CSC’s Brand Advisory Team is comprised of Marketing, Legal, and IT specialists.  In our domain name related strategies, we highlight 4 best practices for Corporate Domain Name Management.  In a two part blog series, my colleague Quinn Taggart and I will apply our recommendations to a global brand like “eBay” (a non CSC domain name management client).

In this series, will provide best practices on how you can maximize the Return on Investment (ROI) related to your domain portfolio.  Our independent research continues to demonstrate that when done correctly, domain management can be a great driver of qualified traffic at rates that are significantly lower than Paid Search.

Step 1 of CSC’s Corporate Domain Management Plan:

CSC recommend’s Lapsing & re-deploying budget for domains registered in low-risk / low-opportunity extensions and non-core brand strings. In this process, we evaluate a domain portfolio and recommend lapsing domain names in regions where clients don’t have a commercial interest, as well as a low likelihood of infringement based on CSC’s proprietary risk ranking system.  Furthermore, we look at abandoned Trademarks, brand strings that do not correlate to search patterns, or product names that are no longer in existence.

In looking at the “eBay” brand we found that they have registered domain names in lower risk domain name extensions like “e-Bay.name.vn”.  In this instance, “.name.vn” is not the primary commercial extension in Vietnam as “.vn” and “.com.vn” are.  In addition, the likelihood of a consumer navigating via a hyphenated brand string “e-Bay” may be very low as well.  In summary, before making lapsing decisions we highly recommend checking internet traffic to the domain names and working with your TM department to confirm whether they may want to own the variations for Brand/TM Protection reasons.  Again, it’s not possible to own every brand string variation in every domain extension, so CSC recommends focusing on those areas with the greatest risk and opportunity allowing you to maximize your TM Protection efforts while driving Brand Promotion.

Step 2 of CSC’s Corporate Domain Management Plan:

Prior to brand launches, CSC recommends Registering high-risk / maximum-opportunity domains defined as core brand strings in .com and key commercial ccTLDs in countries where clients have a business interest.  Furthermore, we look at reconciling Trademarks and potential popular search terms with an existing domain portfolio in an effort to identify gaps in the current domain name strategy.

In looking at the “eBay” brand we found that “eBay.co” a new Colombian domain extension and a popular .com typo appears available.  Furthermore, a few potential keyword rich domain names such as “Ebay Classico” which gets approximately 30,000+ searches in Google Italy and is growing in search popularity appears available in both the “.it” and “.com” extension.  Also, “eBay Fee” which gets approximately 3,000+ searches in Google and has a Cost Per Click Value of $.62 may be worth a look to capitalize on the potential direct navigation traffic via “EbayFee.com.”  This perhaps may even help eBay solidify its “above the fold” listings in search engines for the “Ebay Fee” search term.  Unfortunately, many eBay related keyword rich domain names in the .com extension have been registered by Third Parties.

In Steps 3 & 4 of CSC’s Corporate Domain Management Plan, Quinn Taggart will highlight how Third Party domain name infringements divert traffic, impact brand recognition and increase paid search budgets.  Furthermore, he will highlight the importance of making sure your domain names point to relevant content.

Vincent D’Angelo
Director Global Brand Advisors, Corporation Service Company

Domain Management Plan – Part 1

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