New service leases domains based on physical location.
Visit the web site DivorceLawyer.com and you might get a message like this:
Are you trying to reach customers in Austin TX? Make ‘divorcelawyer.com’ yours today! Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to see how affordable leasing this domain can be.
The DivorceLawyer.com domain name is being leased based on geographic location. If you’re a New York divorce lawyer, you could capture all of the type-ins and other web traffic to the domain from New York residents by leasing the area. The same goes for any other location.
The company behind this new service is Washington, D.C-based Root Orange. The company helps premium domain owners lease out their domains based on geography, and local businesses get leads online by locking in all local traffic for a premium domain.
In its pitch to local businesses, the company claims its service does three things:
-Increase search rankings
-Easy-to-remember website URL makes referrals easier, while increasing your credibility
-40% increase in search engine marketing campaign click-thru’s
Of these three, I think the last one is the most valid. Type-in traffic is another bullet point that should be included. As for search engine traffic and actually using one of these geo-leased domains as a primary domain for your business, that’s of questionable value. Search engine bots won’t capture your local content, and I’m wary of over leasing a domain for a company’s primary web site.
On the domainer side, Root Orange provides a new monetization opportunity for category-killer domains by leasing them to multiple people.
Local businesses pay anywhere from $9 to over $1,000 per month to lease a domain in there area. For example, DivorceLawyer.com will cost a New York lawyer $1,099 per month, while it will cost a Montgomery, Alabama Lawyer $69. These rates seem reasonable given the number of possible leads. You can search for domains and prices by location on Root Orange’s web site. Other good domains available include BrakeRepair.com and WindowWashing.com.
The company was founded by Princeton Roommates Camilo Acosta and Frank Langston, who won $35,000 in a Princeton business case competition.
Root Orange is another example of innovative services popping up to monetize domains in the wake of falling domain parking revenue.