Grandseeds

Using dotDB in domain investing


September 14, 2019 (Sat). Everyday I sift through thousands of domains in the garbage dump to try to find one or two domains which may be valuable. Obviously, I need tools to help me, and one of them is dotDB. So, today's article is about using dotDB to help me select domains.

In my daily routine, I download about 5,000 expiring domains from ExpiredDomains.net. First, I use my customized Namebio database to cut the list down to about 300 domains. Then I apply the number of similar domains for a keyword as reported by dotDB to rank the domains. My rationale here is that the more similar domains a keyword has, a higher chance that it is valuable. I visually inspect this ranked list to select and then research domains for purchase.

Finding the number of similar domains for each of some 300 domains is time consuming, so recently I decided to employ dotDB's API to automate the process. Because my data is stored in Microsoft Access, it's natural to write the program in VBA. For those who are interested, you can try the sample code below. Because Excel also supports VBA, you should be able to run this program in Excel as well.

Sub dotDB()
Dim hRequest As Object
Dim strAPIkey As String
Dim strURL As String
Dim strResponse As String

strAPIkey = "(your API key)"
strURL = "https://api.dotdb.com/v1/search?keyword=apple"

Set hRequest = CreateObject("MSXML2.XMLHTTP")
With hRequest
.Open "GET", strURL, False
.SetRequestHeader "Authorization", "Token " & strAPIkey
.Send
End With

strResponse = hRequest.ResponseText

MsgBox strResponse

End Sub

The program requires an API key and a keyword. The API key can be found on the API ACCESS page of dotDB (EXPERT subscription required). The keyword is "apple" in this example. The program returns a lot of data, but the number after "total_suffix" is what I want. It indicates the number of similar domains for "apple".

Caution! A high "total_suffix" number does not guarantee that a domain is very valuable. For example, TedInsurance.com is top on my list today with 532 matches, but a lot of the "similar" domains are actually not related, such as AcceptedInsuranceHouston.com, AccreditedInsurance.com, and AceUnitedInsurance.com. This number only alerts me to take a close look of the domain. Further research is still required.

In short, dotDB's API helps me create a ranked list of domains quickly so that I can focus on domains which may be most valuable.

Join me on LinkedIn for further discussion.