Dropped Domains: Here’s How To Snatch The Perfect Expired Domain Names Now.
In the beginning of the World Wide Web era, not many people realized the potential of this new technology.
The first six domain names in history were registered in 1985, but it took another ten years after that for domain registrations to really start to pick up.
Many of the world’s first dot com websites were hosted on short one-word domains like Think.com, Quick.com, Apple.com. But as the web suddenly skyrocketed in popularity in the 90s, it didn’t take long for all the short, simple .coms to get scarce.
Because of the impending death of .com domains, ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, added on more top level domains, including .info and .biz. But the popularity of those TLDs never took off, and to this day, the golden standard of domains is the .com. Dot-com domains are so popular that today popular domains often sell for thousands or even millions of dollars.
Chances are, if you’re looking to snag a short and simple .com domain, it’s already been registered. But that doesn’t mean you have to settle for a long, complicated domain or a spammy-looking .biz or .info site.
If you want a great domain name, dropped domains are a solid option.
Not every person or company that registered dot-coms 10 or 20 years ago has held onto it all that time. Many companies that registered some of the best domain names in the 90s have gone out of business since then. The web is very fluid, and websites come and go every day
A dropped domain is a domain whose registration hasn’t been renewed. When someone doesn’t renew their domain registration, the registrar can then put them up for sale to the highest bidder.
How do you find dropped domains, and how do you determine whether they’re worth the often hefty price tag? Check out the guide below, and get ready to snatch up some prime virtual real estate before someone else beats you to it.
Beginner’s Guide to Dropped Domains
With more and more businesses building an online presence, a useful original domain name may be difficult to find. However, dropped domains may be the perfect opportunity for you to begin building your business’s online identity.
What is a Dropped or Expired Domain Names?
A domain is, simply put, the more memorable name of a website or URL rather than a string of letters, numbers, and symbols.
- Examples: ebay.com, facebook.com, sandwich.com
A dropped domain means that it has expired.
- The owner hasn’t renewed the licence with their domain registrar.
- Usually the registrar can open bidding for that domain, and after 7 days it goes to the highest bidder.
- The process and timeline can vary from registrar to registrar.
Know Before You Buy
Check with the page authority (PA) and domain authority (DA) for domains before you buy.
- You can use the Open Site Explorer at
- They let you judge quality.
Know if it’s banned from Google.
- It might have a high rating, but if it can’t be found by search engines, it’s not useful.
- Check domain names in the Google cache, an online tool that lets you see what version of the page is currently in its index.
- Type: cache:domainname.com in the Google search box to make sure it shows up.
- If you find a great domain that is banned, you can take the risk to purchase the domain and then appeal to Google with a ban reconsideration request.
Know if it’s banned from Google AdSense.
- Many expired domains are banned from Google Adsense.
- Building a website to make money needs to have the AdSense option.
- Look at tools to check if a site is banned.
- Bannedcheck.com, Isbanned.com, Bannedchecksite.com, and iWebtool.com
Check the website’s archive.
- To know what kind of website was associated with that domain, go to archive.org and type in the domain URL.
- A calendar will let you choose a date, as far back as 1996, to see what the website looked like then.
Transfer of Ownership.
- Check the WHOIS database for domain information.
- See how often the domain has changed owners in the last few years as this may alert you to red flags of the domain’s quality.
- Has it been banned from search engines?
- What type of content has it been associated with? Check the Internet Archives to see if it was relevant to your business.
Get to know PageRank
- PageRank can be manipulated to make a domain look attractive.
- Tools like Fake PR Checker will help you catch expired domains that in fact have fake rankings.
How to Buy a Dropped Domain
Know which type of expired domain it is.
- Pre-release, on hold, redemption period, dropping, and deleted.
- Check it’s expiration date with tools like WHOIS Lookup.
- If the expiration date is 1-30 days in the past, contact the domain’s registrar to learn how to get it.
- If the expiration date is 31+ days in the past, check its Registrar Status.
Redemption Period or Pending Delete Restorable
- Domains of this type are in a grace period where the registrar attempts to contact the owner, a period usually lasting 30-40 days.
- It can only be renewed by the original owner during this time and is not available for a new owner.
- You can contact your registration company for information on when the domain will be released to be purchased by a new owner.
- When a domain is pre-release it is sold in auction before it is released to the registry and becomes available to anyone.
- This is a domain that has not been renewed by the original owner before the expiration date.
- It’s being sold by its registrar in an open auction to the highest bidder.
- Pre-release auction sources: SnapNames, TDNAM, and NameJet.
On Hold Domains
- These domains have not been renewed by the owner. When this happens they are placed on REGISTRAR HOLD or REGISTRY HOLD.
- While some on hold domains are actually expired, others are part of a legal dispute.
- Buying source: only purchase by contacting the owner, having them renew the domain’s registration, and then buying directly from them.
- A domain not renewed by the owner that is scheduled for deletion from the registry is a dropping domain.
- Once a domain is dropped from the registry, anyone can buy it, such as through a backorder or drop catching service.
- Backorder sources: GoDaddy, NameJet, Pool, and Snapnames.
- A deleted domain has been dropped from the registry already.
- Buying source: purchase the same way a regular unregistered domain name would be purchased.
Armed with knowledge and the right tools, you can investigate dropped domains ready for you to take your business to the next level. With the right investment of your time, research skills, and money, you can build an online identity worth building on for years to come.
The domainer in you must have wondered at some time as to how exactly can an expiring domain name become available for re-registration by a new owner. To know the answer to this question, you must understand the Status of a domain as listed in the whois database. Here is the URL of the whois lookup provided by Domain Tools. When observing the results of a whois lookup, you will see a record similar in format to the one below:
ICANN Registrar: MARKMONITOR INC.
Registrar Status: clientDeleteProhibited
Registrar Status: clientTransferProhibited
Registrar Status: clientUpdateProhibited
Name Server: NS1.GOOGLE.COM
Name Server: NS2.GOOGLE.COM
Name Server: NS3.GOOGLE.COM
Name Server: NS4.GOOGLE.COM
Whois Server: whois.markmonitor.com
There is a line item in the lookup data labeled Status. In the case of this domain, the status are listed as clientDeleteProhibited, clientTransferProhibited and clientUpdateProhibited Listed below are the various states that can appear in this field, and what they mean (There are two standard protocols, RRP and EPP – RRP is the older protocol that is being phased out in favor of EPP which is more fine grained. There is a specific mapping of statuses between the older RRP and EPP).
Below are the all RRP statuses, followed by EPP statuses.
Registry Operator Status codes: (RRP) Registry Registrar Protocol (Com / Net Registry Operator – Verisign Global Registry)
ACTIVE: The registry sets this status. The domain can be modified by the registrar. The domain can be renewed. The domain will be included in the zone if the domain has been delegated to at least one name server. A domain can only change registrars if in this state.
· REGISTRY-LOCK: The registry sets this status. The domain can not be modified or deleted by the registrar. The registry must remove the REGISTRY-LOCK status for the registrar to modify the domain. The domain can be renewed. The domain will be included in the zone if the domain has been delegated to at least one name server.
· REGISTRAR-LOCK: The sponsoring registrar sets this status. The domain can not be modified or deleted. The registrar must remove REGISTRAR-LOCK status to modify the domain. The domain can be renewed. The domain will be included in the zone.
· REGISTRY-HOLD: The registry sets this status. The domain can not be modified or deleted by the registrar. The registry must remove the REGISTRY-HOLD status for the registrar to modify the domain. The domain can be renewed. The domain will not be included in the zone.
· REGISTRAR-HOLD: The sponsoring registrar sets this status. The domain can not be modified or deleted. The registrar must remove REGISTRAR-HOLD status to modify the domain. The domain can be renewed. The domain will not be included in the zone.
· REDEMPTIONPERIOD: The registry sets this status when a registrar requests that the domain name be deleted from the registry and the domain has been registered for more than 5 calendar days (if the delete request is received within 5 days of initial domain registration it will instead be deleted immediately). The domain will not be included in the zone. The domain can not be modified or purged; it can only be restored. Any other registrar requests to modify or otherwise update the domain will be rejected. The domain will be held in this status for a maximum of 30 calendar days.
· PENDINGRESTORE: The registry sets this status after a registrar requests restoration of a domain that is in REDEMPTIONPERIOD status. The domain will be included in the zone. Registrar requests to modify or otherwise update the domain will be rejected. The domain will be held in this status while the registry waits for the registrar to provide required restoration documentation. If the registrar fails to provide documentation to the registry within 7 calendar days to confirm the restoration request, the domain will revert to REDEMPTIONPERIOD status. The domain status will be set to ACTIVE only if the registrar provides documentation to the registry within 7 calendar days to confirm the restoration request.
· PENDINGDELETE: The registry sets this status after a domain has been set in REDEMPTIONPERIOD status and the domain has not been restored by the registrar. The domain will not be included in the zone. Once in this status all registrar requests to modify or otherwise update the domain will be rejected. The domain will be purged from the registry database after being in this status for 5 calendar days.
EPP Domains (The newer better protocol)
Domain Status: Normally operating domains have a status of “OK” or “Active.” Other status values detail pending operations and restrictions regarding the domain. If the status is OK then the domain can be transferred.
· OK: This is the nominal status value for a domain object at all times, whether or not the domain has pending operations or prohibitions.
· New: This is the nominal status for a newly created domain object. The domain can be modified unless locked.
· Active: The domain can be modified and appears in a zone file. This is the nominal status for a domain object once it has been published in a zone.
· Locked: The domain cannot be transferred, renewed, or deleted. (Though the status value can be changed.) Hierarchical and associated objects cannot be added or removed from the domain object. Domain names involved in Sunrise and other disputes may be locked, subject to registry policies.
· Hold: The domain will not be published in a zone for DNS resolution. Names without at least two nameservers may be placed on Hold status; in this case submit nameserver data through your registrar.
· PendingTransfer: A transfer request has been received for the domain, and completion of the request is pending. The domain cannot be renewed, deleted, or updated while in this state.
· PendingDelete: A delete request has been received from the registrar for the domain. The domain has been removed from the zone, but has not yet been purged from the registry database. The domain cannot be renewed, deleted, transferred, or updated while in this state.
· ClientHold: The domain will not be published in a zone for DNS resolution. This status is placed on the domain by the registrar.
· ClientLock: The domain cannot be transferred, renewed, deleted, or updated. This status is placed on the domain by the registrar. An update command may be used to change the status value. Hierarchical and associated objects cannot be added or removed from the domain object.
So, for those of you interested in registering previously registered – but now expiring domains: the domain will always go into REDEMPTIONPERIOD status before it is released to be re-registered.
It will remain in REDEMPTIONPERIOD status for 30 days at which time it will then move to PENDINGDELETE status. After 5 days in PENDINGDELETE status, the domain will be released to be re-registered.
If a domain is renewed by the original registrant during the REDEMPTIONPERIOD status, the domain will NOT go to PENDINGDELETE status. Once a domain reaches to PENDINGDELETE status, it will become available to re-register.
Hope this helps
Source by Anwar Mehdi
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