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Domain Buying Secrets: The Things I learned From Buying a €3,000 domain

Discover the secrets of buying a valuable domain name. Learn how to identify the best domains and avoid common pitfalls to securing your dream domain.

Quite often, you encounter situations when you wish to have a great domain name, and when you check, it’s frustrating to find the domain name is not available. Besides, it makes sense to have a domain name that relates closely to your expertise or business area as it brings your audience closer.

Well, the good news is that instead of registering a domain, there are other viable alternatives at your disposal.

Read on to delve into what are domain auctions, premium domains, expired domains for sale, how to buy aftermarket domains, how to buy an expired domain, expired domain marketplaces, and more.

Alternatives to Registering New Domains

Premium Domains

The core difference between a premium domain and a regular domain lies in the various benefits that the former brings. It’s akin to the difference between a leading brand status and an average one. Essentially, premium domain names are those that are already registered and are now sold for a higher price than a usual newly registered one. Buying a premium domain offers several advantages.

While some people buy a premium domain to enhance their online presence by gaining a better ranking on search engines, others may want to build their brand and prevent others from using it for similar purposes.

If your investment in a premium domain is justified, the next step is to purchase it. You should buy it from the current owner or a third-party agent. In addition, services like GoDaddy also help you in this regard.


  • Establish a strong online presence
  • Gain an edge over your competitors
  • Earn trust and credibility


  • Premium domains are expensive
  • There’s no guarantee that your business will be successful just by buying these domains. A lot of marketing and promotion is needed.
  • It’s quite possible that in the future, your domain name may lose its value, depending on how your brand performs.

Expired Domains

Expired domains are registered by organizations or individuals. However, the contract hasn’t been renewed, or they are voluntarily terminated. In other words, they are open for re-registration. When a domain expires, it turns inactive, making all services attached to it abruptly halt.


  • If the expired domain had multiple quality links tagged, it could help boost SEO.
  • In case the expired domain name had a good reputation, it could significantly contribute to effective link building, website traffic, and other positive aspects


  • Choices are limited. If you buy a new domain, you have numerous options. However, for expired ones, only what is already available can be bought.
  • Domain registrars are smart and usually price the expired domains higher. So they tend to be more expensive.
  • Not all backlinks may be of high quality. 50 links may relate to high authority sites, while 50,000 are somewhat from low-quality or spammy websites.

How to Buy an Expired Domain: Things to Remember

  • Check the auction houses first. This could be a great way to get your domain name.
  • Consider purchasing backorders from different sources. Finally, place a backorder.
  • Register the domain regularly in case there aren’t any backorders, or it is unavailable in auction houses.

Aftermarket Domains

Aftermarket domains are those domains that are already owned by someone and are put up for sale by the owner. In most cases, the aftermarket domains are priced high as their owners usually would have bought them with the conviction that they would be sold after some time.


  • By finding out who owned the aftermarket domain, you can know how it performed, like the quality of backlinks, traffic, etc.


  • Compared to other domains, aftermarket domains are expensive.

How to Buy an Aftermarket Domain

  • Check and search for the domain name and find if it’s for sale
  • Try checking other factors like domain extension, quality of backlinks, website traffic, etc.
  • Contact the owner. Don’t divulge anything about your business. Let the owner quote the price. You could opt for escrow services for the negotiations.

Domain Auctions

Domain auctions could be conducted by a domain registrar or auction house. There are public domain auctions and private domain auctions. While the former lets everyone participate, the latter is permitted only for a few private players. The greatest advantage of domain auctions is that if the domain name you listed sells, it increases its value.

Therefore, these are powerful ways to get your domain name to earn fame while letting the prices go up. Besides, expired domain auctions are specially meant to sell expired domains. Depending on various factors, such as who previously owned the domain, its price could increase or decrease considerably.


  • Domain auctions, particularly the public domains, let everyone participate.
  • In cases where your domain name listed gets sold out at a higher price, you earn more value.


  • Auctions are always a gamble - there’s no guarantee.
  • You may lose value if your domain name’s price plummets in the auction.

Tips for Buyers

Use Advanced Search Tools

It makes sense to use well-crafted search tools like filters and drop-downs, which make finding your domain name easier. Most sites offer options like price, keywords, etc., to narrow your search.

Assess Prices

Evaluating prices intelligently is a crucial aspect for buyers. Before you make a bid, check the sales of others to confirm you are making the best deals.

Take Timely Action

While it’s possible sometimes to contact the seller after the auction ends, you don’t need to wait. If you have found the ideal domain name for your business, place the bid.

Bid Smartly

Make careful decisions while bidding. Sometimes, placing a lucrative bid could engage the users in bidding wars and shoot up the price. Furthermore, it’s important not to keep refreshing the page as it will impact the traffic and garner more competition.

Tips for Sellers

Make Focused Choices

When searching for domain names, it’s advisable to choose domains that use keywords or top-level domains relating to your niche or area of business. This would further help you with SEO optimization.

Use Domain Names Associated with Real Value

Understand what people in your business are looking for and select domain names relating to real solutions or use cases. It makes more sense to opt for domain names that are associated with reality.

Set Realistic Prices

To determine the appropriate price for your starting bid, use services like GoDaddy, which offers free domain name and appraisal services based on real-time market data. However, check on the escrow and commission limits.

Target Niche Buyers

While planning your sale, it’s always better to start with people you know well. Besides, make sure your pitch is short and crisp so that the conversation could turn the lead to a customer.

Domain Marketplaces

Domain marketplaces are essentially online platforms that allow domain owners to let out their domains on sale while getting in touch with interested parties. These serve as a great place for buyers and sellers of domains to interact, and some offer escrow and transfer services. Expired domain marketplaces let you buy expired domains by bringing you in touch with the sellers.


  • It’s a great platform to bring together sellers and potential buyers
  • The features like escrow and transfer options make the process more convenient and secure.


  • You need to check thoroughly on the parties before you buy or sell.
  • Not all domain marketplaces are equally reliable.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why wouldn’t I just hyphenate a .com or buy a .org that’s available?

Domain names are very important to any business or organization. Your business must have a unique domain name, and that must ideally relate to your industry or brand. Some characteristics of a good domain name are:

  • Short domain names are easier to remember and avoid typing errors for users.
  • Domain names must offer good memorability. They must ideally not include generic names, hyphens, or special characters that could cause confusion to the users.
  • Using the right extension is vital. While .com is used by most top brands, it makes sense to buy other extensions like .net or .org and redirect them to your .com site.
  • Verify for copyright and trademark issues before choosing a domain name.

What are the best-rated websites to buy premium domains?

There are several good websites available to buy premium domains. Some top-rated include - NamePros, Namecheap, Flippa, Sedo, and

Is it safe to buy a domain from a broker?

While there’s no guarantee that you will always get the domain you want, contacting domain brokers offers some benefits. First, as they have extensive coverage, they provide sellers with an estimate of the value of the domain names. Second, they possess strong industry knowledge and thus can advise you on pitfalls and risk factors. This saves a lot of your time and money.

It is recommended to seek the assistance of reputable and reliable brokers so that you enjoy these benefits while ensuring safety.

Once a domain expires, when can I buy it?

To buy an expired domain, it’s important to understand the underlying facts. Depending on the domain registrar, the expiry timeline varies. While the first 30 days post the expiration is regarded as a grace period, the website will not be available online. However, it can be renewed for the standard price or somewhat higher.

Generally, the domain ownership is forfeited after 30 days. Anyone interested is allowed to place an order. In case no one shows interest, it is let on auction for 7 days, with the offer going to the highest bidder.

If the domain isn’t sold during the auction, it enters a 5-day pending delete period. Post this, it re-enters the original registry and can be registered at the regular price.

While GoDaddy serves as the largest domain registrar, offering several expired domain names for auction, there are various expired domain brokers as well.

How to find out when a website domain expires?

It’s quite easy to check when a domain expires. There are various tools known as domain expiry checkers available that are user-friendly and make this process a piece of cake. Some examples of these tools include - Sitechecker,, Site24x7, etc.

Wrapping up

While you may often think of registering a new domain, there are other resourceful ways to buy and use domain names. Buying an expired domain or dropped websites, aftermarket domain, or opting for expired domain auctions are other choices. Besides, you can use expired domain marketplaces to buy and sell domains. Each of these options, with their benefits and limitations, are outlined in the article.

Written by:
James Mew
Selljam Founder | Head of eCommerce

With 18 years of experience in the eCommerce industry, I have successfully launched and grown multiple e-commerce businesses, the 2nd one hit 7-figures in revenue within its first year. In 2022, I joined a European food technology equipment and IT service provider as their Head of E-commerce, overseeing 14 eshops across Europe and South Africa. Selljam is where I share all those ecommerce tips, tricks and hacks learned along the way that I hope will also help you on your journey to success. 

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