Rick Schwartz: Yes There Will Be A Live Domain Auction At TRAFFIC & We Already Have Over 5K Submissions

I reached out to Rick Schwartz today about whether there will be a live domain name auction at the TRAFFIC conference this year.

There have been a bunch of emails and announcements from the organizers of the TRAFFIC conference about the conference, the nomination for the awards to be handed out (see here, here and here,) people speaking at the conference, but not a word on a live domain auction.

So I have confirmed with Mr. Schwartz that there will in fact be a live domain auction at TRAFFIC in October.

Although no formal announcement has been made calling for submissions, the organizers have received over 5,000 domains for auction.

A formal announcement is expected to go out next week calling for submissions.

Like last year people will be able to pay for placement of their domains to be in included the auction but the pricing will change in favor of the more valuable domains.

As last year you will have to be in attendance to bid, online bidding will not be available.




  1. says

    I visited the TRAFFIC registration page last night, expecting to see some sort of conference schedule. There wasn’t any, aside from a recap of the calendar of events from 2011. I realize some of the details are still in the works, but two months out, if I’m going to plunk down that kind of cash, I need to see a day-to-day conference schedule, not just a profile of one of the invited speakers.

    I hope the auction goes well. It seems like auction numbers have been down across the board this year. Hopefully things will bounce back after the summer slump.

  2. J S says

    Allow Pre-Approved bidders the opportunity to bid via phone/proxy. There are many big players that will not be able to attend but can take a few hours off to partake in the auction. It is absolutely silly for the organizers and domain owners to be leaving this money sitting on the table.

  3. says

    To be relevant and tackle the issues of the day, we can’t put the agenda together too far in advance.
    We generally put it out 45-60 days before the show and even then there will be number of changes.
    This year the agenda will be done as always as we build it in front of everyone from scratch.
    Our goal is to just keep adding value. Overwhelming value.
    While we have seminars and that provides a framework, I think most folks would agree that the real value is the networking with the key folks in the industry.

  4. says

    I think the market is desperate enough where there will be a boat load of domains at No Reserve and priced very aggressively. I agree we don’t need 5000 or 50,000. We need about 75 domains that people would like to have and would buy at the auction. The competition for those slots are going to be fierce.

  5. says


    Absolutely, I agree that every detail can’t be pinned down 60 days in advance. But it would be nice to have a breakdown of events, even if the speakers and topics are still being decided. I went to Domainfest in January, so I know that the majority of the deals happen behind closed doors and at the parties and afterparties, etc. I did meet some amazing people (and a lot of people skipped the conference this year, who I’m guessing will be at TRAFFIC), but I got the most out of the other events, which gave me actionable items and ideas I could use right away.

    That’s just my take. I realize the cabana networking parties are a big draw for people, and those seem to be the focus on the site. In the domain industry, “party” and “business” go hand-in-hand, but I sometimes wish it were more of the latter. We (domainers as a whole) might be taken more seriously by people outside the industry.

    (and before anyone thinks this is because I’m offended by bikinis, I’m not. I’m from Miami and have been to Carnival in Rio – I’m not a prude, and this is just my opinion). Off-topic discussion done. I’ll keep an eye on the TRAFFIC site as the schedule unfolds. :)

  6. says

    It’s 2012, and you guys still haven’t perfected the online bidding system yet…

    Aren’t you nerds suppose to be online gurus???

  7. Dean says

    … $1595.00 is a lot of money to pay for the privilege of “networking with the key folks in the industry.” Maybe I am being cheap, but I don’t get the “value” in that?

  8. EMMA says

    It is lamentable to see people paying attention to this crap which they try to make it look a big thing when in fact is just a piece of shit. If this business was in demand why do you have to go to conferences in order to sell one? Why Amazon, ebay or facebook don’t go to conferences to sell they products??

  9. EMMA says

    5k submission, and many domains will be sold? Zero, nada, rien, nullo nichts, nata, cero, 00000000000 zero zerooooooooooo. Your profit will be the fees you charge for people to attend to the conference, not fees from domain sale

  10. Aggro says

    @ Emma

    It’s called selling the sizzle – not the bacon

    Auctions venues are basically liquidity events where domainers can get rid of their names that end users haven’t inquired with up-to-now or didn’t want to pay the sellers asking price

    Think about it: without the domainer 2 domainer market, liquidity would be very poor indeed.

    Truth is, the real demand from *end users* with the *big idea* (to justify paying high prices) is very limited

    There aren’t that many *big ideas* that succeed where on the internet it’s winner-take-all, period

    The vast majority of all those millions upon millions of domains registered will NEVER be sold, in domainers’ lifetimes, period

    On a purely numbers matching basis, there just isn’t the demand – and too much supply

  11. says


    You do make some legit bearish points about domaining. That said, why are you wasting time reading domain blogs and posting then?

  12. Aggro says

    @ Tony

    Why don’t you stick to being a dentist

    There’s an old stock trading adage which holds true:
    whenever widows, orphans & dentists enter the market, the peak has long passed


  13. domain guy says

    with the market so depressed and very few domains being sold for big bucks. I think there should be a change implemented..All top domains that are going to be in the auction need to have a website up and operating on the corresponding domain. end users and the public in general cannot conceptualize the use of the proposed domain. so there fore the price is beat down to below the value of the domain. traffic is a leaddr so lead the industry down the developement path.

    the proposed website does not have to be all inclusive just enough to give the end user an idea what could be….paint them a picture…

  14. says

    Hello MHB and Rick’

    My prediction is this coming auction will be EPIC. It is fast becoming very evident to Institutional Investors the absolute edge they have by purchasing “Virtual Business Foundations” in the highest volume Traffic vehicle in History found in the .COM Channel, where the big Fish Swim.

    Even the Great and powerful GOOGLE.com will succumb to the coming “New World Marketing” Business practices that involve LESS Advertising and More Memorable Brandability found in , “Virtual Business Foundations”. It is a tide that they are swimming against that they had better realize and join before they are completely Obsolesced or at least slowed down. They need to be aware of their coming competition, which they can neither stop nor avoid. Smart Businessmen are gaining in Cyberspace and this will only increase our countries bottom line and is a welcome change from Indentured Debt foisted on Businessmen By “Old World Marketing” advice that is fundamentally flawed, especially on the Web, and they know it.

    Gratefully, Jeff Schneider (Contact Group) (Metal Tiger)

  15. BillW says

    @Jeff Schneider
    Without trying to sound mean, you post and post and post and post the same stuff across the blogs an some expert in the field, but you never seem provide any hard data or references to back anything up. What are your credentials….have you presented at any domain conferences, or at any markting conference of significance? Any papers or thesis….do you publish on your own blog?

    To predict the downfall of google is pretty outlandish. They currently OWN the “new world marketing” and they have the resources and R & D to drive a lot of what will happen in the future, or to to buy any comany or business they feel has a new technology that will benefit them.

    And this “virtural business foundation” thing you post over and over on all the blogs (at least once if not twice in most of your posts) really gets irritating at at least this reader). How about posting without trying to sound self serving or being blatent about like your are promoting your own brands. I think you will get a lot more respect that way. Just my 2c.

  16. Back in the real World says

    BillW –

    If only you understood just how much Institutional Investors are waking up to the secondary domain market you would spend more time looking for virtual business foundations instead of moaning at Jeff. Maybe youre just another old world marketing guy who cant see the bigger picture.

    P.s. We are telling all our clients to dump Google and buy Enron.

  17. says

    Quick thanks to nametalent and tntnames for the nice headlines on domaining dot com today and for the traffic auction tomorrow. Hope to see gtldforum.com bought and developed by some talented good folks after it’s sold at auction!

  18. says

    You are going to take a pounding at “no reserve” this is a domainer’s event and you are not fooling anybody, to may other variants (is it gtlds? or tlds) ‘domains are domains” there is already plenty of domain’ forums around (most decaying) also “specialized domain” forums seldom work…
    I would have hold this domain for a couple of years…
    (till’ their about to come out)
    Good Luck.

    Rick Schwartz PERMALINK
    I think the market is desperate enough where there will be a boat load of domains at No Reserve and priced very aggressively. I agree we don’t need 5000 or 50,000. We need about 75 domains that people would like to have and would buy at the auction. The competition for those slots are going to be fierce.

    Do it next time!

  19. says

    It’s a short memorable domain, but not here to defend it and you’re right in a few years it could have been a better hold. We’re on the auction block and it will be sold.

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