There’s money to be made by buying domains.
It’s not limited to being an indirect part of a money-making online venture like buying a domain name to be used for a monetized blog or online store. This post does not aim to show how it’s possible to make money with expensive domain names. You can make domain names additional sources of revenues especially if you employ the right digital branding and marketing strategies.
Consider the following strategies as you deal with the new dynamics of domain investment and exploit new opportunities.
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Domain buying strategies
1. Choose business-friendly domain names
This is a basic tip for those who want to make money with domain names, but is worth including it in this list as it remains to be an effective strategy.
- Generic names are common words likely used by typical internet users. These could be names of emerging products, services, ideas, or blogging niches. Don’t be too fixated on getting the shortest domain names, though. Short is good but easier-to-spell-and-remember is better.
- Geographic names are those that pertain to specific locations, which may be paired with other words and used for the websites of businesses, organizations, fan groups, and other entities.
- Business domain names, on the other hand, are those that are usually used for business or professional practice websites. These could be the name of a professional practice coupled with a geographic location.
- Timely domain names are domain names that could be used for a specific event such as the Olympics, elections, or perhaps the impeachment of a president.
The Blog Herald has a brilliant post on how to choose a good domain name.
2. Beware of possible domain name seizure
When buying domains, make sure you will not end up with legal tangles. It is very much possible for your domain name to be seized or forfeited for legal violations. You can be accused of cybersquatting and the domain name you obtained may just be taken away.
There are countries that have strict laws against cybersquatting. The United States, in particular, has the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act, which extends trademark rights to domain names.
It doesn’t matter where you register your domain names. Legal authorities have ways to have it forfeited or seized once legal procedures are undertaken by the complaining party. That’s why your domain name buying strategy should always take into account the possibility of seizures.
Don’t waste money on an acquisition that will only be taken away from you by force of law. If you are sure that you have obtained domain names in good faith but you suspect that they can be contested by newly founded companies or organizations, be sure to build sites or blogs for them to establish ownership.
3. Don’t leave a trail
It’s important to avoid leaving any hint that you are targeting certain top level domains or TLDs. Don’t register the .net, .org, .info, and other TLD versions of the domain name you are pursuing before you acquire the .com or the TLD you really want to get.
Otherwise, you will end up increasing its price, making it financially difficult to obtain it. If you have already registered these alternative TLDs, ascertain that they are concealed with a Whois privacy shield. Don’t let speculators get ahead of you.
4. Make the most of your location
Never underestimate the value of location-specific domain names. TLDs such as .uk and .wales are popular for businesses, organizations, or groups that are focused on specific areas. You can buy domain names such as .co.uk, .london, and .eu that can be sold for a good price to those who want to put up online stores, diners, clinics, or agencies serving specific locations. Just make sure you target the right keywords and focus on an industry or sector that are most likely to need these names in future.
If you’re focusing on potential buyers in London for example, look at business listings or directories of establishments, organizations, and professionals in the area. No—don’t try to cybersquat on them! The goal is to get a glimpse of the possible demand for domain names among businesses and organizations in a specific location.
Find unregistered domain names that bear frequently-searched keywords and get them. Nobody may have registered “buffetrestaurant.london” yet. Examine the keywords being targeted by local businesses. They will likely buy the location-specific domain names you have if these domain names bear the primary keywords they are doing SEO for.
5. Buy low, sell high
Nowadays, you should never rely on stereotypes. For instance, you shouldn’t assume that domain auction sites such as Sedo and GoDaddy won’t offer you something cheap. You’ll be surprised to find out that there are many low-priced domains you can find at auctions, which are valuable based on your own evaluation.
Exhaust all possible options for finding cheap domains. There are many domain owners that undervalue their portfolio. You just need to exert some time and effort to find them. Go over lists of expiring domains.
Of course, you need to be discerning with how much you spend for and sell domain names. If you are getting domain names to be sold later on, you certainly want to buy low and sell high. How low is low? How high is high?
It’s difficult to come up with a benchmark. Also, it would be wrong to state specific amounts in this post about domain buying strategies because it can become misleading. The domain name trade is volatile or difficult to predict. There’s no foolproof blueprint on how to do it successfully. That’s why the best you can do is to carefully research your options.
6. Don’t forget to promote
You need to know and understand the ways your potential buyers register a domain name for their sites. This is to take advantage of every step or way they take to get a domain name. After buying a domain name, you can’t just let it sit or get parked with an unattractive placeholder. Here are a few quick strategies to let the world know you have a domain name for sale:
- Create a good landing page with convenient buttons for those who want to buy the domain name.
- Participate in auctions or sign up at domain marketplaces.
- Add your for-sale domains to domain registries.
- Consider enlisting the help of a domain broker.
Don’t miss to cover every possible option you have for promoting a domain name.
Over to you
The advent of new TLDs has an impact on domain buying and selling. However, in 2018 and the next few years to come, it’s safe to say that the .com and other “traditional” TLDs will remain popular and sought after. That’s why strategies for domain buying are somewhat still similar to how they were in the past. What’s important is to have a plan and to be dynamic enough to appropriately react to the latest trends.
Pratik Dholakiya is the founder of Growfusely, a content marketing agency specializing in content and data-driven SEO. He regularly speaks at various conferences about SEO, Content Marketing, and Entrepreneurship. Pratik has spoken at the 80th Annual Conference of the Florida Public Relations Association, Accounting and Finance Show, Singapore, NextBigWhat’s UnPluggd, IIT-Bombay, SMX Israel, SEMrush Meetup, MICA, IIT-Roorkee, and other major events. As a passionate SEO and content marketer, he shares his thoughts and knowledge in publications like Search Engine Land, Search Engine Journal, Entrepreneur Magazine, Fast Company, The Next Web, YourStory, and Inc42, to name a few. He can found at Twitter @DholakiyaPratik.