February 24, 2016 (Wed)
Dog and ccTLD
Today's news is about dog. Dog.cc was sold for low 6 figures CNY and so I naturally asked myself: why? How could a domain name on a minor extension sell for such a good price?
Well, what I've been seeing lately is that Chinese speculators are expanding their domain investment from traditional extensions of .com and .cn to other extensions -- and ccTLDs are the most attractive ones.
ccTLDs have only two characters in their extensions, which aligns well with speculators' preference for short names. That's why short numbers/letters + ccTLD is a good recipe for popularity.
Another thing we can learn from this news is that English words are acceptable in China, as long as they are simple and commonly known -- and 'dog' is obviously one of them.
The domain name is actually very versatile. Dog business is a big money business in China, so you can use the domain name to develop a pet or vet site. You can also use it in areas completely unrelated to this animal, such as ecommerce and even game sites.
Examples of businesses operating on animal-named site are TianMao.com (天猫 or heavenly cat) shopping mall, and Airbnb-like short-term rental service XiaoZhu.com(小猪 or piglet).