Testing a New Strategy – Domain Parking vs Amazon’s aStore

I few months back I went on a binge of buying a bunch of expiring domain names with Google PR values and inbound links. I parked these domains at Sedo Pro, a great parking site that hosts your site, provides relevant pay per click advertising, and allows you control over the keyword list and look and feel.

Today I was going through my list of “high traffic” domains, those domains in your parked portfolio that are getting the most traffic, and I noticed a few that would make some good shopping sites. I took a look at popshops, and ultimately decided to test out Amazon’s aStore program.

Amazon’s aStore lets me setup a site with any products or category of products from amazon. I have the ability to put in specific products, specitic categories, or items matching specific keywords within a category. It’s pretty cool actually. There are a lot of other options for customizing the colors, links, and sections that are displayed.

After about 5-10 minutes of customization I had created a store, and shortly thereafter, I had 3 stores setup and I 301 redirected the domains to the Amazon stores:

It would be interesting of Amazon actually made a way that you could easily host these stores under the actual domain name instead of having to 301 redirect them or implement them in a frame. I am not sure if being on the astore.amazon.com domain will add any search value.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this type of strategy for domains with traffic, do you think it’s a good way to monetize them? I would think this should do better than the parking pages.

About Adam Viener

Adam Viener is the Chairman & Founder of imwave, inc, a leading performance search engine marketing agency. Imwave focuses primarily on building and launching effective pay-per-click search engine keyword marketing campaigns for companies paying commissions on sales and leads generated. In both 2009, 2010 & 2011 Imwave was recognized as one of the fastest growing privately held companies by Inc. Magazine. Imwave recently announced they had served over 5 Billion ads for their clients!

Adam, a serial internet entrepreneur, founded one of the first commercial internet service providers (ISPs) in 1993. He has a deep understanding of internet technologies and profitable internet marketing tactics. Adam currently sits on the publisher advisory boards for Commission Junction and the Google Affiliate Network.

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Twitter: adamviener
  • http://www.chipseo.com chipseo

    I have tried and currently used both domain parking and the amazon aStore, my results have been neither one work very well. I outlined the godaddy parking account in a recent article post in some detail, total earnings etc, I should do that for aStore as well.

    I think the aStore has it beat by a little bit. Scott

  • http://www.Conceptualist.com Sahar Sarid

    Look means nothing in terms of conversions. Matter of fact, the nicer the look, the more distraction, the less the conversions.
    The only piece of data I would be interested in is conversions. Are you making more with Amazon then domain parking? What are the numbers? and is it scalable? My guess is, from past experiences, it may work on few domains but majority will do bad. That 5-10 minutes of customization work, even if it was working (which isn’t the case), cannot scale well on thousands of domains.
    Sahar Sarid

  • http://www.Drewryonline.net shawn

    Does domain parking mean that you buy a domain and let it sit with no content on the page, except Google ads?

  • http://www.popshops.com Angel Djambazov

    Pardon the shameless self promotion, Adam, but if you are going to try Amazon’s aStore as a monetization tool for your parked domains it would be worthwhile to try PopShops as well. Our functionality is similar to aStore with a better UI and our catalog is over 25 million skus covering 1300 merchants across the big 4 affiliate networks. Might be worth a try.

  • http://www.Drewryonline.net shawn

    Oh ok. Thanks for that Adam. Now, when you parked your GoDaddy domain name and earned cash on that domain parking, did you have to pay extra for that after the purchase of the domain name , or….???:-)

  • http://www.virallinktracker.com/vlt/links/940 Happy

    I would like to know your conversions too. Also how do you do a 301 redirect? I found this posting very interesting. I hope you post again to comment on how it is doing. You might want to check out a great software that is opening its doors again on Dec. 4th. http://portal-feeder-review.com

  • http://www.AureliusTjin.com Aurelius Tjin

    That's interesting! Would love to know the conversion rates for this. Anyone on it?

  • http://www.imwave.com Adam Viener

    There were a bunch of good comments here.

    1. What exactly is domain parking. Great question. When you buy a domain your registrar will automatically start posting ads on that domain and taking PPC revenues from those ads, you get NOTHING, if you want something, you have to sign up for a domain parking site. Most of the top sites DO NOT CHARGE, don't sign up for any that do, they make their money by sharing in the PPC revenues. I have tested A LOT of parking services and I have found Sedo Pro to be the best. If you have a bunch of domains with traffic, shoot me an email at adam(at)imwave.com and I will send you a sedo endorsement code so you can get an account. The parking provider hosts the domain and you get paid for clicks on the ads on the domain. Here is an example: http://www.redmask.org

    2. What are the RESULTS? Everything in this industry is based on results, on Sedo with http://www.gpsonline.net I was making $4.20 RPM, I might have been able to do a bit better than that with some optimization. It's too early to tell how it will do on Amazon. I'll let you know.

    3. Other shop building services. Honestly, I went to popshops first, but the free builder seemed to only let me build individual product lists, and it would have taken too long for me to get something good up and running, after about 5 minutes of playing with Popshops, I left and went to Amazon. I will probably work with popshops on some future tests with their enhanced versions, because I understand I can do more with the non-free version that they will let me test. I'll let you know my results.

    4. How do yo do a 301 Redirect? There are a couple of ways to do a 301 redirect, the easiest is to check with your registrar and ask them if their domain redirect service is a 301 or 302 redirect if it's a 301, you can use that. Moniker offers a 301 redirect, and if you have a bunch of domains you can negotiate rates with them and get free redirection. The other way to do a 301 redirect is to put a .htaccess file in the main directory of your website, and put the following line:

    Redirect 301 / http://astore.amazon.com/gpsonline.net-20

    You can also add some lines to tell it where you want to send your 404 error pages, lines like this:

    ErrorDocument 404 http://www.imwave.com

  • http://www.macewan.org Robert MacEwan

    Have you considered setting up a BANS store yet?

  • http://www.viralandbuzzmarketing.com iLan

    Hello Adam,

    I used to like the AStore service a lot, since I found out about Zlio.com. They provide you with the same kind of service, meaning opening your own store in 3 clicks, but the main differences with aStore, are:
    - you can pick products from hundred merchants ((Apple.com, Buy.com, Barnes&Noble, etc.) instead of only one with Amazon
    - you have an integrated price comparison search engine for your visitors…
    - you can fully customize your shop as much as you want.

    So I would recommend you to try out this service, which I heard is doing good in the US and in Europe!

    Hope it helps!

  • http://www.affiliatecrew.com Chuck Hamrick

    I would think that the few extra minutes it takes to incorporate an HTML datafeed would give you long term SEO benefits. It seems that the Amazon store will erode any Google PR you have pretty quickly. I would rather see a PopShops or AvantLink datafeed site with some optimized meta tags.

  • http://www.usafastshopping.com beckham

    GoDaddy domain name and earned cash on that domain parking

  • http://www.3appraisal.com/domain-blog/age-factor-domain-name-appraisal/ Trevor Trent

    Neither parking nor Astore lets you monetize your domains to the full potential. Content monetizing is still the best way. I do a microsite for each of my domains. I have actually never parked a domain name – don't like the idea of giving away my money to somebody who does nothing.

  • http://www.storebrander.com/ twinky

    There is a way to assign own domain name to Amazon aStore. Look at Storebrander.com. You can get both: benefits from aStore and benefits like parking using custom html templates. Enabling AdSense by several clicks. There is no “someone who does nothing”…