Domain name is nothing but the website address you type in the browser’s address bar. For example, domain name of this website is webnots.com. Since each domain name is unique, you have to register your domain name. your hosting company will provide a space on the web server to store your content. When you link the domain name to your hosting account using DNS, the website is born. People can access your website through browsers anywhere from the world. That’s the basic of a website!!! So, the domain name decides many factors of running a website. In this article, we will explain how domain name impacts your website and how to buy old domain names from top marketplaces.
Registering a Domain Name
You can’t keep a domain name for a lifetime. What you can do is to register a domain name under your ownership for a certain period of time.
- It can be a year, two, five or ten years.
- You can register domain name through a domain registrars like GoDaddy by paying the specified amount for specified period.
- You have to renew the registration, if you want to continue the domain name after the specified period.
- If you do not renew and extend, the domain will expire and released for sale as a new domain. This is referred as an expired domain and can give you lots of value due to the previous history of domain.
Why to Buy Old Domain Name?
When you decided your niche and course of action for your website, it may not be an easy task to buy a relevant domain name. Let’s take an example that you want to write about WordPress tutorials. Here are some of the good names for a WordPress blog – learnWP, teachWP or wpblog.com. You can think of .com, .net, .org or any top level domain extensions for these names like learnwp.org or teachwp.net.
When you search for these names, you will be surprised that almost all names were already taken by someone else. Everyday people register million of new domain to block the names. 90% of the domain buyers will never build website and publish online. However, they will sell the domain name to others for a good price and make a commission with the sale. This is called domain flipping business.
Instead of looking for a new domain you can search for an old domain to find a relevant names for you. The old domain can help you in the following ways:
- It is easy to rank high on Google if the domain name was already popular for specific content. For example, it is cool if you can find the name justwp.com for your WordPress site which is 13 years old domain.
- You can get high domain authority with a relevant domain name.
- Domain name is your brand name. People remember the domain name to contact you and share the content with others. Established domains can help you to spread the word of your blog quickly.
Therefore, having a relevant domain name and content can help you to have an online success. It is a good idea to get an old name to make use of the previous domain history.
4 Types of Old Domains
Unlike expired domains, old domains still have a valid registered owner. The only way to purchase an old domain is that they need to sell to you. There are 4 types of old domains you can purchase:
- Domain showing display advertisement without content and additional pages. This is a good indication that the domain is parked without use. Some registrars like GoDaddy will automatically show parked domain ads if you do not point to any nameservers.
- Domain page will explicitly show a banner indicating it is on sale.
- Domain still have some old content and for sale.
- Show DNS error indicating the domain is not connected to any hosting account. You can only find it is for sale from a marketplace if the owner advertise.
There are also marketplaces to sell expired domains before they are released to public for purchasing.
Marketplaces to Buy Expired Domains
When you decided to buy an old domain, here are the top 2 marketplaces you can check.
- Go to Flippa and enter your keyword in the search box.
- Choose “Domains” from the dropdown.
- Click on the search icon.
You will get the result based on your keyword. It is possible to filter the results based on domain name length, extension, price and domain age.
Click on the “View Listing” button against the name you like and make an offer to the owner. When the negotiation is finalized, the owner will transfer the name to you.
GoDaddy is the largest domain registrar in the world. They offer a broker service to negotiate and get old domain names for you.
- Go to GoDaddy website and search for your domain name.
- If the domain name is already taken, GoDaddy will show the additional “Domain Broker Service” to get the domain for you.
- Click on “Add to Cart” button to order the old domain.
Flippa Vs GoDaddy Old Domains
Flippa does not charge any commission from the buyer. You can pay the amount through Escrow or PayPal to the owner and transfer the domain name to you. However, on GoDaddy you have to pay $69.99 broker commission fee plus 20% of the sale as a commission.
From the safety point of view, GoDaddy will ensure the domain is transferred to your account securely. With Flippa, you have a risk that owner may not transfer or support after paying the amount.
Is It That Easy?
There is one important point when purchasing an old domain name – domain history. Many owners do Black hat SEO and inappropriate promotions when the domain is new. Here are some precautions before purchasing an old domain name.
- Google might have banned the domain from AdSense. You have no easy way to find this as AdSense ban is on Gmail account level. Even for site level policy violations, you have to access the owner’s AdSense account to find and resolve the reason.
- Check spam score using any of the online tools. As shown in the below examples, the spam score for the first case is 67% which is potentially danger to purchase.
- Use arhive.org website to check the domain content history. Make sure there was no illegal content at any point of time beforehand.
- If you purchase through marketplace like Flippa, discuss with the owner whether it is a first-hand sale or previous owner’s history. It is also not a good idea to purchase a domain which was handled by multiple owners.
If everything look fine, it makes sense to buy a 10 years old domain to kick start your website instead of a new domain. Yes, it may take few hundred dollars for purchasing compared to a new domain. However, it may save you few years of hard work to get the domain authority and popularity.