XXX Domain: Destined for Failure

By - Posted under: News, Web on December 14, 2011

Just last week ICANN (International Corporations for Assigned Names and Numbers), who controlled the World Wide Web’s domain, started selling the .XXX domain names.

Some histories about the .XXX domain first.

ICANN wanted a special domain to differentiate the pornographic websites than regular websites so that regular users won’t stumble onto a pornographic website by accident, and parents, IT managers, and etc can filter these websites with .XXX domains easily to prevent the teenage child, workers and regular people can and will be blocked easily from these pornographic websites.

Very good intention. But seriously?

The AP reports that 80,000 XXX domains were sold in pre­sale and many com­pa­nies like Pepsi and Nike lined up to pur­chase adult domains. The Uni­ver­si­ty of Kansas report­ed­ly just paid $3,000 for a vari­ety of XXX URLs.

Nike will not want the domain Nike.XXX to be registered by some dubious companies and turn Nike into pornographic brand with a Nike porn site. Furthermore, universities will not want to allow pornographic websites to use their names, such as MSU.XXX or MSUGirls.XXX. So most of these 80,000 XXX domains were sold to legitimate corporations seeking to protect their names, brands and corporate images.

How about the real pornographic websites? From the information that we gather, there were just a few real pornographic companies registering them. A lot of these pornographic websites make their fortune when users stumble onto their websites, so the good intention of ICANN on preventing innocent people from stumbling onto a pornographic website is a moot point. Furthermore, with the .XXX domain, they can be blocked easily (just a simple *.xxx will do) so it is not a surprise anyone with half a brain that real pornographic websites will not take up the triple X domain.

A quick tour to GoDaddy website, one of the largest web hosting companies and domain registration companies in the world, showed that a .XXX domain is USD99 per year, while regular domain ranges from USD 11.99 to 19.99 per year.

Accord­ing to the web­site, if I want­ed to launch an adult web­site under that URL, I actu­al­ly have to become an “Inter­net Com­mu­ni­ty Mem­ber” and then con­firm my sta­tus of “the spon­sored adult enter­tain­ment com­mu­ni­ty”. My guess is that this is how the ICANN polices the URLs, to ensure that some­one isn’t reg­is­ter­ing some­one else’s brand as a porn site. I have no plans to do so, which con­ve­nient­ly means I do not have to become a part of the “Community.” GoDad­dy tells me this too, and is — for­tu­nate­ly, I guess — only too happy to help me park my URL for the same exor­bi­tant fee.

Atop GoDad­dy’s XXX domain reg­is­tra­tion page is this: “Let’s be adult about it. Cre­ate an adult Web pres­ence or pro­tect your brand.” This is fol­lowed by an expla­na­tion of why you’d want to reg­is­ter an XXX domain. Note what it starts with:

Secure your brand. Pro­tect your rep­u­ta­tion.

Per­haps you’d like to cre­ate an adult enter­tain­ment web­site. Or maybe you’re here to keep your brand from being reg­is­tered as a .XXX by some­one else. What­ev­er your rea­sons for want­i­ng a .XXX domain, you’ve come to the right place. To check the avail­abil­i­ty of your domain, type the name you want into the search box above.

The mes­sage is clear: If you don’t want some­one launch­ing a porn XXX domain with your name or brand, you’d bet­ter let GoDad­dy take your money and reg­is­ter it for you.

This scene was like during the early days of the web where companies and person rushing to snap up domain names to protect their own interest or making some quick money by selling the legitimate domain back to the companies. But this time there is a dif­fer­ce in one fun­da­men­tal way: Those snap­ping up the domains for pro­tec­tion will never use them. No one out­side the porn indus­try wants to run a live XXX domain web­site. These busi­ness­es and uni­ver­si­ties are sim­ply buy­ing them in what GoDad­dy actu­al­ly calls “Defen­sive Reg­is­tra­tions” to hide them from view for­ev­er (and they’ll pay GoDad­dy year­ly fees to do so).

I think GoDaddy should send ICANN a flower, a box of chocolate with a Thank-You note while laughing all the way to the bank.

The Quality of Website Traffic – Part 1

By - Posted under: Online Marketing, SEO on November 15, 2011

This is a 2 part articles. Please check back for Part 2 soon.

There was an old saying for website and any online services that goes, “It’s all about the traffic!”

I agree, and I disagree.

First of all, it is great if a website can attract 1,000, 2,000 or 20,000 daily unique visitor traffic (that is roughly 30,000 to 600,000 visitors a month). With such traffic, the function of the website, be it promotion of a product or service, awareness, branding, or marketing, will be fully served.

But is it?

At Zymora Technologies, we don’t take the average daily traffic as the benchmark because we believe that quality is more important than quantity.

What we want to achieve is getting quality traffic that landed onto the website instead of creating a huge number of visitors that come to the website but not contributing to anything for the website beside wastage of the bandwidth.

So how do we determine what’s quality traffic and which one is “just traffic”?

For SEO purposes, we have to investigate the following:

  1. Bounce Rate
  2. Average Time Spent
  3. New Visitor
  4. Geographic
  5. Traffic Source

#1: Bounce Rate
Bounce Rate, as what it says, are the rate of visitor that landed onto your website and then navigate away without staying or navigate further through your pages. Normally this happens when people found your website via search engine and then realized that you are not offering what they are looking for, so they close the browser tab or navigate away.

If you have 600,000 visitors per month and your bounce rate is 90%, then actually there were only 60,000 real visitors that really looking for the things you are offering. If you have 30,000 visitors, that means only 10% of that number is your actual visitors. The rest? They are just passerby.

So for the objective of creating quality visitors, we have to lower the Bounce Rate. Ideally if we can keep it at 35% and lower, that will be great.

#2: Average Time Spent
This data is actually telling us the average time spent by a visitor on the website. It has a direct relation with bounce rate and when the bounce rate is high, then the average time spent will be lower.

Bounce Rate has 0 seconds time spent on the website. So even if you have 300,000 visitors, and your Average Time Spent is 26 seconds, that means your visitors aren’t spending long enough time on your website and learn enough of what you are offering.

In conclusion, it’s important to reduce the Bounce Rate, increase the Average Time Spent to gain maximum exposure of your site to your visitors so they will have the time to learn what you have to offer.

#3: New Visitor
As the name applies, new visitor is the indication on how many “new” visitors that visited your website.

If your average traffic is 20,000 visitors per month and you have a very high number of New Visitors, that means you are attracting lots of new traffic, but you don’t have enough returning visitors.

If you have low new visitors but have a lot of returning visitors, that means you are not generating enough new visitors.

It is important to strike a balance. In an ideal situation, it is best to convert those new visitors to become visitors that visit your website regularly.

So the question is: is there a ratio of returning visitors and unique visitors? There is, but it depends on the cases in question.

Here mark the end of Part 1 of this blog. Please check back later for Part 2.

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