A few years after I bought my first home, the spring on my garage door snapped. I called up a local garage door guy and he came over to fix it for me. He was a one man show, a small business owner. I was working on some other things in the garage while he was taking care of business. We got to talking and he mentioned something to me that I never forgot because, well, it was genius.
Take advantage of opportunities
He started on a story about a local competitor of his that was going out of business for one reason or another. The reason isn’t really important. I don’t know if the owner was retiring or if there was some issue, but the fact is, the business was no longer going to exist. He explained the business was actually bigger than his because it had been around for a decade or two longer than his own business. So, he made the guy an offer. Not for his business…. but for his phone number.
See What Others Don’t See
I asked him why he would buy the guys phone number? I mean the guy is going out of business. Sure, maybe you’ll get a couple of calls, but not worth buying the number. Then he tapped his finger on the wall of my garage. As I looked over at the source of his tapping, there was a sticker on my was which is what he was intending me to see. Right next tot he garage door button was a sticker from the last company that serviced the door in this house. It wasn’t the name of the company on the sticker that mattered, it was the phone number.
Set Yourself Up for Success
Every time a service person visits your house to fix your garage door, clean your furnace, service your water heater, they slap a sticker nearby so you’ll call them the next time you need work done. If there was a competitor there before them, they’ll slap the sticker right over that other sticker. It’s almost a guaranteed repeat customer for them.
My garage door guy explained that since this company was in business for decades before him, they had thousands of these stickers plastered in homes in a 50 mile radius, at least. His business tripled over night! He told me there are days that he could turn down jobs because they were too far, too complicated, or he just didn’t want to take it on. He still had plenty of work.
How Does this Relate to Domaining?
Here is a simple example that I am going to use as a case study. If it’s successful, I will bump up the intensity of this plan and report progress. I acquired a name used by a local martial arts school that has recently gone out of business. My plan is to offer this name to the other local schools that would like to pick up the business this school has left behind. Why would they want it?
The school did a lot of local advertising using it’s domain
There are several links back to the site
It still shows in search results
Families have posted years of Youtube videos mentioning their kids in this school
There are dozens of directories still referencing the school and it’s domain name
There are archived competitions online that still link to the site
The reasons go on and on. The concept is essentially the same as the phone number story my garage door man told me. This will be a cheap sale since I am dealing with small businesses / sole proprietors but it the proof of concept I am looking for here.
Buying domains with traffic is nothing new. I am not inventing this concept. It’s more of a moment of enlightenment for me that I thought I would share. If all goes well, you’ll hear more about it. If not…. you still may hear more about it.
If you have any experience in this area, let me know what you have tried and how well it has worked for you.
That’s an interesting take on a fundamental concept of domain name investing.
Thank you for sharing your story and insights.
My pleasure… as you pointed out, it’s a fundamental. The fundamentals are what everything is built on. They don’t change. Sometimes we get so caught up in complexities that we forget the simple things.
I did the same thing with a jobs board domain recently.
It’s a good idea but few people see, understand, or know the value of doing something like this.
I did go to an internet marketing conference once and there was a business that sold pay-per-call to local businesses. They did what this guy did but on a huge scale. Was a good model from what the rep told me.
So you see, some small business owners are really genius in disguise. The fact that they prefer to remain small even though they are capable of scaling their biz overnight if they wanted to. Great thoughts here!
That is some excellent point and a good lesson from other professionals…
I always like some points learning from real life scenarios….
Mike, I will wait for next chapter of this concept…it works I am sure…if it didn’t it might be only related to name not entire concept.
Share with us all details and also any other names bought based on same concept..