Race of the Domain Extensions – Which Increases in Value Fastest?

December 5, 2007 · Print This Article

You can make money from a variety of strategies in domains – but what’s the domain extension that increases in value the fastest? I’ve tried to crunch some hard figures to answer this question.

The most comprehensive resource we have as to what the domain market is are the reports in the Domain Name Journal. For this study, I’ve used the year to date sales chart (well, the year is almost over) for 2007, as well as the 2006, 2005 and 2004 price charts to determine the market. I realize that a lot of sales do go unreported, but this is really the best information that is available. As well, the unreported information should not significantly affect results, as it would be consistent from year to year, and I’m focussing on changes between years.

For each domain extension, I counted up the number of sales. I then determined the average (mean) sale price and the middle (median) sale price for the extension. You can find the full data here, but to provide a quick summary of the most important data:

Increase in Value – 2004 to 2007

.com – mean 311%
.com – median 443%
.net – mean 104.5%
.net – median 53%
.org – mean 79%
.org – median 135%
.info – mean 117%
.info – median 107%
.de – mean 63.5%
.de – median 40.6%
.co.uk – mean 180%
.co.uk – median 52.4%

I studied other extensions, but there was not enough data to include them in this table. You can find out more about these extensions by browsing the data.

What the Data Shows

While the absolute numbers are impressive (beat that, Warren Buffet!), for the purposes of this post, the important part is how they compare to each other. Some of the conclusions that you can draw from this, and the other data I obtained are:

  • .com has historically performed significantly better than any other domain extension
  • Contrary to popular belief, .info hasn’t done too badly in comparison to .net and .org
  • The only ccTLDs that have a significant number of reported sales are .co.uk and .de
  • .de performance has historically lagged the rest of the market
  • While .co.uk appears to have done well in comparison to .net, .org, and .info, most of this is due to phenomenal gains in the last year. In fact, over the last year .co.uk has done as well or better than .com
  • Over the last year or so, there seems to have been a significant growth in interest in several ccTLDs, especially .es, .us, .in, .ch, .ca and .se.
  • .net has done particularly well over the last year.
  • .mobi hasn’t been around long enough to draw any long run conclusions. However, it’s performance in the last year has been less than stellar in comparison to the rest of the market.
  • .biz and .cc results are pathetic.
  • .ws – what’s that?
  • .tv values seem fairly stagnant.
  • There is not really sufficient data to draw conclusions about .eu.


It’s a bit harder to draw conclusions from the data, as past performance may or may not be indicative of future performance.

For the conservative investor, and probably the newbie, the recommendation I see from this is to stick with .com as much as possible. From the data, .com seems to be the surest thing.

However, the last year has shown that there are opportunities in all extensions, as .co.uk and .net seem to have done as well as or better than .com. Where these opportunities lie is harder to discern from the data, but given the recent increased interest in ccTLDs, perhaps these are the domain extensions that will provide the most opportunity.

.biz and .cc should be avoided. .mobi, .eu and .tv should be approached with caution.

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