You may have heard of the practice of buying up expired domains. By doing this, you’ll become the owner of a website that was once alive and kicking, but has since ceased to be, for whatever reason. Once it’s in your control, there’ll be a whole host of things you can do that’ll have the recently revived website profitable, and ultimately putting money in your back pocket. Of course, there are plenty of things you’ll want to consider before diving in and snapping up any old defunct site that you come across. Not all expired domains are — or may have ever been — valuable, but if you do your research, know what you’re doing, and take steps to do things the correct, smart way, then you may just find that this approach takes you on an exciting, profitable venture.
And so, without any further introduction, let’s dive into the wonderful world of buying expired domains, and going through the process of monetising them.
What’s the benefit?
There must be a reason why people are deciding to revive old websites from death. They’ve gone, maybe no-one’s even missing those sites, so what’s the advantage of snapping them up and making them part of the world wide web again? Well, it’s because you can make money using those old sites, or, at the very least, they can be an added tool that helps you make money. It all depends on how you go about the process.
An example of an expired domain being monetised above.
One way they can be useful is that they help you to quickly build an authority site. Let’s say that you’re trying to build a new authority or niche site. If you opt for a brand new domain name, you’ll have to go through the sometimes lengthy and complicated process of building authority. If you instead choose a domain that already has authority, then a large chunk of your work has already been done for. They cost the same, too, so it even makes sense that on that level.
Another option is to to take the dead domain, and then use a 301 direct to push visitors who typed in that web address to your main website. Let’s say you have a website that’s called something like “FrogHats.com” as your main website. It’s the moneymaker. If you found that “FrogHat.com” was expired, it’d make sense to buy it up, and then push visitors to that website ahead to your original site.
Another way you can do this is to take a website that you think will receive traffic organically, and then use affiliate marketing. You already have an idea that the website is going to get a lot of hits because of the name. Let’s say, for example, that it’s a close spelling of a hugely popular website. Every day, there’ll be people visiting because they mistyped. When they land at the address, they might just click on one of the links you provide, which will help to earn you money.
How to Find Expired Domains
So we’re sure that all sounds good, but how do you go through the process of finding these websites? You know they’re out there, but that’s not going to be of any use to you. You need to have them in your portfolio, not sitting out there in cyberspace, unclaimed.
There’s no fast, cheaters way to find these web addresses. You’ll have to put in the work yourself. There’s software you can use to find expired websites, but you’ll still need to put in some information and look around. You may start by searching for keywords related to your industry; the software will then find websites related to those keywords that currently aren’t live. You can also look at digging around old articles on popular websites, and clicking any hyperlinks. You’ll probably already have experience of clicking a link wanting more information, only to find that the website has since expired.
An example tool – DomCop that can be used to find expired domains.
If researching the right expired domain names is too much work though you could even try hiring someone from Fiverr to do the work for you.
It’s also possible to bid for expired domains at auction, though you’ll want to be smart with your bidding. Those prices can move up pretty quickly.
How to Monetise Domains
Once you’ve got an expired domain, you can quickly monetise it by using a tool like WOW TRK’s offer feed, which you can configure to show offers based on certain verticals, geo-target the list. With our offer feeds there is no need to manually update the page, the list keeps up to date with offers live in your affiliate account. All you’ll need to do is build a landing page and incorporate the affiliate marketing tool into it. It’s an effective way to ensure that your domain isn’t showcasing dead offers, thus it will always be able to make you money.
There’s an art to dealing with expired domains, but once you get the hang of it, it can be a fantastic new income stream!