I had two domains, a .com and .net with godaddy. I’m beyond their redemption period ($80 fee), but they said it should be released back to the public domain soon and I may be able to get it back. Before I knew this, I paid $12.99 plus ican fees for the .com thinking it was available as the rep told me she was able to add it their cart, and I paid a $24.95 fee for back ordering my .net domain. Shortly thereafter, I received an email from godaddy saying:
Simple question: say I get the URL I want via auction for however umpteen hundreds of dollars, what about the renewal prices? Am I at the mercy of the auction house every year I want to renew it? Is it as simple as paying 10 or 15 bucks a year like with GoDaddy with a URL I got not through an Auction? I’m willing to pay for the desired URL up front but I don’t know what that entails down the pike.
Your course of action really depends on how much work and effort you can put into the expired domain. If you're barely able to maintain and optimize your current site, you probably want to just 301 redirect the old site (note: see my amended comment above about the link value not likely to be passed). If, however, you're more creative and have some time on your hands, you can try your hand at crafting a microsite. If you really know your stuff and are experienced at making money off various websites, you'd probably do well with the third option.
If it contains any of those, then I am going to crawl it. Otherwise, I'm not going to because it's probably just something like an Amazon listing. Okay lets move on to the endless cruel. So this is the endless crawl. Basically, here you put your seed websites, one will do if it's a big website, because there's probably loads of domains on it. If it's a tiny, tiny a website, then you might want to stick a few more in so, as I was saying before, it will crawl on all the pages on these websites and then for each external domain that it finds on that website. It will check whether it's expired if it's not expired, it'll try and crawl it and then it will start the loop again, it'll try and take all the domains from there check that they are expired.
Why does this matter? What's the big deal? Well, unfortunately, the vast majority of domains registered are eventually abandoned. For some reason or another, people just fail to re-register or renew their domain name and that domain name drops or becomes available to the public. Of course, the obvious reason is that these people simply did not make money off the website that they put up with that domain. Other bloggers and website owners simply don't have the time, so they just gave up on their online projects. Whatever the case may be, by simply registering these expired domains, you can resurrect the value they bring to the table. With the four situations that I outlined above, you can benefit from those situations by simply registering a drop domain.
I'm running the new Mac edition of Domain Ronin and I have to tell you it's extremely stable. I'm getting about 250k pages every 5 minutes which equates to about 2700 checked domains. At the moment it's only using about 1 gig of memory for 100 threads. I've got the page count and other settings to the max. The builtin features like TF and spam checking on the fly are wicked helpful.

The great thing about this is that it’s kind of like a metasearch engine for all the places that you can find expired domains around the web. First, let’s look at deleted domains. Okay? To do that, you go click on the deleted domains button here and then click on any top level domain that you want to get. I prefer .com because it’s obviously the most common top level domain.
If you buy a domain from a 3rd party, the backlinks are valuable.  I always wait a few months before redirecting, so just set up a quick minisite until two page rank updates have passed and then go ahead and 301 redirect.  However, it seems that you'll get the link juice from the back links, the anchor text is ignored by Google.   Buying a domain at Godaddy TDName expired auctions, seem to not count as a dropped domain if you immediately set up a mini-site.
It’s easier to rank higher with expired domains: Depending upon your domain age, page authority, trust flow, expired domains tend to rank really well when compared to new domains. Most new domains don’t have any DA, page authority or trust flow so it’s really harder to rank well in Google. This won’t happen with the expired domains as they are already established well and might be getting decent amount of traffic from search engines.
I've seen some people comment about losing the link value of domains that have expired and picked up, but what about non-expired domains?  Let's say a competitor is going out of business and they still have a year or two left, and we buy their domain and site.  Is there a risk changing registrant info and registrars, even if I keep their site up and mostly the same as before?  I was under the impression that I'd want to keep it under their name so as not to hit the uber-reset button on the domain's inbound link value.
Why does this matter? What's the big deal? Well, unfortunately, the vast majority of domains registered are eventually abandoned. For some reason or another, people just fail to re-register or renew their domain name and that domain name drops or becomes available to the public. Of course, the obvious reason is that these people simply did not make money off the website that they put up with that domain. Other bloggers and website owners simply don't have the time, so they just gave up on their online projects. Whatever the case may be, by simply registering these expired domains, you can resurrect the value they bring to the table. With the four situations that I outlined above, you can benefit from those situations by simply registering a drop domain.
Hi Michael, thanks for the excellent writeup. I followed your steps and found that the domain name I’m seeking is currently registered with GoDaddy. Interestingly enough, I actually owned this domain name almost a decade ago, but out of laziness (at the time), I didn’t renew the registration. Someone else snatched it around the same time and has had it since. The website is dormant, with only an embedded video playlist from a YouTube account last updated over a year ago. The website itself hasn’t changed in appearance for several years.
Hi Michael, thanks for the excellent writeup. I followed your steps and found that the domain name I’m seeking is currently registered with GoDaddy. Interestingly enough, I actually owned this domain name almost a decade ago, but out of laziness (at the time), I didn’t renew the registration. Someone else snatched it around the same time and has had it since. The website is dormant, with only an embedded video playlist from a YouTube account last updated over a year ago. The website itself hasn’t changed in appearance for several years.
However, what do you think about buying expired high PR domains and creating local directories, business reivew, and event calendar sites that actually provide a value to the community? Then include a sponsored link from local business that is trying to rank? Do you think a method like that is a. morally soluble and b. viable long-term because it creates value?
1. Some domain names don’t go to auction and are instead held by the registrar in their own portfolios (you called this “warehousing” by the registrar). This is probably less than 0.001% of the domain names….actually, probably even less. I suspect it would only be premium domain names with massive exact match local search quantities. Not surprisingly, I cannot find any information from registrars about their procedure, quantities of domains their keep, or ICANN’s rules (if any) about this.

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