The .xyz domain name hit its one year anniversary today with about 950,000 domain names. That’s just 50,000 names shy of .xyz CEO Daniel Negari’s first year goal for the domain name, an estimate many snickered at when he made it.
Now, many people are probably still snickering about these numbers. After all, weren’t they all given away for free?
No. One registrar gave away about 350,000 domains. Many of the others were registered at bargain basement prices of a couple bucks, but weren’t free.
It’s no secret how to ramp up registration numbers in new top level domain names. Price domains for a buck or two at domain name registrars serving the Asian market. GMO Internet has become the #1 .Click registrar with close to 50,000 names. Last I checked they retailed for less than a dollar.
Before new top level domain names hit registrars’ shelves, many applicants had visions of grandeur. Selling 100,000 domains in a single string, all at .com prices or much higher.
That hasn’t been reality. Looking back, perhaps Negari was one of the smartest guys in the room.
Sure, his top line revenue doesn’t reflect that of the equivalent number of domains sold in other TLDs. But .xyz made noise this past year, and that’s a lot more than can be said of most other new domain names. .Xyz created its own reality while others looked at the domain name business the same way the business has been run for the past decade.
Are .xyz’s numbers manufactured? Do registrations really count if they’ve been given away for free? What about for two dollars?
Everyone will have their own opinion about this. But I think .xyz has been good for new top level domain names in general. Think about the mainstream press you’ve seen for new TLDs in the past year. .Sucks, .club, maybe .porn. And .xyz. Lots and lots of .xyz.
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. A quick look at the top of the new TLD charts shows a lot of domain names that have taken a similar approach to .xyz. Get’em out there anyway you can and whatever price you can.
Let’s see what the renewal rates are and if he is tooting his own horn when those numbers come out. Of the 350k giveaways I’d guess 335k+ will drop. Of the ones that were initially sold for a buck or two what will that renewal rate be? And as more meaningful gTLDS come out any investors who bought into .xyz are going to realize that “xyz” is meaningless and end users won’t want it and they’ll let theirs drop.
This is like the domain version of The Emporer’s New Clothes.
“Looking back, perhaps Negari was one of the smartest guys in the room.”
Did Daniel write this post? Why not wait until renewals roll around. Didn’t hit the goal and that’s with deeply discounted domains and a few hundred thousand pushed into people’s accounts without them asking, for free. Probably one of the more ridiculous posts I’ve read this week.
pumping up these gtlds with free or next to free registrations reminds me of penny stock scams.
R P says
Negari outhustled everyone else yet has little if any profits to show for it
Google and Amazon backed out
Donuts has done ok. Could be only real long term winner
Some keyword.domain combinations will be marketable one day just not anytime soon
If you factor in all of the time/money/resources operators put into new gtlds they’ve been a miserable failure and money loser
Kind of reminds me couple of years ago when apps were supposed to render domains/.com useless from so called “experts”
Owen Frager says
The big winners were the ones who bailed at auctions with million dollar compensatory pay days
Joseph Peterson says
With .XYZ the aspect that I object to isn’t the strategy of dumping them on the market. Freebies and near-freebies are a legitimate way to get products circulating.
For a registry pursuing that strategy, there’s some risk of their TLD being associated with brand cheapness, shoddy websites, spam, malware, or phishing. But for domainers, dirt-cheap domains are a better way to experiment with high-risk nTLD inventory.
What I find repugnant in the whole .XYZ affair is the way in which Daniel Negari has pointed to his largely manufactured registration volume as evidence of market demand and buyer appetite. This began with his arguably mendacious prophecy of 1 million registrations. And it has never really let up. We’ve all seen him continue to portray .XYZ’s “success” in terms of these numbers – both to convince the mainstream media that .XYZ is thriving and to persuade naïve domainers that they ought to register plenty of .XYZ.
Having seen many domainer newbies rush out to give Negari’s company money based on the illusion he’s fostered partly at their expense, I’m not prepared to excuse the man’s (shall we say) pliant interpretation of reality.
These new domain investors ought to be looked after by the domaining community rather than sold down river by its veteran players. Frequently they arrive from developing nations with little money to spend, and it’s a shame that our industry has Daniel Negaris in it who (I believe) swindle them based on fabricated registration numbers.
While .XYZ has bought plenty of mainstream exposure, any attention that brings to the domain industry will be tainted by outsiders’ observation that we allow facts and figures to be flagrantly manipulated. That does no favors for us. We need more than attention; we need investor confidence.
Then there’s the other issue of placing domains in registrant accounts without the owner’s permission. That’s a concern.
Whether Daniel Negari was the smartest man in the room or not can, I suppose, be measured ultimately by how much money he pockets as a result of this .XYZ scheme. Personally, I think other criteria are more important than measuring a CEO’s business acumen in terms of dollars. Trust, for instance.
oh but didn’t you hear? .xyz domains were accessed so much that it ‘broke’ centralnic’s reporting…
A few reasons why domain investors should never invest in .XYZ:
1. Almost 1 million .XYZ registrations, yet only 24 .XYZ reported domainer sales in one year time (basically 0.0024% of all .xyz domains).
2. Most of those 24 .xyz sales were sold below $300 USD and we’re talking top-of-the-line keywords such as Printers.xyz (sold for $300 USD), Pictures.xyz (sold for $210 USD), Press.xyz (sold for $72 USD).
3. All of those keywords in .com would easily sell for six or even seven figures. And that’s probably where the value of .xyz is at: around 1/5,000th of a .COM (for a similar keyword).
4. Namejet is currently holding an .XYZ auction as well (no idea why because they’re not going to make much money with that). There are around 50 .XYZ domains in that auction most of which do not have any bids and the few that do are pathetically low (highest bid made on any of those domains is $99 USD, basically for analytics.xyz).
5. Sure, 950,000 .xyz registrations looks good on paper but if you take into account that 375,000 of those were freebies and around 410,000 of those were sold at around $1 a pop you are left with around 165,000 “regular price” registrations made in one year. That’s an average of only 452 .xyz domains registered per day. Not impressive at all.
.XYZ is a joke imo. Sure Negari can brag about “volume”, but after one full year there’s basically no value in an .XYZ domain and I highly doubt there ever will be (other than some startups who can’t afford the .com so decide to settle for a (much) lesser extension. Funny thing is, if they ever become successful it’s highly likely they will end up buying the .com and dropping their .xyz).
I’d still say the 3 big ones are com, net, and org. Not to mention, there is still plenty of names to be had with these extensions. For instance, urhot.net is on Flippa at $1 right now with no reserve. https://flippa.com/4506501-great-domain-name-with-huge-potential-spin-it-however-you-like-top-keywords
Garrett E. Atkins says
You guys will be swallowing your words after today lol
And now that Google’s Alphabet is on abc.xyz?
Will this boost .xyz TLD’s value?