Investing in 4 letter domains in 2017

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2016 was a banner year for 4 letter .com domain names and was a major turning point in the domain industry.  When Chinese investors started to invest in domain names the value of short domains <= 4 letters quickly rose sending shockwaves through the domaining world.  Although China does not have an alphabet, they do follow what is called Hinyu Pinyin, an alternative writing method to the Chinese language which is made up of symbols.  Pinyin is the official system to transcribe Mandarin Chinese sounds into the Roman alphabet.  The following Pinyin chart is a great reference for creating pinyin domains.

 Pinyin Words

To simplify the chart above, the following list summarizes the most popular Pinyin words.  Although most of these are longer in length than 4 characters, it gives good insight into what 4 letter domains as acronyms may mean to Chinese buyers.  To translate the below Pinyin words to English you can use the Pinyin Dictionary.

ai gen kuo zeng ju wai zuo shun
an hai lie zhai ku wan bang shuo
ba han lin zhan lo wei beng song
ca hao liu zhao lu xia cang suan
ce hei lou zhei lv xie chai tiao
da hen lue zhen mi xin dang ting
de jia lun bian mo yan deng tong
di jie luo biao mu yao dian tuan
ei jin mie bing nu yin fang weng
en kai min chou nv zai gang xing
fa kan miu chua ou zan geng xuan
ge kao mou chui po zao gong yong
he kei nie chun pu zei hang yuan
ji ken nin chuo qu zen heng zhou
ka lai niu cong ru zha jian zhua
ke lan nou cuan si zhe jiao zhui
la lao nue diao su zhi kang zhun
le lei nun ding tu ang keng zhuo
li lia nuo dong wo bie kong zong
na mai pie duan wu bin lang zuan
ne man pin feng xu chu lian chang
pa mao pou fiao yo cou liao cheng
pi mei qiu guai yu cui mang jiang
qi men que guan zi cun meng liang
re nai qun hong zu cuo nang niang
ri nan rou huai bai die neng qiang
sa nao rui huan ban diu nian shang
se nei run jing bao dou pang sheng
ta nen ruo juan bei dui peng xiang
te pai shu kuai ben dun qian zhang
ti pan sou kuan cai duo qiao zheng
wa pao sui ling can eng rang chong
xi pei sun long cao fou reng chuang
ya pen suo luan cen gou rong guang
ye qia tie mian cha gua sang huang
yi qie tou miao che gui seng jiong
za qin tui ming chi gun shai kuang
ze ran tun niao dai guo shan qiong
ao rao tuo ning dan hou shao shuai
bi ren wen nong dao hua shei shuan
bo sai xiu nuan dei hui shen shuang
bu san xue pian den hun tang xiong
ci sao xun piao dia huo teng zhong
cu sen you ping fan jiu tian zhuai
du sha yue qing fei jue wang zhuan
er she yun quan fen jun xian zhuang
fo shi zhu ruan gai kou xiao  
fu tai zou shou gan kua yang  
gu tan zui shua gao kui ying  
hu tao zun shui gei kun zang  

Chinese Premium 4 Letter domains

As you can see from the list of Pinyin words above, the majority of the pinyin dictionary is comprised of words that do not begin with AEIOU OR V, for this reason 4 letter domain names that do not contain Vowels or the letter V are higher in value than 4 letter domains containing AEIOU or V and are considered to be premium domains.  At the time I write this the average value of Chinese premium 4 letter .com domains is $1,900 usd.

To check Reported Sales of premium 4 Letter .com domains you can visit LLLLsales.com and use the filters to show only “Chinese Premium” domains.

Quad Premium LLLL.com

Unlike Chinese premium LLLL.com domains you can also invest in Quad premium domains, which are considered premium in the English language.  There are 21 consonants (B, C, D, F, G, H, J, K, L, M, N, P, Q, R, S, T, V, W, X, Y and Z) and 5 vowels (A, E, I, O and U) in the English dictionary.  Quad premium domains are comprised of the following premium letters (B, C, D, F, G, H, L, M, N, P, R, S and T).  These letters appear more frequently in the English language.  The remaining letters are considered non-premium J, K, Q, V, W, X, Y and Z. At the time I write this the average value of premium 4 letter .com domains is $500 usd.

Standard LLLL.com domains

With the sudden rise in the values of both Chinese premium domains and Quad premium domains, the value of standard non-premium has also risen.  Early in 2015 standard 4 letter .com domains could be acquired for as little as $25, Today the minimum sales price of 4 letter .com domains has risen to $305 usd.

Buying 4 letter .com domains

There are always numerous expiring domain auctions running for 4 letter .com domains.  I use the following marketplaces to bid on and buy 4 letter .com domains.

GODADDY AUCTIONS

NAMEJET

PHEENIX

DYNADOT EXPIRED AUCTIONS

Feel free to share which marketplaces you like to use below

You can also hit the forums and post a domain request thread and let the sellers come to you.  Though this is a great way to get names, it is unlikely you will get a good deal, after all you are buying the names from other domain investors and they likely paid a hefty ransom for the domain in the first place.

Here are some domain forums I have joined

Namepros

DomainState

DigitalPoint

Warrior Forum

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