperous district of a real-world city.

C-R-E-D-I-B-I-L-I-T-Y. It's a lovely word!

You can (perhaps, for a time) buy it with millions in advertising dollars and huge extravagant campaigns, or you can outflank all your competitors, big or small, by grabbing the mindshare of your visitors even before they set a virtual foot on your site by securing that perfect URL.

Once companies start to realise this en masse as opposed to the current dawning realisation of a few earlyish adopters, this already crazy market is going to head for the skies.

***FS*** You get this.

Johnny B. Good

If CrossStitchPatterns.com gets four real uniques a day and assuming the traffic is being sent to Yahoo, then the owner of that domain controls .0133333333 of Yahoo's total traffic for Cross Stitch Patterns. That is assuming Yahoo gets 300 uniques a day.

I'd take that 1+ % marketshare anyday - owning one percent of the market share a big ol' search engine has for a particular niche. The owner should be proud to own it. In reality it's a silent coup that some domain owners may not realize is ocurring with their domain purchases.

Imgaine what those few extra percentage points we cumulatively own could mean to Yahoo, Google, or MS when competing against each other. Talk about a competitive advantage ; I believe you mentioned this already Frank about what Google did with locking down AOL with a percentage buyout. This really seems like a possible future scenario.

Richard K.


I think you are underestimating the power of cctlds for the specific markets they represent.

The same argument you apply for .com domains also applies for a particular cctld in their own market. They are much more likely to click on the domain that reflects their country. One of the reasons is localization(this includes dealing with local companies, wanting a website in a particluar language etc.) and the second reason is that in some cases they are just more use to dealing and typing in cctlds as they more prevelant in their particular country.

One last point I'd like to make is the traffic leaks between .com's and cctlds flow both ways.

***FS*** I agree with the CCtlds line.. I like them for geo specific circumstances

Eric Shannon

you are right about the .info and the .us -- no traffic. but the .org names have some reasonable traffic and in employment and healthcare (my areas of interest) the intent factor isn't quite the same. however, the biggest problem with a name like browardjobs.org is that the parking companies don't display ANYTHING relevant to the visitor .


The House Always Wins:

Frank....teach me or direct me where to find the info you mentioned: (I don't find
it on the keyword search criteria..)

" That's more than 300 people a day seeking out that search phrase at assorted third party search-pages powered by Yahoo.... "

" 4 consistent type-in visits each day on a generic name like that is actually quite good. "

Thanks a ton,
I'm learning volumes.....Ed




9010 total searches a month divided by 30 days in a month = roughly 300 searches a day. Frank knows how much type-ins a day (4) because that he currently owns the domain.

Anunt Patel

Frank, i own the domain name meetpeople.com
I am in the process of building a website for my domain name meetpeople.com
My question is: do i have the legal rights to get all the typos of my domain name meetpeople.com such as meetpoeple.com, etc. for free?
thanks for your help!

***FS*** No not necessarily.. depends on your trademark position, date of first use of the other holders etc

Wealth Building Lessons

How do you calculate the type-in traffic?
is it just the direct hits under the referrer tag?

***FS*** Yes..we make sure they are unique in a 24 hr moving window as well... ie. visitor comes at 11:59 and again at 12:01, they are not unique


Frank -

I understand that you are very pro .com
I wondered what you thought of other extensions like net org and info when it comes to arbitrage PPC ads.
For example isn't it better to have GreenWidgits.info than WeSellGreenWidgits.com at the URL for your PPC ad at Google?
I thought there might be a lot more available domain names for the arbitrage game in other TLD's & ccTlD's.


***FS*** I like .info and .org in that scenario in certain circumstances.. For example: charitablename.org is better than .com also healthname.org can be more potent at drawing a click. But .com will typically draw more clicks in nearly every other circumstance for the same reason that people type the name in their browser. It is in the collective conscience and deemed authoritative.

David Wrixon

I believe that this is the kind of prospect where development is the key.

It is clear that whilst people are very happy to Search on three word combos they are much less likely to type them in.

At the same time the competition to get to the top of search through good development and SEO, is going to be manageable. The domain should give you the boast you need to get visible without massive investment.

Providing content for this sort of site should also be a doddle. Front page needs to be little more than an index so providing Advertising Space on the front page should not be too much of an issue.

This case study does highlight the difference in the quality of prospects in ASCII dot coms and IDN. Nobody in their right mind would have drilled down to complexed terms like this for IDN. I bet the equivalent of Pattern is still available in dot com in a lot languages let alone Cross-Stitch.



What would you consider a good ovt? and good ovt with extension? I know some of your domains don't have high ovt and was wondering what else you consider as factors. (other than branding)

***FS*** There's not really an exact science to it.. so much is subjective.. and I certainly don't always get it right. Try to look for meaningful generic things (in the correct tense) that get over 1000 apart.

Marc Flood

What if I aquire a keyword matching domain and forward it to my primary web site. Will this still be of benefit for an ad in terms of CPC bid?

***FS*** Refreshing a domain to another domain often causes traffic potency to decrease. It's the same reason Search Engine conversions are lower than direct navigation. Better to title the page after the domain to reafirm to your visitors that they have found the right thing they were looking for.


Thanks for the great blog, it's fascinating and inspiring.

I'm a newbie with a question showing just how new: what is an "apart" search?

Thanks again!

***FS*** Thanks, "apart" refers to number of monthly searches for a phrase ie. "eating disorders" or "Rum Cakes" at the Overture search term suggestion tool: http://inventory.overture.com



Highly Successful dotMobi Online Auction Confirms Strong Demand for .mobi Domains


Managed Account

To me owning the generic search term - even with hyphens and .info seems to be the real deal.
I made it within 6 months to #3 on google for managed forex or managed forex account (s)with

The guy on spot one with only a partial match paid 300K for his spot and domain.

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