Happy New Year!

Hello! Been a while eh.. 2010 seems to have just started but were already more than half way through January!
So what’s been happening on the domaining development front?

Domain Leasing: After the flurry of bids and very nice sale of bedroomfurniture.co.uk (which isn’t mine) I suddenly had a good bit of interest in my livingroom & diningroom furniture domains. Weird how that goes, no interest for 12 months and then suddenly 3 different five figure offers, happy to say I leased both mine out for £100 per month each so a nice little gain in the leasing income. The 2 domains were not ranking or developed, both have buy options written in.

Geo’s: I had initially planned to work through the winter adding advertisers to sites like Ullapool.co.uk but it became pretty obvious once the businesses shut down it’s going against the grain trying to get them to spend on next season so I held off, I did initially get some B&B’s on board and some have naturally emailed and signed up as the site ranks top for the town, so that one established site is earning £1350 per year in listing fee’s and would make around £2k per year in adsense based on present numbers, my other geo sites although small in traffic levels are getting really nice clicks on Adsense from 50p to £2 per click so even just now in the winter they add up quite nicely. My geo sites will likely earn around £10,000-£15,000 passively for me in 2010 but if I can get motivated that could easily be doubled year on year.

Domains: Not really searching out domains too much nowadays, but I did manage to buy Enhancement.co.uk for £1350 which I thought very good value just by emailing the business that owned it but didn’t use it, there is a large lucrative & growing market in cosmetic surgery for both sexes and this domain would make a great home for such a site, it also lends itself to be fully developed to cover natural mind body & soul enhancement so not too narrow or focused. To get this site up and running I have bought a site that is a couple of years old with some info that is on a really crap domain, I’ll get it moved across to it’s new home on Enhancement.co.uk this week and have a few ideas to develop it out further, I’ll come back to my plans for this at a later date.

My son had a bankroll built up since he was born, money from his Gran for Birthdays & Christmas over the last 9 years and it got to just over £1000, sweet! Rather than leave it in the bank I suggested we get him a good domain that could give him a better return as an asset and/or develop it a little. So he bought EdinburghCastle.co.uk which cost £1200 – Edinburgh Castle is Scotland’s most visited tourist attraction so I really hope he gets to do a project on it at school so we can get some good free content!

ThinkVisibility 3: March 13th 2010 Think Visibility returns,  Al will be there doing a talk on automation and outsourcing along with plenty other notable speakers so it looks a good line up.

Minisites: Some of these are going great guns, one is doing 4000-5000 visitors per day, another 1500 per day, if they are handy tools, scripts or programs they can really pull in traffic. The Ambigram site is a relatively new one getting around 150 visitors per day and making good sales in December for electronically delivered images.

Websites: Knowing my limitations which are endless really :) I don’t often develop myself due to lack of talent, ability and motivation but I do see the value in buying old websites from others. I mentioned it last year but I have a list of 50,000 websites which I know all get decent traffic levels, still going through this list every now and again looking for neglected/forgotten about traffic sites. I have to say I have found some gems that are not monetised and clearly forgotten about but getting in touch or getting a response from owners is more than a little tough at times which is frustrating but also exciting to think that if I managed to find & buy the right site a really good income could be made from it overnight, takes patience and perseverance and a lot of detective work at times, you really have to put yourself out there to make things happen but this is the easiest and laziest way to build a passive income, many sites bought over the last 2 years have already paid themselves back.

This is for a separate company from my main stuff that was started 2 years ago buying a small site that earned £5 per day and every now & again buy other smallish sites to the point the business now makes into 3 figures per day maintenance free, every penny earned in that company has been re-invested and every now and again money has been borrowed to buy sites if they were available on a good multiple. The most recent site being USAGardener.com which completed on Friday, a really nice info site that has grown each year and should have a good spring/summer 2010. USA Gardener is content rich with a nice enough design and already had adsense so bought on a multiple with the view it should increase traffic wise as a good resource for people looking to grow their own vegetables & fruit – would like to have it repaid within 2 years.

Overall I feel a lot of positivity for 2010, ’09 wasn’t anything special, it’s quieter when businesses and people have less cash or at least feel poorer and more frugal, I think there will be a lot more cheer to celebrate in 2010 with more progress in domain leasing, big domains sales and more passive income, for me 2009 was again about diversity on income streams and I hear a few others doing the same, congrats to Andy on his recent lease I hope it’s the first of many mate.

About Scott Jones

Scott hails from the north east of Scotland and started earning online at the end of 2000 building websites for local businesses during which time he won an award from Lord Alan Sugar for Excellence in Enterprise. After having quite a bit of success with domaining Scott mainly runs educational evergreen websites which generate over 3 million visitors per month but is always on the lookout for a fresh thinking out of the box way to turn a buck. Follow on Twitter.

Comments

  1. Hello there scott, keep writing man, your blog is one of the few worthwhile blogs around so keep up the good work.

    Any luck with domain leasing in the .com arena? or any other than .co.uk?

  2. Elias Baltuano says:

    Happy new year for you too Scott. I just love the work you’re doing with this blog. Keep it up!

    Thank you for sharing this blog with us!

  3. Its always good to hear of others success. It provides inspiration and motivation, both of which can easily dwindle when things don´t seem to develop as quickly as you´d like them to. I hadn´t thought of leasing until I read about it here! Was just talking to someone today about another potential lease. Also going to try my hand at an affiliate site.

    Those are some pretty impressive traffic figures from “mini” sites!
    Have you had much success from a new reg or dropped domain? If so how quickly did you manage to develop it into a worthwhile asset? As all my are new regs until I know what I am looking for in buying a site.

  4. I’m not so much a developer, the minisite getting 4k-5k per day was a free to reg domain but it’s a few years old now, I think getting from 0 to around 100-300 per day is achievable within the first month if it’s a handy tool.

  5. I like the idea behind ambigram and such sites. Coming from a pure affiliate site background I may try and make a couple of sites that can be used as tools as a way of complimenting the affiliate income I generate.

  6. Good to hear you’ve been busy :) I like the idea of your son buying a domain as an investment, what a great idea – much better than a savings account with the current low rates.

    I think 2010 will be better than 2009, businesses will start to become more confident and more likely to spend some cash – well thats what I’m hoping for anyway :)

  7. Happy New Year Scott. Nice to read another post from you. I especially enjoy your domain lease posts as it is a big initiative for me in 2010. I have been successful with domain sales over the years but now I think the future is in leasing and I wish I hadn’t let go of a lot of domains that I sold. Had I kept them I think I could’ve done much better through leasing. Hence, I am looking to only lease domains moving forward and not sell any of them. Either way, I enjoy all your posts. Keep up the great work.

  8. Great to hear from you as always Scott. Was a bit worried that you too were going to go down JimKarter’s way and not update the blog.
    Keep up the good work.

  9. Thanks George, I have to agree – if you believe in the power of as good memorable & short generic domain then it would seem a natural progression and one which may still be a few years away from commonplace but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t pave the way.

  10. Happy New Year Scott and everyone!!

    Like Andy, I hadn’t considered domain leasing until reading your posts Scott. It seems to be a very lucrative business that I wouldn’t mind getting into.

    I’ve was looking through old domains that I had registered for projects but never got around to finishing them. I’ve got a short sweet domain “go4.net” but do you guys reckon a .net name is gonna be worth much to anyone?

    • If it ranked and had some organic traffic it certainly would have value to someone, building a site on a good generic gives you possible adsense income, possible affiliate sales, possible end user domain sale and possible leasing options but most are dependant on the site generating traffic, doesn’t always have to be much though.

      • Thanks Scott, will definatly have to put something on it and get it ranked with some traffic. Just need to come up with a theme for the site now. :)

    • The one I leased out was a .net but it was to some people in Spain who didn’t really seem to care – probably weren´t that aware of the difference.
      Not much traffic on it either – hence the low price.
      If they keep a hold of it then I will stick some more backlinks into it and review the price as traffic increases.

      • It’s reassuring to hear that you’ve had success with a .net Andy, I had thought the .net names weren’t very popular but maybe there is a market for them.

        So the more traffic you’ve got going to a name the more you can lease it out for?

        • I leased that one n the basis that it gets some traffic, its on page one for one of its main keywords, they can pick up a website and use it immediately with no upfront costs (they have no website at all – just telephone number on business card) no design, hosting or anything else costs and they can drop it if it is no use to them (with three months notice) – I think they got a good deal :)

          I discussed pay per lead and min. leads per month etc but best for them was a complete website and email addresses (they were using hotmail…) and somewhere to start pointing people who they were talking to on forums etc. They are getting some new business cards done with new email addys and website so I guess it depends how web savvy they are as to what they are looking for and what they will pay.

  11. Great to hear from you as always Scott.

  12. Great to have a new post from you Scott. I’ve been checking the blog every so often and was beginning to worry that you had retired to the med!

  13. Hi Scott,
    You stated the below about your sites, I have a few questions :)

    “buying a small site that earned £5 per day and every now & again buy other smallish sites to the point the business now makes into 3 figures per day maintenance free”

    1. Are these mini sites ?
    2.What is the total investment excluding reinvesting the profits from these
    3. Where do you reinvest the passive income from these ? in to the same company ? to buy more mini sites ?

  14. Sorry, I have more questions …:)
    1. How did you build the list of 50,000 websites ? any tips ?

    2. How did you come up with the idea for the Ambigram site ? were you inspired by your tatoo fonts site ?

    3. What prompted you to buy the USAGardener.com site ? did you for example check for keyword value etc ?

    4. How do you findout the traffic details of a site without having to email the owner ?

    Thanks for any advice.

    • 1. I can’t say for now as I would lose my competitive advantage.
      2. I saw them elsewhere as they were featured in a film/book so looked into it.
      3. USAGardener was in my list of 50,000 sites so I knew it had traffic before emailing the owner.
      4. If it’s on my list it gets somewhere around 1000 visitors per day which this site gets.

  15. Scot is back, hope you will post regularly

  16. Greg Findley says:

    Fantastic idea with your sons savings Scott! When can we expect guest blog posts from him? :)

  17. Greg Findley says:

    I’m sure it won’t be long before Jnr Jones starts following in the footsteps!

  18. Hi Scott,

    It is great to hear from you I thought you had moved to somewhere warmer.

    I can see why you always mentioned patients I have seen some and email/phone the owners they either don’t comeback or not interested.

    I like how you continue to grow it’s an inspiration to use all.

    All the best for the New Year!

  19. Same feelings for you all, may 2010 year would be less troublesome for us all….

  20. Happy New Year Scott (is it too late for that?). Nice to see the latest post and love the idea of your son buying his 1st domain – maybe do the samee with Ben if he can stop buying lego & trains with it LOL.

    Are you going to Think Vis? If you are, I’ll no doubt catch you at the bar :-)

    The 1st of out geo sites goes live in Feb, with the other 15 hopefully throughout the next 15 months. Thanks for the inspiration for these, not only from the blog posts, but from our chat at Think Vis 2.

    See you soon, and here’s to a cracking 2010

    • Hey Toby, was good to sit down with you too mate. Nice to hear things are coming along, not sure on Think Vis in March as yet, but if I can’t I’ll likely catch the second one this year.

  21. It is great to hear of your son investing in a premium domain with his accumulated savings. You say the choice of domain name was his, or was he prompted? Nevertheless, 10/10 for entrepreneurial flair.

  22. You’re right Scott. I think 2010 will cause domains to jump higher in prices. That’s some investment for your son. Man, I’d never have made those decisions when I was younger.

  23. Hey Scott, you must be looking forward to the next month or two. Is the geo market picking up?

  24. I think it will be around another month before a lot of the businesses are looking to spend money but it’s certainly gearing up with a few more enquiries, looking forward to the next 3 months to see how things go.

  25. Now that we into spring I think your geo sites will start to take off, everyone is thinking about getting their advertising in place ready for the summer rush.

  26. Amazing work – I wish I had you energy. The ideas you share with us are superb and are an excellent read too.. please don’t stop

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