A whopper of a sale at NameJet, as Joseph Peterson reports.
This week it’s no contest. Between the top expired auction at NameJet and its runner up there yawns a chasm – a 7:1 ratio. At $9k, GameStars.com would be an impressive sale … but for the fact that China claimed its own Baotou.com for a staggering $61.8k. If you’re like me, then you’ve probably never heard of this industrial city in inner Mongolia. But it makes our smart phones and tablets possible. You see, China holds 95% of the world’s reserves of rare earth minerals; and with 70% of these mined just north of Baotou, it’s no wonder the place went from 97,000 inhabitants in 1950 to a population of 2.5 million today. Apparently, it’s the gold rush we’ve relied upon but never heard of.
At first glance, it may seem strange to pay $4.8k for PensionCalculator.com; but if you’re looking up pension amounts, then you belong to a well defined demographic – one which advertisers can target for services such as retirement planning. At the other extreme, banking services looking to acquire new lifelong customers beginning at age 18 would be smart to leverage domains like MilitaryFinancial.com ($1.5k).
CNHT.com ($4.5k) might double as the Coalition of New Hampshire Taxpayers, an advocacy group that already runs a website built on .ORG. However, “CN” is the abbreviation for China; and we all know how the Chinese market appreciates short, un-voweled character strings. SLBC.com ($1.6k) matches the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (built on .LK), the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation (built on .SL), and Sugar Land Bible Church (built on .ORG). However, the domain was most likely bought with none of those nations in mind, since it has gone to Hong Kong. Shurui.com ($3.5k) appears to be a Chinese personal name and may also have some generic meaning in Japanese, although (of course) the buyer resides in China not Japan.
|Domain Name||End $||Domain Name||End $|
Groggy non-morning persons need a good soak to resurrect themselves every A.M. Being one of those, I’m not surprised that ShowerHead.com drew $2.9k in bids. Such items ship easily, making them perfect for e-commerce websites. With a drought in California causing the governor to declare a state of emergency, it’s also not unthinkable that these might be low-flow shower heads intended for water conservation. A related domain, PoolShowers.com ($500) also sold.
Grasmere.com ($735) is a village in the English Lake District where Wordsworth resided and composed much of his poetry. Decomission.com ($325) is how Navy ships retire. Matina.com ($1.4k) is a municipality in Brazil. AUltimaArcaDeNoe.com is “Noah’s Last Arc” and matches a .BR website about Nature in the Amazon. Madeiras.com ($515) are not only Portuguese wines but the sunlit islands where they’re produced. Amfora.com ($1k) would in many languages be the spelling of amphora, which you’ll recognize as a twin-handled Greek vase. JeunesDuMaroc.com ($371) is French for the “young people of Morocco” and corresponds to a magazine.
The German word for question, Frage.net, was certainly undervalued at $432. But LLL.net domains seem to have rebounded, as 5 of them placed between $910 and $1550. The most expensive of these, LTR.net, is a common dating abbreviation for “long term relationship”. As opposed to, say, CollegeEscorts.com ($796).
DoYouParty.com ($79) is a euphemism for asking someone if they partake in recreational drugs. Illicit, yes, but as a phrase widespread and undervalued. Speaking of good deals, I’d point out CityVisits.com ($79) for travel and tourism, HowToTip.com ($79) for a tip calculator app, OverdoIt.com ($80) for preparedness or surpassing expectations, NoMaps.com ($171) for wilderness survival, ModelingNetwork.com ($89), WholeChef.com ($99), and (in a higher price range) MedFund.com ($500) and TVShopping.com ($1.5k).
AmeriPac.com ($1.3k) ought to rebrand the web address for AmeriPac.net … or Ameri-Pac.com … or AmeriPac.org … or AmeriPac-Inc.com … or serve as brand protection for AmeriPak.biz … or AmeriPak.net … or TeamAmeriPak.com … or BuyAmeriPak.com … or AmeriPakFilm.com … or AmeriPakPackaging.com … or AmeriPack.com … or AmeriPackFoods.com … etc. Yes, those are all real websites. Remember, kids, you’re all special; and any brand identity you happen to choose will be as unique as every other snow flake.
These weekly articles only cover expired auctions at NameJet. If you’ve ever wondered how the expired name space compares to NameJet’s seller-managed inventory, you can view side-by-side lists for the month of May in an article I wrote yesterday.
Matina can also mean “fat girl” in some arabic dialects.. just thought i’d throw that in there
Joseph Peterson says
Interesting. I hadn’t run across that colloquialism.
أليس كذلك؟ , (solidity) كلمة متينة من نفس الجذر مثل المتانة
.عندنا ايضاً عبارات متصلة بها: متانة المواد مثلاً ومتانة المركزالمالي
Just a guess.
توصلت الى عنوان خاطئ؟
ShowerHead.com was a ridiculously good buy…
Simon Cousins says
Hi Andrew, great to see another blockbuster Chinese sale! While you’re quite right that “Baotou” is the name of an Inner Mongolian city, this isn’t necessarily the definitive meaning. Chinese Mandarin Pinyin (the way that Chinese characters can be written in English letters) is devilishly ambiguous. This is one of the reasons why Chinese investors love ASCII — a single ASCII domain written in Pinyin can mean many different things to different end-users.
Baotou, as a word representing characters for “bao” and “tou” has several common meanings:
1. The Inner Mongolian city you mentioned (包头), and
2, turban, protective covering on the front tip of shoes, women’s white headdress worn at funerals, head of contractracted laborers (note, these meanings all use the same characters as the city! 包头), and
3. masthead (of a newspaper or magazine, etc), nameplate (different characters 报头), and
4. to cover one’s head with one’s arms (different characters 抱头), and
5. a wild pitch (different characters 暴投)
When combined with other characters, “baotou” can mean:
1. to scamper off like a frightened rat, and
2. to weep into each other’s arms, and
3. a thin lens, and
~ many other phrases!
Keep up the great Chinese domaining coverage!
Best regards, Simon @ Allegravita
Joseph Peterson says
Thanks for expanding the range of meaning, Simon.
If not the city, then perhaps meaning 3 is the most brandable – “masthead (of a newspaper or magazine, etc), nameplate”?
Bao also means 宝(Gem),
Tou also means 投(Investment),
So, baotou means BestInvestment.
This is the real reason why it sold so high.
Simon Cousins says
A reasonable theory, Jack. Lets just say there is a great diversity of remarketing opportunities in Pinyin. We don’t have to be so black-or-white. Leaving the declaration of meanings multiple expands resale options after all!
Joseph, yep, I had the same feeling. Nice brandable option for a publisher or aggregator or media clippings service.
Chinese is awesome.