GoDaddy’s power in domain registration cannot be ignored.
Here’s a tip to any registries for new domains coming online in the next couple years: before you create your marketing strategy and invest in infrastructure, go cozy up with your new pal Bob Parsons at GoDaddy.
Registries make money when more domains are registered as they get a typically flat fee for each domain registered. For example, VeriSign gets $6.42 for each .com domain registered.
With GoDaddy claiming to take nearly 50% of the new domain registration business, you can’t ignore its marketing power. If GoDaddy promotes your domain it will be successful. If it doesn’t, then you face an uphill battle.
Consider .mobi. As of April 2008 there were 903,941 total .mobi domains registered across 155 registrars according to mTLD filings with ICANN. GoDaddy held 434,141 of them — that’s 48%.
Domains that launched 5 years ago have a somewhat lesser share at GoDaddy, but it’s still strong. GoDaddy registered 28% of the two million .biz domains and 34% of the five million .info domains as of the end of April.
If GoDaddy includes a registry’s domain in its famous “protect your brand” upsell, where it offers a deep discount on alternative extensions for a name you choose, you can expect sales to go through the roof. Ditto if GoDaddy offers special pricing.
If GoDaddy decides to jack up the price of a registry’s domain extension, it could be a rough road ahead.
So registries, be sure to hop on your private jet and visit Scottsdale. Hire a couple scantily clad models and go off-roading with Parsons. It might be the smartest business move you’ve ever made.