A topic that I had sitting in drafts for a bit came to light in a thread on Namepros. The topic being luck. How much does luck matter in domaining? How lucky do you feel you have been.
I would also argue that companies in the business have been lucky that this business that came together were very lucky.
The question on Namepros was a little more cut and dry as the poster asked if it was based all on luck?
My reply was:
Your question seems to be is it all luck? NO it’s not. There is a lot of luck involved with domaining, first off you can’t just go and make your own way, you need the misfortune or negligence of others. By that I mean there are plenty of names that sit and don’t sell for 15 years, many brandables have been like this and then someone lets the name drop and someone else picks it up and sells it passively, just putting it on Sedo and Afternic (nothing that requires skill or high intellect) in three months. That is pure luck, now you will not be able to make a living doing that, outliers happen and other bits of luck happen as well.
Look the whole secondary market is based on luck, GoDaddy and all the other registrars that sell their customer’s expired assets and pocket the cash got lucky. ICANN could have easily implemented rules that said all names expire after 30 days and are released back into the wild. A registrar cannot profit off of expired domains, they didn’t and that was very lucky for companies like GoDaddy.
Understanding linguistics, marketing, trends, the temperature of the culture and knowing how to sell are all real skills you need to adapt to make a living or a hobby where the juice is worth the squeeze.
But for anyone telling you that luck played no part in their success in this business is either lying or in denial.
So how much of a factor has luck played in your domaining experience?