Before I go any further, I want to state that I support all of the companies listed below. In my personal portfolio I use Epik.com and ParkingCrew.com. These companies work best for my domains.
However, when I consult with clients, I may also employ DomainSponsor.com or other monetization companies. It just depends on the types of names that are in any given portfolio as to which company or companies should be used. This section is all my opinion and your experience may be much different.
DomainApps.com is much smaller than the bigger companies like Sedo.com, but that in of itself is not bad. When I opened a ticket to test support, I got a reply back from the owner of the site. He has other people working for him, but he also has enough humility to actually answer questions and jump in on the forums to participate and help. I thought that this was a great personal touch.
The payouts can be pretty decent. Like all parking companies it will have its highs and lows but I would rate the payouts as average. The company is pretty solid and has been around for years. The interface is easy to use and navigate.
Another great thing about DomainApps.com is that the standard landers (templates you choose from that become the pages that the visitors view when going to your domain) are very nice looking which helps traffic click better.
When I first signed up with DomainSponsor.com I was a bit confused with the system. I had been accustomed to setting keywords and other options for my individual domain names. DomainSponsor.com lacks this, but for good reason. They do allow for the changing of templates and a few other settings, but the majority of the system is aimed at auto-optimization. This basically means that once you add your domain name to their system, their platform will automatically find the best possible template, keywords, and other settings to make sure visitors to the site click through. Because of this type of system, it is extremely attractive to people who have massive amounts of domains since there is very little work needing to be done after a domain is added to their platform.
Another huge plus for DomainSponsor.com is that they traditionally have had great payouts for insurance, mutual fund, banking, credit card, and similar financial domain names. Ten dollar (or more) clicks for finance type names are not uncommon.
The only bad side that I can find about DomainSponsor.com is that their landers tend to look a bit 1990’ish, and that their interface for adding domains is not very intuitive, in fact, their interface as a whole is not all that easy to use. However, as with most things, once you learn it, it becomes second nature. Regarding the landers, if the parking page makes us money we should not really be concerned if it has pretty pictures on it or not. We should only be concerned about CTR and revenue.
Another note about DomainSponsor.com is that you will need a decent traffic portfolio before they will allow you into their system, so you will have to wait until you have a good set of generic/semi-generic domains or a large traffic portfolio before they will approve you for an account.
If you are a large portfolio owner with limited time resources when it comes to domain optimization, then this will be the best parking company for you by far.
While Epik.com is a registrar, it also has integrated parking features. You can choose to park your domain on a Secure Socket Layer (SSL) enabled page with a “make offer”, “purchase now”, or “lease now” option, or you can send your domain through a parking company rotation with takes advantage of multiple different parking companies which optimize the CTR (click through ratio) and payout of your domains. This is far different than most parking companies because Epik.com is a one-stop-shop. You can have your domain hosted on the same registrar that is also providing the parking. Furthermore, the multi-rotational parking platform allows for automatic optimization of a domain without any intervention from the domain owner.
(Search Engine for Domain Offers) Sedo.com is without a doubt one of the largest parking providers out there. They also provide domains sales through escrow, have a domain appraisal service, and more. It is very easy to get an account at Sedo.com, no special portfolio requirements/minimum domain requirements, and they are also recognized as being established and stable throughout the domain industry.
Their support is pretty helpful. Every time I have submitted a ticket the people who replied back to me were very professional. Payouts are about average, and often argued on blogs as less than average; however, the ability to buy a domain is built into every template they have (if desired) and makes for a very easy process when you sell a domain.
One note about Sedo.com is that their regular landers are now becoming well known to end users because they are all the same, which can result in a poorer CTR. Essentially the visitor remembers seeing these types of pages and knows the page is a link page and they don’t stay or click which means no revenue.
Making More Money with the Same Domain
Ok, with all of these parking companies out there, what is the difference? Well, there are some big differences that will be of huge importance to you.
I usually buy domains on 3x to 15x revenue multiple. So, if the seller tells me a domain is making, say, $10 per month, we may negotiate $360 for this domain (12 months * 3 * rev). I will pay this amount, but I also know I am usually going to recoup my money back faster than three years. At the very least, I know that I can use the exact same keywords that this person did and get ten dollars a month. However, if I am smart and monetize the domain correctly, I can have it making $12 a month, or $15, or even $20 per month.
There have been several occasions that I have bought a domain making $10 per month and turned it around to make $20 per month. There have also been occasions where I bought a domain making $20 per month and turned it around into $80 per month. Additionally, there have been a few occasions where I cannot make the domain perform any better than it had been. It just depends on how well the last person who owned the domain optimized it.
Keep in mind that when you get a new domain that has traffic and makes money you will need to ask the previous owner what provider, template, and keyword he/she was using. That information gives you a starting place. You can be lazy and go sign up for that same parking provider and replicate what that person did, or, you can try a different provider and see what you can do with it. When I buy a domain I immediately park it at a different parking provider from the one that it had previously resided (hence the reason I use multiple parking providers). Or, if it was at the same provider that I intend to use, then I begin applying different keywords.
For the first couple of weeks I tend to lose money because I play with the keywords until I get them correct. If I am getting stuck and cannot find a better keyword, I will enlist help from others on the domain forums and/or my Domainer friends. My friends can usually help, and if they cannot, I get my account manager at the parking company to help me out. With all of these resources available, there have only been a few times where I was not able to get the revenue above what it was making previously.
The reason people don’t do this often is because they don’t think to do so, or they think it is too much work. With domains you perform the great bulk of the work up front, and everything after that is comparatively smooth sailing. It is worth an extra 30 minutes of your time for your domain to make you extra money consistently.
Domains that have traditionally performed poorly at Sedo.com may perform great at Epik.com. Domains that perform great at Sedo.com may perform badly at DomainSponsor.com.
In light of all of this, there is a possibility that you can find the right keyword or template but still choose the wrong keywords. Conversely, you can find the right template and the right keywords, but the payouts may be bad for that particular domain at certain providers.
The above reasons are why you should try different providers for each of your domains. Every time you switch the domain around you may end up losing a little money, but in the long run you stand to make a WHOLE lot more.