In my recent articles, I have been talking about different ways to generate an alternate stream of income. This article, as the title indicates, will pertain to how you can use the Internet as a powerful income generator.
The first question you might ask yourself is, “What exactly is a domain name?” A domain name is basically a website’s URL, i.e. www.weddingdresses.com or www.stereos.com. Another question that you may ask yourself is why anyone would want to buy one of these?
Good question and it’s the same question I asked myself when I found out about this powerful tool. But to understand the rationale behind the whole domain name buying process, one must understand what happened to hundreds of Internet startups during the late 90s.
You may or may have not heard this era – the late 90s – referred to as the ‘dot com’ era. And it certainly was – and for good reason. Because of the emergence of the Internet as a widely used tool, many thought that it was the new frontier and all of our activities would be conducted ‘online’. So companies like www.pets.com, www.flowers.com, and www.medicine.com, sprung up like weeds in a junkyard. Because of the collective zeal for anything that dealt with technology during this time, many of these companies did well. However, many of them went bankrupt and subsequently, they did not receive as much Internet traffic as they had when business was thriving. This is where domain name buyers come in.
After some of these ‘dot coms’ went bust, enterperneurial websurfers began to buy these ‘domain names’ by going to www.afternic.com, and placing bids for names like www.weddingdresses.com and www.stereos.com. “Why is this profitable?”, you may ask yourself. Well, when a woman is looking for a wedding dress, she doesn’t always just ‘Google’ wedding dresses. She may visit www.weddingdresses.com. Or when someone is looking for a stereo system, she may go to www.stereos.com, where she’ll find hundreds of advertisements for stereo purveyors and other audio/visual equipment. When people visit this site and click on the advertisements, the owner of the domain name receives payment from the advertisers.
In order to make serious money though, you have to buy domain names that are common enough that lots of people visit the site. Or, you have to buy domain names that capitalize on common misspellings when typing in URLs, such as ‘.cm’ instead of ‘.com’. Below, you’ll find a link to a very interesting Business 2.0 article about one of the top domain name buyers or ‘domainers’ or our time – Ken Ham.
If you’re interested in dabbling in this space or making a living out of it, check out the link above and also visit www.afternic.com and view how the bidding process for domain names works.