Poor Reporting of .IN Sales is the Weakest Link

Poor Reporting of .IN Sales is the Weakest Link

If buyers were to make calculated commercial decisions about the value of .in domains, the values would be a lot higher. .In domains are really cheap compared to the commercial difference they can make to a business over the lifespan of the domain. The impact a good .in domain can make for a business is much, much greater than its actual cost.

So, why aren’t Indian businesses willing to pay more when .in domains can help so much? They are making decisions based on what they believe is acceptable, rather than on the domain’s value to them. What they believe is acceptable is based on several factors, but I think one of the biggest issues plaguing the .in market is poor reporting of sales. This takes many forms.

1. A visible reseller market. Now that domainers are starting to recognise just how valuable .in domains are, there is more and more reseller trading in .in domains. Obviously, reseller prices are significantly below end user prices. These reseller sales are then made public. An end user searching for price information about .in domains is going to find primarily a volume of sales at a massively lower price point than what they are be asked to pay. This is going to skew the end user’s perception of the value of domains.

2. Old domain sales data. .In domains were just launched 12 years ago, and the market has developed rapidly since then, including a significant increase in domain prices, especially in the last 3 or 4 years. This means that even sales data from 3 or 4 years ago is outdated, and sales prices from then are normally too low to use as comparables.

3. Sales not made. Many of the best quality .in domain are in “strong” hands – held by people who can afford to wait until the market realises their value. So, you won’t see a lot of high priced sales at this point. Owners are holding onto them rather than selling them, so as to get a big payday down the line, rather than small profits now. So there is no sales data to report.

4. Sales not reported. A lot of .in sales don’t get reported. That’s true in all domain extensions; however, from what I’ve seen behind the scenes in the .in market, that’s more the case for .in than most extensions. Indians aren’t the same braggarts that Americans are, and one’s personal financial circumstances are guarded more privately.

I think that these issues are coming to a head. I’ve noticed, and so have many colleagues, that the number of inquiries made on .in domains has increased dramatically in the last year. Every day, we are fielding many inquiries, so the interest in obtaining a quality domain is there. However, despite this increased interest, the amounts offered are still very low. Sometimes I know that I could sell the domain to a reseller for more than what the end user is willing to pay! So, end users in India are understanding that there is value in these domains, they just are not willing to pay for it yet.

I’ve been discussing these issues with Stephen R Wilson of Keyword Acquisitions Inc. He has a quality .in portfolio, and has kindly offered to share some of his sales that are not covered by an NDA. Here are the sales that he is able to report (all figures in USD):

alphabet.co.in – $1,999
bsb.in – $7,750
curtains.in – $6,500
cycle.in – $16,500
diapers.in and yoyo.in – $62,000 for both
distance.co.in – $1,100
filmschool.in – $15,000
flirting.in – $2,700
gmat.in – $4,000
hem.in – $7,990
hollywood.co.in – $7,000
letters.co.in – $999
nba.co.in – $5,000
onlinegambling.in – $5,000
onsale.in – $4,400
passover.in – $4,500
pepper.in – $6,500
recall.in – $8,800
specs.in – $3,600
still.in – $2,990
tack.in – $8,250
wash.in – $15,000
wwe.co.in – $1,500

Thanks for sharing, Stephen. There are some excellent sales there, and these are representative of the types of prices that .in sales should be receiving.