Domain flipping is a relatively offbeat concept, so if you’ve never heard of it, you’re not alone.
Buying and selling domain names could be a profitable side business.
If you do it well, you can make hundreds (or thousands) of dollars every month.
Want a good excuse to test out domain flipping?
Well, it’s easy as pie. And you may do it with as little as $10.
Yup, you read that right.
You can get started in domain flipping for the price of your next lunch.
The method is straightforward and easy to implement.
But, like any other business, domain flipping requires an initial investment in inventory.
Learn the ins and outs of domain name trading, from where to look for good domain names to how to sell them, and more, in this post.
Read on to discover the quick and easy ways to profit from domain flipping!
First things first, let’s define some things so we’re all on the same page.
A website’s domain refers to its address on the internet.
It’s a unique identifier that defines a website’s boundaries that a certain entity controls on the Internet.
Domain names function much like our physical homes.
Domain names, like house addresses, consist of a combination of letters, numbers, and the name of the street on which the property is located.
In the same way that there is only only one address for your house, there is only one address for a website. Each domain is one of a kind.
This is where “domain flipping” comes in, as there can only be one address. It’s technically an online real estate game.
Domain Name Flipping
Companies (or individuals) are willing to spend astronomical sums for highly desirable domain names due to the potential financial benefits they can provide.
A domain name like “apple.com” may be valued substantially more than, say, “coolapples.com.”
When comparing the value of two domain names, shorter ones will almost always be more valuable. More on this in a bit!
In order to make a profit, you can “flip” domains by buying and then selling them. You can set any price you like for your domain.
You’ll need to put in some serious time and work if you want to make money in domain name trading.
Related Reading: How To Start Something New – Learn That Here.
Why Get Into Domain Flipping?
When compared to a house, car, or stock, a domain name is far simpler to “flip.”
Suppose you want to start a side business but don’t have time to research and engage with professionals like web developers or real estate agents.
Well, you could find success in this venture because of its minimal risk and high payout.
Domain name trading platforms like GoDaddyAuctions and BuyDomains offer an alternative method of acquiring online real estate.
To facilitate the process, sellers can use one of these platforms to list their domain names for sale at several price points.
Once they put their domain up for sale, they’ll start getting offers.
Where To Find Domain Names To Purchase
The market for domain name registrars is highly competitive. Fortunately, there are many registrars where you can purchase domain names to sell.
There are always more reasonably priced options than there are more expensive ones.
NameCheap and GoDaddy are the usual go-tos among domain registrars.
Domains can be purchased from Namecheap for as little as $8.88 annually.
Here are other places to check out to hunt for domain names:
How To Flip Domain Names: A Step-by-step Guide
Choose Profitable Domain Names
There’s a trick to buying and selling domains.
Finding a domain with a lot of potential is necessary, and this is something that many people overlook.
If you’re just starting out, this might be really intimidating.
Even if you think you’re great at closing deals, negotiating with customers, and selling products, there’s a lot more to selling than meets the eye.
For example, you might have your heart set on a domain with a .org extension, and you might even have the perfect plan for selling it.
However, you might change your mind if you find out that .com domains sell at a significantly greater rate than the others.
Note that this in no way suggests that I’m totally against purchasing names with extensions other than .com.
It simply means that you need a much more discerning eye and significantly more experience in order to successfully sell domains with other extensions.
When searching for a profitable domain, you can use specific criteria and factors.
When looking for a fantastic domain, take these things in mind:
A shorter domain is valued more highly than a longer one. That’s why you can generally ask for a greater price while selling it.
The longer the domain, the less desirable it is and the harder it is to sell at the price you want.
I’ve already mentioned that the .com extension is the most popular choice.
Domain names with the .com extension sell for far more than those with the other extensions (like .info, .org, and.net).
For most online enterprises, having a domain ending in “.com” is a must.
In fact, there is a 72.90% share of the market for.com domains.
However, there are circumstances where you might want to think about other extensions as well.
After all, if so many extensions are available, then surely some folks will want to use them.
So, when would it be okay to buy other extensions?
A country-specific extension is what you should choose if your goal is to reach customers in a single country like Germany or France.
Omitting the .com extension makes perfect sense here. In this situation, you’ll want to focus on a different group of customers—those in your immediate vicinity.
Not to mention, SEO (search engine optimization) efforts in this situation will be directed at a certain location.
However, even TLDs that are normally reserved for a single country may find worldwide use on occasion. Use Zoom as an example.
Its top-level domain (TLD) is .us because its headquarters are in the US, specifically California.
The absence of the .com extension does not detract from the value of the domain or the overall brand is another reason to use a different extension.
Examples include the .org version of Wikipedia and the .fm version of Last.fm.
Try not to use as many complicated words as possible.
Although you may find some of them catchy and interesting, it’s likely that others would think the same.
Picking a domain name with an unusual sound won’t attract many people.
It may even turn them off entirely.
Finding useful and relevant domains is the entire goal.
When it comes to selecting a domain or some other purely practical subject, people are more likely to relate to something they can quickly identify and understand.
Think like your potential customers.
Would you buy a domain that you had trouble pronouncing and remembering, let alone entering into your browser?
Keep in mind that the goal is to choose a domain that won’t make people scratch their heads in confusion.
You want them to go to your site with ease.
Consider if the domain is simple to spell and easy to remember.
It’s no secret that the most popular domain names are short and simple to type.
That’s why “.com” domains like “food.com,” “furniture.com,” and “clothes.com” fetch such high prices.
They’re probably worth seven or eight figures as domain names.
The fact that they unquestionably belong to someone else makes it all the more challenging to acquire them.
As for people’s initial impression of a website, it’s crucial that the domain be easily recognizable and pronounceable.
You could try searching for the most popularly sought-after domains or the most easily recalled domain names.
This will provide you with a great overview of the market’s current offerings, availability, and so on.
Ease of Use
Avoid domain names that are confusing or use terms that are spelled differently in the UK and the US (like “favorite and “favourite”).
Additionally, it’s preferable to steer clear of homophones (words that sound alike but have different meanings; “creak” and “creek,” “ate” and “eight,” “chilli” and “chilly,” etc.).
You should also avoid using any unusual symbols or duplicate letters.
Hyphens are another thing you should stay away from. The use of hyphens is an unnecessary source of confusion.
Keep everything brief and readable. Ensure that outside of your target audience can decipher your domain.
Keep in mind that you want to appeal to the widest potential audience, so avoid offering a name that requires a degree in linguistics to interpret.
You should also think about investing in branded domain names.
You may be wondering what those are.
Branded domain names are merely domains that have been generated and registered but aren’t yet being used as commercial websites.
They are made with the expectation that a specific company will purchase them and put them to use for a certain brand.
They haven’t been put to use yet, so they need to have the same specifics as the others (being short and memorable, being SEO-friendly, and commonly using the.com extension).
One of the most important factors in determining your success at flipping domains is your level of familiarity with the specific niche or industry.
Being well-versed in your field and keeping your attention on topics you can easily grasp and negotiate over gives you the upper hand.
Let’s imagine that you have been simultaneously operating a physical bookshop and an online coffee shop. On top of that, your home base is in Alabama.
To get started, try experimenting with some domain names that are already very recognizable to you, like alabamacoffee.com or coffeebeansalabama.com.
Also, someone may be interested in buying that domain name if you believe numerous cafes will soon begin selling their products online.
You can always utilize some online tools to help you choose the proper domain names if you’re having trouble narrowing things down.
Check out these helpful resources as you consider potential names for your new venture.
Nothing here is in any particular order, so pick and choose as you see fit:
- Domain Puzzler
- Business Name Generator By Shopify
- Bust a Name
- Lean Domain Search
Lastly, don’t give up if you’re struggling to come up with a domain name or aren’t 100% certain about the one you’ve settled on.
There is always more learning to be done and new ideas to be generated.
I get that you might not be able to meet every single one of the criteria I listed above, but if you stick to my advice, you’ll have a far better shot at coming up with a great domain name.
Buy Expired Domains
You can either choose a fresh domain name or buy and resell previously used ones.
Where would you find those?
My first recommendation is GoDaddy Auctions.
However, there are additional options like ExpiredDomains and DomCop, that are all worth looking into.
Please note that choosing an already-lapsed domain name can be risky. Y
ou should do your research before attempting to resell an expired domain since it will have a history that you should be aware of.
For instance, you wouldn’t want to buy a domain name if Google has already penalized it because the previous owner engaged in black hat SEO.
Keep yourself well-informed at all times.
In addition, make sure to look at the site’s backlinks.
There are a lot of sketchy and dubious backlinking strategies out there, so you need to be sure your domain is, shall we say, “spotless.” Tools like SEMrush and ahrefs can be used to analyze backlinks.
Remember to check out the website’s archive as well.
This is helpful since it provides insight into the website’s purpose and content.
Domain Authority (DA) and Page Authority (PA) are two indicators that should not be overlooked.
Their results should clearly demonstrate the domain name’s potential for success in search engine results.
So, it stands to reason that a domain name with a high DA and/or PA is more valuable.
If you decide to use an expired domain, here are just a few of the considerations you should make.
However, you may always undertake your own, more in-depth investigation to see whether or not the expired domain you’re interested in is indeed worth pursuing.
Related Reading: Best Jobs For Introverts – Find Out Here.
Register Your Domain Name
After registering a domain name, you will have sole ownership of it.
You can buy the domain name you want immediately if you find it and it is for sale.
Obviously, you’ll want to try to make an offer to the present owner of any domain names you come across and get them transferred to you.
After you’ve settled on a name, registering it is a simple process.
In addition to your name, address, and phone number, you’ll be prompted to select an extension when registering your domain name.
Though it may be awkward to reveal such private details, doing so can help you appear more trustworthy and credible.
Some registrars, like Namecheap.com, give you the option of maintaining some anonymity.
You should realize that registering a domain name is a simple process that won’t take long at all.
The process of domain flipping begins with registering the domain in your own name.
Build a Site For Your Domain Name or Park it
There are many options open to you after you have registered your domain name.
For one, you can create a niche website and host it somewhere.
Create a landing page that openly advertises the fact that you’re selling it.
You could even advertise the domain name sale in plain text and nothing else.
In doing so, you ensure that the visitors who may end up making a purchase are well-informed potential customers.
Don’t forget to include a way for people to get in touch with you.
You could leave your contact info or email in the contact section on your website.
Adding content to your site is another option to consider.
You should probably go ahead and get a domain name if you believe it has great SEO potential and can attract a large number of visitors.
It’s possible that you’ll sell more than just the domain name for your website.
Spreading the word about your domain name on your various social media profiles is another choice you have.
This is a very simple method to implement.
You can find communities on Facebook, for example, where people buy and sell domain names.
You can also do a search on Facebook to find more folks who could interest you.
If you do decide to join a Facebook group, read the rules for that group thoroughly before posting anything.
You don’t want to get kicked out of a domain-selling community accidentally.
Parking Your Domain Name
If you’ve purchased a domain name but haven’t yet built a website, you can “park” it with a domain registrar by pointing it to a “parked” or “temporary” page.
Sedo is the best platform to use if you go this route, and their slogan, “Buy. Park. Sell.” says it all.
Sedo is simple to use, registration is free, and you can make money with every click on the matching advertising links on your domain.
Drop Catching Your Domain Name
Domain drop-catching refers to the process of registering a domain name after the original domain registration has lapsed.
Domain registrations have a lifespan, and if yours runs out of time, you could run into some difficulties.
There is no way to get the domain name back unless you have some kind of legal claim to it, like a trademark.
The redemption grace period (RGP) is a period of time after a domain name’s expiration, during which the original registrant can regain ownership of the name.
The period varies (often between 30 and 90 days) and is primarily determined by the demand for the domain.
Remember that many domain speculators will be keeping a close eye on the domain at this time.
Also, if the registration lapses entirely, they may seize the opportunity to acquire the formerly registered domain name.
This is especially true of exceptionally sought-after domain extensions.
Sell Your Domain Names
Once you build a site or park it, it’s just a matter of waiting for buyers. You could also try reaching out to buyers directly.
Let’s say you own “buywatches.com.” It would then make sense to approach watch retailers and dealers.
Consider using a domain marketplace, as they are highly recommended.
This strategy is among the most popular ones employed today.
However, before settling on a marketplace, it’s a good idea to read up on their policies and any costs you might incur.
If you use BrandBucket, for instance, your domain name cannot be listed with any other service
Finally, keep in mind that the bulk of your work will be searching for and purchasing valuable domain names in order to resell them.
You won’t have a hard time selling a particularly hot domain name.
Tips For Domain Flipping
Get some experience under your belt first, and only then should you consider spending $500+ on a domain name.
Domain flipping is a fairly tricky process, and even a small amount of exposure can help a beginner grasp the basic skills of calculating and predicting value.
Having a personal budget in place will help you avoid unnecessary financial strain while you’re getting started.
The next step is to devote some time to exploring your alternative options.
Don’t rush into buying the first domains that come to mind; you may develop an attachment to a name that has little to no worth.
Make a list of possible purchases to consider before acting to avoid making any hasty decisions.
Determine the number of potential buyers and the reasons why they would be interested in each option.
If you take a methodical approach, you can guarantee that the domains you purchase will be worthwhile investments.
Prioritize Memorable Domains
I’ve already stressed that the most marketable domains are those that are both memorable and simple to type.
Domain names that are both short and easy to remember, tend to fare well in the market.
This is especially true of .com domains that are actual words or commonly used acronyms.
When determining the worth of a domain name, some domain flippers consider the volume of traffic the site has received in the past.
Domains that have many inbound links from reputable sources are especially appealing because they provide an SEO headstart for a company.
You should avoid buying trademarks, but you should buy brandable domains.
The federal government enforces trademark laws to safeguard the value of a company and individual names.
Words and phrases that are widely used and so cannot be trademarked are preferable.
Pay Attention To Keywords
If you look into what people are actually looking for, you can pick out some killer domain names.
If you want to see what versions of a keyword are the most popular, Google’s Keyword Planner is an excellent tool to use.
In addition to using a keyword tool, you may also use a domain name sales history tool, such as NameBio.
NameBio lets you plug in search terms to locate complementary domains and track their value over time.
Try not to ignore regional domains in your search as well.
Always Check For Similar Domain Names
Domain names that seem similar to a well-known brand may be purchased if they are not a trademark.
For example, the American Farm Bureau Federation sold the domain name “fb.com” to Facebook for $8.5 million, making it one of the most valuable domain transactions ever.
Be wary of buying a domain that could be confused with a competitor’s name if your day job involves running a business.
Buying a domain name in this way could land you in hot water with the law.
Learn To Create Effective Landing Pages
Some domain flippers prefer to spend money on hosting and launching a landing page as a promotional strategy.
Include contact information and a description of your domain for sale on this page.
By doing so, you may be able to negotiate more favorable terms with those who are actively looking into purchasing your domain name.
Name.com’s one-page website builder is a great tool for establishing a landing page, and it only costs $4.99 per year.
Domain Flipping – FAQs
It’s possible to buy a domain name cheaply and then resell it for a large sum of money.
How much money you can make is contingent upon the quality of the domain names you acquire.
That’s why domains like Toys.com and Slots.com have sold for millions of dollars.
It’s more challenging to buy the domains that could bring you a large profit because of the increased competition for in-demand domains.
But even if you spend only $10 to acquire a domain name and then sell it for $100, you’ve made a $90 profit.
If you’re able to replicate that trick ten times, you’ll have generated $900 in revenue.
It’s also important to consider if you’re flipping domains as a side hustle or a full-time business when estimating your potential earnings.
Making money from domain name flipping is no different from making money from any other side business.
There are tax implications to consider, like whether the profits should be treated as ordinary income or capital gains.
Consulting a financial expert could prove helpful. Either way, you’ll need to be able to account for your financial transactions when filing your taxes.
Is there a risk to domain flipping?
When trading domains, there is always the chance that you may make a poor investment that will not provide a profit.
There is no assurance that anyone will want to purchase your domain name. And even if they do, they might not be willing to pay more than you did.
You can lessen your risk of losing money and improve your odds of making a profit by conducting thorough research into a domain’s potential value prior to purchasing and by strategically scheduling your sales.
If you don’t spend more than you can afford to lose, you’ll limit your risk of losing money.
A domain name costs less than $10 per year, so even a newbie can get their feet wet with a modest investment and expand as they develop knowledge and confidence.
Domain flipping is completely legal, unlike cybersquatting.
Despite their similarities, cybersquatting is always done maliciously, so it’s easy to see why people get the two concepts mixed up.
When a person attempts to make money off of a trademark or a competitor’s business, domain flipping crosses the line into domain squatting.
Do your homework before purchasing a domain to ensure that your domain flipping stays on the right side of the law.
Never keep a domain name hostage if you realize too late that it contains a trademarked term.
Related Reading: Money Making Hobby – What Is It?
Great domains are always in demand, making domain flipping a lucrative business.
The most lucrative niches will become clear to you once you gain more experience.
The average domain investor probably won’t make a million dollars from selling domains.
Still, there’s a good chance that they will earn a substantial additional income with little to no more effort required.
Anyone with even a little bit of technical know-how can make some extra money by flipping domain names as a side business!