Domain AuctionsDomain DevelopmentDomain valuation

Retail Appraisals — A useful tool for selling domains to end-clients

By May 5, 2010 February 27th, 2017 9 Comments

When trying to determine a fair price for a domain, end-clients usually look for some type of objective 3rd party assessment of what is fair market value for a domain name.   In the past we would send a client to Estibot. However, Estibot is really a tool for domainers.  Here is a useful tool that you can use for free when selling to end-clients.

Appraise.Epik.Com is a free service
For developed websites with traffic, we have a scorecard that we have started to use that is designed to value the traffic.  This was the subject of a recent post. For undeveloped domains, the appraisal is not based on actual traffic but rather, it is based on potential traffic.  This is like an oil field that has “unproven reserves”.  The same logic applies to domains.  There may be high search volumes, but if you can’t get ranked, it won’t bring you traffic.

The tool is easy to use.  To use it, simply add your domain name to the end of the URL:

For example:

Here is what you will find:


The site takes a few seconds to load as it gathers the site data and attempts to make a screen capture.

How is this tool different?
The appraised values are generally higher than Estitbot — about 3X higher on average.  This is based on a proprietary valuation model that we are continuing to refine to better reflect fair market value based on end-client purchase patterns that we have observed from our own end-client sales.

The scorecard also adds other supporting data where available in order to help a prospective buyer evaluate the attractiveness of the domain or website asset.  This scorecard will continue to improve.  For anyone familiar with a 409A valuation for private securities, there is a success model to follow.

Looking Ahead
Our ultimate goal is to be able to support the efficient buying and selling of developed websites and developable domains. This is critically important for the growing number of retail investors.

For sites that are hosted by Epik, we will also be able to show actual site statistics and will be able to use this data to inform the valuation of the domain or developed website.  This data integration is a work in progress but on that is progressing quickly and is the different between “unproven reserves” and “proven reserves”.

In other words, a domain might be worth $5,000 on the basis of theoretical traffic. However, if it is actually making $300 a month from verified net revenue, it is possible to use an alternative valuation formula that reflects the projectable stream of cash flows.

Join the discussion 9 Comments

  • Mark says:

    Right On Rob!!!!

    Great work. Outstanding. I look forward to seeing this breakthrough develop even further.

  • Interesting-just curious if you have observed how the valuation changes (%) for the same domain pre versus post development.

    • Rob Monster says:

      @Leonard – There is currently no automated differentiation between developed and undeveloped here. However, for sites hosted by Epik, where we know traffic and monetization, our plan is to dynamically adapt the valuation model to use the higher of (1) raw undeveloped domain, (2) multiple of gross revenues, or (3) multiple of net revenues. The difference between (2) and (3) matters if it is a dropship business as some end-clients will value a multiple of top-line. The updated appraisal engine will come online when we finish integrated metrics reporting across all lines of business.

  • fizz says:

    Excellent valuation tool.

    Does replace or does each fulfill a separate purpose?

    • Rob Monster says:

      @Fizz – looks prettier, for one thing. Also, is mostly for screening dropped names and so you probably would not want to send an end-client there.

  • tricolorro says:


    Are the appraisal tool results private?

    If I do an appraisal test on an available domain I find or one expiring,
    will anyone else be able to see the domains I’ve tested?


    • Rob Monster says:

      @tricolorro – We don’t look at who is appraising on However, the tool has a tag cloud with latest appraisals which is visible. If most people think that this should not be displayed, that is a reasonable design change for us to make.

  • Mike Lee says:

    I tried it. No success. Operational?

  • Roma says:

    Great tool. It would be nice though,since there is such a thing as DQI, if this tool would show it as well.

Leave a Reply

Translate »