Is our domain a golden ticket?
February 25, 2007 5:27 PM   Subscribe

This (somewhat shady-seeming) automated domain appraiser claims that our domain is worth over US$150,000. What does that translate to in real money?

We love our domain name (, but if there were truly someone out there willing to shell out a hundred fifty grand for it, we could probably get used to the idea of parting ways. But... there's appraisal price, and there's actually finding a buyer willing to pay. Does anyone know what the market is really like for a very short but meaningless domain name like this? Is that kind of money really in the cards?
posted by miagaille to Computers & Internet (18 answers total)
Two words: market forces. You could shop it to the biggest "E3" establishment out there, but I doubt that they'd be willing to pay that much for it.
posted by tmcw at 5:37 PM on February 25, 2007

Well it claims $169,000 for a domain I just sold for $30,000 if that helps. Of course, totally random samples aren't going to help much here ;-) It's worth whatever someone offers you for it (plus a little more)
posted by wackybrit at 5:40 PM on February 25, 2007

For another data point:
It gave me $45,000 for mine. In ten years I've only ever had one person interested in my domain, and they were unwilling to pay $2,000 for it.

It also looks broken since the "Google score" is zero for every site. Including Google.
posted by Ookseer at 6:01 PM on February 25, 2007

My personal domain ( is apparently worth 114,000. I invite you to poke around and judge that for yourself.

If it were "worth" that I would keep it myself, on the grounds that I could develop a great revenue stream off it - in the real world, the promise of a revenue stream is the only thing that sustains a valuation.

I think their appraisal is overly mechanistic bullshit, frankly.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 6:14 PM on February 25, 2007

Had a domain appraised at $500,000 once. Sold it for $10,000.
posted by kindall at 7:40 PM on February 25, 2007

Looks like crap to me. One of my (~20) domains, I'd consider selling is estimated at around $114k by them ( It's my old blog, and I got $10k for it I'd be ecstatic.
posted by Kickstart70 at 8:06 PM on February 25, 2007

It's merely appraising on the number of back links it can find (Google doesn't even seem to be showing up), how long the domain name is, and if it's a .com, .net, .org, and so on.

All those have credence when purchasing a website but to simply apply them to a domain name is meaningless. The value of a domain name goes beyond statistics and back links, the real value comes from simplicity, originality, effectiveness, and function.
posted by 913 at 8:11 PM on February 25, 2007

A thing is worth what someone will pay for it. That's all. There's no evaluation algorithm that can be applied to a thing to determine that, if it is not a commodity.

In a sense URLs are a commodity, but the theory is that some are worth more than others (e.g. the infamous ""). But unless your URL coincides with some hot trademark (say, you managed to snag "" and hang onto it through the resulting lawsuits) then I seriously doubt that any URL is worth $140,000 any more. The dot-com boom went that-away!
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 9:58 PM on February 25, 2007

My domain, which I have been offered $25K for, appraised at 162,669.00. Uh, sure.

Of course, I had it "professionally" appraised at $85K and have not seen anything like that, either, and we're talking three-letter, dictionary-word .com .

Steve, some domains are worth a lot, but they depend on type-in traffic. If you don't have that (I don't) you don't make diddly.
posted by maxwelton at 10:06 PM on February 25, 2007 was an interesting little reference tool for a while until it was sold and completely bastardized. The new owner turned it into a shill site. Not to mention breaking the damn thing.

And, as others have said - it's worth what someone will pay for it.
posted by FlamingBore at 10:39 PM on February 25, 2007

The only thing you've got going for you is the short domain (too bad it's not a .com though). Someone like a cellphone content provider would love to have as short of a domain as possible, but like everyone else said, it's only worth what you can sell it for.

I would guess, given all the people I've heard selling domains these days, it might be worth $30-50k if you found the right buyer that really wanted it.
posted by mathowie at 11:27 PM on February 25, 2007

Ha! They quoted $657,951.00 for one of my domains! In the 10 years that I've had it; I've never even been approached for it by anyone... not that I ever plan on selling it anyway.
posted by Jade Dragon at 12:03 AM on February 26, 2007

My site is apparently worth $21. Not $21,000. $21.
posted by Faint of Butt at 3:32 AM on February 26, 2007

Well, I plugged in the (in)famous
and they say it's worth 22K...
posted by allterrainbrain at 3:33 AM on February 26, 2007

I have a few domain names sitting around for future projects. I plugged them in and got quoted $20. Then I put in my personal domain (which is [my obsure and non-English family name].org) and it returned $40,000.

Looks like it's heavily biased towards google rank, top level domains and and a short name length. In other words, mostly a guess.
posted by outlier at 3:52 AM on February 26, 2007

You can just make up domains (unregistered at that) and make a fortune according to leapfish. You could have an unlimited amount of income just by buying at 9.99 and selling for thousands.

It's a complete joke.
posted by justgary at 4:41 AM on February 26, 2007

Probably not a golden ticket. I own a 3 letter .net domain and get at least 2 emails a month from some person or company saying that they're interested in buying it and to name the price.

I tell them "no less than $15,000."

Needless to say, I never hear back from them.
posted by drstein at 12:07 PM on February 26, 2007

Well, this is all good news. I (it was me posting, selfishly using my wife's AskMe quota) really didn't want to have to tear up my online identity, which I kind of would have felt forced to do if it had been the case that I was sitting on that kind of serious dough. I (and my wife, and my friends who use it) are personally invested enough in the domain - I've been using it for over a decade now! - that it'd really be way too much of a hassle for anything less than six-figure bling.

Thanks all!
posted by dmd at 6:34 PM on February 26, 2007

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