Something wise my father once told me "Something is only worth how much someone is willing to pay for it." This small seemingly unimportant statement has guided me in many selling and purchasing decisions in my life. Sometimes, it makes the reality all too apparent. So, is buying a domain with the intention of selling it a good idea? Let's break down the details, and talk to some people that actively pursue this method. Yeah, we know a guy.
A rule of thumb that I follow is when I purchase a domain name I have to believe that I can flip it for a 100% profit. So if I spend $500 on a domain I need to feel like I can sell it for no less than $1,000. This way, even if I’m wrong in my estimation I still have some room to still turn a profit. And if worse case comes to worse case I’ve sold domains before for a $0 profit (it happens even to the best of us).
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Internet users, who try to find expired domains and re-register them, will soon discover that this plan cannot be manually accomplished. Professional domain traders are familiar with the registry deletion process and rely on sophisticated algorithms that indicate when a domain is about to become available. Deletion lists are the result of this research. You can find many datasets online with domains that have already become available or will soon be. You often have to pay to be able to see this information.
It is much harder to sell names no one has heard of. Short names have the highest value — they are rare, easy to sell and bring substantial profit. Basic and common domain names, which can be relatable, or arouse interest in the market are the best. General names sell thick and fast and also bring considerably higher profit. Names that are easy to spell will attract buyers, and provide good opportunity to make a decent profit. If you know you have a good domain in your hands, then you are likely to make good profit by selling it.
Use escrow services for direct sales. When you are dealing directly with the buyer, make sure that any money that is transferred goes through an escrow service. This will ensure that all checks clear and that you aren't left with a bounced check and no domain. Escrow services may add a few days to a sale and cost you a percentage, but they can save you a lot of heartache.
The IP popularity and domain popularity each play a part in the overall quality evaluation. If you come across an expired domain with a high link popularity (i.e. a large number of backlinks), but then poor values when it comes to IP and domain popularity, you can assume that these links were obtained in an artificial way. Domains like these will have already caught the search engines’ attention. Perhaps this is the reason why the domain was abandoned. Users that want to start a serious online project should steer clear of these domains.
The truth is that you require at least one year’s time to get around only the basics of the domain flipping business, leave alone making huge money from it. During this time, you’ll make several mistakes, buy useless domain names, lose out prospective deals and much more. Domain flipping is far from any get rich quick method. If overnight results are what you’re after, domain investing may not be your piece of cake. This business involves a real and steep learning curve which many people find difficult to climb.
The first thing you need to do is signup at Namejet in order to get your account (signup is free). You can then use their search functionality to sort through all the upcoming domains for auction. Place bids for $69 on the ones you want to go to auction for. If you bid on 100 different domains for $69 each, and there is 50 bidders for each auction you need to understand you aren’t going to owe any money, you are not committing $6,900 to Namejet. By entering that $69 you are getting an entry into the live bidding when the 30 days expire. Only if you are the ONLY bidder on a domain would you automatically win the domain and owe $69 to Namejet.
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.
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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.
Most domains traders, or resellers, buy hundreds of domain names. This way, the chances of hitting the jackpot are higher. But, this takes some up front money. You can start with a handful of names and work your way up. This is the best way to begin. You may also decide to purchase a name from another seller if you think that a name will be big enough.