Crypto Domain Name Sales Are Spiking
A crypto land grab is on the way, but this time it’s not a cute JPEG of an expensive monkey, a Shiba Inu-themed meme coin, or a virtual estate in the Metaverse. In a way, this boom in speculation is what Internet entrepreneurs have been doing for decades: buying domain names to make money.
This type of domain name ends in .eth instead of .com or .org. Managed by the Ethereum Name Service (ENS), the .eth domains serve as public profiles showcasing individual transactions and holdings on the Ethereum blockchain. If you’ve used Twitter, you’ve seen them in user profiles focused on cryptocurrencies.
Typing the .eth domain into a web browser will not reveal your account, but typing it in the Etherscan database or third-party sites such as Blockchair will reveal your assets and transactions, including non-fungible tokens (NFTs). increase.
Once an .ENS domain is registered, it can be sold on secondary markets such as OpenSea, as it is itself an NFT.
The price of Ether, the native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum blockchain, has halved from its November 2021 peak of around $4,500. So why are ENS sales growing?
ENS domain name sales are surging
The number of ENS subscribers has been growing since its launch in 2017, and will grow exponentially in 2022. In July, ENS reported record numbers. 378,804 .eth domain names were registered, 25,000 names were renewed, and net profit was approximately $3.9 million.
New .ETH domain registrations
In the past 30 days, ENS was the 9th most popular Ethereum-based NFT collection on OpenSea, the largest peer-to-peer NFT marketplace, with around $9.5 million in transaction volume during that time. ENS sells a single domain and, like all NFT creators, receives a portion of secondary sales on platforms such as OpenSea.
Ethereum Name Service net income
But ENS is not a multi-hundred-thousand-dollar NFT collection like CryptoPunks or Bored Ape Yacht Club. ENS has no restrictions on .eth domain names, but only some of them are of great value.
Personal websites for web3
For many people interested in cryptocurrencies, buying an ENS domain is like buying a personal website. If you own scottnover.com which represents you on web2, why not also buy scottnover.eth for crypto-focused web3?
At Rally, an online auction house that buys and sells fractional shares of collectibles such as baseball cards and NFTs, co-founder Rob Petrozzo says many of his colleagues have changed their company Slack workspace handles to their personal ENS domains.
Then large brands started registering or buying their ENS domains on the secondary market, he said. “In the last 24 hours, nike.eth just sold for $60,000,” he said when we spoke in July. “Chanel.eth and hermes.eth, which are owned by private buyers, both got bids in the last 24 hours of, I think, $50,000 to $60,000.”
However, some of the most valuable ENS domains were three-digit domains such as 123.eth and 456.eth. The cheapest 3-digit ENS domain listed on OpenSea currently sells for around $38,000. Nick Johnson, founder and lead developer of ENS said that many of his ENS sales, both new registrations and secondary, are in online social clubs for owners of 3- or 4-digit ENS domains. He said it was driven by an interest in a certain 999 Club or 10k Club.
Rally also recently got in on the action and posted 105.eth on the platform. Petrozzo said the stock-divided offering sold out in 10 minutes.
What’s the point of an ENS domain?
ENS domains are both very private and very public. This may be a pseudonym (a way of identifying yourself in cryptocurrency trading) or your real name.
It also displays the person’s ledger of assets and transactions. This is a daunting concept in traditional banking and finance. But in the end, despite widespread speculation, they show that his ENS domain has a function that gets to the heart of how people present themselves on the so-called Web3.
“What’s interesting is that the person behind this domain name can actually use other domain names when interacting in other environments,” said Al Morris, the founder of the decentralized publishing protocol Koii Network. “So he could probably use one for a consulting job or another business. We can actually see someone wanting to use 10 of those domains. Each domain is designed to preserve his or her underlying identity.”