Buying and selling domain names is an exciting adventure that for some seems to conjure up images of finding hidden pirate treasure or guessing the winning combination on the next Powerball. Stories abound of domains that were purchased for $8 dollars 15 years ago being sold today for millions. Of course, that leads the more adventurous of us to wonder, “How can I do that?”

One of the best ways to obtain a valuable domain that is already search engine optimized is to purchase existing domains via auction sites.  This strategy can be beneficial mainly in two ways.  Firstly, any domain that has already been purchased was probably already researched for potential benefits.  Secondly and more importantly, the second benefit is that many recently expired domains still retain some of the search engine optimization attributes that were built up by the previous owner. For example, a recently expired domain name may still have active backlinks on the web, and the page rank of the domain could still be high, giving the purchaser instant SEO gratification with minimal effort.
Before you park any domain names, you must focus on finding hot keywords that buyers would be interested in. The best way to make sure you get a good return on your investment is to pick a domain name with acceptable traffic, somewhere around 10,000 searches a month. You can do this conveniently by using tools like Google Keyword Planner or Niche Finder Software.

Know your rights under the Anti-cyber squatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA). This is the main federal law that deals with domain name trademark disputes. These distinctions are still a legal gray area, and being able to make these claims is no guarantee you will win a case. You should consult with a copyright lawyer to help determine the validity of your defense. If you are accused of cybersquatting, you may be able to keep your domain if you can make any of the following defenses in court:
There are many different ways to make money in the Domain Name game, but rather than skim over half a dozen of them at no great depth, Buffet takes a detailed look at Domain Flipping, one of the simplist and most effective ways to make money online. He lays out a step by step plan to guide you through the process, as well as a list of free resources that are invaluable.
When you are selling a domain name, you don’t want to suffer because of failed transactions or being tricked by defaulters. Safeguard your monetary dealings; the best way to do this is to take the help of a secure domain transfer and escrow service. The escrow system is highly beneficial because a buyer has to deposit money at the trusted source prior to purchase, and the dealing between a buyer and a seller takes place through a secure domain transfer and escrow service. This makes the transaction safer for both parties with the involvement of a neutral third party.
Finally, you want to head over to domaintools.com. Then put the domain into here. What this will do is it’ll show you the history of the domain, because a lot of times these domains have been dropped like four or five times and a lot of people in SEO feel this way. I’m not sure about it. If a domain has been dropped several times, then Google does actually devalue the links pointing to that domain. So, as you can see I just changed registrars a few times and it hasn’t been dropped or else it’ll say one drops or two drops.

There is a common misconception that domains expire on their expiration date. If a domain registration is not renewed by its expiration date, the domain simply goes into "expired" status, which means all services are shut off. Typically, we provide a 35-day grace period during which the current holder can still renew it for the standard renewal fee. For more information please review our domain deletion policy.
Prospective buyers can contact domain holders directly in cases where the desired domain is no longer available. Most registries openly publish the names and contact data of domain holders. Once this information is gained, buyers can get in touch with domain holders and make them an offer for the name. Sales are also known to occur even when the original domain owner may necessarily have never had any prior commercial ambitions

Joe Styler serves as product manager for the aftermarket at GoDaddy. He’s responsible for marketplace products including any purchase, sale, or monetization of a domain name. During his nine-year tenure at GoDaddy Joe has served in a variety of directorial and supervisory roles. His passion is seeing his customers become successful in their business goals when using the aftermarket. He has been interested helping people with transactions on the Internet for more than 20 years. Joe received his B.A. from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, and his Masters in Divinity from Gordon Conwell in Massachusetts.


If you buy keyword specific domains, you're really buying the type in traffic.  I use the URL builder and redirect through that URL so you can see how much traffic your getting from the keyword domain.  There seems to be no rythme or reason to what keyword domains deliver traffic and what don't.  By tracking traffic with the Google URL builder you get a feel for what names are giving you traffic and which are not. ie. the plural, the singular, two words, three words, the possessive, etc.
So how do you develop that instinct? NameBio maintains a database of over 500,000 historical domain sales (as of writing this post). They have interesting filtering features by which you can narrow down domains by price range, date sold, keywords and more. Simply sifting through the listings on NameBio long enough will quickly develop your domain appraisal “instinct”.
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