Friday, July 29, 2011 All Registered as of this Morning!

As I checked the's that had dropped in recent days and weeks, it is clear that as of the time of this post, all domains (all 100,000) are registered.  It remains to be seen whether this sticks, lots will continue to drop each day so there should likely be some fluctuation.

Nevertheless, this is somewhat of a milestone, coming 3 years after the mass buyout frenzy in 2008, and the failure of that buyout.  This buyout has proceeded at a much more cautious pace, namely around 10-13 net domains registered (new registrations - drops) each day on average, for a couple years to get to this point. 

Additionally, while the previous buyout was mainly propelled by Western domainers registering's after the buyout and price spike, this buyout was accomplished mainly by Chinese domainers, who actually use and trade these numeric domains on a regular basis.  Thus one would expect it to have more staying power. 

Thursday, July 28, 2011's Sales Data

I went through published sales records of's to get a sense of average sale price for these domains.  I gathered data on 49 sales, most of which were from this year. 

Average sale price was $1,197, and the median was $58.

What accounts for the big disparity? sold for $49,999 last year on Afternic, so with a small sample size that had a significant effect.

Excluding that sale, the average was $159.  The median, however, shows more of what a random is likely to fetch in a sale, since the average still includes some premium sales (e.g., for $1,000 on Sedo this year).

The lowest sales figures seemed to be around $30. sold for $22.50, and after that the lowest sales were for $30 (,, and 

Monday, July 18, 2011

6N's: How Many Are Registered?

With the (five digit .com) domains hovering near bought-out status once again (22 remain as of today), I thought it would be interesting to look at their younger cousins, the's.  Whereas there are 100,000 domains, there are 1,000,000 domains.  So, one would assume that a very small percentage of these domains are registered. 

Well, yes and no.

A small percentage of the domains are registered.  I did ten different searches of 500 random's and came up with an average of 8.42% of the domains I checked being registered.  So's aren't super-popular just yet.

But, when you consider the numbers again, it becomes clear that there are a HUGE number of registered.  Around 84,000 it seems, which is almost approaching the total number of's registered, which today stands at 99,978.  That is mind-boggling. 

Given that the six digit domains have one more number than the's, you would think there would be significantly less of them registered.  But apparently this is not the case.  The extra number makes productive uses of the domain less likely (just google any random five and six digit numbers and on balance, there will be many more hits for the five digit numbers).  The extra number also makes the domain harder to remember on balance. 

So what accounts for the significant registration of's?  I can think of a few factors. 

One is that's are not that easy to come by.  While there are 100,000 of them, a little less than half are owned by Marchex as US zip code domains.  And another 10% about are already developed websites.  So you are really looking at only 40,000 domains held by domainers, and as of late you really just can't go and hand-reg one of these domains.  So if you want to register a nice number, you need to go to the six-digit space. 

Another possibility is that in some situations, a six digit domain may actually be preferable to a five-digit domain. is more memorable than  The six digit domain can offer the possibility for a symmetrical, easier-to-remember number in some instances. 

Regardless of the explanation, it is proof that numeric domains are becoming harder and harder to register.  As of today, there are still nice numbers available for hand-regging in the space.  I certainly wouldn't encourage anyone to start speculating in this area, but I wouldn't be surprised if in 10 years or so, it will be significantly more difficult to hand-reg a decent  

Friday, July 15, 2011 Update: Big Increase in Registration

In the last few weeks since we profiled the (four digit .org domain) space, a significant number of these domains have been registered.

Whereas on June 24, 2011, 1,035 remained to be registered, as of today only 601 of those are still available to be registered.

0NNN = 88 Remaining, a decrease from 91
1NNN = 0 Remaining
2NNN = 0 Remaining
3NNN = 0 Remanining
4NNN = 0 Remaining
5NNN = 0 Remaining, a decrease from 1
6NNN = 0 Remaining
7NNN = 208 remaining, a decrease from 283
8NNN = 45 remaining, a decrease from 338
9NNN = 260 remaining, a decrease from 332

So, it appears that most of the registration happened in the 8NNN range, presumably because "8" is a lucky number in China.  It is interesting that numerics are so hot right now in China that even .org's are being registered for their lucky numbers.  These domains could be bought out soon at this pace.

Recent Auction Results

 I did not check whether reserves were met, only what the bidding got up to. RMB¥170 $26 RMB¥240 $36 RMB¥561 $84 RMB¥260 $39 RMB¥220 $33 RMB¥28,199 $4,230
0845.NET RMB¥200 $30 RMB¥520 $78

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

100 Million .com by Year End? Almost

In a previous post we noted that .com registration looked to be on pace to reach 100 million registered .com domains by the end of the year.  A huge milestone to be sure, and a sign of the unwavering importance of .com as a TLD and domains in general. 

However, registration has slowed somewhat since we last tallied the numbers. 

On April 30, 2011, there were 94,549,208 .com domains registered.  An increase of approximately 28,439 per day since the beginning of the year.

On May 27, 2011, there were 95,168,572 .com domains registered.  An increase of approximately 22,939 per day since April 30th.

On July 13, 2011, there were 96,024,048 .com domains registered.  An increase of approximately 18,202 per day since May 27th.

If the rate of increase stays at 18,202 per day for the remainder of the year, on December 31, 2011 there should be 99,136,525 .com domains registered.  Close to 100 million, but not quite there.

If the rate of increase is 22,939 per day for the remainder of the year, there should be 99,541,606 .com domains registered by year end. 

If the rate of increase is 28,439 per day for the remainder of the year (what it was between January and May), there should be 100,887,080 .com domains registered by year end.  But registration rates would have to pick up to reach this target, and they have been slowing a little during the summer. 

So, most likely we will reach the 100 million milestone in early 2012.  We will keep the countdown going here, though.

Numeric Domains in the Top 500 Chinese Sites

The Alexa top 500 Chinese sites contains 33 pure numeric sites.   There are several NNNNN's in the list, and some with even more numbers.


Also, a lot of other top Chinese sites contain numbers in them, what is listed above is only the pure numeric domains.  When going through the list I was very surprised to see the following (non-numeric) domain at 166th place:

Hmm.  I knew I had seen a lot of's recently picked up through GoDaddy by Chinese domainers, but I didn't realize the site was so broadly popular in China.   Just goes to show how much of a driving force China will be in the domain and internet spheres going forward. 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

More Numeric Auction Results from    RMB¥2,900    $435    RMB¥380    $57    RMB¥200    $30    RMB¥500    $75    RMB¥983    $147    RMB¥400    $60    RMB¥4,218    $633    RMB¥4,306    $646    RMB¥4,400    $660    RMB¥262    $39    RMB¥4,300    $645    RMB¥4,518    $678    RMB¥4,700    $705    RMB¥4,522    $678    RMB¥4,500    $675    RMB¥1,600    $240    RMB¥7,901    $1,185    RMB¥4,700    $705    RMB¥6,101    $915    RMB¥41,388    $6,208    RMB¥420    $63    RMB¥6,712    $1,007    RMB¥5,500    $825    RMB¥5,900    $885    RMB¥9,400    $1,410    RMB¥220    $33    RMB¥220    $33    RMB¥582    $87

Tuesday, July 5, 2011 Buyout Part Deux? Less than 100 available.

Over the July 4th weekend, a very strange thing happened.  A few Chinese domainers apparently registered nearly 500 (five digit .com domains).  As of this morning, I could only find 34 of these domains available for register, out of 100,000.  I know I missed one day of drops, and haven't done a bulk scan, so the number may be a little higher, but my guess is it's under or around 50.

It looks like we are barreling forwards towards an imminent buyout.  While previously we had noted that the registration rate had slowed somewhat, from the multi-year average of 13 domains per day to around 7 per day, it appears to have picked up steam on a massive level.  Why these purchasers bought the domains is not evident, perhaps they noticed that the domains were nearly bought out and wanted to get in before a potential gold rush or perhaps they have other goals for the domains.  What is interesting though is the sheer volume of registration activity in what is usually a pretty sleepy domain space.  Somebody is starting to put some serious money into registration of these domains, and the lowest quality ones as well. 

We will keep monitoring the situation in the days and weeks to come.