Location: Brand Credibility & Market Share
Brand Recognition + Generic/Authoritative Credibility = More Brand Recognition
Companies often acquire category-defining domains to lever existing efforts, rebrand, or launch new consumer-facing campaigns—for instance, I sold Rate.com to Guaranteed Rate, eBike.com to Bosch and Advance.com to Advance Publications (Conde Nast); Oracle utilizes Sales.com, Retail.com and Think.com, and L’oreal owns Skincare.com and Makeup.com; Barnes & Noble owns Books.com; Honda owns Motorcycles.com; Intel owns Chips.com and PC.com; PetSmart owns Dogs.com; Frito-Lay recently launched Snacks.com, and the list goes on and on.
This is not only a smart move offensively, but defensively as well—for instance, many times a company will lock up a domain name to block competitors from acquiring and developing it. In 2013, Brian Sharples, former CEO of HomeAway spent $35M to acquire VacationRentals.com just to keep it out of Expedia's hands! Which worked. Expedia later acquired HomeAway in 2015 for a whopping $3.9Billion. You can read the article/see the video with Mr. Sharples' comments here.
The case studies on the inherent advantages of leveraging a premium .com are legion. Look at Russian Standard Vodka’s $3 million acquisition of premium domain Vodka.com. Furthermore, look at the timing: the Russian company was one year into their first foray into the lucrative US market. For three straight years after the acquisition of Vodka.com, with US growth rates at 56.5%, the brand received honors and awards for understanding and achieving consumer appeal. Acquiring the premium domain name was an integral part of this success.
And, as a startup, Mint.com credited their investment in a premium short, brandable, memorable domain as a primary factor that enabled their brand recognition up to the 20 million users they now report.
What these case studies show repeatedly is that when companies utilize a premium domain name, particularly with a name in direct alignment with their brand and positioning, they see a huge bump in traffic and conversions.
What do these smart companies know that you don't?
Premium domains (authoritative, one-to-two word .coms) do very well in natural search, particularly if developed correctly—think: a content-led strategy in traffic. Moreover, their authoritative nature leads to trust and credibility—resulting in higher click-throughs and conversions, not to mention intuitive, type-in traffic (direct navigation).
Here are some of the other inherent benefits of owning a premium domain name:
Most companies are in the digital equivalent of an arm's race with their top competitors; an ultra-premium domain name provides the key differentiator they need to prevail.
How can you begin developing your own domain strategy and building out your portfolio?
Buckley Media has a carefully curated list of premium domains for sale and you can find them at the simple, one word, English dictionary .com: Defining.com. Please keep in mind, this is a short list, and contact us with whatever kind of domain you need, as it's a good bet we can get it for you. Buckley Media works diligently with both buyers and sellers to ensure a smooth transaction. We pride ourselves on our matchmaking skills—developing deals that benefit both parties.
Here are just a few of the smart companies that have acquired and aligned themselves with premium, generic, short .COMs:
About the Author: Kate Buckley is CEO and founder of BuckleyMedia.com, a premium domains, naming and branding agency. She is an expert at premium domain consulting and brokerage, specializing in discreet, professional acquisitions and divestments of ultra-premium domain names. Kate has personally brokered millions of dollars in both private and publicly-recorded top domains sales.
Kate Buckley is CEO and founder of BuckleyMedia.com, a premium domains, naming and branding agency. She is an expert at premium domain consulting and brokerage, specializing in private domain acquisitions and divestments of ultra-premium domain names. Kate has personally brokered millions of dollars in both private and publicly-recorded top domains sales. A member of the ICA, Kate is also a member of the Business Constituency of ICANN.