Why I registered 20,000 .xyz domain names.
I thought I was smart, it was like an aha moment, like when that guy bought 12,150 cups of chocolate pudding and earned 1.25 Million Air Miles. This was back in June 2016 and .xyz domain name extension was having a sale at Uniregistry and every .xyz domain name that was available to register would cost $0.01, one penny. I spent the next two nights scanning and compiling lists of domain names that I could add to my cart, at that time, the site could roughly only handle about roughly 500 registration per session, so on it went adding domain names 500 at a time to my account. Most of the domain names I registered, I would say 80% of them were just purely number combinations, during that time such as 0000011.xyz and 0000012.xyz, also I registered thousands of high-value keywords in the car, insurance, legal, addiction, mortgage and real estate industries. The Chinese domain market was hot for number domain names and 4-letter .com domain names at that time. I also thought it was pretty cool to see in the next couple days that I had over 20,000 domain names in my account. With great power comes great responsibility, I must have quoted those lines quite a few times to myself, I mean in general, when you have that many names, surely some sort of traffic would come along, via type-ins or bots, there was one way to test it out. I asked my friend Andre who had a blog and small online store selling art, pictures of guitars as clocks if I could test and send traffic to him as he had Google analytics. The next day he told me to stop redirecting my names because his service provider was going to charge him more for the influx of traffic. So it is true, it works. With great power comes great responsibility.
I set the names back to their default name servers and did a bulk edit where I priced every name for sale at $300 USD each. I was going to be rich! I got maybe two enquiries in the coming months and put it at the back of my mind and carried on the day to day work. The one enquiry was someone confused and the other one was a real person, they wanted a domain name I had registered for $0.01. The name was somnambulist.xyz, I don’t even remember the name or registering it. Turns out the definition of somnambulant. 1 : walking or having the habit of walking while asleep. You learn something or about something every day when you are in the domain industry. Anyways an email went out to the potential buyer quoting them $2,000 USD minimum and the came back and laughed on email. I sent an email saying that was sent in error and the price was actually $300, they could not see the value and suggested the name might be worth $3 bucks if being generous. I held firm on my $300 USD asking price, I mean I did pay around $200 for all 20,000 domain names so I really just wanted to sell one and make a profit. That never happened, almost a year went by and I had to make sure all the .xyz were on auto renew off as the renewal price for around $12.88 USD each, I knew this going into this and a few clicks and sorting out bulk domain edits I was going to let them all lapse. If you really wanted to renew 20,000 .xyz names it would of the cost you in the region of $250,000 USD!
One thing I will strongly suggest is not to register domain names blindly or in bulk like I did, unless you curate every single name you register, you can get into trouble with the law in the form of a URS (Uniform Rapid Suspension System) and or UDRP (Uniform Domain Name Resolution Policy) and they will be a headache, cost you money and damage your reputation forever online. I did not get into any trouble registering all the .xyz names, but I could of and that would have been a stupid mistake to make in hindsight. .xyz is still one of my favorite extensions, they have good marketing and brand awareness. I just won’t be registering 20,000 names anytime soon.