I've seen some people comment about losing the link value of domains that have expired and picked up, but what about non-expired domains?  Let's say a competitor is going out of business and they still have a year or two left, and we buy their domain and site.  Is there a risk changing registrant info and registrars, even if I keep their site up and mostly the same as before?  I was under the impression that I'd want to keep it under their name so as not to hit the uber-reset button on the domain's inbound link value.
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.
As .COM is the natural domain extension for the United States based websites, it does get some priority in the Google.com’s search engine results (based on Google’s US datacenters) when competing against other countries’ domain extensions like .CO.UK, .CO.ZA, .COM.AU etc. However, .COMs don’t get automatic priority over other similar extensions like .ORG, .NET etc. that are also commonly used in the United States. All these domain extensions compete with .COMs on a level playing field.

Thanks for the great review on domain flipping. I could definitely see myself getting into domain flipping down the road. I constantly find myself thinking of domains that are probably worth buying. But the way you have presented and analyzed which keywords get the most page views makes it more like long term investing. I also never considered trying to market the domain names or that Adsense money could be generated. Thanks for sharing and good luck with your domains!

As mentioned earlier, knowing the potential value of a domain name is an invaluable skill. By adhering to basic guidelines such as those I listed above and through some of your own research, you’ll be able to pick names that offer you a higher chance of flipping them more easily. Remember, a net profit of $100 is still a profit, you must start somewhere.
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.
Buying domains or registering domains–what’s the difference? There are many ways to acquire a domain. While available domains can be registered with any domain provider, rights of use from already-registered domains have to be purchased from their current owners. You can find different market places and auction platforms online that are tailored to these purposes. This kind of domain trade is...

With over 25 million .com domains registered with Google alone, this top-level domain is by far the most popular choice worldwide. According to the domain marketplace Sedo, in 2015 the average sales price for a .com domain name was over £3000. The most expensive publicly traded domain names have been known to fetch eight-figures sums. But don’t quit your day job just yet: such sales are the exception rather than the rule.
Chris takes us through his stages of domain investing: educating himself, antique picking previously owned dropped domains, buying brandable expired domains and his first 2 profitable flips. We touch on the tough topics of frontrunning and GoDaddy expired auction changes, plus the 4 letter word of domainers, CALL- with Chris’ current 100% success rate on phone calls!
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.
Very good article and overview explanation. However I would not recommend buying names with bitcoin, ripple, etc in them. Not only will it be oversaturated those names are brands and can / will be trademarked and you can still be hit with a UDRP. Only register generic names like buycrypto.com, buyingcryptocurrency.com, theblockchain.com, etc. There are tons of opportunities and no need to infringe on a brand name.

Using the keyword search feature you’d also be able to familiarize yourself with how much domains typically cost on average in a certain industry or niche. Even better, they have an addictive little app called “The Domain Game” available for iOS and Android. They basically give you a domain and you try to guess whether it sold for three, four, five or six figures. You get points for each correct answer and lose points for incorrect ones. You do this for a while and you start to see patterns. Your brain starts connecting the dots and you get better it. Now you’re ready to go out there and scout some domains!
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