I have many domain names. So do most other web developers. Some of them serve production sites, others are used for testing and some even get used just as placeholders. There’s even a few I just don’t use.
This domain was registered alongside the .com variant – where I run my main business. I’ve used it for all kinds of things over the space of several years but mostly it’s been a playspace.
I recently re-evaluated it’s use and decided it was a good place for a blog to live.I still use it for a few things but at the moment it’s the place where I keep this personal blog. I’m going to be doing that with a few of my domains and it’s going to result in a shake-up of the services I offer.
Firstly I’ll be taking a look at my hosting site and seeing what I can turn that into that’s more useful. Currently it’s the front-end for my managed hosting service but there has been a slow uptake in the offer and managing a growing cluster of servers, tracking what runs where and rejigging things as necessary has become a pain.
It often takes me more time to keep it running smoothly than I get paid for by the users.
In short – it was an idea I tested and it isn’t viable for 2 reasons. The traffic I send to it isn’t interested in managed hosting – they are technical enough to do that themselves. The pricing point is hard to compete with larger companies that offer ‘shared hosting’ because my target market can’t quite see the difference between shared and managed.
I’ll be shutting up shop on the hosting and using the domain for something different.
Similarly I’ve had another domain that I planned to use as a split testing/conversion optimization service. It never got anywhere because it evolved to the point where 2 server-side services I created for it continued to grow to the point where it would have been an inefficient million lines of code. I vastly underestimated what would be needed to make it work like I pictured so the project – while it’s still been worked on in development – is stagnant till I finish. Eventually this service will exist but it’s a long time off.
Also I’ve tested the water with split testing content on my site and there’s been some interest but not as much as I’d like. That means that to get traffic to the service I’d need to invest a lot more time in research and content creation before I could get enough people who would be interested. That’s time that I don’t currently have considering that my family is about to grow and I’ll have a new baby to look after.
I’m still not sure what I’ll be doing with the repurposed domains but I suspect that I’ll narrow the audience I was targeting and focus purely on the audience I do have traffic from – other web developers like me.