Uniregstry’s Affiliate Program To Date: 5,367 Clicks No Transactions, No Revenue

We turned on the Uniregisty’s Affiliate program about 10 days ago, that places a banner on the bottom of parked pages marketing new gTLD’s registrations.

So far the results have been less than impressive

As you can see below we have had almost 5,500 clicks, no transactions and no revenue.

Today, Domaininvesting.com, wrote about some new landing pages for Franks own portfolio:

“In place of the PPC links, Schilling has put a call to action to encourage visitors to search for domain names ending in a new gTLD extension. The main message on the page says, “KidsActivities.com This name is taken in .com, but it may be available in other extensions.” Below this message is a search bar to search for available extensions at Uniregistry, the domain registrar owned by Frank Schilling. On the top of the landing page, there is a message announcing it’s for sale, but it’s much less of a call out than the standard orange bar found on most other DNS-parked landing pages.”

I’m not sure that is going to work either especially if normal PPC revenue is going to be lost.

I wish I could have reported better results.

But at the moment I’m drawing all blanks

I will keep the program up for a while longer and continue to report the results

If I get to 10K clicks with no transactions or revenue we will be removing it

 

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Comments

  1. says

    The way to sell any product is by creating demand. You create demand by example and as the saying goes success breeds success. I’ve been saying it but here goes once more to any registries listening …
    Show them what a live site built on their gtld will do and many buyers will appear.
    In other words use risk reversal by doing it first yourself thus taking away the unknown causing buyers not to want to act.. Don’t expect the avg. Joe to fawn over an unknown commodity and risk their time efforts and money, Instead show them a successful version of what they could have and they will salivate like Pavlogs dog and go great distances to get one themselves.

  2. says

    Close to 100 gtlds open for business, and we have not even hit 1 million registrations, just over 600K, which includes many internal reservations by some parties.

    The gtlds are fizzling out, .com is still in strong demand, I have played with some gtlds, and on some I can’t even accept a $500 as with closing costs I will be break even. People that inquire quickly refute that is crazy to pricing, and the kicker is that I never tell them about the renewal which is premium.

    The loophole with the lack of cap on renewals, just a heads up reminder is a main concern going forward. This is a major hurdle among others including set restrictions that will disable a healthy registry from operating without a a gauntlet of self governing rules.

  3. says

    those 5000 people that clicked do NOT know and do NOT want .sexy nor .link …

    they want what they know which is mostly .com

    it is way too early for those people to register .bullshit

    when .bullshit becomes more popular after the big tech companies like google starts promoting their .bullshit … then people will finally realize and register the leftover shit until then forget that shit!!!

  4. says

    These past 15 years I have been creating sites and services mainly targetted to webmasters and domain owners. My experience shows that people who naturally visits sites (or parked domains) are rarely people looking to acquire a domain. So honnestly I think the problem here is not Uniregistry.com, any other registrar will have produced the exact same poor results.

    Each domain has his own story and reasons why people visit but something is constant, it’s ultra rare they be visited by potential buyers, and if above this you add the fact to suggest an alternate domain extension then you get these results, no surprise.

    Mike, it should be interesting to do the following:
    Count the unique visitors these domains received since the banner is up.
    This should give an idea of the amount of potential domain buyers received, and this way we will better appreciate the interest they may have on no .com alternatives.

    In a side note, people outside the domain industry could feel a bit scared about new extensions and not really understand what is proposed is also a web site address like the .com. So probably the landing page showing domain suggestions should do a minimum of education and reassure buyers with some examples (maybe they already do that, I don’t know).

    • says

      LLN is an acronym for the Law of Large Numbers,

      real theorem that a random variable will reflect its underlying probability over a very large sample, performing the same experiment a large number of times, the results obtained from a large number of trials should be close to the expected value, and will tend to become closer as more trials are performed. Even if Berkens realizes revenue in the next 5000 hits, according to this law, it will eventually gravitate towards that initial random poor result he observed in the beginning; I say that because, now the next 5000 is not going to be random at all. I will assume that UniRegistry will try to adjust things, including taking Francois’ advice. It’s akin to a gambler at a Casino, as noted elsewhere, while a casino may lose money in a single spin of the roulette wheel, its earnings will tend towards a predictable percentage over a large number of spins. Any winning streak by a player will eventually be overcome by the parameters of the game.

      Francois you make a couple of good points in your final paragraph. The trouble with pitching surfers with new gTLDs as they accidentally land o web pages is that almost anything you tell them about these new gTLDs will be untrue; they don’t need them.

  5. chrishughesuk says

    All the registries need to recognise that the old ‘build it and they will come’ paradigm of marketing dot coms just won’t work for the new TLDs.

    They need to start spending money to generate awareness and build brands.

    This is particularly so with the generic domains, whose primary strength is also their main weakness – without support, their generic nature makes them inherently meaningless and unattractive to end users.

  6. todd says

    The reason you got 5,000 clicks and no bites is not because the person doesn’t want to buy a domain name but that the domain extensions offered are to niche specific. That is the bottom line. The only extension that could be a truly universal extension and be used by someone landing on your page is the .link extension. I would rather have about 20 other extensions before .link

    The other 66 extensions are way to niche specific so to really get a good understanding if this will work is to have at least 1000 domains all within the same niche landing on one of these pages to see what will really convert. If they are all random domains in different categories you can’t get any realistic data.

    If you put 1,000 tattoo related domains with these landers I can guarantee you will convert some. If you put 1,000 random domains then the odds are stacked against you and you won’t convert any.

    • Raymond Hackney says

      I agree Todd it is about the niche, if someone is looking to buy an advertising name for example, options to buy a .sexy or .tattoo are never going to convert.

      Now a photo related name, may have the chance to sell a .pics.or .photo.

  7. says

    My affiliate numbers show 14 registrations so far. What am I doing right (or wrong?)

    It all has to do with what one sells to whom. Pure traffic does not mean conversion is guaranteed. But given a more targeted audience and a healthy amount of traffic, eventually conversion jumps.

    • todd says

      Theo don’t you think by having these affiliate links that you are missing out on potential sales? I can understand if a person has a portfolio of $50,000 domains that these links won’t take away the sale.

      What if a person has $3,000 domains than trying to convert a buyer is not that difficult but that same $3,000 buyer may say I don’t need the .com and I’ll take the .link for 10 bucks. So you made $28 on 14 sales but do you think you lost any 4 figure sales because of it?

      • says

        Raymond – Thanks.

        Todd – While I agree that commissions are low, my point was about conversion as a percentage of traffic: it requires a particular audience. I cannot emphasize the latter enough, hence your valid argument does not apply to the referral registrations I made. Another thing I found out: clicks don’t mean anything, bots love clicks, and they will spider affiliate links like chicken feed. Obviously, sales must be valid in order to count as earnings. The affiliate payment threshold is set at $250 by the way.

    • says

      I thought Berkens wrote that “We turned on the Uniregisty’s Affiliate program about 10 days ago, that places a banner on the bottom of parked pages marketing new gTLD’s registrations”, which means the client doesn’t have to do anything right, or wrong.

      The Results should be uniform, then? Should one do better than the other? Doesn’t Berkens have the chance of doing best among his peers who parked there? One because of better domain names, but also because Schillings is his pal, and advertiser?

    • says

      Boy, you calculate your friendships differently; people have pen pals all the time, especially before social media. Who says you gotta stay at someone’s home to be their pal?

      But please address the serious issue I raised: do you have to do anything else to tweak in the results other than turn the dawn thing on?

  8. Matt W says

    Zero revenue since program start for 1500 names (all verticals). Pretty lander I must say.
    Enquiries via banner are holding up. Alternates might just remind visitors they really do want the .com

  9. says

    Michael —

    I question this data. First of all, looking at Quantcast, TheDomains.com gets only 1,800 daily uniques on average (https://www.quantcast.com/thedomains.com?qcLocale=en_US). It seems very hard for 1,800 people to produce 5,000 clicks.

    But, please tell me I am wrong. Minds and Machines will launch our own affiliate program in a week or so, and I will happily share some (but not all) of my data with you — using Facebook and Google as a source of Traffic with a variety of keywords. I am signed up as a Uniregistry affilate, so we can see how Uniregistry and M+M compare.

    From a guy who has watched about 2 Billion dollars in aggregate ad revenue over the last years running on the company I started http://www.adconion.com — I can tell you that you need to be very careful when analyzing data like this.

    – your audience of domainers is particularily hostile to new TLDs — that could play into it
    – the new TLDs are narrowly focussed, your audience is not.
    – it’s possible that the Uniregistry affiliate program has problems of its own — could be the banners, messages, chechkout system, merchant accounts etc). All of these are factors.

    Still, if your logs in fact show 5,000 clicks, I would interested to know that. I would also be interested in placing some banners on your site, and paying on a cost per click basis to test results for myself — both on the M+M and Uniregistry platform.

    Finally a comment on style — I think the whole tenor of this post is inflamatory. You say Frank is your friend, but I have to say, I don’t think that friends write this kind of article about their friends. You may not have meant harm, but you are stirring things up here, and I would leave it alone if I were you.

    Fred

    • wmx says

      Coming from the guy who said.com will be dead in 10 years that’s hysterical and secondly who the fuck do you think you are to tell Mike Berkens anything ?

    • says

      First of all you question Michael’s data. Michael is one of the biggest new gTLD supporters. What incentive would he have for releasing stats that are not accurate which reflect how poorly the affiliate program is doing?

      Then you attack domainers as being hostile towards new gTLD. Look, if you can’t even sell new gTLD to domainers who are more receptive than anyone to investing in domains, then good luck selling them to end users. Maybe the issue is not the domainers, maybe the issue is the product itself.

      Then you call the post inflammatory. Since when is releasing objective data inflammatory?

      You go on to imply that Mike is a bad friend for releasing this info. Are you saying that because Mike is friends with Frank he should just ignore the data? Sorry, but just because someone is your friend does not mean you can’t be objective as well.

      This post is an insult to Michael and the domain community in general. It does nothing but damage your credibility.

      Brad

    • wmx says

      A phd from Stanford means nothing in the domain world. So fail.

      To your second point I doubt that very seriously.

      And it is certainly not greater than Mr. Berkens the man you were telling to leave stuff alone, on his blog.

    • Raymond Hackney says

      Absolutely Michael gave facts, he was not referring to clicks on this site, there are no affiliate links on the domains. He owns a portfolio of over 75,000 domains, he is talking about his parking of his domains.

  10. says

    Fred

    You have it wrong.

    All the Uniregistry affiliate banner clicks are generated from tens of thousands of domains we have at parked at Franks Internet Traffic (domain name sales).

    The traffic has absolutely nothing to do with TheDomains.com, its traffic or its visitors ( by the way your estimates of traffic to thedomains are way off)

    If you type type in this domain for example into your Browser:

    http://appraisingdomainnames.com/

    You will see a parked page, with the Uniregistry banner on the bottom, our inquiry link on top and PPC links in between.

    We have over 10,000 domains parked at Internet Traffic and those parked domains in that 10 day period generated almost 290K visitors (according to Franks own stats) which generated over 32,000 clicks on PPC links which generated over $4K in revenue net to us.

    Now on the other hand the affiliate banner ad below the PPC links on those same domains generated as I said Over 5,300 clicks and no revenue.

    One could argue that those who clicked on the Uniregistry Banner didn’t click on the PPC links.

    One could argue that not only didn’t the 5,300 + clicks produce any revenue but that its very likely we lost some revenue from people who clicked on the Uniregistry ad that would have clicked on the PPC links instead had that Uniregistry ad not been there

    As far as Frank, yes he is a friend to both Judi and I, we love the guy, we have known him a very long time and as you can see he is spending a lot of money advertising on thedomains.com, but just because someone is a friend or is spending money with it, it doesn’t mean I’m going to lie to readers or refrain from telling readers what is going on in the space.

    I wish I could have reported that I made hundreds of dollars from the affiliate program or even better thousands of dollars.

    It would make me happier to report success, I’m sure it would make Frank happier and apparently you happier.

    However I can’t just dish up good news when the news isn’t good, friend or not.

    I would expect my friends to accept that despite our personal relationship the numbers are the numbers and I have an obligation to the readers.

    Having said that I didn’t say I was pulling the Uniregistry ads down, I’m going to continue to try it for at least 60 days to give it a fair go and will report back hopefully with better news the next time.

    • says

      Ok, then I stand corrected. I thought it was traffic on your website.

      What I think this is telling us is that

      – 5,000 clicks — with street value of +/- $2,500 on Adwords (50 cent per click, is that reasonable) produced 0 revenue.
      – if the CPA was $500 or below, the chance of 0 conversions on that many clicks would be 5 standard deviations, or something like 0.01%
      – therefore the CPA of driving conversions on domain name traffic is higher than $500 with very high probability.

      My take on this is as follows:

      – people who mistype domains don’t in general want to buy domains
      – they really don’t want to buy strange new domains like .link

      On the other hand if you own disneytrips.com and there is a link to disneyland there is a high probability that the user is interested in that link, and it will generate some kind of conclusion.

      I think this might signal that a strategy of using general parked domains to generate sales on new TLDs is flawed.

      It DOES NOT signal the following:

      1. That new TLDs are in any way “doomed”
      2. That affiliate programs don’t work in general (they absolutely do)
      3. That an affiliate program targeted to a specific vertical might actually work spectacularly well.

      • says

        Really looking forward to the details of the M+M affiliate program. Coming from a gambling affiliate background I quickly saw that the domain industry affiliate situation is underdeveloped. The first provider to offer an affiliate program that is:

        1. generous – commissions starting at 20%
        2. recurring – 1 time payment for valuable end users is unattractive
        3. Includes ancillary services, hosting, site builders, also recurring revenue model.
        4. tiered – recruiting sub affiliates is profitable.

        Will crush the domain/hosting affiliate market. I could get on board with something like that. But, I’m not counting on it though, which is why we’re developing our own registrar(s) at New Dots. I wanted to move up the food chain in the New gTLD market anyway.

        I agree also, and have believed for years, that the niche targeting of registrants is critical. Play to people’s passions, that’s where they’ll convert.

        Incidentally I put links into uniregistry for 7 days, 1500 visits, zero conversions. Now I just send them to my clunky enom storefront, which converts better.

      • guh says

        It DOES NOT signal the following:

        1. That new TLDs are in any way “doomed”
        —–
        First you said be careful in interpreting the data, now you try to interpret this very limited data to make it fit your personal hopes and goals.

        If it means nothing why did you get so upset about it?

        I tend to agree that this doesn’t necessarily mean that all the new TLDs are doomed but it isn’t a spectacular launch either.

  11. says

    I looked at this Uniregistry.com landing page and I will say the biggest problem I see regarding conversion is the domains suggested are only .pic .photo .sexy and .link. For most sites probably the first 3 are useless and the .link looks strange the first times (yes be honnest, it also happend to me) because sites are not links (I am now less reluctant but it taken time to assume it). So potential buyers are presented by something they do not need or do not understand, if Uniregistry.com will add to their suggestion list: .net .org, … and more new extensions options then I am sure this will raise the interest and the conversion rate.
    I guess it’s just a begining (they are testing water) and they will do it soon. Nobody find the good recipe instantly.

    In a side note, people who already own domains (certainly a minority) prefer to register from their usual registrar, so ther is always a portion of this traffic that will find a domain suggested of interest but will buy it elsewhere.

  12. Phil says

    These stats are a bit disappointing.

    Really glad that Mike has shared them with us though, definitely one of the biggest reasons I visit this blog daily (and have now signed up) is because it’s filled with quality and real facts, something that’s always scarce in every field.

    I agree with Todd on a point, although sometimes his comments are quite raw, that the context of the name would determine success of this programme. The thing is that of these 5000 clicks, I’m quite sure Mike had a few tattoo/photo/pics related names and hence that theory would have been indirectly tested in these numbers, so it’s even more upsetting.

    I suppose giving it some more time would make sense. Who knows, the landers themselves might need a bit of tweaking, this is still early early game in the world of gTLDs.

    Really glad this programme was launched, as it’s clearly innovation in the namespace as a whole, I’m sure other gTLD providers will definitely try to replicate it (I’ve always believed domaining was nothing but the art of replication at it’s core). I mean the guy from M+M just admitted they now want to do something similiar, and who can blame him.

    On a side note, I think the world as a whole is headed for some dark days. I’m seeing it all round, the smartest small/private business owners I know are really struggling to get things going. I even see the frustration in the comments on domain blogs in general. Some may say that it’s in times like these when the biggest opportunities present themselves (we all know what happened after the .com bubble). All I know is that it’s through experiments such as this which have the highest chance of showing us the light (or darkness) of what lies ahead.

    Thanks again for sharing Mike.

    Peace out from the South of Africa.

    • says

      I’d rather be paid, or pay, for eye-balls. Just like TV ads.

      If you asked CBS or FOX to charge for advertisements after Super bowl watchers visit a store, they will call the cops on you, or laugh you off the phone.

      PPC is stupid. I will never accept t for anything I do.

        • says

          I know. Pay Per Click is not a good thing. If the new g TLD people, or anybody who wants to be innovative really wants to give Google a run, are smarter they will pay for eyeballs.

          PPC puts an unwilling site owner in business with the advertiser. What if the product or the ad stinks? And nobody clicks through or purchases anything? The site owner gets nothing for his space? Or if they see the ad and purchases elsewhere or another time?

          Bing, Yahoo…. If they want to get serious and take market share from Google, they should develop and implement eyeball stuff just like TV folks. PPC is dumb.

          • says

            It seems to me you are defining the term PPC to mean Google AdSense. I simply mean PPC in the general definition and in this discussion Uniregistry would be the PPC client.

  13. says

    I mean all affiliate programs but to elaborate on the specific market in question I think that domain affiliate programs do not work due to cookie longevity. Beginner domain purchasers do a lot of browsing before they buy a name. If the click made that customer your customer for a longer period, that would be much much different in commissions and make it all worthwile.
    But then there is the problem of them clicking from multiple sites and they visit from someone else’s site when they finally made a purchase.
    That’s why I said PPC works better on this stuff. Too complicated and too many holes for your commission to drop through.

  14. says

    Fred to your points:

    – people who mistype domains don’t in general want to buy domains

    For the record I do not do the typo game.

    I own generic domain names properly spelled.

    There are a number of domainers who do play the typo game but i am not one of them.

    I’m a domain investor not a cybersquatter.

    On the other hand if you own disneytrips.com and there is a link to disneyland there is a high probability that the user is interested in that link, and it will generate some kind of conclusion.

    But if I did own disneytrips.com then I would be using a well known trademark and although my clicks from that domain would covert better, the domain would be subject to being taking in a UDRP at any time and I could be sued under the ACPA that carries $100,000 per domain statutory damages plus attorney fees.

    It DOES NOT signal the following:

    1. That new TLDs are in any way “doomed”
    2. That affiliate programs don’t work in general (they absolutely do)
    3. That an affiliate program targeted to a specific vertical might actually work spectacularly well.

    Fred I agree with you there and nothing in my post indicated otherwise.

    I just reported my results, the numbers of one particular program.

  15. Louise says

    @ MIke Berkens, Does it occur to you the traffic your parked pages generate are – at least – partially paid? There has been noise about this in the media lately, and Google bought Spider.io my opinion is as much to keep this quiet until Google figures out an alternative to its ad revenue, as to filter out paid clicks! There are paid clicks generated from machines that visit and click in distinctive patterns that make it obvious it is machine clicks. Even bot software is becoming more sophisticated to resemble human clicks. There are likely boiler room operations in developing countries that are human clicks, but on more basic machines which don’t play video, which represent a higher quality of traffic. Then there is paid traffic from, “Pay to Surf,” operations in this country and in others. It represents the highest quality, where videos are actually loaded and played.

    You see where I am going: no wonder the affiliate links didn’t convert.

    Also, this pay to click services are reality, when marketing agencies rely to clicks to demonstate success.

    Maybe you can even argue, pay to click supplies jobs in developing countries.

    If you want some references, I will email them!

    Domenclature said

    If you asked CBS or FOX to charge for advertisements after Super bowl watchers visit a store, they will call the cops on you, or laugh you off the phone.

    Well said! Internet advertising converts, but it is unsustainably cheap, and publishers are paid shamelessly low. I appreciate your stance to leave off adsense ads off your sites!

    • says

      I appreciate that, Louise.

      I am formulating a proposal now for Domainers, and Yahoo, Bing, Facebook, Twitter etc., that could be ready in early June; this thing will start at .50 cents/Unique view, depending on the Industry/Vertical … Eyeballs.

      If your site can deliver 1000 Unique viewers a day, you make $600 that day, it’s up to the advertiser to convert them, based on their ad, their products, ad their prices; it’s non of the Website Owners business if people are interested or not. The Website Owner’s duty, and obligation is to deliver the Eyeball, period. It doesn’t matter if the eyeball is from a bum, or a king.

      Anything short of that, is a rip-off. And Domainers should reject it.

      • Louise says

        You’re still on my radar – even though you were disrespectful to Mike! – because you called Judi, “a gorgeous wife.” That was nice!

  16. Louise says

    The affiliate, “clicks,” didn’t convert, because children in India or China being paid low wages to surf and click, are not in the market for a $35.00 domain. Not for a $25.00 domain, not even for a $15.00 domain.

    Not even people being paid to surf in the USA earn enough to justify a $35.00 domain purchase:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tz_iPMk0-YY

    I’m not calling anyone out. Google itself has wanted it this way, so why should the small fry take the blame?

  17. says

    I think Uniregistry is doing very good job of offering the user a product using stunning graphics, engaging content and entertaining education. They are not the reason the affiliate program is not producing revenue. It is the affiliate system doesn’t work well for getting credit for a sale. Not specifically their system, it simply has too many holes to loose revenue in.
    I will let Uniregistry advertise all day on my sites for PPC money. Excellent site and company and I would be proud to do business with them, if I could get compensated.

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