Your Guide to the Domain Aftermarket

A man using a computer

Key Takeaways

  • Buying a domain can sometimes be a competitive and challenging process. 
  • The domain aftermarket is a way to get the domain you want. 
  • Our eBook explains how to explore the aftermarket for domains and do your homework before purchasing.


If you’ve ever tried to choose and then buy a new domain name for your business, you know how hard it can be to find one that’s both suitable and available.

In today’s digital world, your business needs an unforgettable domain name that’s on-brand and ideally aligned with your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy. That’s why branded, memorable domains are sought after so fervently. Many have been known to sell for millions of dollars; the domain name dating.com sold for $1.75 million in 2010, and investing.com sold for $2.45 million in late 2012.

However, with an estimated 100,000 domains registered each day, it can be incredibly challenging to get the domain you want as it may already be owned by someone else. 

Here’s the good news. Just because the name you want is already taken, it doesn’t mean you can’t get it. Through the domain aftermarket, you have a way to secure a domain name that’s currently owned by someone else. 

Purchasing the name you want on the aftermarket may be easier than you think. Here’s what you need to know.

What Is the Domain Aftermarket?

The domain aftermarket is an online marketplace for domain names where you register a bid or make an offer to purchase a domain name.

While it may take a little more effort to secure the domain you want on the aftermarket, it’s well worth it. Your domain name is so much more than the address of your website — it’s an extension of your overall brand.

As tempting as it is to come up with alternative spellings or variations for your desired domain name, the simpler your domain name, the better. Your customers are more likely to remember a short, easy-to-spell domain than one with dashes, underscores or random letters and numbers.

To find out if your domain is currently available for purchase, visit the Network Solutions website and type in your desired domain name.

A screenshot of the Network Solutions domain search page

If you still don’t see what you want, then it’s time to begin exploring the domain aftermarket to scope out names you can purchase. 

What You Need to Know About the Domain Aftermarket

Before you buy your domain on the aftermarket, take the time to do your homework. Start by researching the domain for any potential trademark issues and work with a lawyer to help clear any names with a trademark search. That way, you won’t accidentally infringe on an existing trademark.

Next, do the math on your investment to decide if a higher-priced premium domain is worth it for your brand. You may find that with the price tag attached to your desired domain, one at a lower cost will be just as effective.

From there, you’ll have a clear idea if you should buy a domain on the aftermarket or go back to the drawing board to come up with some new options for potential domain names.

Here are the most common ways to purchase via the aftermarket: 

  • Expired domains or expiring domains: Buy an expired domain, which is one that existing owners don’t renew. This is a great way to pick up an ideal domain name as thousands of domain names expire every day.
  • Dropping domains: Domains need to be renewed regularly, and owners may choose not to renew them for various reasons. By monitoring for domains that may potentially drop, you have a proven way to pick up desirable domains, including those with the .com extension.
  • For sale by owner: In some scenarios, you can buy directly from the owner or through a domain broker, a domain investor or an auction site that specializes in listing domains. If you choose this option, take measures to ensure a smooth financial transaction and domain transfer.

 

Strategies for Securing a Domain Through the Aftermarket

You’ll find many options available for buying a domain on the aftermarket, so it’s critical to get a handle on the steps involved before deciding to finalize your purchase. 

We’ve covered everything you need to know in a free eBook, which is available for download here: Your Guide to the Domain Aftermarket and Getting the Domain Name You Want.

But here’s a quick overview to help you get started.

Backorder Your Domain
A solid strategy to secure a domain on the aftermarket is to buy it on backorder. When a domain name’s registration has lapsed, been left unused or forgotten by the owner, you may be able to get a short, memorable and highly brandable domain.

Work with your domain registrar to see what options they may have to help you monitor for domains that are set to drop or expire.

A picture of the Network Solutions domain marketplace

Buy a Premium Domain 

Another option is to purchase a premium domain. If a premium domain is for sale, it’ll be available to purchase immediately through a domain registrar.

If it’s currently owned by someone but isn’t being used or listed for sale, don’t give up. You might be able to buy it from a domain investor or by working with a domain broker who will help identify the owner and negotiate a deal. 

Get the Domain You Want With the Domain Aftermarket

The domain aftermarket offers a proven way to secure your desired domain name, even if it doesn’t seem to be available at first. There may be times when getting the name you want simply isn’t possible. But before you search for one of many possible alternatives, start by exploring available aftermarket options. 

Download the eBook: Your Guide to the Domain Aftermarket and Getting the Domain Name You Want.


Image Credits 

Feature Image: Unsplash/Nikita Kachanovsky
Image 1: via Network Solutions 

Image 2: via Network Solutions