How to buy expired domains listed in Yahoo and Dmoz.
by Tony Cooper
You've probably seen loads of web sites that claim to be able to secure that soon to expire domains. here's the lowdown on how to do it properly.......
Expired and soon to expire domains are a fiercely competitive market. Not a day goes by without a new script or web site set up to try and capture business in this rapidly moving market place.
There are several free web sites available which if you have had an interest in this topic you will probably have seen. http://www.deleteddomains is probably the most famous one and http://www.domainsbot.com is probably the leading subscriber based search tool.
The problem with all of these low cost or free services is that the lists of names that they are working from are usually hopelessly out of date and it can be a frustrating experience to try and sort the wheat from the chaff.
Domain names - and some very good ones at that - expire on a regular basis. Either the owner of the name forgot to re-register it, they possibly stepped under the proverbial number ten bus or they just lost interest in the site completely and forgot about it.
The latter is probably the most common reason. Considering that there are some eighteen million web sites then you have to work pretty damn hard to create a visible presence on the web - generally only web sites in the top 150,000 available sites generate any meaningful traffic to be able to work with so it should not be surprising that many people have a stab at it and then give up because it's too time consuming.
So why bother with expired and expiring domains?
There was a time - probably eighteen months or so ago - when expired domains were in plentiful supply, and good ones at that. It was easily conceivable to pick up domains that had reasonable amounts of traffic and were listed in many search engines. Now it's not as simple as that, as I have said it's now a fiercely fought market and the tools used to do the research and grabbing of the names is becoming more sophisticated on a daily basis.
The reason for spending a bit of time with this is that you CAN find some little nuggets that will give you a massive head start when it comes to winning the search engine battle. Many professional expired domain collectors are on the lookout for attractive names - those one syllable, un hyphenated names that can gain many "type in's" (people type the domain name to try and shortcut their research). These names can be valuable not only for the name itself but also by plonking some strategically placed adverts or partnering with a pay per click search engine can generate some meaningful revenue for the name until an interested party is prepared to buy the domain name. However these names are the most prized and are either grabbed as they expire by professional speculators with deep pockets and a "grabbing script" to match, or go to auction once they have been purchased by a grabbing service.
In a nutshell - it's easy to gain a list of which domains are due to expire today or tomorrow and then set your script to "grab it" the trouble is most of these scripts are owned by private "clubs" or services which are exclusive.
However, there are some names which are not so sought after and can be purchased with a bit of research and not too much hard cash.
Names listed in Yahoo and DMOZ are obviously the names we are interested in. But not just any old name. What we are looking for is a domain name that we can match to an affiliate program or vice versa so that we have a head start in search engine submissions.
Names like this are readily available - but you need to be aware of several factors before you try grabbing them.
Firstly, and most importantly, the previous owner could quite possibly rant at you for "stealing their name". If this happens to you then I suggest you sell it back to them. Or get embroiled in legal battles across the pond.
Secondly, you need to check that the name is listed in a reasonable category for your purposes. For example a domain name listed in a USA shopping category would be of little use to a UK affiliate program.
Thirdly, You need to check the history of the site so that you know that you are not taking over something that was previously used for unsavoury purposes.
Here's everything you need to have a go at getting some decent expired domain names:
Http://www.domain-retriever.com - Scans a list of expired domains and tells you which search engines they are listed in. This is the best program of it's type for doing this kind of research.
Http://www.snapnames.com - Allows you to backorder your chosen soon to expire name.
http://www.namepursuitclub.com - Name catching service
http://www.pool.com - An auction based model of the above.
http://www.namewinner.com - similar to Pool but you need to know which names you are bidding on first.
http://www.archive.org - Check out a web sites history using this archive tool.
http://www.dnforum.com - Everyone who is anyone hangs out here. A subscription here will give you all of the inside info you need on playing this game.
http://www.exody.com - Hourly, daily lists of soon to expire domain names.
This article may be reprinted free in it's entirety providing you include this resource box.
Tony Cooper is the Internet Marketing manager at http://www.keywordmarketing.com Building web sites that achieve tangible and accountable results.
Web site statistics and analytical tracking http://www.visitorlogs.com
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