The Real Costs of Listing Domains article discrepancies

I’ve just read your new post:

There are some discrepancies:
Squadhelp commission rates vary from 35% to 15% depending upon the selling price of the domain name.
Many of my domains look like this…
So that 35% needs to change to 37%.

The Listing Fee per domain is a made up figure. Using your figures…

SH - If I buy 100 domains at $9 and SH accepts 20 of them, then I’ve paid $900 to get 20 approved.

Elsewhere - If I submit 100 domains at $1 and get 20 accepted, I buy them at $9 (x 20 = $180 + $100 submission), then I’ve paid $280 to get 20 approved.

(actually this also highlights why a $1 submission fee for domains we’d like to register ourselves for SH would be beneficial to both SH and the seller).

So if we update the figures in your examples to the correct figures, then you’ve highlighted that we are better off elsewhere.

This also doesn’t take into account that a $2,000 sale at SH could be a $300 contest win and $1,700 balance, meaning 10% of the contest fee will be deducted, but we could probably overlook that.


I got replied like this after ask via blue button.

For domains where you indicated or chose that you’re open to registering it yourself, SH still decides whether to register the domain, or to approve it as a creative owned domain. if the domain is approved as a creative owned domain, your commission approval email will indicate that information.

I never really get the opportunity to register by myself if domain approved.

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Thanks for the feedback. One of the things that we have been working on over the last several months is simplifying our commission structure.

We no longer offer more than 35% SH commission for any creative owned names that we approve in our Marketplace. While we’ve accepted names in the past with a higher SH commission, this is no longer the case for any submissions. If you submit any seller owned domains to SH Marketplace, we will only accept the name if we can approve it for 35% (or lower SH commission).

This article is meant to be for Domain Investors who already own an inventory of names and are comparing the costs involved in listing those names in different marketplaces. In that scenario, the analysis presented in the article is accurate - however as stated in the article, we recommend everyone to incorporate their own assumptions based upon the costs they are able to achieve with other Marketplaces.

You also have the ability to submit unregistered domains at SH at no cost. While there is currently no guarantee that the name might be approved as a seller owned domain or SH owned domain, you can greatly increase the chances of it getting approved as a seller owned domain by selecting the highest commission level for creative owned domain option. Even if the name gets approved as creative owned domain, you have the final control on whether or not to list the name.

In the next few days, we will be announcing additional changes regarding unregistered domains and how you can submit them as creative owned domains - this will make the comparison even more appealing to creatives.

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So what about those of us that were early adopters? We jumped in and supported SH to the maximum but we get hammered with the highest commission for supporting you?

Now you drop the commission to bring in more domain sellers. How is that far to those of us that have been loyal to SH? We should have had benefits for being supportive, not disadvantaged for it. Please consider aligning our existing domain commissions to at least be in line with (if not better) than newbies.

I’m sure plenty of people will jump in about submitting unregistered domains to buy ourselves. We all have issues with it. I’ve stopped trying.

I don’t mean to be crabby at you @grant, please don’t take it personally, but you can understand our frustrations surely?

I look forward to seeing the additional changes regarding submitting creative owned domains :sunny:



@Grant Good to hear about the additional changes you guys are planning regarding unregistered domains. Looking forward to hearing all about it.

@ablebrands is definitely correct though. We early adopters of the marketplace got the short end of the stick, especially during the period of time when SH dropped the commissions considerably before listening to our pleas and raising them to a reasonable amount. I too hope SH can adjust those past commissions so they would be fair.

Regarding the submissions of unregistered domains- if I indicate that I want to have the option to own an unregistered domain while submitting it, there’s a problem. The price the domain can have (if SH decides to accept it and let the creative register it) is often lower than a domain that was already registered and submitted via the ‘owned domain’ option where the seller can state the price they want instead of being limited to choosing one of a few fixed possible prices. I think you guys need to look into that and possibly allow users to submit the prices they want via the unregistered option (unless that’s the change you’re already planning on making).

Thanks for the consideration.


I think it’s great that SH has created a page that attempts to help domain owners evaluate and compare domain marketplaces and to see some of the advantages that SH offers over other choices. Explaining and comparing commissions is very helpful I think. But naturally each marketplace that publishes these kinds of comparisons does so with their own bias :slight_smile: My advice is to be careful, it’s better to under promise and over deliver than to try to fool people and risk resentment. Domainers are very savvy and they see where things might be skewed or left out as Able Brands has mentioned.

For example another factor that domainers will consider is that prices for domains sold at SH are significantly lower than other marketplaces. So you have to have more sales to make the same income. This is less the case now as average prices have risen from $899 to around $1299 or so now. But $1299 is still a far cry from average listing prices at other marketplaces.

I’m not complaining, just letting you know how domainers think.

The bright spot for SH is that it has what is likely the best sell thru rate of any marketplace and this can make up for other deficiencies. Hopefully domainers will realize that. I also hope that SH will be able to keep a high sell through rate and not experience the decline other marketplaces have experienced as they expand their inventory.

Lastly, I want to echo comments from others that:

  1. Early adopters should get the same commission as newer people or submissions. Please reward us rather than penalize our early alliance with your platform.

  2. I echo the frustration others have expressed with the Unregistered Domain submissions. I always indicate I’m ready to buy - if approved - but only about 15% of my approved names give me the option to buy them. Having SH register the domain doesn’t work for me and I continue to reject all accepted domains that SH won’t let me buy. I hope this system can be fixed soon.

Thanks for all your great work. SH is, for sure, a remarkable brandable marketplace and I look forward to many future successes together!



p.s. I’ll just add that the improvements you’ve been making have been awesome and the constant receptiveness to feedback and making adjustments based on feedback is extremely helpful so thanks for listening and continuing to improve!


Thanks for everyone’s feedback. We have infact taken a conservative view in presenting the different scenarios in this article. Even though our 12 month sell through rate is currently more than 20%, we have used 5% as expected sell through for most examples, and 10% in one example. We could have used our current sell through rates to make the distinction even stronger, but we have chosen a much more conservative number in the analysis. As the Marketplace grows, it is certainly possible that the sell through rates may decline a bit.

The main point of this article is to convey that SH can actually get more revenue by implementing the exact same commission rates and appraisal/listing fees charged by other Marketplaces however we have aligned our commission structures directly with the success of our sellers. We do not want any revenue if we are unable to sell your names. If someone just evaluates the commission rate without accounting for other fees, it can lead to a flawed comparison.

We always value those in our community who have been with us, and any changes we make are in order to continue to improve our platform for everyone. Unfortunately, we are unable to revisit the past commission rates. While in some cases, you may have been offered a 2-3% higher SH commission than the current levels, we hope you also recognize that the early adopters of Marketplace have been able to achieve a fairly high marketing exposure and sell through rates (on average) on their names (since there wasn’t much competition when those names were approved).

Similarly, in the case of SH registered domains, the commissions offered initially used to be a bit greater than what we currently offer. Initially, for many domains, the creative commission for unregistered domains was as high as 40% (or 36% after withdrawal fees). However at this stage, it is extremely unlikely that a new domainer would receive such a commission for a SH registered domain. Therefore, it works both ways.

We will continue to look for more ways to make the Marketplace even more beneficial for our entire community. Regarding the unregistered domains, we expect to announce some changes in the next few days.


@grant You have a point about the benefits of being an early adopter. I hadn’t thought of that. I guess it sort of balances out in a way (though it’s not always a 2-3% difference. To my recollection, if we’re talking about SH owned names- almost all approved domains were approved at a 25% commission, pre-withdrawal fee, for creatives for awhile). Either way… looking forward to the announcement about unregistered domains.

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What if we choose to pay the renewal fee for some of domains or few of it? is it possible to increase the commission to 40% for SH owned domains? thank you.


When you pay the renewal fee for a Squadhelp Owned domain the commission rate stays the same. The other two options are (1) for Squadhelp to pay the renewal fee and the commission to be reduced, as per the offer shown in your account or (2) for the domain not to be renewed.

oo ic … ok Thank you @grant and Squadhelp team.

I tried to submit and choosed option to register domain by myself, but zero result, never get chance to register by myself, meanwhile if i register first, then many of them got rejected sigh, this make the upfront cost higher and higher. :anguished:

:tired_face: feel really bleh. Just unfortunate situation for creatives.