I had a chance to sit down with Josh Metnick who owns Chicago.com and started selling subdomains & email addresses ending in Chicago.com.
In the first year, sales of subdomains and vanity email addresses using Chicago.com generated some $125,000 in revenue with virtually no marketing.
Josh shared the numbers with TheDomains.com exclusively:
“”Chicago.com is going well — our first year sales were approximately $125,000, but it’s recurring high-margin revenue. ”
“First batch of yearly renewals came up — and the renewal rate was actually higher than 100%, which is interesting. ”
“What that means — is that during the renewal process, our existing customers not only renewed, but they placed additional orders– significantly more than we lost. ”
“I believe we lost five customers total in 14 months or so. ”
“We are targeting around $250,000+ next year, maybe more if we do a deal with a local media partner.”
“Our marketing budget for the first year was around $5,000, so we will be putting more into it and also doing a large drive for Cyber-Monday, as roughly 50% of our sales are given as gifts, we didn’t see that.”
“Another thing we did not see was Spanish language names.”
“Chicago is roughly 30% Hispanic.”
“We sold email@example.com, and then the same firm, which has attorneys who specialize in Spanish-speaking clients, bought firstname.lastname@example.org — so this again is taking us in another, unexpected direction.”
“We sold Parking.Chicago.com and Parking@Chicago.com to one of the largest VC-based “Hotels.com” for parking companies– Spot Hero, to help create a portal for Chicago parking. Lawyer.Chicago.com will be launching soon.”
“A domainer bought limos.chicago.com and email@example.com (we bundle the subdomain and the email) for investment purposes, we have had some of those.”
Josh confirmed that the system he developed has spread to other Geo domains including:
Neworleans.com; they just went live about two weeks ago, but cannot reveal sales numbers there, they are ramping up.
Nashville.com; they are live but it is not being promoted, so we are in the process of re-doing all of the direct marketing efforts.
Telaviv.com; This went live a little while ago, we have something like 50+ Israeli city.com’s on the system, these names have been selling, as well Jerusalem.net, we have been selling emails. Pricing is more simplified on this system, we are testing different price points.
“”We’ve sold several thousand dollars worth but officially just launched that site today actually.”
Even smaller US cities are signing up and seeing results.…