Epik user’s public stats are now private

It used to be good to look at the buyers of Epik’s sites because the stats were public. If you placed /stats on the domain you could see how many users the sites had in a week. This gave those that own real premium IDNs a measurement of what traffic is like on comparable sites in English.

Their user metrics are standard so you don’t have to hear “we get a million HITS” a month. We all know in web marketing “HITS” can be anything. The Epik system clearly labeled weekly unique users, clicks, pageviews, & even revenue. Even though Epik is going through some drama right now, a service like this will expand what you can do with your domain. You control the marketing for your domain.

The public stats are now gone it redirects to a login. I guess no one with a domain blog has noticed or saw the value in that info. I certainly compared many of my product domain’s with Epik sites. This way no one can say IDN sites have low traffic because many of the Epik sites have less uniques than I’m getting on my shopping sites.

Anyway I still think their product can get better. For me personally if I have an extra $3,000 instead of paying for 10 sites I can use that amount to develop, advertise, & take a trip myself.

WIXI becomes sponsor of Agency Night: Tokyo

Tomorrow night’s Agency Night has added WIXI Japan’t first public domain parking service as a sponsor of the event. The team at WIXI have been adding new services & I thought it would be good for them to network with more of the Ad Industry in Japan & make personal connections. This way we all can shape the domain industry in Japan together.

Agency Night is tomorrow night in Shibuya
Sponsored by
WIXI www.wixi.jp
comScore www.comscore.com

For more info about Agency Night go here www.AgencyNight.com
or see us on our Facebook page www.facebook.com/AgencyNight

In the Christmas spirit for IDNs

Today I’m going to do an Elliot (Elliot’s Blog) & specifically talk about the traffic of a new domain. Recently I’ve been testing a lot with shopping product sites. As I’ve written before in a post I did get a new domain recently that just has massive amounts of traffic. I initially wanted to test the difference long term of an IDN Domain & an ASCII Domain.

I was a bit surprised by this myself & the test is already skewed because out of the gate the IDN got more traffic than I thought possible. So I’ve been optimizing the IDN a bit more.

I bought the domain “Christmas Present” in both ASCII characters & IDN version. Sorry no one can say they don’t have a chance to own both because to my surprise both were available & make a really good set. I registered both around November 27th this year. I wanted to see if I acquired both versions & developed them initially with the same amount of content which would get more traffic &/or sales.

If one is using Google’s tools for seasonal domains you really have to rethink your strategy. Google keyword tool will show you a monthly average which isn’t good. The actual traffic is usually 20 times or more during that keyword’s peak season. So Google’s tool would show “Christmas Present” may only get about 6,000 searches a month reality is more like around November the term will get 100,000 searches & in December it will get over a million searches. So those who missed it in the drop in November this is the reality of thinking about seasonal domains.

The ASCII version basically is trickling with traffic. Less than 30 uniques a day. Not bad for a domain that’s about 2 weeks old but the IDN version is up to over 450 unique visitors a day via PC & Mobile. About 40% of my traffic is from mobile & I have been optimizing for mobile versions of my sites. This pickup in traffic spurred me to spend some time recently going over & making a better mobile template & adding mobile adsense to it.

In the Christmas spirit I’m sharing the Google Analytics screenshot. Initially I didn’t want to put analytics on these two domains but the traffic was too good to not measure it more thoroughly. These developments was not a built in a day. I’ve been trying to build these sites & upgrading them from February of this year. Each site you have developed can give you insights to how to better build the next site.

Since the year is ending I believe I’ve accomplished

  • A good way to monetize my domains which are products/shopping category on PC & mobile
  • I’ve gotten good at ranking them for various keywords (well that’s one of my prior job function so I should know this).
  • I’ve built some pretty good mobile templates for regular Japanese mobile phones.

Next year I plan to

  • Build better solutions/templates for iPhone & iPad for my sites.
  • Build a solution to monetize my music category domains
  • Build a solution for my travel related portfolio on PC & mobile
  • Build a solid advertising network for my portfolio for PC (I may not be able to do this for mobile yet)

Here’s the screenshot. The traffic for this will keep rising until January. I am not a believer that I am loosing traffic to the dot com because I am ranking for many keywords not just the term Christmas present. Happy Holidays guys. Sorry I’m not writing revenue stats or linking to the domain in the post.

You can compare my stats for one week (less than a week) with the Epik sites
http://www.domainstryker.com/epik/epik_visitors.html

So far for 5 days of traffic I’d project this would compare to their top 10 sites for traffic. This is why I choose development.

PS. I’m sharing this only because I feel there is a serious lack of proof of what potential IDNs have especially compared to sites.

stats for Christmas Present IDN
Christmas Present IDN

Hobbies.com (epik low traffic site) sells for 6 figures

I just noticed this one. Maybe this is why epik took away the public stats.

Hobbies.com just sold for almost $300,000

On this page that I just wrote the last post I noticed that Hobbies.com was an epik site & the week stats are here.
http://domainersadvantage.afternic.com/2010/12/hobbies-com-sells-for-297500-through-afternic-dls/

In one week times the site had about 553 visitors. It made about under $10 for the week. For IDN investors I’d like you to use this as an example that you can’t judge a domain just on traffic. Yes I think it’s a great keyword & worth the cost to the right company.

I have quite a few IDNs already that beat that for weekly traffic, & I’ll have more of them next year.

Epik user sites Stats no longer public

I really like Epik. I think the concept was really brilliant. Even though they do have some issues with Google & indexing I think the concept is great.

Even though I develop myself I do look at the Epik blog often & noticed that at one point all you had to do was add “/stats” to any Epik site & the stats was public. Most of the sites they had actually had very little traffic. I used this to compare my own product network. I can’t say I have a better product but I can say I’m one of the only ones mass generating Shopping sites like this. This way it’s more under the radar & my sites rank better. Now this has disappeared from about every epik site I saw.

Anyway if you are into developing using their stats as a benchmark was great. You realizing people are paying $299 for a site that got less than 50 unique users in a week. If you have 10 sites or more with high search volume IDNs you can spend $3,000 & get a programmer to create you your own system & most likely get more traffic.

I don’t think the epik product is perfect but I think they made decisions to try to create revenue for even their users with low traffic. I like that thinking too. When I was part of the IDN community (more than just writing this blog) I really wanted to share more & make sure all of you had your chances to profit from your investments. I realize not everyone thinks this way. I believe there’s lots of IDNs investors wondering when are these big sales going to trickle down to me? Control your own investment guys.

***Update****
Even though their stats are gone here’s a blog posts with 1 week snapshot of their networks traffic
Compare this with your IDN portfolio.
http://www.domainstryker.com/epik/epik_visitors.html

Development don’t think sites think Network

I started thinking that the mindset for domain investment to sell & domain investment to develop has differences. I came into IDNs with the intent to develop so I bought with that in mind. Then later I started to think about selling & changed strategies a bit. Lately I’m really back on track only thinking about development.

One difference I notice is the power of having a network.  I like have sites that can feed off of each other’s links. I don’t have a really strong site anymore like IDNF but I think that if I created at least 2 sites like that before I can do it again (of course not the same topic). With developing also I am thinking about trending too.

What I am looking at & what others are looking at may be different. I am finding even if I have strong keywords .nets aren’t generating the same amount of traffic as my developed .coms or .jps. I purposely put up a few to test. I may try later with some stronger keywords.

I’ll give a good example of how to take advantage of having a network. I have about 20 different shopping sites currently. I took a chance to test an IDN.jp that wasn’t registered after the drop in the middle of the month. I also bought the ASCII version of the domain. I developed both & put backlinks on both. In less than 3 weeks the IDN is now at 300 unique users a day via PC & mobile. It would not have done this by parking the domain.

Having a network also lets you target keywords that are bringing conversions on your sites. I have one site that this week traffic rose 30% just because of the keywords in the link of another domain. These are some of the things you can’t do with the “traffic will just come theory”.

Anyway for all of you that just keep buying buying buying. Use some of it to develop. I read one article on Frager’s blog about the Castello brothers. These guys are brutally honest. They say hey we just bought dreamweaver & kept putting up content on our sites.
http://fragerfactor.blogspot.com/2010/12/castello-brothers-well-im-new-do-i-have.html
Look at what they have: A site network. Not all of the sites are the prettiest but they can control their investment.

Agency Night: Tokyo December 15th

Again if anyone is in Tokyo feel free to stop down for my Agency Night event.

Special Guest Christmas Live: Jason Young
Special Gift Giveaway

Agency Night
Sponsored by comScore
12月15日(水曜日)2010年
時間:20時~00時
Door: 1,000 yen

Special Guest Christmas Live: Jason Young
Special Gift Giveaway

Place: Canaria Dining Bar in Shibuya
東京都渋谷区道玄坂1-19-12 道玄坂今井ビル1・2F
www.Canaria-Bar.jp

エージェンシーナイト(Agency Night)は広告、メディアなど色々な業界に携わる人々が気軽に会話や情報交換ができるイベントです。
イベントに参加して、色々な業界で働く人々のネットワークを広げ、今後のビジネスに役立ててください。
Twitter、FacebookやMixiなどで友達や知り合いをお誘いの上、参加していただければと思います。
色々な人たちの参加を楽しみにしています。

Description: Agency Night is a casual get together for people in advertising, media, marketing, & various related services. Our event will tie the genres together allowing guest to expand their network. July 8th is our next event & we would like our friends & associates to come, talk, & share the evening with us. Please spread the word, on twitter, facebook, mixi etc.

Homepage: http://www.AgencyNight.com
Event Photos: http://www.agencynight.com/tokyo/agency-night-tokyo-october-2010-photo-gallery.html
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/agencynight
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AgencyNight
Mixi: http://mixi.jp/view_community.pl?id=5123315

Jason Young
Jason Young has been singing R&B, House, Neo Soul and Jazz music for over 18 years. He is originally from Detroit, and it was there where he found his love for House Music and Techno, listening to
Juan Atkins and also near by Chicago DJs such as Ron Hardy, Larry Levan, Jim Burges etc…. Jason is currently performing in Japan, doing shows quite frequently in Tokyo, Osaka, and Nagoya. He has performed with some of Tokyo`s finest DJs as well as from around the world.

comScore
http://www.comscore.com

Craig Nine Top 20 of Influential people in domaining.

I was a bit surprised to see this but I guess I will have a permanent mark in domaining history.

Thanks

http://www.thedomains.com/2010/12/06/the-20-most-influential-people-in-the-domain-industry-2/

Vinton Cerf
Former ICANN Chairman/ VP and chief Internet evangelist for Google

Rick Schwartz
CEO, President and Cofounder of T.R.A.F.F.I.C.

Ron Jackson
Editor and Publisher of DNJournal

Monte Cahn
Founder and CEO of DomainSystems

Kevin Ham
The Man Who Owns The Internet

John Postel
Editor of the RFC document series, and for managing the creation and allocation of Top Level Domains and IP addresses in the pre-ICANN era.

Frank Schilling
Pioneering Domain Investor /Sevenmile.com

Adam Dicker
Owner, DNForum.com / Go Daddy VP of Domain Name Aftermarket

Russell C. Horowitz
CEO, Marchex / Chairman of the Board Director

Yun Ye
Elusive and successful domain pioneer

Tim Schumacher
Co-Founder and CEO, Sedo

Tim Berners-Lee
Director of the World Wide Web Consortium/ WWW Inventor

John Berryhill
Patent Attorney and UDRP legal specialist

Chris Chena
Pioneering Spanish domainer

Bob Parsons
CEO, Go Daddy

Craig Nine
Founder, IDN Forums

Sahar Sarid
Co-founder Recall Media Group/ Conceptualist.com

Ron James
Founder, NamePros.com/ Director 1Plus.net

Rick Latona
Founder, DigiPawn

Domains & trends

Christmas season is upon us & I’ve been hit by the development bug again.

Over the summer I’ve created a bunch of Shopping sites. I’ve creating a bunch with different themes & little minor changes. By doing this I can see what sticks & what doesn’t. I’ve had major errors with some, I’ve had some great success with others. Lot of people say that they don’t have time for testing but if you can be on the internet for long periods of time you can learn simple development or just hire someone.

I realized that I never did finish the アニメ.com (Anime) site. So I completed an ok first phase. I’ll admit the sites look crappy from a design standpoint the outer wrapper can always change. Christmas is coming & my limited amount of sites has already ranked first page for 2 of the sites for very hard keywords (well one of them anyway) & currently I’m experiencing 3 to 12 orders at least a day.

Using the data I can clearly see trends & plan for 2011. Plus for the domains I started with over the summer they now are a bit more indexed & I can tweak them a bit without being slapped with penalties.

Anyway control your investments…

Looking at ccTLDs from both sides & .com

I have started to invest in .jps looking at the market as a resident of Tokyo, Japan.  My daily life is mostly speaking Japanese with staff at work, friends, & speaking English with clients overseas & friends in Tokyo. I have been around Japanese people for about 20 years & look at the Japanese market like Japanese people do.

I can’t talk about every single ccTLD but I read a lot of people write about ccTLDs in IDNs being risk & .com isn’t. Unfortunately lately with the WikiLeaks scandal & the BitTorrent sites you have to realize .com holds risk too. For a user in China having a .com & running a movie site this domain can be taken away from them & recently this has happened. It may not be illegal for the location of the domain registrant but the US has taken away domains anyway.

I’d rather take the risk. The average business owner in China for example will have a business license & conduct business legaly in China. This is what you should be looking at. This business owner is going to pick what best suits his customer. He/She won’t care if the governmaent took away some porn or adult names. Especially if they were taken away from nonChinese nationals. This will not affect the mindset of the bulk of the people registering these domains.

I don’t want to get you to think one is better than the other. I invested in both .com IDNs & .jp IDNs. I have sites with good traffic on both extensions currently a few at over 200 unique a day. I just like to try to get you to see things for the way they are on both sides. I personally don’t write about dot com going to IDN because I’ll wait till Verisign promotes it. Currently they seem very much in the planning & figuring it out stage but IDN sites promotes these quotes like it’s set in stone. IDN investors have been saying “It’s coming next week” for a lot of things for years. Take advantage of your portfolio now & try to make income of of it. This WAS my reason for being a part of the IDN community.

Have a good day if anyone is in Tokyo during the third week of December next Agency Night will be December 15th. It’s turning out to be a really good industry event.