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Latona’s Adds Expense Details to Latest Web Sites for Sale

July 12, 2011Domain Sales, Domaining, Domainnamewire, rick latonaComments Off on Latona’s Adds Expense Details to Latest Web Sites for Sale

More web sites for sale, this time with hard costs data.

Rick Latona has released a new batch of developed web sites for sale. This time around he has added expense details so you can get an idea of how much it costs to operate the site.

Still, the expense details don’t seem to take into consideration how much time the site operators spend on the site. You’ll want to find that out before placing an offer.

Included are two insurance lead generation sites. One is state specific and earns about $20,000 a year. Asking price is $70,000, or 3.5x revenue. The other brings in nearly $200k a year and is priced at 4x that.

Also up for sale is business directory Weboptopia.org for EUR 600,000, about 5x annual revenues, a printer review site, a college/career web site, and “cancer insurance” site.


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What I Think About Latona’s 5 Latest Web Sites for Sale

June 15, 2011Domaining, Domainnamewire, rick latona, Uncategorized, web sites for saleComments Off on What I Think About Latona’s 5 Latest Web Sites for Sale

Opinions on Rick’s latest batch of web sites for sale.

Rick Latona has posted his five latest web sites for sale, which he says his team hand picked from 1,000s of sites.

I’m a big fan of buying and selling revenue-producing web sites and I’ve done it myself. Latona’s announcement asked for feedback, so here’s mine on the five sites.

EasyToInsureMe.com – this property has approximate annual revenue of $100,000 and an asking price of $170,000. The description states that traffic is up 78% since January, which makes me think this revenue is annualized based on recent months. So the site history is fairly week. It’s also up to about 1,300 uniques per month. That’s not a lot for a site that makes $100k a year. It’s possible on a well designed lead gen site, though. I’d verify all traffic to this site and make sure it’s organic. Deduct any PPC costs. Think hard about if the site revenue is sustainable. Also think about the trademarked terms that the site ranks for in SEO.

ReviewCar.com – This lead gen and online advertising site claims revenue of $26,400 per year and is asking nearly 5x revenue, a very high price. I can’t get the site to load correctly in FireFox but it does work in Chrome. Revenue is mainly from Adsense with some from SureHits. I’d want to make sure that revenue is steady, especially since it’s concentrated. There’s a stale forum on the site that could be boosted, but forum traffic doesn’t do as well for PPC advertising as other traffic. Be sure to figure out how much time the owner spends on the site and deduct this as a cost from revenues.

HousingPredictor.com – According to the site, HousingPredictor.com has been featured in publications such as New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. As a buyer you’ll want to figure out if it’s the owner’s expertise or the site that is most often quoted. Also see how recent these mentions are. The site makes about $25k top line a year and is asking $125k. It looks like the owner writes a lot of the articles, and this cost must be taken out of your revenue to figure out profit. At a minimum we’re talking a rich 5x earnings, and I expect it’s higher when you consider the true costs.

GolfCartMotors.com – This site makes annual revenue of $5,400 with an asking price of $16,500. The owner sells a product and basically marks it up based on a relationship with a supplier. It’s sort of like drop-ship, but it’s not clear if it’s that seamless. The first big question is if that revenue number is actually a profit number. If not, you need to deduct the cost of the motors which changes the entire equation. The site gets 877 uniques a month, primarily from one search term. Ask yourself if there’s any way to increase this or if it’s just a small niche. How defensible is it?

Edugree.com – This site has potential for someone who wants to put in some serious elbow grease. Its annual revenues are $3500 on 31,000 monthly uniques. It’s stale, with the last post (according to the home page) in October 2010. This can be a problem, but is also a sign that there’s room to grow. I’d consider the SEO base and if that’s worth the $11,700 asking price.

Again, I’m a huge fan of the business model of buying and selling existing web sites. These are just my observations on these five sites.


© DomainNameWire.com 2011.

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TRAFFIC Extended Auction Ends Thursday

October 27, 2010Domain Sales, Domaining, Domainnamewire, latonas.com, rick latona, traffic conferenceComments Off on TRAFFIC Extended Auction Ends Thursday

Extended domain name auction ends tomorrow.

The extended TRAFFIC conference domain name auction run by Latonas.com ends Thursday at 11:15 EDT.

So far four domain names have received bids: Pisos.co (apartments/flats in Spanish) at $15,000, Coche.co (cars in Spanish) at $9,950, Piso.co at $9,950, and AutoReply.com at $1,500.

The extended auction also includes two domain names that appeared sold in the live domain name auction, Shock.com and BVI.com/.co. Latonas believes the bids for these two domain names were fraudulent. Shock.com originally “sold” for $200,000 at the live auction, and BVI.com and BVI.co sold for $110,000.

There are over 750 domain names in the extended auction. The inventory is relatively heavy with .co, .cm, and .tv domain names. A few of the names that look interesting to me at starting bids include:

Physical.com and Physical.co $35,000
MadridJobs.com $500
SanFrancisco.co $400


© DomainNameWire.com 2010.

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Rick Latona Discusses TRAFFIC Dublin

July 28, 2010domain conference, Domain Services, Domaining, Domainnamewire, rick latona, targeted trafficComments Off on Rick Latona Discusses TRAFFIC Dublin

Here’s the scoop on the next TRAFFIC conference.

TRAFFIC is taking the show on the road again next month, traveling to Dublin, Ireland August 24-25. Domain Name Wire caught up with show organizer Rick Latona to get the scoop on the show.

DNW: Why did you pick Dublin as one of the locations for this year?

Latona: Many Internet companies are setting up their European headquarters in Ireland. There are excellent tax advantages as well as a very tech friendly infrastructure. English is also a great benefit for us American companies that are exploring business opportunities. Ireland is far less expensive than Britain and of course, it’s in the European Union. The beer is good too.

We go to Ireland often on business and wanted to show our American domainers who travel to the overseas shows and the main land Europeans the benefits of the environment.

DNW: At the Vancouver show you lowered prices but cut some of the extras. I understand the meals and parties are back for Dublin. What can people expect in terms of entertainment and food?

Latona: Domain Invest (.com, not to be confused with domaininvest.lu) is throwing a big dinner on the second night and Latona’s will be sponsoring the opening night cocktail. Dublin is a great place to let loose a little because the bars aren’t open so late that we’ll get into too much trouble!

DNW: The Dublin show is only 2 days, as opposed to 2 1/2 to three at previous conferences. Why the change?

Latona: We understand that many people have been going to a lot of shows and they want to focus on their businesses. So, we’ve jam packed the two days, cut the auction back to a single event and included parties on both days. It’ll be a tiring two days but it’ll be productive and to the point.

DNW: What new and different events or panels will people want to see at this TRAFFIC?

Latona: The Test Track is always good and our guests tell us often that it is their favorite part of the show. Sponsored by .CO the Test Track is the event where entrepreneurs can pitch their businesses to the panel of investors at the show. Please note that we still have room for applications if anyone is interested.

DNW: Looking forward, any updates/info about Hong Kong show?

Latona: The Hong Kong event isn’t until November and we’ll be posting updates about it soon enough. We want to focus on Dublin for now. That’s one thing that we’ve definitely learned this year. Focus on just one show at a time.


© DomainNameWire.com 2010.

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Agenda and Air Travel Falling Into Place for TRAFFIC Milan

April 23, 2010Domain Services, Domaining, Domainnamewire, rick latona, traffic milanComments Off on Agenda and Air Travel Falling Into Place for TRAFFIC Milan

Everything coming together for next week’s conference in Milan.

TRAFFICThere are some things conference organizers can control, and there are some things they can’t. They can control the quality of their agenda. But volcanic eruptions? That’s a challenge.

Fortunately for Rick Latona and crew, everything seems to be shaping up nicely for its April 27-29 show in Milan.

First, on what they can control. TRAFFIC will look somewhat like Latona’s first foray into domain conferences at TRAFFIC ccTLDs last year. The program is full of country code experts, from ccTLD administrators to domainers to registrars.

The first day will include a session on .IT (Italy), followed by a discussion on the markets of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark. The day concludes with a 50 domain .eu auction.

Wednesday includes sessions on .fr, .uk and .es, .de, .nl and .at. It also has a case study session on developing ccTLDs. The day concludes with the main live auction.

Thursday covers .pl (Poland), .ru (Russia) and Eastern European markets, .com, IDNs, and ccTLD legal issues. The agenda finishes with Test Track.

Now, what about that volcanic ash cloud hanging over Europe? If the event would have been this week, it would be a challenge. Fortunately the skies are clearing and most people with originating travel should now be fine.

Want to make a last minute trip? Contact Rick Latona.


© DomainNameWire.com 2009.

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Rick Latona Domain Sales Newsletter Switches to Auction Format

April 8, 2010Domain Sales, Domaining, Domainnamewire, latonas.com, rick latonaComments Off on Rick Latona Domain Sales Newsletter Switches to Auction Format

Latona shakes up newsletter — no more fixed priced domain names.

With 15,000 subscribers, Rick Latona’s domain name sales newsletter is the most popular newsletter for selling domain names. Today Latona’s company announced a big change: it will no longer sell domain names for fixed prices. Instead, domains will be auctioned off on Latonas.com.

People can still submit domain names with a price, and the price will become the reserve price for the domain. Auctions will last 24 hours.

In a letter to subscribers, the company stated that there will also be more transparency with this move:

Also new is complete transparency. Now everyone will know what we are selling or aren’t selling. Everyone will know what they are getting for their names. Those who sell their names will know that they are getting exactly what their names are worth.

To kick off the new auction format, the first newsletter includes 120 names from the company’s own inventory, all offered starting at $1 with no reserve.

Some of the domains starting at $1 are Footballcards.net, ePayments.com, Crackhouses.com, Gymnasiums.com, and TempLabor.com. You could see some fantastic deals in the next 24 hours.


© DomainNameWire.com 2009.

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Rick Latona Discusses TRAFFIC Milan

March 24, 2010Domain Services, Domaining, Domainnamewire, rick latona, targeted trafficComments Off on Rick Latona Discusses TRAFFIC Milan

Rick Latona discusses next month’s T.R.A.F.F.I.C. conference in Milan.

The next Targeted TRAFFIC conference will be held in Milan April 27-29. I reached out to show organizer Rick Latona to find out what attendees can expect.

DNW: Your second conference of the year will focus on ccTLDs. You held a ccTLD conference last year. What will people who attended last year’s ccTLD show learn/experience new this year?

Latona: The ccTLD industry is constantly changing, much like the major gTLDs so regardless of your focus attending another show one year later is a good idea. One thing I’m excited about though is our panel about the Russian market. We’ve added a lot of new countries to the panel including those in Scandinavia and of course the Italian market.

The big answer to your question though is that things are always changing and you need to stay in tune with your market, there will be a great ccTLD auction, and networking with other like minded investors. It’s the same reason someone would go to a show every year in any other industry.

DNW: What special admission offers do you currently have available?

Latona: Right now we are reaching out to members of cctlds.com offering them special discounted rates. Most who know me know it is pretty easy to get a deal out of me. All you have to do is ask. If you want to come to the show but need help just email rick AT ricklatona.com.

DNW: Does holding an international show like this require extra preparation and planning? What extra logistics are required?

Latona: For one thing, we spend a lot more time on airplanes! Fortunately we have friends in high places. People like Michele Dionia have helped us a lot with the Italian market. In Dublin we are getting help from Pinky Brand of .mobi. It would be a lot harder without their support.

DNW: You’re using Proxibid for the auction in Milan. What technically went wrong with Latonas.com in Vegas, and when do you hope to have those issues resolved?

Latona: The system is beautiful but it just isn’t fast enough to handle the load of a live auction and we won’t be using it again for that environment until we feel it is. Proxibid.com offers a great system and domainers at this point know how to use it because we’ve used it so many times. The issues on Latonas.com will be resolved whenever they are resolved. We aren’t going to rush it at this point because putting on a fast and stable auction is the priority. Getting the names sold is what counts.

How can people submit domains to the auction?

Latona: We try and make that part as easy as we can. TargetedTraffic.com, Latonas.com and RickLatona.com all have auction submission forms. You can use any one of them that you’d like and we’ll get it processed. Just don’t fill out forms on all of them!

DNW: What do you think went well in Las Vegas that you want to replicate in Milan? Conversely, what lessons did you learn in Vegas that you’ll apply to Milan?

Latona: We were really satisfied with our networking events and Test Track. While the Vegas show was small, we feel that it was a success and our customers got business done which is what counts.

While the European market and ccTLDs are fundamentally different they are also basically the same. We are all domainers in the end so most of the same tactics work. However, Milan will focus more on teaching about the individual ccTLD extensions. There are three full days of panels in Milan so the show will be very content rich.

DNW: No rest for the weary — you’ll be back at it 2 months later for the Vancouver show. Any updates or exciting news about the Vancouver show you can share with us now?

Latona: Vancouver is going to be a hit. The city sells itself and it’s a huge market. We are already selling tickets for the show and have sponsors lined up and joining. You’ll be hearing a lot more about it from us in the coming weeks.


© DomainNameWire.com 2009.

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Survey: Innovation Coming to Domain Sales

February 25, 2010bido, Domain Sales, Domaining, Domainnamewire, GoDaddy, NameMedia, rick latona, sedoComments Off on Survey: Innovation Coming to Domain Sales

Companies provide innovative twists on domain selling.

Which company is most innovative when it comes to selling domain names in the aftermarket?

The results show a handful of newer companies are innovating in the selling process — and attracting attention from domainers.

The top response in this year’s Domain Name Wire survey (by a long shot) this year was Sedo. After that are three companies, two of which are smaller upstarts: Rick Latona and Bido.

Rick Latona is perhaps most known for his daily domain sales newsletter, the first “major” sales newsletter in the industry. He also runs an auction arm, Latonas.com, that is the exclusive live auctioneer at TRAFFIC conferences. Latona has a licensing agreement to run TRAFFIC conferences, and just held the first one under the new licensing agreement last month in Las Vegas.

Bido is also making waves with innovative auction techniques. It is bringing crowdsourcing to picking the best domain names for auction — and rewarding its customers when they pick domains that sell. It is also adding social aspects to auctions.

GoDaddy makes the list as well, thanks in part to a number of new initiatives to help domain owners sell domains to retail customers. It allows domainers to sell their domain names when someone searches for the exact domain they are selling, and also provides data on the popularity of domain names registered at GoDaddy. The company has a new VP of Aftermarket, Chris Kennedy, who will take a fresh look at the platform this year.

Rounding out the list is NameMedia, which sells domains through BuyDomains, Afternic, and syndication deals with top registrars.

Here are the top 5 results:

1. Sedo/GreatDomains 26%
2. Rick Latona 16%
3. Bido 15%
3. GoDaddy 15%
5. NameMedia 13%


© DomainNameWire.com 2009.

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Survey: Rick Latona Most Influential in Domain Industry

February 15, 2010Domaining, Domainnamewire, rick latona, UncategorizedComments Off on Survey: Rick Latona Most Influential in Domain Industry

Results of survey for “most influential” person in domain industry.

Rick LatonaMirror, mirror, on the wall. Who is the most influential of them all?

The answer is Rick Latona, according to the 5th Annual Domain Name Wire Survey.

The question of who has the most influence on the domain name industry is always controversial. I received a number of comments this year about what this question means. Can influence be only good? Can it be a company? Really, it’s up to you to decide.

But in the end, the race for “most influential” wasn’t even close. 50 people wrote in Rick Latona, who is quickly building an empire of domain name services. (You can read more about Latona’s story in this DNJournal profile.)

Some of Latona’s more popular services include his domain sales newsletter. He’s also active in the live domain name auction business and is running five of this year’s TRAFFIC conferences. Latona isn’t shy about his ambitions, and is willing to cut his losses when necessary. This past year he shuttered his AEIOU minisite service.

Of course, Latona isn’t the only one getting press in this industry. Here are other top picks, including the number of write-in votes.

Rick Schwartz 33 (TRAFFIC co-founder)
Bob Parsons 22 (Go Daddy)
Frank Schilling 21 (Name Administration)
Ron Jackson 14 (DNJournal)
Rod Beckstrom 11 (ICANN)

See more survey results here.


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The Problem With Having Too Many Domains in an Auction

February 6, 2010Domain Sales, Domaining, Domainnamewire, rick latona, SnapNamesComments Off on The Problem With Having Too Many Domains in an Auction

For online domain auctions, less is more.

Two “extended” domain name auctions concluded this week. The results were underwhelming.

In the Rick Latona auction, only 9 of 600 domain names sold. The Moniker extended auction sold 79 of about 2,000 domains.

So what’s the problem? Too many domains, and especially too many poorly priced domain names.

I won’t profess to be an expert at picking which domain names will sell. But I assume auction houses apply some mathematics to it. You take the reserve price times the odds it will sell to come up with an expected value. Of course, you also consider that you want a high sell through rate, so you don’t just accept million dollar domains with a 1% chance of selling over $5,000 domains with a 90% chance of selling.

If auction houses are using a similar selection process, it just isn’t working. I think the problem is too many domains in the auctions.

Moniker set the high water mark a few auctions ago with 5,000 domains in the extended auction. It has since lowered the number, with about 2,000 in the latest auction. This is still too many, as shown by the less than 5% sell rate.

When there are too many domains in an auction, it turns off buyers. Some buyers like that, because they can run their analytics and find a few gems. But it’s bad for sellers if buyers don’t show up.

In addition to the number of domains, if a buyer sees any outrageously priced domain names, they’ll assume all of the domain names are overpriced. If I see a .ws domain name with a reserve over $5,000, I’m not going to waste my time looking at other domains in the auction. I’m going to assume everything is overpriced.

To be fair, part of the problem is too many submissions. If an auction company asks people to submit their ten best .com domains, they’ll end up with submissions of 50 .cc domains instead. That’s a mess to sort through.

We’re still at the early stages of domain auctions. But the results are becoming frustrating.


© DomainNameWire.com 2009.

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