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Ethereum Name Service Sales Surge Ahead of Merge

2 mins
Updated by Geraint Price
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In Brief

  • Sales of Ethereum Name Service domains have been surging recently, in anticipation of the upcoming Merge next week.
  • ENS trading volume has topped the 24-hour chart, according to DappRadar, as well as the seven-day chart, according to OpenSea.
  • The spike in resale volume suggests sellers are cashing in, while buyers expect to flip domains at a markup after the Merge.
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The Ethereum Name Service (ENS) has been hotly trending recently, just ahead of Ethereum’s Merge upgrade anticipated sometime next week.

With $2.44 million in trading volume over the past 24 hours, ENS is currently No.1 among the top non-fungible token collections, according to DappRadar.

The crypto data portal also revealed that the number of traders had increased 45% over the past day, while the number of sales had risen 67%. ENS even managed to top the trending Bored Ape Yacht Club, which recently hit a new all-time high in value. 

Source: CryptoSlam

Additionally, ENS topped the seven-day volume charts for NFT collections on OpenSea, the largest NFT marketplace, also coming just ahead of BAYC.

Meanwhile, data from NonFungible also revealed surging sales over the past week, peaking at $1,896 million in sales volume yesterday. The fast-approaching Merge upgrade for Ethereum scheduled next week has had a particularly marked effect on secondary sales, which have skyrocketed 137%.

Source: NonFungible

ENS domains

ENS is an open, distributed, and extensible naming system that interacts directly with the Ethereum blockchain, and works similarly to the domain name system (DNS) we use in web browsers.

Like DNS, ENS maps human-readable addresses such as “name.eth,” to a machine-readable address, such as a lengthy hexadecimal string. These personalized addresses facilitate users in managing their cryptocurrency funds and assets by providing a human-friendly interface. 

After registrations for ENS domain names reached a record number earlier this year in May, they proceeded to climb another 200% by July. With the jump in secondary sales ahead of the Merge, sellers are hoping to cash in on the hype, while buyers could be looking to later flip, expecting big price bumps in the wake of the upgrade.

Buterin tweets

Ethereum co-founder Vikatik Buterin even weighed in on the trend, asking his followers on Twitter about the fair price of domain ownership. “What is a fair price that someone should have to pay to register and unconditionally guarantee ownership of a 5-letter .eth domain for 100 years?” the poll asked

By the poll’s end, nearly half had voted that under $100 would be the most fair, which seemed to strike Buterin as somewhat uneconomic. “OK wow, half of yall literally think that someone should be able to lock down every five-letter word in the Scrabble dictionary (which includes exotic stuff like “ZORIL”) for a hundred years for less than the price of four lambos,” he responded.

Next week, the Ethereum blockchain is expected to transition to a proof-of-stake based system, known as the Merge. While announcing the penultimate step of the process, the Bellatrix update taking place today, Buterin reconfirmed the prospective dates for the final step of the update.

Some experts expect the price of Ethereum to rise following the Merge, though others have warned of risks.

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Nicholas Pongratz
Nick is a data scientist who teaches economics and communication in Budapest, Hungary, where he received a BA in Political Science and Economics and an MSc in Business Analytics from CEU. He has been writing about cryptocurrency and blockchain technology since 2018, and is intrigued by its potential economic and political usage.
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