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Investing in Virtual Real Estate - Speculator, Investor Or Developer?

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  • Investing in Virtual Real Estate - Speculator, Investor Or Developer?

    Although the Internet's formative years stretch back to the late 1960's, the year 1995 is generally accepted as the year that marked the beginning of the web as we know it today. It was also the year that two present-day giants kicked off their operations. They were eBay and Amazon.

    As we have come to know with many innovators with a vision, these were operations which had the decided advantage of being there first with a product, service or concept. Yahoo was another concept that claimed this early dominance. In recent years Google has surpassed Yahoo, but a recent alliance with Microsoft and Yahoo may go some way to redress the current market position enjoyed by Google. Note here that these enterprises combined a traditional business model of brand-building combined with their inherent 'here first' position. It also took them several years to achieve their current status.

    They, like many others, suffered when the 'dotcom bubble' burst in early 2000. The NASDAQ stock index had virtually doubled in value from the previous year. The ensuing crash wiped out $5 trillion in market value of technology companies from March 2000 to October 2002. This downturn then seem to translate to the bricks and mortar sector with the sub-prime crash of 2008. This market has still not recovered. Note here also, that a similar situation that happened earlier in Japan has not been fully resolved even after a decade and a half. The interesting point to note here, is that domain name investment has not suffered the same 'boom and bust' cycle that has plagued other industry sectors. Another critical aspect of Internet real estate had arisen in this same time period. That is of generic, keyword domain names. Again, those with foresight were able to quickly secure these valuable addresses and resell them for a massive profit. Look at this list: - Sold for $9,999,950, - Sold for $7,500,000 - Sold for $7,500,000 - Sold for $7,000,000 - Sold for $5,100,000 - Sold for $5,000,000 2000 -Sold for $5,500,000 - Sold for $3,500,000

    While some were businesses attached to these names, some were not. By now you might be saying something like - "The good one-word, English, generic names are all gone." That is only partially correct as you will see from another list: Sold for $3,000,000 Sold for $3,000,000 Sold for $1,659,000 Sold for $1,600,000 Sold for $1,500,000 Sold for $1,230,000 Sold for $1,020,000 Sold for $1,000,000 Sold for $1,000,000

    Note that, as one-word generics are snapped up, the two and three word combinations tend to grow in value. At this stage we have only discussed the names with the most valuable extension, (.com.) A year or two ago, names extensions could be purchased relatively cheaply. In this booming market, that was only a temporary situation. It may be no surprise then, to hear that sold recently for $1,000,000! This obviously illustrates a trend for a product or investment vehicle that has largely weathered the cyclical storms that more traditional financial instruments have had to endure.

    Although this statistical information provided here is thought to be largely correct, it has been drawn from various sources around the Internet. Verification is advised via, either domain registry companies or industry publications such as the DN Journal. Most domains sold today will go for far less than those listed in this article, but if the one you really want is registered by someone else, you may not have a lot of choice in negotiating a final price. As always, do your research as there is no definitive guidebook to pricing domains as there is with many other goods and commodities. You can also visit the website listed below for more information and a list of keyword domains that may suit your development or investment profile.

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