Only 10% Of All .Guru Domains Have Been Renewed, 1 Month Before Anniversary

donutsOnly 10% of all 70k registered .guru domains have been renewed so far, 1 month before a lot of domains start expiring. As expected EAP renewal rate is higher.

Actually there 78,839 .guru domains today according to but I am using an older zone file so I can compare this report with my previous report done exactly one month ago.

Of course most people wait until the last few days or even after expiration to renew their domain names. And usually auto-renewals start processing at about 30 days before expiration dates so the renewal rates will certainly improve but I don’t think they will reach the 80% predicted by Donuts.

Renewal rate is the amount of domain names that are renewed, for 1 of more years, from the number of domains that are expiring in a certain period of time.

The .Guru New gTLD was one of the first 7 New gTLDs to launch in January 2014 by Donuts. Donuts now has more than 150 active New gTLD strings.

.Guru entered the Early Access Program (EAP) on the 29th of January 2014 and General Availability 1 week after that, February 5. It had some unexpected success and it was the most successful New gTLD in terms of number of registration for a few weeks. It now ranks 7th among all New gTLDs and if you were to take out all the free domains other extensions have offered it would rank higher. Probably second or third.

.Guru was the first ‘generic’ New gTLD to launch and a lot of people bought domains just for fun or because a desirable keyword was available. And .Guru is what some people call a “vanity” or “novelty” extension.

Donuts does not agree but a few people believe that New gTLDs will take a big hit in the first year renewals. Donuts predicted a renewal rate of more than 80%. Last month I said that that 60% will be better than great for .guru. After this report I am down to: a 50% renewal rate will a great result for .guru.

So I picked .guru to run this test as it was one the first to launch, has a lot of registrations and it is both a generic and a novelty New gTLD. I will be following the renewal rate of .guru in the next 2-3 months. This is the second report and it was done 1 month before General Availability domains are expiring: February 5 2015.

The report is using a 20141203 zone file and look ups ran between 3 and 7 of January. The zone file had 77,031 .guru domain names that were registered between February 5 and December 3.

69,274 domains or 89,93% of all .guru domains are expiring in 2015. It was 70,744 domains or 91,84% a month ago. 1470 or less than 2% of .guru domains were renewed in the past month.

Here is when the 10,07% of .guru domains not expiring in 2015 are expiring. I have both the numbers from 2 months before .guru anniversary and 1 month before anniversary:

Expiration: 2month# 2month% 1month# 1month%
2016 4552 5,91% 5817 8,22%
2017 688 0,89% 833 1,18%
2018 77 0,10% 116 0,16%
2019 792 1,03% 793 1,12%
2020 40 0,05% 56  0,08%
2021 5 0,01% 6 0,01%
2022 12 0,02% 12 0,02%
2023 6 0,01% 6 0,01%
2024 117 0,15% 121 0,17%
Renewed: 8,16% 10,07%

So 10,07% of all domains in the zone file have been renewed or were initially bought for more than 1 year. This is important to understand because some of the domains were not actively renewed approaching expiration. They were just purchased in 5 year or 10 year blocks.

10 years is the maximum that someone can renew a domain name. Most of the 792 domains that are expiring in 2019 are probably because some people bought 5-year registration packages. More than 700 of those are registered with Go Daddy that was offering discounts on these packages. In terms of renewals years .guru now has 12,225. (it was at 10,742 years the month before)

Of course the numbers above include domains that are not expiring for many months from now so I ran a separate test to identify renewal rates for different periods of registration/expiry.

It is interesting to see how later and probably more mature registrations compare with EAP or first day registrations that had the initial impulse factor added in. Of course more recent registrations have a lesser keyword quality compared to the first registrations and are also further away from expiration.

Registration Period # of domains Renewed Renewed %
EAP and up to GA (February 5) 13850 1761 12,71%
February 6 up to February 28 26276 1944 7,40%
March 1 up to June 30 23255 2330 10,02%
July 1 up to December 3 13651 1724 12,63%

“Renewed” means that the domains are not expiring in 2015. “Renewed” expiration dates range from 2016 and up to 2024 as explained above.

The table above shows that latter registrations were either purchased for a period of more than 1 year or renewed early.

EAP had about 2,898 domains and 664 (22,91%) of them have been renewed. EAP renewal rate is much higher than the combined EAP/GA renewal rate. That seems logical as buyers paid an extra fee to get these domains. GA day only renewal rate is at just 10,02%.

I will repeat this report on February 5th and a month after that and maybe a month after. What do you think that the renewal rate for .Guru and New gTLDs in general will be?

Here is a poll with over 490 votes so far: “Are You Renewing Your New gTLD Domains?“.


About Konstantinos Zournas

Konstantinos studied Computer Engineering and Computer Science in London and lives in Athens, Greece. He works on domain names, websites and software development. Has been online since 1995 & domaining since 2002.


  1. I saw sell on flippa the other day for $275. This is a category killer keyword POKER, in a popular extension, $275 is 1 years renewal, the seller took a bath with their EAP purchase, and premium renewal, more investors will be slaughtered in this financial sense, and donuts keeps raising funds to bid more millions in contention sets.

  2. .com or nothing !

  3. Are you down with TLD? Hey, you know me!

    I’d guess 26% renewal rate. However, I think the following year it will go down more, and each year after that. Year two 16% and so on.

    It’s when you renew a dog for many dog domains many times you finally say “fu*k it” and drop everything, or almost everything, out of disgust.

    Anybody in this business for a length of time has seen this play out so many times. It even happens when somebody rags a bunch of crappy domains, but look ,.biz,.info, .travel, .jobs, etc. how many people have dropped thousands and thousands of those domains because they miscalculated the strength of those extensions?

    Don’t forget Robert Cline and his failed predictions. He should be a domain case lesson for everyone.

  4. Those renewals were never $100-$500 either, so this has a lot more room for drop %

  5. I’m dropping all of my .guru domains ( a couple dozen ). Even though, I still like a few of them ( and see some type-in traffic ), I see a serious limit for appreciation as it’s more of an individual vs commercial appeal. It was the first gtld and it took a while to work out a strategy ( such as keywor-extension combination, number of search hits ( for the combination ), other extensions taken etc ) and most of my .guru does not fit the strategy anymore – gone. .center & .tips renewal is higher because I was more selective by then ( vs. just hitting keywords ), but overall I’ll be at 30% renewal for gtlds. Did you have/are you renewing your .gurus/gtlds?

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