Be Cautious Of Domain Name Appraisal Services

The only way to keep up with the latest about Be Cautious Of Domain Name Appraisal Services is to constantly stay on the lookout for new information. If you read everything you find about Be Cautious Of Domain Name Appraisal Services, it won't take long for you to become an influential authority.

Most domain registrants are understandably curious about the value of their name - and there are shonky appraisal services around ready to take advantage of this curiosity.

Once you begin to move beyond basic background information, you begin to realize that there's more to Be Cautious Of Domain Name Appraisal Services than you may have first thought.

When web site owners hear about some domain names being worth millions of dollars, it can trigger them to start hunting around for valuation services.

The problem often is that valuations - whether free or paid for; are often way off the mark. In the case of paid automated appraisal services where you pay your cash, enter your domain name into a box and a claimed "complex algorithm" then calculates a value instantly; the estimates are often highly exaggerated.

This inflated valuation might leave the registrant with a warm and fuzzy feeling of success and riches; but when they then attempt to sell the name at the valuation price, disappointment is usually the result.

These exaggerated valuations can also lead people to register more names (and then get more valuations - both often through the same service) as they feel that they have struck a gold mine.

Another appraisal scam is the unsolicited one. In this scam, a registrant is emailed out of the blue by someone claiming to be interested in buying their domain name; often offering far more than the domain is actually worth. The catch is the domain owner needs to have an appraisal done by a certain service, with the excuse being it's the only valuation service the buyer trusts.

Bedazzled by the potential dollars, the domain name owner then happily parts with anything from $20 - $100 for the sham valuation; which may even confirm its value.

However, the "buyer" then ceases communication - that's because the buyer is actually a representative of the valuation service, or otherwise affiliated with them and receives payment for each valuation referral.

So how do you get an accurate domain name appraisal?

The first tip is to be very wary of automated services - this is a case where humans do it better. Something you can do is to list the domain name on popular relevant auction sites at a reserve price far higher than it would be worth. The highest bids should give you some sort of indication as to market value - and you may even decide you wish to offer to the highest bidder.

If you want to hire a service to issue an appraisal; look at the methodology being used and their history, also search for reviews. Methodology should consist of dozens of points, such as the length of a name, the keywords it contains, any existing traffic, search frequency and a myriad of other aspects.

Also bear in mind the wisdom of real estate agents when it comes to the value of a home which can be applied to the domain name sector - "it's worth whatever someone is prepared to pay".
Michael Bloch is an Australia-based online business consultant with over seven years experience in the web hosting and domain name services industry. Michael is currently consulting for Domain Registration Services, who have been providing domains names and web hosting services to individuals and businesses in Australia and around the world since 1998.

This article's coverage of the information is as complete as it can be today. But you should always leave open the possibility that future research could uncover new facts.

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