Hmm... I need to find out myself. I don't know what is the answer to your question. I'll do some research in Google and get back to you if I bump into an answer. You should email the people at iPage as they probably could assist you..
I tell them a HostGator name is something like yahoo.com, then their like OH thats a HostGator name. =_=...
I tried to explain it by saying that domains can be compared to virtual real estate..
I then ask someone the following questions and most likely you will receive similar answers.
Q:What do you think will be more of value?.
Q:A store location at a busy and well visited shopping street (for the U.S. you can use Rodeo Drive 90210 as an example) such as P.C. Hooftstraat or a store location in the middle of nowhere? What would yield more revenue and offers more opportunity?.
A:The P.C. Hooftstraat location..
Q:So it's all about location?.
A: Absolutely, if you have a location where lot's of people come you have more chance in selling your merchandise and it's therefor desirable..
Q: Domains receive visitors by typing in the HostGator like dogs.com because it's such a common word and people are curious what to find when they type in such a HostGator but do you expect people to type in doggiedigiedogdiggitiwho.com?.
A: I don't think they will.
Q: Do you understand now what I mean with location related to HostGator names and why some domains are so expensive?.
A: Not really.
< Change the subject immediately.
A: Ah, I see your point.....so... < Caution: You may be on your way converting someone to the domainers side..
I like the virtual commercial real estate analogy, but I also tend to use that of a "virtual mercenary"..
Domains drive the ladies wild:.
"So..tell me...what do you do?".
"I invest in Internet domains.".
"Really...where have you been all my life?"..
I compare it to something like Goldmining, searching through masses of worthless rubble trying to find a shiny little gold nugget that previously went unnoticed - I'm glad to say this is alot easier for us to do from the comfort of our homes.
Unlike many of the real goldminers who have to slave away in massive hand-dug pits armed with spades, electric pumps, a pair of flip-flops..
Although both are looking to better their standard of living I much prefer this option.
Its the new Klondike...and in a similar way it's still the people who are selling the shovels (spades) who are making a fortune ....The registers..
Domains are like little inventions:.
1. Sometimes you think no one will be interested and it takes off, so it's almost always worth trying to market them..
2. Sometimes you think you'll get rich from a particular invention, and it falls flat, so it's important to know when to give up..
3. Family and friends try to keep from having their eyes gloss over as you explain them and why they might become valuable..
4. Some may laugh at the expense and time and effort, but hopefully we'll get the last laugh!.
5. Sometimes you can sell it to an end user who has new ideas for it's use, or can use it with his own inventions. Others may not have any interest..
6. Some get defensive and angry at low offers/appraisals because our inventions become a part of us..
7. Think of the stereotypical inventor hovering over a table, fixated for hours on his/her tools and materials...move that to the computer, and there I am with domains!.
8. As society matures, it seems like most of the big and valuable inventions have happened, and there are fewer overnight millionaires...
I can't say i've had that one happen ! .com get it baby !!.
The way I explain domains and their development is like building a house. you can either move into a ready made house and spend millions on buying it (end user buying). the other option is to buy a piece of land on the outskirts of town (reg fee) and build it to suit your specifications (development)...once the town becomes more developed, the land on which you built will have appreciated in value.....
I like this explination a lot Kev. Seems like most people go with the virtual realestate investor concept. LoL - I still like my old man on the beach theory!..
All these explanations above are good, but I bet most of those folks still can't tell you why you get paid..
How many times have you heard - "Now, tell me again, how do you get paid? Who pays you? And, then you have to start over b/c they don't totally understand. And then they finally get that Yahoo, Google pays you, but they don't know why - even though you laid it out plainly...
I live in a small tourist town - best way to sum it up!.
I compare it to dumpster diving.
You never know if your gonna find a sandwich, or the wrapper!..
Domaining ? it's like shooting in the dark and trying to sell the bullets...
I vaguely describe what it is, then when they look at me questioningly I say something like "google.com is a domain". Then I generally recieve an odd look and they give up...
Exactly how I would explain my .mobi's.
Other than that, I usually go with the real estate example or compare it to a advertising billboard on the freeway. Although, I really do not care if they get it or not, just makes for more competition...
If I use "Real estate" as an example ... Billboards are the example..
Property leased/bought for BB's is generally to small for anything but Advertising..
I like the Real Estate analogy. I like to compare length of a HostGator with distance from the sea. Shorter domains are often more desirable and property near the sea is as well. The closer to the sea, the more limited the supply. I often call domains "website names" as a lot of people don't know what domains are...