Minding the Neighborhood

It recently came to our attention that a nearby domain was offering content aimed at a different group of users than our audience at EpicGem.

While we hope that EpicGem (note the lack of an ‘s’ in our name) empowers users of all stripes – young and old – to create and share memorable content, epicgems.com (with an ‘s’) was serving users interested in photos of a decidedly mature nature.

It was easy to recognize that the potential for our users to land on a site so different – and yet so nearby (in terms of naming) – was not acceptable.  But what to do about it?

Two solutions readily presented themselves.  The first, wholly in our control, would have been to simply move.  We are early in development, so renaming and rebranding would have been sub-optimal but certainly not insurmountable.

The second approach – easier but not entirely at our discretion – would be to somehow change our neighbor.    Fortunately, after a bit of research, we determined that the owner of epicgems.com (with an ‘s’) was open to selling the domain.  We used sedo.com, an online domain broker, as an intermediary and successfully completed the domain transfer within about 12 days of starting the process.  Now visitors to either site end up on our original website – epicgem.com (no ‘s’).

So, though it initially seemed a big issue to be managed, we were able to resolve the situation (relatively) painlessly.

Is there a lesson here? Probably quite a few.  A key one – know your neighbors.  Also, don’t overlook the easiest solutions, even when facing large issues.

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