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8 notable takeaways from 2021 Global Domain Report

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This is what stood out to me in this year’s Global Domain Report.

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InterNetX and Sedo released their annual Global Domain Report this week. The 76-page report recaps what happened in 2020 and looks forward to 2021. The data-rich report uses data collected by the two companies and third parties. You can download it here.

Here are eight things in the report that stood out to me.

Europe loves its ccTLDs (page 16) – travel to many countries outside of the United States and you’ll see a curious thing: the near absence of .com. Businesses in many countries prefer their local country code domain name to .com. A chart breaks down the number of domains registered per 100,000 inhabitants in many countries. Several European countries have standout numbers. The Netherlands leads the pack at about 35,000 domains registered per 100,000 inhabitants. Of course, some people/companies register more than one, and foreigners can register some ccTLDs.

Lots of domains are registered each year even though the base only grows slowly (page 24) – The total base of registered .com domain names inches up slowly. In September, the total number of registered .com domains hit 150 million. Now it’s at 153 million five months later. But with so many deletions every month, a lot of registrations (or re-registrations) are necessary to keep that number moving up. A chart on page 24 shows that there were nearly 38 million new .com registrations last year.

Usage numbers are staggering (page 25-26) – There are many ways to measure if a domain name is being used or not. I think numbers showing usage are mostly inflated. But the report uses DomainsBot’s definition of usage to show the TLDs with the most and least usage. .Com, .org and .net lead the way, but there are some new TLDs on the list as well. The namespaces with the most undeveloped domains and inactive domains include cheap new TLDs, but there are also many .com, .net, and .org domains that don’t resolve at all.

Don’t drop the ‘the’ (page 45) – InterNetX has a database of 2.6 million aftermarket domain sales. It calculated which words show up most often in these domains. The, home, and free lead the list. Free is a surprise to me. Keep in mind that this list is from a long period, not just the past year.

More domains sold in 2020… (pages 37, 52) – Sedo sold more domains in 2020 than in 2019. You can kind of see this in a chart on page 37, but that chart is missing a y-axis. It’s quantified on page 52, though: there was a 26% increase in sales volume.

…at a lower median price (page 57) – Median sale prices at Sedo were down for .com, .net and .org in 2020. This is likely because Sedo scrapped its minimum sales fee mid-2019, so many more low-priced domains sold. It might also be due to more expired domain sales. The median for .com fell from $630 to $332. The average for .com fell from $2,693 to $2,223.

Those sales lists don’t include everything (page 59) – Sedo helps the industry by sending lists of sales over $2,000 to blogs like Domain Name Wire each week. There are a couple of things you should note. First, given that it’s limited to sales over $2,000 and the median price last year was $435, it’s missing many sales at the bottom end. Second, the lists often exclude the biggest sales. 14% of Sedo’s sales last year were kept confidential, and they represented 1/3 of the total dollar value.

Sell with Buy Now prices (page 61) – 2/3rds of Sedo’s sales in 2020 were buy now transactions! Top public buy now transactions included for $65,026, for $59,575, for $50,000, and $50,000. Oh, and SedoMLS now accounts for 1/3 of Sedo’s sales.

Read the full report here.


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