Three “Expired Domain” Sites for Sale

Three websites went on sale in January that dealt in expiring domains. The webmasters went about providing the results very differently, so I thought it would be instructive to look at each site in turn and how it was set up.

Buffdomains.com

buffdomains.com

This website for sale at flippa lists domains that are pending delete or expired. The site gets the domains from an expiring domains source and downloads them into a MySQL database. A single script gets a fresh list of domains, updates the database, creates the XML sitemaps, and pings Google to let it know about the updates every morning. It doesn’t look too hard to administer, though some basic PHP and MYSQL knowledge would help.

When a visitor sees a domain that they are interested in they can click on the “ORDER” button to backorder the domain which is an affiliate link for GoDaddy on through the Commission Junction affiliate program.
The site also lists domains that have past the deletion point and shows them as “potential expired” domains with an option to “CHECK” the domain to see if it’s still available to register which also goes through the GoDaddy affiliate link earning a commission if they register the dropped domain.
I noticed some of the pending deletes were already deleted when I checked, so the dates might be a little bit off. The owner is proud that he hasn’t spent a cent on paid traffic, noting that everything is organic. The problem is that although the site made $22,000 in 2012, and has only made about $1,000 in the final three months of the year.

Zulist.com

zulist.com

This site sold on the WebHostingTalk forum for around $175. It runs the Cachelogic script which runs a cron everyday to update the domain list every day. So the users go to the website in order to search for expired domains and when they click the register button for any listing the website owner will get GoDaddy affiliate earnings through CJ.com. The script runs about $90 by itself, so whoever bought this got a good deal even though it was only making $5 a month. One interesting about the monetization is that the owner said most of his revenue came from referral traffic through his forum signatures.

PagerankDomains.com

PageRankDomains.com

The Flippa listing is here: https://flippa.com/2877901-pagerank-domain-biz-with-high-revenue-and-a-great-invesment.
Whereas the two sites above relied on visitors coming to browse listings that are dumped in from a data source, PagerankDomains.com actually owns the high PR domains it lists. This is one of those Flippa auctions where the seller is offering to pass on proprietary information to the buyer:
and i will guide the Buyer with special secret Note Book written by me where to buy the domains and how we sell it…easy …

The site’s traffic is strictly type-in (as it’s a good keyword domain). They used this site as a showcase to advertise their Domains during private sales and email sales. A big part of having success with this website would be to stock quality high page rank domains and have a thick rolodex of resellers / hosts / private customers who keep coming back to you for high PR domains.

The site looks really nice, although custom coded php user administration is a headache waiting to happen if you don’t have a developer handy. I really don’t see the need here for the customer portal: the buy buttons go through to Paypal (you can even use their cart), and the receipts can be mailed to the customers. This is one of those sites that someone will buy on potential, even though it doesn’t have revenue stats.

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