How to Buy Expired Domains: A Comprehensive Guide

Tech Industry Cover

Is it a good idea to buy expired domains? Or perhaps it’s just a myth to get people so as not to waste domain names? 

In our years of experience, expired domains are perhaps one of the best investments we made because of their great backlink profile!

If you want to buy expired domains, then you’ve come to the right place. We will talk you through how to buy expired domains and clear any doubts you have in mind.

How to Acquire an Expired Domain

Acquiring expired domain names is pretty simple. In this article, we will discuss the steps you need to observe when buying expired domains. 

But for now, we’ll give you a brief overview so you know what you’re up against. 

Many online tools list expired and dropped domains up for grabs, like the Odys Global Domains Marketplace and GoDaddy auction house. 

Once you’ve found a good name, you can purchase it from the domain owner and buy it for a reasonable price. But based on our experience, good expired domains have a steep price tag. 

This could be for various reasons, such as having high domain authority and quality backlinks. When this happens, you must be ready to be the highest bidder and match the maximum bid. 

Buying an Expired Domain: Step-by-Step

Let’s get into the nitty gritty of buying expired domain names. Don’t worry because we’re here to guide you every step of the way. 

1. Choose a Domain

Choosing a domain name is one of the challenges many website owners have to face. 

It is tricky to find a name that represents exactly that kind of product or service you’re offering to the public. 

Based on our experience, we’ve encountered a few creative blocks along the way. Nonetheless, don’t let this stop you from finding a domain name that works for you. 

2. Check Domain Availability

The domain registrar is a gold mine of some of the best domain names up for grabs. You might even be surprised to find an expired domain that uses the keywords you plan to use! 

Hang on to that name and check if it’s already available in the domain name registrar. You could be the next owner if you’re lucky enough to put in a good bid. 

3. Place a Backorder or Bid on the Domain Name

If your desired domain name is up for grabs, don’t miss the opportunity to put in a good bid. 

Online tools like GoDaddy auctions always have expired domains waiting for their new owner. 

If the platform you signed up for doesn’t require an auction process, you can consider purchasing the domain from the old owner. 

4. Proxy Bidding (Make an Offer)

Another good way to purchase an expired domain is to have someone bid for you. They can be responsible for buying expired domains and outbidding your potential customers.

The beauty of proxy bidding is that they can dedicate their time to finding expired domains while you continue your business operations. 

Just be sure to put a ceiling on the maximum bid you’re willing to spend. 

5. Finalize the Purchase

Once you’ve found a good expired domain and your price is accepted, you can finalize your purchase! 

The expired domain name is transferred to you, and you’ll be the proud owner soon! Don’t forget to pay the necessary fees and have the name listed on the domain registrar. 

Finding Expired Domains

There’s a marketplace where you can find expired domains. 

This helps you streamline your search so that you don’t have to worry about being all over the internet just to find the perfect domain name! 

1. Searching the Domain Marketplace

A good place to start looking for an expired domain is a domain marketplace.

It’s an online platform where a seller puts their expiring domain up for sale, and a buyer makes an offer. 

The beauty of a domain marketplace is it’s an all-in-one platform where you can find several domain names you might be willing to work with. 

Plus, you don’t have to worry about searching in the nooks and crannies of the internet just to figure out where you can find quality expired domain names. 

However, buying an expired domain from a marketplace tends to be pricey. 

It becomes even more expensive if the expired domain already has a good set of quality backlinks and existing traffic on the site. 

2. Utilizing Automated Domain Tools

Never underestimate the power of using automated domain tools. Not only will they help you buy expired domains, but you can also check for their quality. 

Many domain tools today use an intelligent program that helps determine the quality of an expired domain. 

It keeps you in the loop of whether the domain is being used for fraudulent or illegal activities. 

In our years of purchasing expired domains, we’ve always counted on automated domain tools to help us with our search. 

After all, we want to ensure we don’t become victims of whatever the old website has been doing. 

We all want a good domain name that ranks high in search engine indexes and has high-quality content.

3. Exploring Domain Auction Sites

There are a lot of domain auction houses out there that are waiting to be explored. If you’re looking for a specific domain name, best believe an auction house is a good place to go. 

You can find domains in an auction house and match them with the seller immediately. If you put in a good bid, you’ll be able to get your domain in no time! 

Based on our experience in a domain auction house, we’ve encountered various domain investors. 

These investors have one goal: to find new domains they can use for domain flipping!

It helps repurpose old domains, especially those which have good backlinks and authority sites linked! 

Evaluating Expired Domains

Before making a winning bid, you need to evaluate your potential domain name to ensure they meet the standards you’re looking for in a domain. 

You don’t want to buy an expired domain that ranks low in search engines or is being used for fraudulent activities. 

To help you land the best domain name, we’ve listed a few ways to help you with your evaluation. 

1. Analyzing Domain Metrics

Consider domain metrics as your best friend when it comes to looking for the best expired domains. 

It helps you determine the trust rating of a particular website and if it’s a good investment for your company! 

Your potential domain doesn’t necessarily have to be a top level domain. Instead, what’s important is it doesn’t go below what you expected from expired domains. 

Ideally, it should already have good existing traffic or at least be at the first few pages of search results. It’ll be a lot easier for you to build your new site so that it gets the visibility it deserves. 

2. Checking Domain History

Always check the domain history of your potential domain names. Many people skip this step and start building a new website. 

Unfortunately, they fail to realize that the domain history contains valuable information that could help you assess how the domain was used and up until when. 

WHOIS lookup or a Wayback machine is a reliable tool to help you obtain information about expired domains like the following:

  • Previous owners, their addresses, and contact information
  • Date of registration and expiry
  • Previous sales transaction 
  • Whether the website was used to commit illegal activities

Once you’ve cleared this, you’ll be better positioned to decide whether to buy an expired domain. 

3. Examining Backlinks

Backlinks are one of the most common yet effective strategies to build a website’s credibility. 

You put backlinks on your website so that it links to other sites, which usually ranks high in search results. 

Unfortunately, not all expiring domains have a good backlink profile. Some don’t even have backlinks, which is probably why they don’t rank high on search engines. 

A quality expired domain usually has several good backlinks to authority sites. Doing this is a good strategy to send traffic to their site without costing you too much. 

Registering an Expired Domain

Once you’ve scored a great expired domain, your next job is to ensure it appears on the domain registrars. As the new domain owner, it becomes your responsibility to manage it. 

1. Securing the Domain

First off, you need to secure your domain from the previous owner. A way to do this is by buying it directly from the owner, or by placing a bid in auction houses!

This is an important step you need to take, before you’re able to build a new site out of the expiring domain you bought. 

2. Transferring the Domain

After you’ve paid all the necessary fees, it’s time to get the paperwork out of the way and transfer the ownership to you. 

You want to be sure the registration reflects your name just to avoid future problems. Based on our experience, we’ve seen several owners fight over the same domain name, which often leads to a lot of trouble. 

3. Setting Up a Domain Name Server

The last thing you must do is have your domain registered in the domain name system. 

This is a crucial step to finalize everything, so you can say goodbye to the existing website and say hello to yours. 

You can begin setting up your domain name server and managing it yourself. 

Just be sure to keep track of all the necessary details of your domain, such as its expiration date or if there are auto-renew options.

Factors to Consider Before Buying Expired Domains

Once a domain expires, you can choose to have it renewed or offer it for sale in the marketplace. This is a good way to breathe new life into older domains, especially if a lot of work has been put into it. 

However, keep in mind that buying an expired domain can be tricky. You need to consider several factors to ensure you get the most out of your money. 

1. Age of the Domain

Domain age refers to how long the domain name has been used. It could have been used by an owner for a long time or by several others over many years. 

We find buying an aged domain worth it, especially if you want to rank high in search results immediately. Unlike starting from scratch with new domains, your job will be much easier. 

So given a choice between a longer or shorter domain age, we’d always go with the former. Well, not unless it’s been used for illegal activities, then we would never choose it. 

2. Google Index

Most existing website owners aim to have a high ranking in search engines. Achieving this goal can be challenging, especially with the number of websites online you have to compete with. 

A key to ranking high is buying domains that are part of Google’s search index. You’re more likely to reach your potential customers faster, especially if you attach yourself to a private blog network.

In our years of waiting until a domain expires, we’ve been working in the background to check if it’s been indexed by Google and is worth the investment. 

3. Site Traffic

Always check how much traffic the website is getting. Some domains aren’t lucky enough to have more than 50 views in a day, which makes it hard for them to gain visibility.

Regardless of what domains you’re eyeing, be sure it has good traffic. Doing this ensures you reach your target customers faster than intended. 

Some buyers are competitive enough to sign up for a backorder service to get first dibs on domains with good traffic. 

4. Traffic Index

A website’s traffic index keeps you in the loop of how many page visitors and clicks they get daily. Not only that, but it also can let you know the average time a visitor stays on a page. 

The higher the traffic, the better! This translates to better visibility, which some domains can only hope to achieve for now. 

These websites are usually hot in the domain registrars, with many buyers lining up to purchase once the redemption period has ended. 

5. Content Check

You can make money with expired domains if it has a really good content score. Doing a simple content check can help you out. 

People are more likely to buy domains once they’ve discovered that the website has been housing great content. 

It could be for multiple reasons, the most important of which is that the site has gained good traffic in the past years. 

At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what topic the domains have been hosting. As long as it’s good, you have nothing to worry about.

6. Spam Check

No one wants to buy an expired domain used for fraudulent activities. It’s the last thing people who signed up for a backorder service want on their list because it could mean serious trouble. 

Your new site could be associated with the fraudulent and spam activities of the old owners, which we don’t want to happen. 

This being the case, do a quick spam check on your targeted domain name. You can ask for help from your auction partner, especially if you’re unsure what to do. 

7. Citation Flow and Trust Flow

One of the smartest decisions we’ve seen a lot of companies make is buying expired domains as an SEO strategy. 

It has helped them repurpose old websites, especially those with good citation and trust flow. 

Be on the lookout for those types of websites because it will make your job building a website a lot easier. 

You’ve already got good traffic, and all you have to do is keep it up. 

8. Domain Authority and Page Authority Scores

We always look at how high expired domains rank in page authority sites. 

As much as possible, we want them to score high to make us feel better that the platform is authoritative and used for good. 

Notwithstanding this, there are still a few good domains out there that don’t always score high. Nevertheless, don’t make a mistake in thinking they’re no good. 

Sometimes, they need a good person to help their domain reach its full potential. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Before we leave with our parting words, we’ll answer some of the FAQs we get about buying domains. 

How Long Do Expired Domains Last?

In general, domains last until your subscription. Once it ends, consider your domain expired. There’s a grace period to decide whether you want to keep the domain pending delete. 

How Long Until You Can Buy Expired Domains?

We always get asked, “how long until you can buy an expired domain?,” and some people have a hard time finding answers to this.

You can buy them immediately right after you see them in a domain auction house. They sell fast like hot pancakes, so keep your eyes peeled! 


Buying expired domains is one of the best ways to utilize used and forgotten names. Most often than not, these domains house a lot of potentials you don’t want to miss out on. 

You can sign up for a backorder service to ensure you’re updated on the latest expired domains that are up for grabs. 

We hope you enjoyed this article. Let us know in the comments what you think of expired domains. 

Would you ever consider buying one? We’d love to hear your thoughts.

Odys Global Founder and CEO

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