Domain names are the names of websites on the Internet. For example, ‘www.buzzle.com’ is the domain name of this website. These can only be purchased from a Domain Name Registration Service Provider who is accredited with the ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers).
Nowadays, it has become a very profitable business to acquire domain names and then resell them in the Internet marketplace for a profit. This can be a very lucrative business if one is not violating Cyber Squatting Laws or Intellectual Property Laws.
Cyber squatting involves buying a domain name with the express intention of extorting a higher than market price value from a prospective buyer, while Intellectual Property Laws involves purchasing a domain name which has a name similar to that of a person or a company that is well-known, again with the express intention of exploiting the price value in the market.
All these activities are punishable by law, and must be avoided, especially if one wants to build a good business and reputation as an Internet Domain Name Reseller.
Reselling Domain Names
Selling a domain name involves a lot of research and hard work. It helps if you compare the names with property locations or real life addresses. Obviously, an address of a particular location will help define the price value of the property when it goes for sale. In the same manner, names of particular domains will gain relative price value depending upon their address. This means the names of your domains have to be something that other people may want for themselves at some point of time in the future.
As a domain name reseller, you have to remain abreast of the latest developments, and purchase relevant domain names which you feel will become valuable sometime down the line. Of course, all this has to be done while ensuring that there is no violation of the aforementioned laws.
Domain names expire after a certain period, depending on the time period that you purchased them for. So, you will to buy them for a long period, or remember to renew your ownership before they expire. This can be an investment, which you will have to factor into your costs, while reselling in the future.
Another thing that you have to consider is which kind of Top Level Domain (TLD) you are purchasing. Different TLDs tend to command different prices. For example a ‘.com’ TLD will often have a higher price than any other TLD. That is not to say that the other TLDs don’t attract high prices, but often the name of the domain will help you determine which kind of TLD will attract more price.
Once you have acquired the domain name(s) that you want to resell, you must now decide on a strategy to resell them. Here are some tips which will help you formulate a good plan.
- There are many sites on the Internet that offer a variety of services which can help owners determine the prices they can expect for the domain names that they want to sell in the marketplace. Some sites may offer to front for the owners to act as go-betweens for a certain fee. These sites may also offer appraisal services, which will help you evaluate the value of your domain name.
- You can also sell the domain name on your own. Start by altering the WHOIS entry to include a ‘For Sale’ in the details.
- You might also consider adding a price option (which may or may not include the word ‘negotiable’) in these details instead of a standard ‘Make Offer’ statement. This will help the potential buyer understand your asking price before he/she contacts you.
- Ensure that the contact details you provide in the WHOIS are relevant and up-to-date. Potential buyers must find it easy to get in touch with you when they want to purchase the domain you are selling. If you change your telephone number or business email ID, make sure you make these changes in the WHOIS directory as well.
- Eventually you will be on your way to create a portfolio of sorts for the domain names that you own. The idea is similar to holding a stock portfolio. Some domains might find buyers right away, while some domains will take time to find buyers. You must be patient and persevere. Just like any other business, this one has its risk factors too.
- Be very proactive with all your potential customers. Keep a business-like tone with all your potential customers. Reply to all their mails even if the initial offer they make is not what you are looking for. This is because some potential buyers will contact you with a low price in order to approach the table from the point of view of negotiating for the best price.
- Negotiation is always the key to a successful sale―whatever you may be selling. Domain name selling is no exception. Depending on the value of the name, determine a price below which you will not sell. This helps you negotiate effectively with potential buyers.
- Another idea is to market the domains for sale aggressively and properly. You can include a list of the names in your email signature line, or make a website or blog where you post the domain links.
- You can and should also post these names in forums, message boards, search engines, and directories. This is somewhat akin to Internet marketing―the idea is to reach out to potential customers where they are likely to see your listing and contact you.
- Last but not the least, when you do find a buyer, take care to provide good after-sales service. Help or assist him with the domain transfer process. This always creates a good impression in the customer’s mind. He/She won’t mind coming back again to deal with you if you have left a good impression.
Domain name reselling has thus become a lucrative business for many who are able to judge future trends on the Internet well.