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Epik Network Versus Parking Domains

November 23, 2009

I’m always on the lookout for new and better ways to utilize the domains I have on lay-away (that is, either waiting to be developed or sold.) I consider parking to be under-utilizing.

I recently came across Rob Monster’s Epik Network. Epik Network endeavors to provide domain owners with an alternative platform to traditional domain parking services, wherein domains are filled with a much more robust site layout that features multiple pages and content types (think text, video, pics, etc.)

I hesitate to call it development, since I’m well aware of the bad rap of the mini-site amongst so many domainers, and yes, full scale development is the way to go, however Epik’s service costs nothing. That is much different than shilling out $99 – $299/domain for the standard mini-site.

Epik requires no more work than domain parking (Simply upload a list of names, change your DNS and presto) yet the potential upside is considerably more promising.

As a step up from domain parking, consider that:

  • Adding content to your domain opens up the possibilities of getting indexed and building rank in search engines, meaning the potential to build organic traffic as well as direct navigation, and thereby improving the domains resale value.
  • Unlike with parking services wherein backlink building is against the TOS, a key premise of Epik Network is that your domain will be linked to from other domains on the network with relevant content to your own (and vice versa of course). While I’m on this point, if you’d like to see examples of an Epik site-build, check out PrefabricatedHomes.info and PaganIsland.com
  • Having some semblance of a website on your domain as opposed to a straight parked page full of ads helps give your domain a sense of tangibility to potential buyers.
  • Epik provides an in-house auction platform for selling domains on the Epik Network, thus adding an additional outlet to sell your domain

Epik Network over domain parkingEven if you find all of the above-mentioned advantages weren’t enough to wet your whistle, there’s another reason I find Epik > parking

With Epik, you know up front that you’re getting a 50/50 chop on the revenue generated from your domain. What percent are the parking companies giving you? No one knows!

My longstanding criticism with parking services is that there is no transparency about what you’re earning. Is it 30% of pay-per-click? 20%? 15%? I’ve never once suspected it to be a full 50%.

Furthermore, with parking revenues noticeably down in the last year how do I know they’ve not lowered my margin to help cover their own earnings? The point is you just don’t know.

Moreover, I suspect that ads on Epik should pull more click-through than parked pages due to the presence of content.

If I were Monster I would want to develop a study to measure the CTR of a domain on Epik vs. the CTR of the same domain parked with a domain parking service. I suspect that Epik’s CTR will be higher, and this would make for a great white-paper to be distributed throughout Domainerville:

Higher CTR + Higher Revenue Share = Mo’ Money

… Or something to that effect.

Please note this is not a paid advertisement, I’m only stating some of the reasons why so far I believe that Epik’s service outweighs domain parking given the equal level of effortlessness involved.

After having just signed up and gotten some domains on board I do however have some questions and concerns, but for now I’m going to wait to share those in another post.

Update: read the followup post here.

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