Domain parking income is down 40-60% for most domain owners. While parking companies are tweaking their algorithms to squeeze every drop out of parking, there is also a shift toward domain sales as a way to monetize domain names. If you’ve been in the industry long enough, you’ve seen this before. This is how many of us monetized before the advent of parking.
Domain sales income has held up better than domain parking income for big companies and small domain investors alike. Sedo recently announced that 31% of it’s recent income was from parking, while 69% was from sales. Guess what they will be emphasizing down the road? Despite this disparity, I don’t expect to see these companies abandon parking. I do expect to see more parking companies get gobbled-up by the likes of Sedo, Parked & DomainSponsor.
What does threaten domain sales? ICANN’s plan to roll-out new TLDs will hurt sales of non .com domains. I’ve dumped most of my .infos, because I believe that these new TLDs will dilute the market to such an extent that only .com and .org will really be meaningful in the future.
Domain development has even taken a hit lately. Rick Latona recently announced that his company aeiou.com will no longer create mini-sites for people. That leaves companies like Domain Mass Development and MiniSites competing for this market with quasi-development companies like WhyPark and DevHub. Is there money in mini-sites? I haven’t seen much there yet. Even full-fledged site development with great SEO does not guarantee an income stream.
My strategy for the future is to get lean and watch for occasional buying opportunities as others get lean too. Forecasters are predicting an economic recovery in 2010, but I don’t expect the domain industry to reciver that quickly. Domain parking is in bigger trouble than the economy in general, and many of us have relied on that source of “easy” income for too long. I’ll also be cutting some sales prices. Look for more on monetizing through sales in future articles.