This is in response to a question a fellow Moz community member once asked in Q&A, and we thought that it deserved its own article. Buying up expired domains, or purchasing keyword-driven domains is becoming more popular amongst the internet "get rich quick" crowd. The big question is: Can you make a profit by buying and selling domain names? If you get the right one, sure. If you plan on repeating the process over and over, probably not.
It's ranking high today! What could be the problem? NO. JUST STOP. Unless you know the entire history of a domain, you may be setting yourself up for failure before you begin. SEOs (and business owners) use a variety of tactics to get a site ranking high in search results. For some of these methods, we'll just call them "questionable". These methods could include everything from buying links, overuse of directory submissions (non-industry related), duplicate listings, poor quality backlinks, and guest blog comments.
When the domain drops, the minute it drops, literally, they will try to get it and if you can get it, it’s yours. So, that’s it for expired domains. You can see it’s a little bit complicated and it takes some leg work, but if you’re interested in building a publisher network or a private blog network, this is a great way to find sites that have a great link profile without you having to actually build any links. So, that’s it for this video. I’ll see you in the next one.
ExpiredDomains.net gathers all the information you need to find good Expired Domains that are Pending Delete and you can Backorder. Depending on the domain extension you can search through thousands of domains every day before they get released to the public and pick what you like. ExpiredDomains.net currently supports 449 TLDs. From the classic gTLDs like .com, .net, .org to Droplists for ccTLDs you can only find here and now we even support some of the best new gTLDs like .xyz and .club.
The market-driven principles of the domain trade mean that a domain is only worth as much as the buyer is willing to pay. It is for this reason that criteria such as market potential and usability play such central roles in determining prices. Values can change at the drop of a hat. The price of a domain that was once of little interest to anyone in years past can skyrocket once, for example, a newly founded company takes interest in that same name.

Let’s just say for example we wanted this site, crystalgiftsworld.com. It looked good based on our analysis and we’d head over to Snap Names, Nameja is another one and what these service do is they have special technology on their site that allows them to try  to register a domain on your behalf over and over again. Okay? If you tried to do that your IP would get banned, but they have some system where they know how to do it just enough to get the domain, but not enough to get blacklisted.
A good majority of web developers view the domain flipping industry with disdain as they face a hard time finding the right domain names for their own development projects. Domain flipping is also looked down upon by corporate and business entities who register multiple domains related to their trademarks or business names. Actually, it is these people who’re the real domain name squatters!
Listen to expert domainers on domainsherpa.com. Read anything by Michael Berkens, Frank Schilling, Eliot Silver, Morgan Linton, and Ron Jackson. Watch YouTube videos on domain investing. Read blogs like The Industry News Magazine at DNJournal.com. Search #domains on Twitter. Go to industry conferences. Understand the Google Keyword Planner tool inside and out.
What about option #4 - Redirect your existing domain to the old domain? I bought an old domain that is 100% relevant to my current domain but currently has with very little content. It did have more content fours years ago. The old domain is 13 years old, pr=3, while my current is 7 months old pr=1 and a decent amount of content. The old domain I purchased was not expired though and I do not know if this makes a difference. What are the pros and cons of option #4? Am I correct to think that option #1 would result in no benefit from the old domain's age value and if so why is it not listed as a con, a MAJOR one. Its hard to believe that a 301 using option 1 would give my existing domain 13 years credit but I'll take it if it does.
So, you paste the domain into here and click on the search domains button. This will show you more information about the pending delete status domain. In this case, you have to order by June 13th and today is the 10th. So, you have three days and you just add it to your cart as if you’re just buying anything online. Just check it off and click add to cart. It’s added to your cart and they will try to get it on your behalf.
There is a misconception that good ‘.COM’ domain names are hard to find and so they are more expensive to buy. But once again, this statement holds no water. You can easily check out the ‘.COM’ domain names that are on sale at highly affordable prices. However, the only downside to flipping ‘.COM’ domain names is that you will have to discover them at different places like Flippa.com or private seller portfolios.
There is a misconception that good ‘.COM’ domain names are hard to find and so they are more expensive to buy. But once again, this statement holds no water. You can easily check out the ‘.COM’ domain names that are on sale at highly affordable prices. However, the only downside to flipping ‘.COM’ domain names is that you will have to discover them at different places like Flippa.com or private seller portfolios.
Please keep in mind that domain flipping isn’t child’s play. As much as you may want, it isn’t easy to buy and sell domain names for huge profits without putting in a good amount of time and effort. Although there’s nothing wrong in aspiring for at least one big deal per month, be aware that sometimes it takes months and months to sell just a single domain name.
Official marketplaces offer a third possibility for domain traders to peddle their product. Domain marketplaces, such as Sedo, GoDaddy.com, or BuyDomains.com, connect potential buyers with domain holders hoping to sell their valuable virtual property. These platforms function as a kind of domain real estate agency and are known to sometimes demand high prices for their services.
Wait for people to contact me: When I bought my two domains, I didn’t pay the extra $12 for Domain Privacy, learn about Domain Privacy here, so anyone can look up the owner of IHateCold(.com) and ReallyFunnyJoke(.com) in the ICANN WHOIS Database. It can tell you whoever owns any website unless that domain owner pays for domain privacy. So if someone was really interested in any of my websites, they could look me up and shoot me an email about their interest.
Your course of action really depends on how much work and effort you can put into the expired domain. If you're barely able to maintain and optimize your current site, you probably want to just 301 redirect the old site (note: see my amended comment above about the link value not likely to be passed). If, however, you're more creative and have some time on your hands, you can try your hand at crafting a microsite. If you really know your stuff and are experienced at making money off various websites, you'd probably do well with the third option.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying marketing your domain is not important. But, if you’ve bought a bad domain and you do (and overdo) everything laid out in this section and more, it’s still very unlikely that it would sell. It’s like spending car flipping and spending a huge amount of money, time and effort perfecting a car’s paint job, except that this car’s engine is completely fried. You’ll never be able to drive it anyway, no matter how awesome the paint job is, it’s irrelevant.
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.
Acquiring what you believe may be a valuable domain name is the easiest part of the equation.  Finding the right  buyer is much more difficult. Using auction sites and forums is perhaps the best way to find qualified buyers that are interested in your domain, and using auctions will take some of the stress away from establishing the value of a domain name yourself.
Yes! Selling domain is an emerging trade and no wonder if it can develop into an exchange. www.DomainX.org has been initiated with this view. There are some good ideas in the comments regarding which names to buy and how to grow their value. However one must not forget that it also involves a recurring cost (annual renewal) and keeping many of them might become difficult if you are not really selling at least a few to cover it. Enjoy free listing at DomainX.org.

Control your expectations and keep them based on facts, data and expert opinions. Use a tool like EstiBot to get a general idea of how much the domain may be worth. Do understand that this is an automated appraisal tool, so take those numbers with a grain of salt. However, it’s great to get you started. You can also use paid, human-based appraisal services from Sedo and other providers, but these can get costly. If you’re not careful, you could easily overspend on such services and then realize your domain may not even be worth the appraisal fee.

While buying up a ton of domains seems like a great way to make some extra money, the real world results show that it is very hard to make that process profitable. As with any industry, you will have those "golden moments" when someone you read about made it into a million dollar a year business, all while sitting in the comfort of his own home. That could be true, but he probably consumed a lot of alcohol and lost a lot of hair doing it.
In order to maintain ownership of a domain, you must renew it yearly. If you don’t, it “expires”. An expired domain goes through several stages before being released again for general registration. The process differs slightly from one registrar to another but it’s more or less the same. GoDaddy explains what happens to domains that expire with them here.
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