Domaining.com Responds to Criticism of Marketplaces, Hints At Changes

By on October 9, 2010

A few days ago Facebook launched a new groups feature. Having an extensive network of domainers as friends on Facebook, I decided to create a group exclusively for serious Domainers. Many have been actively participating and I expect it will be a great place to discuss Domaining, network and share.

These new groups have something pretty neat, a chat room feature. While casually discussing domain marketplaces in the chat room with group members, I mentioned that I do not use the marketplaces found on the popular industry news site, Domaining.com. To my surprise, a short while later I received an email from Francois who was curious as to why I don’t use the Domaining.com marketplaces.

I commend Francois for proactively seeking out feedback for the website. He has always been open to suggestions since the beginning.

Here I would like to share the concerns I expressed to Francois and his detailed responses. Some grammar has been fixed and sensitive comments omitted.

1. My domains do not appraise highly through your algorithm and may be perceived as less valuable to buyers.

Response: You know it’s not my algorythm but Estibot’s algorythm who also powers Valuate.com, and the valuations given are statitstically good to compare domains and adopted by most of the domain industry. For domains having a low appraisal and or an appraisal under the reserve price I don’t know if I coded to continue showing the appraisal in the sale page or not. It’s certainly a good point to let the owner to decide, I will add that option.

2. Don’t like that there are varying levels of membership and benefits for sellers who pay membership fees.

Response: Each plan has it’s logic. First, there are many to avoid to ask to pay too much someone who will not need of all the options and services.

The initial membership at $10 is mainly here to filter buyers and avoid anyone to come, place a fakebid and go away (what we had in the begining 3 months ago). It’s also a way to filter unscrupulous buyers that list domains they don’t own or don’t transfer a name sold. It’s the level to have a minimum of security and peace of mind for each participant. I have be thinking to have it a single time fee, maybe I will do it.

The second one is in fact the normal level to get advantage of almost any service and with almost the maximum privileges, it’s less than $4/month. It should help pay the DNS cost when you want to park your domain for sale or portfolio (not sure you know these features) which is expensive.

The third is only for buyers that want to be aware of the best deals before anyone, anyway, even this plan cost nothing… (it’s possible we raise it next year significantly).

You know, these plans are targeted for each kind of buyer/seller.

3. Marketplaces are not easily linked to each other. Some new visitor to BargainDomains.com may never see or know about Cax.com domains.

Response: Right, mainly because none is finished completly as I would like.

4. Flipping.co domain implies that you are “selling something bought for cheap” which is negative connotation

Response: It took me 2 hours to decide to create this marketplace, start the promotion and have the first domains listed. It was the morning the .CO become available to everybody. As a lot was registering for cheap (exactly), I imagine the most smart will try to immediately flip it to avoid the scenario of the .mobi.

You cannot consider people are stupid, almost everyone knows .CO has been registered for less than $25 a month ago and that you are flipping.

5. Cax.com domain does not make sense.

Response: The same Google does not make sense, Sedo, Bido, … any brandable name doesn’t make sense. Oops! People will tell you after that Sedo is “search domain” but who knows this? It’s logical only after someone has told you :) I remember a popular thread in DNF 4 years ago about a game trying to find what was the meaning of SEDO, … it was funny and outlined very well. Now that you like Cax or that you don’t like it’s up to you and it’s personal. I remember found very ugly bido and his sonority at the begining, and I also must be honnest and say I like it a lot after many months of promotion.

There are basically 2 routes when you decide to buy a domain for a service: generic or brandable. I am maybe too elitist, but my experience outline that if you don’t own the industry generic killer name then better buy a brandable. The good ones was: Aftermarket.com, Domains.com, … names I cannot buy today for many reasons. But I also want to say it’s not easy to have generic as you must allways add the .com and what ever you do you are never totally owner of the generic.

In a side note I wanted this time (after domaining.com) of a very short brandable that pass the radio test and that was easy to spell and that has some punch. I think the catchy domain Cax.com has this. Maybe after 3 months of strong promotion you will change your mind. Last thing, the type-in is proportional to the inverse of the length, it’s fast to write cax.com/mydomain.com and access your sale page or tell about your sale page.

6. BargainDomains.com is better and of course PremiumDomains.com would be the ultimate name for marketplace.. but that is for your private names.

Response: Both make sense, one to list bargain and the other for premium, but use any of them for list any kind of names does not make sense.

7. Design of the marketplaces is OK, I think it could be much more professional and more usable for buyers and sellers.

Response: Rome has not been built in 3 days. I just have a head, 10 fingers and my days like yours still have 24H :) Don’t worry they are going to be seriously improved.

Apparently you just see a part of the iceberg, look at SalePage.com, DomainPortofolio.com, … in construction. As soon Cax.com is finished all the pieces should be linked and exposed in a more logical way.

By the way Cax.com will allow to submit names without restrictions of appraisals.

Thank you Francois!

Your responses have some excellent points. While I still do not agree completely with everything (I wish there was one big marketplace with categories), it does look like your marketplaces are heading in a positive direction and will receive good use from the Domaining.com audience. I look forward to the upcoming changes and improvements.

The new DomainPortfolio site looks very promising to me. Great idea.

What do you think of the Domaining.com domain marketplaces and the possible changes and introductions? Please leave a comment below with your thoughts.

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About Mark Fulton

Mark is the Founder of DotSauce Magazine and a full time web developer, domain investor, SEO and online marketing professional residing in North Carolina, USA. Visit MarkFulton.com for information on freelance website development, SEO and consultation services.