The right domain can certainly play a role in a websites success, so if you are launching a new website, brand, or project, you will want to give strong consideration to your domain name.
If you can get “type in” traffic (from domains like computers.com or cars.com) that’s definitely a win; finding those domains is pretty tough however (or very costly). Having a nice, short, branded URL can also be great for branding. Names such as Yelp, Google, Bing have become household names because companies have taken short, easy to remember names, and put huge marketing budgets behind them, creating some well known brands. Lastly, if you can find descriptive domain names such as phoenixazlawfirm.com or mesaarizonahousesforsale.com, you can also attract some very specific visitors, both through type in traffic and by the credit you get for having your target phrases in your domain name. And of course, we want all of those domains to end in DOT COM or else you will help build someone else’s brand and web traffic.
Finding good domains is tough if you don’t know how to negotiate, so here are some tips:
1. What you never want to do is find a domain owner and tell them all the reasons you really want to buy their domain. It may seem obvious, but if you are desperate to buy, they will hold out for more money.
2. Look on websites such as flippa.com where you can find sellers looking to sell lots of domains and many of them are reasonably priced. Ebay has a domain category, but I would be cautious as there are still lots of shady folks on eBbay (sorry eBay). I also keep a list of domains for sale on this site.
3. GoDaddy has a domain auctions section where you can bid on domain names for sale, so that is also a great place to look.
4. Don’t assume that you have to pay the asking price. The key is to not be desperate for any domain. I have negotiated thousands of dollars off of a domain name because many times a seller is unrealistic in their pricing. If you think a domain is overpriced, you can always ask what valuation method they used to determine the price.
5. Always insist on using an escrow services such as Escrow.com. I have used them for domain sales as low as $50. It just makes the transaction more secure.
6. Hire a professional. You may not know this, but there are professional domain brokers – both companies and individuals – and it’s a strong niche industry. The fees vary and often include an up front fee and / or a commission. I have personally been buying, selling, and negotiating domains for over a decade and would be happy to help you if you have a need. You can use the contact info to reach me. I will tell you up front that my fee will vary based on the transaction, so I cannot give you a simple answer without knowing more information.
7. Do a Google Search for “domains for sale” and you will find lots of listings. Always be cautious because there is always a risk in buying a domain name, especially if you do not use an Escrow service. The biggest risk (which should be obvious) is sending someone money and getting nothing in return.
8. Use an agreement. Just like selling anything else, I always recommend a domain sale agreement.
9. Play nice. Remember on the other end of the transaction is someone you don’t know who has something you want. They are in control, so stay on their good side. In one transaction, I built a relationship (via email) over a few years with a domain seller. In the course of that time, the price dropped from $4,000 to $600 and even then, I bought it on a payment plan paying $25 per month because I was not ready to build it out (and i still haven’t)
I hope this helps you find the domain of your dreams!