DomainsBot is a company built on the strong belief that being able to collect the right type of data and to understand it is the key to make a business thrive.
A clear example of this vision is our Name Suggestion service. For some, a name spinner is just a novelty that makes a search results page look more dynamic. For us, it’s a very powerful sales tool that not only makes it easy for our partners to deliver a better user experience to their customers and close more sales, but also enables them to collect data and insights that they can use to further improve their sales flows.
We do this by analyzing every search and tracking conversions to understand what works best for each specific Registrar and their customer base. Our service uses this data to constantly improve future suggestions so that we always show to each customer the variations and the TLDs that are most relevant to the original query and that are most likely to sell.
Name Suggestion: a powerful tool to improve your sales flow
There are clearly many factors influencing the effectiveness of a sales flow. The way pricing and upsell options are presented or the number of steps that a customer has to complete before getting to check out can often cause the less motivated ones to drop off.
Domain search should not be one of these elements of friction, particularly considering that it is the very first step of the customer journey. Helping each customer find a domain they like quickly is the best way to increase the chances of success, even more so when their first choice is not available.
When we look at our Partners’ data, the first interesting fact that pops up is that 1 in 4 registrations they complete is for an alternative variation of the customer’s original query, suggested by our semantic engine (these are what we refer to as “semantic registrations”). This is an impressive result in its own right even without taking into consideration that this number does not include exact match registrations in alternative TLDs suggested by our engine when the customer’s original choice is not available in the more popular extensions.
Looking at conversions provides also a very interesting perspective on the preferences of regular end users and of the general trends in the domain market. This has become even more visible to us and our partners since we also started tracking conversion for ccTLDs a few months ago, something that has had a significant effect particularly for our partners in Europe where ccTLDs are often the customer’s top choice.
To better understand the dynamics at play, we did a deep dive on the performance of our European partners in the first quarter of 2019.
The first thing that appears quite clearly is how more established extensions like the local ccTLD and .com still account for the lion’s share of domain sales, as the first graph below shows.
Registrations per extension type
The flip-side of this success is, however, that very often the customer’s first choice of domain name is not available. In this situation, the impact of having an effective name spinner service is clearly visible in the number of semantic registrations for each extension type, something that is particularly evident in ccTLD registrations.
Semantic conversion per extension type
Our data also gives an interesting picture of how awareness for nTLDs is slowly growing among regular customers, something that is not always easy to isolate from the occasionally inflated sales numbers fueled by speculation in certain new extensions.
The nTLDs conversions among our European partners are today close to 1 per thousand queries. While these might seem quite modest sales numbers, due to the nature of our Partners’ business these domains are usually more likely to be put in active use by their Registrant. Each of these registrations then provides a small contribution to the overall visibility of the extension they have chosen and to the acceptance and future sales prospects of new TLDs in general. It is also interesting to note how the percentage of semantic registrations in nTLDs is second only to that in ccTLDs, a possible indication that customers might be increasingly finding inspiration for better, shorter, more catchy domains that incorporate one of the original keywords into the TLD.
Domainsbot’s Name Suggestions provides data & insights to optimize your ROI
As part of this exercise, we also tried to get a rough estimate of the ROI of our service based on the average sales prices of our Partners.
Making an accurate analysis would have clearly required access to a lot more data, but even taking a very conservative approach and looking at the average prices charged for the domain name registration alone, it is very clear how the results of our work end up paying off our fees many times over.
The average cost per conversion lands at just EUR 0.20 per registered domain, a figure that remains under EUR 1 per registration even if we only consider semantic registrations.
In most cases, this cost is already easily absorbed in the margin on the domain registration alone. The case for investing in the right tool to maximize domain sales becomes obviously even more compelling when one also considers the additional revenue that many of these registrations contribute to generate from services like hosting, email and SSL.
In conclusion, whether you are already using a free name spinner or you are looking for a way to boost your domain sales, ask yourself how well does the tool you are considering using support the TLDs that your customers want to buy, and how much data does it provide you back to help you get a clear understanding of your market and keep you ahead of your competitors.