Looking for the expired domains in order to optimize a website is one of the popular methods applied by internet marketers and SEO experts.
By using expired domains which already have so many backlinks could make SEO optimization process for a website becomes much easier because the domain already has the authority.
You need to do several tricks before choosing and buying expired domains that could rise up your websites position in search engine results.
We have a tool that could help you to get some old expired domains with thousands of backlinks and high SEO matric value. All you need to do is filtering the domain list in our database according to the high-valued SEO metric.
It is important to be really careful if you are looking for an expired domain that will be used to build PBN or your own money site.
There are several factors that will be a warning to you because if you did not pay attention to these factors, all you have done will be wasted.
It could cause your website’s position in SERP degraded. The worst is Google will de-index your website. So, before you look for expired domains, you need to read this guide to stay away from trouble.
What is the expired domain?
The expired domain is a domain that has been at the end of its expiry period but was not renewed by the previous owner.
According to the ICANN.org, after a domain is expired it will not be released to public but it will be on Auto-Renew Grace Period phase, which is applied for 45 days.
After that, it will be on Redemption Grace Period for 30 days. Commonly, the registrar will ask the domain owner to extend it, in this period. But if it is failed, the domain will be auctioned.
Each registrar would have different terms and conditions.
For example, if you bought a .com domain in GoDaddy and did not renew it after one year, GoDaddy will give you a note to renew your domain.
You can extend your domain within 18 days after the expiry date in normal price without an additional price. But if it has passed the 18-day period then you will be charged the additional price (about $80) to renew the domain.
On the 25th day of the expiry date, the domain will be included in the auction for 10 days. Anyone could make a bid and the domain will be given to the highest bidder as long as the previous owner did not renew it.
If in there is not offer during the auction then the domain will be in the Closeout Auction for 5 days.
The domain will be sold for USD 11 on the first day, if there is no buyer then it will be $10 on the 2nd day, $9 on the third day, $8 on the fourth day, and then $5.
For further information about the periods then you can read it on the GoDaddy in this article.
There are also various reasons of why a domain is not extended by the owner. It could be because the owner does not want it anymore or maybe the owner forgot to extend it.
If it has been used for a website and it got high-quality backlinks then it definitely has strong SEO.
When a domain is expired then this is your big opportunity to buy it and then use it for your online business.
There are several benefits of using an expired domain, such as:
• It has aged, Google will be more likely trust an old website than a new one.
• It has the backlink, which is an important factor in SEO.
• It has traffic, which will attract more visitors much easier.
With such several benefits, expired domains will make the SEO optimization becomes way much easier compared to using the new domain.
Besides, your website will easily get traffic from search engine so it could increase the business.
So, how to use the expired domain for SEO?
In general, there are three usual methods done by SEO practitioners in utilizing the expired domains.
1. You immediately use it for money site or main website.
2. You use for creating PBN, which later you create a link from it that will be pointed to your money site.
3. Redirect 301, where the traffic from the expired domain will be redirected to the money site.
Things to Consider Before Buy Expired Domains
There are thousands or even hundred thousands of expired domains or aged domains available for sale in every day.
However, not all of them will give a positive impact on SEO optimization.
Just because it has good age and thousands of backlinks, it does not mean that it will give great SEO strength if the backlinks are poor at the quality.
So, before you choose an expired domain either for main website or PBN, you need to consider several things in order to make all things work.
And if you did not pay a close attention, it is going to give bad impact on your website.
1. Avoid a domain that contains a keyword phrase or Exact-Match Domain
What is that?
This is the example of the Exact-Match domain: BuyCheapFootballSHoes.com, TipsTOFindJob.com, NaturalTreatmentForAcne.com etc.
This trick is used by so many SEO experts. By using a domain name that contains the targeted keyword, your website will easily get into the first page of Google Search result.
But it is not going to happen if you apply it in nowadays.
So, does it mean that a keyword in a domain will give bad impact for SEO?
Well, it depends.
But, why should we avoid it?
Let’s look at a tweet from Matt Cutts below.
Minor weather report: small upcoming Google algo change will reduce low-quality "exact-match" domains in search results.
— Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) September 28, 2012
The main problem is not the domain name, but the poor quality of it.
As we explained, Exact-Match Domain technique had been used by many SEO practitioners in early 2010’s.
At the time, Google was frequently showing the websites with that kind of name in the search result even though those websites had Low-Quality contents.
Since the Exact-Match domain does not give positive feedback to SEO, the webmasters just let it got expired. So, it might be that an expired domain was a website or PBN with low-quality content.
Thus, it is better to stay away from the exact-match keyword domain.
Unless it has good quality, for example, it has many backlinks from high authority websites, has DA, PA, TD, and CF values are above 30 points etc.
But it still needs deep analysis before you decide to buy it.
About how to analyze an expired domain manually will be explained at the end of this article.
2. Pay attention to trademark
Using other’s trademark in your domain name could involve you in a legal issue.
For example, CheapSamsung.com will lead you to unnecessary issue just because Samsung is a company’s trademark.
If Samsung knows you have a website or blog with their name in your domain name then they have right to sue you.
3. “Brand-able” or “brand + niche”
This thing is not too important if you just want to create PBN as long as you do the previous two things above.
But if you look for an expired domain for the main website, make sure to find a brand-able domain name or brand + niche that still related to the topic or website category.
For example, FashionSky.com, SusanFashion.com, SharkFashion.com, ZilaFashion.com will be a good name for online shop or blog with fashion niche.
Brand-able domain helps the identity of your website so it will be much easier to be known by the public. So, make sure that the name is memorable and easy to spell.
Topic or niche on the domain helps to describe the website, product, or business of yours.
Try to find popular extensions like .com, .org, or .net unless if you target the traffic from certain countries you can use ccTLD (Country Code Top Level Domain).
Example for ccTLD domain extension:
.in for India
.id for Indonesia
.ca for Canada
.fr for France
You need to focus on the niche of your website even though it is just for PBN. Find an expired domain that was previously used for a website with the related topic to your main website.
If you are managing a website about the cat so you can look for an expired domain that was used for a web/blog about the cat as well.
Or you may find an expired domain that was used for a website about the pet in general. Use it for PBN and then create some contents about the cat and create a link pointed to your site.
This is closely related to backlink, expired domains commonly already have backlink from the similar website or related niche.
Even though you cannot find such domain name, you can use expired domain that was used for a website in various topics or general niche.
After that, you can build the domain for PBN with various contents and categories, including the related category that is suitable for your money site.
You cannot use a domain which has a completely different niche or has no connection to your website’s niche.
For example, if you create PBN in cat niche using a domain was used for technology website, then the PBN may have irrelevant backlinks.
Even though you build it for PBN with high-quality content, but the Off Page SEO quality is not good enough, even it looks like a spammy blog.
When you create a link from the PBN to your main website, you know the impact to your website.
Most of the SEO experts would recommend you to find an expired domain that is at least two years old of age.
The domain age can be found according to Whois data, however, we suggest you count the age according to the data of Archive.org/Wayback Machine.
Why should you?
Whois is using data’s date when the domain is registered, meanwhile, Wayback Machine is sorted by the first time a website was made.
Search engine does not crawl a domain if it was not or yet a website.
If a domain name was registered two years ago and built as a website one year later then the search engine will count it for one year, not two.
So, we highly encourage you to check the website age, not domain age, use data from archive.org as the reference.
Make sure that the domain you want to buy is still indexed by Google. Do not buy the expired domain that has been de-indexed by Google.
In order to make sure if a domain is still indexed by Google, you just need to click “site:DomainName.com” in Google search box. Please look at the picture below:
Picture A shows that the domain is still indexed by Google, while picture B shows that the domain is not indexed.
There are two possibilities why a domain name de-indexed.
First, the domain is getting Google penalty,
Second, the domain is dropped or deleted from the registry. In other words, the domain is available for re-registration like registering a new domain.
SEO metrics for reference
There are millions aged domains that you can buy out there.
Using some SEO matric will be useful for filtering them or at least it can be an initial reference to look for an expired domain by predicting its quality.
Majestic TF and CF
TF and CF are metric developed by Majestic SEO for predicting SEO’s strength of a website based on the certain criteria.
TF or Trust Flow is a matric to measure the quality of website based on the backlink sources that are linking to the web.
Sites that have backlinks from trusted sites will get a high TF score.
Meanwhile, if the links came from unreliable sites then the TF score will be low. TF is scaled from 0 to 100, higher means better.
CF or Citation Flow is also scaled from 0 to 100. Citation Flow is used for scoring how strength a webpage based on the links quantity that pointed to the webpage.
Moz DA and PA
Similar to TF and CF, DA and PA are metrics developed by Moz.com for scoring the strength SEO website from 1 to 100.
DA or Domain Authority is a metric that predicts how strong a domain or website towards the search engine to be shown on SERP.
PA or Page Authority is a matric to predict the strength of specific page of a website to be shown on SERP.
Just keep in mind that those metrics are not the score that could value the real quality of a domain. The most important thing is the backlink’s quality.
Pay attention to the backlink source because this is an important thing that forces you to do the manual checking.
You should look for an expired domain with backlink that comes from average high-quality and relevant sites. If most backlinks come from irrelevant sites then it might be a spam backlink.
See the comparison between the total quantity of backlink and the domain quantity that give backlinks (referring domain). If a domain has 500 backlinks from only one or two domain then it could be a bad sign.
Good backlinks are the contextual backlinks or those that are located in the article/content.
Avoid the site-wide backlink or backlink that is placed on all page of the site. Commonly, this link is positioned in the footer or sidebar.
Have dofollow attribute, backlink with nofollow attribute will not give any SEO effect. However, most SEO experts agree that it is better to have backlink with mixed of dofollow and nofollow so it will look natural.
You also need to check the OutBond Link (OBL) from the source page of backlink. If the page has OBL more than 100 then it might be categorized as a link farm page.
The quantity of backlink may not too important. But it is better to get an expired domain which has at least 30 or 50 backlinks. If the quantity is too small even though the backlink is a high-quality one, someday you may lose the backlink eventually.
Step by Step How to Find Expired Domains
To look for an expired domain, you can visit BuycomDomain.com, you will see millions of domain names along with the SEO metrics value like the picture below.
Those domains are listed in the marketplace, auction and also expired domains that have been deleted and dropped can be bought at a regular price.
Please log in to use all features, or you can make a free account.
Note: In this tutorial to find an expired domain, we use Majestic metrics as the reference to analyze the backlink.
Setting the column
Set the column by clicking the column link on top-right of the table. It will show you the table list.
You can show or hide those columns from the table just like what you want by clicking each column button.
Activate or show these columns:
Domain : domain name column
DA : Moz Domain Authority
PA : Moz Page Authority
TF : Majestic Trust Flow
CF : Majestic Citation Flow
MjRD : Majestic Referring Domain / number of domain that give backlink
MjLink : Majestic Total Backlinks
Archive : age of domain according to Archive.org/WayBackMachine
GgIndex : Google Index / total page indexed by Google
That is the standard setting of looking for an expired domain. It helps you to get the domain quality and you can also show the other columns according to your needs.
Length : length or character number
Digit : total digit/number in the domain
Hyphen : number of hyphen (-) in domain
MzRD : Moz Referring Domain
MzRank : Moz Rank
MzLink : Moz Total Backlinks
MzSpam : Moz Spam Score
MjRIP : Majestic Referring IP’s
MjRS : Majestic Referring Subnets
Whois : domain age according to Whois data
Alexa : Global Alexa Traffic Rank
AxLink : Total backlinks based on Alexa
GgLink : Google Backlinks
Search : Google global monthly searches
CPC : Approximate Adwords CPC
SemRank : Semrush Rank
SemTraffic : Semrush organic search traffics
Price : Highest price/bid
Bids : Number of bids
EndTime : Auction end or domain expiration time
MarketPlace : Place where domain listed (GoDaddy, Sedo, DynaDot)
ListType : Listing type (Bid, Buy Now, Make Offer, Closeout, Expired)
Set the filtering so the table will only show the domains that are suitable for your needs. Click the Show Filter button to show the filter setting.
1. Click the filter Extension (TLD) and choose .com, .net, and .org to look for an expired domain with common extension or you can adjust it with your needs.
2. Set Moz DA and Moz PA on 15 as minimum.
3. Set Majestic TF and Majestic CF on 10 as minimum.
4. Majestic RD (Referring Domain) on 10 as minimum.
5. Set Majestic Backlinks on 50 as minimum.
6. Set Age by Archive.org on 2 as minimum
7. And then set the Google Indexed Pages at least 1 to make sure the domain is still indexed by Google.
You may add the other filter according to your needs.
After you finish, the table will automatically show the domains according to the criteria that you just entered in filter setting.
Evaluating the Expired Domain
Now is the time to evaluate each domain that you will buy.
Even though the filter is on, it is still important to check it manually to make sure every data is valid.
Before you take another step, click the domain name that you want, to make sure the availability of the domain.
If the domain is available to register, on sale or auctioned, it is better to not doing anything yet.
You need to analyze it first to make sure that the domain you want has the good quality for your PBN and website.
Click the (+) sign on the left side of the domain name and you will see the complete data of the domain.
On the Source Links you will see several links that will redirect you to the third party service where you can analyze or check the domain directly.
Check Google Index
Click the Google link to see whether or not the domain you want is indexed by Google.
You will be redirected to the Google search that will show the page number of the domain that is indexed by Google.
If there is no indexed page then it means the domain is not indexed by Google, you better find another one.
But if the result shows the indexed pages at least one then the domain is still indexed by Google. You can take the next step.
Check Domain History
The next step is checking the history with WayBack Machine or Archive.org to see if a website was built using the domain.
With Archive.org, you can also know the age of a website by looking on the date when the domain is crawling by WayBack Machine.
To see the domain history, click Archive.org link (A) and you will be redirected to the page like the picture below.
On the top part, you can see the date (B) when the domain was crawling by WayBack Machine. This is the reference date to count the website age.
The bottom part, there is the list of year and month. Click the date colored in blue (C) to see the website look at the time.
From the picture above you can know that the domain was used for what kind of website.
Avoid domain names was used for a website with banned niche or content like gamble, pornographic or nudity, violence, illegal weapons, etc. unless your website has the similar topic.
Some experts suggest avoiding the expired domain that has been dropped more than twice. But some other experts argue that this thing is not so important if it has good backlink profile.
To check it then you can click the Whois link (A) like in the picture below.
You will be redirected to whois.domaintools.com where you can see the domain age based on the date when the domain was registered (B) and how many times the domain had been dropped (C).
Analyze the Backlink Profile
This is the most important part when you look for an expired domain because the quality of a domain is based on the backlink in it.
There are several tools that can be used for analyzing the backlink profile like Moz, Ahref, and Majestic. In this tutorial, we are going to use Majestic.
1. Referring domains
First, you need to pay attention to MjRD column (the number of domains that gives backlink) and MjLink (total number of backlink). The ratio of both metrics should be rational.
For example, TravelDiscounts.com has 502 backlinks (MjLink) come from 158 domains (MjRD). It means one domain averagely gives 3-4 backlinks.
The comparison can be touted as a rational number and a good sign that TravelDiscounts.com can be a good expired domain candidate for your PBN or main website.
Another example, espacioapr.org gets backlinks from 845 domains with the total number of 174,628 backlinks.
It means that one domain gives more than 200 backlinks. It is not rational.
It is probably the backlink came from side-wide backlink or footer backlink or blog-roll. This type of backlink will give a negative impact on SEO.
However, this thing does not always mean that it is a low-quality domain. But it is better to avoid that kind of domain.
Next, you need to deep analyze through a website Majestic.com. Click the Majestic link and you will be redirected to the Site Explorer of Majestic like the picture below.
2. Anchor text
What is Anchor Text?
Anchor Text is keywords, phrase, sentence, or text that is used for a link. In the HTML code, it will be like this:
<a href="http://www.sitename.com/page-url">Anchor Text</a>
In a link building strategy, Anchor Text has a huge role that can give great impact on SEO optimization.
Good Anchor Text should be varied. It may consist of:
• Generic anchor: click here, read more, etc.
• Brand anchor: domain name, domain product, website name, etc.
• Naked link: http://www.domainname.con./post-page
• Keyword: cheap car
• Related keyword: cheap car in New York, place to buy cheap car, etc.
• Image anchor
Avoid backlink with the same anchor text more than 40%.
In the Site Explorer Majestic page, you can scroll it down and see the Anchor Text part like shown in the picture below:
From the picture above, the combination of anchor text looks good because the variant consists of several anchor text.
Besides the variants, you also need to avoid anchor text that contains negative words like gamble, nudity, weapons, illegal drugs, and the similar.
It will be much better if the anchor text of an expired date is relevant to the niche of your websites.
3. Check the actual backlink
The next process is checking directly to the URL page of backlink source.
It is better if you can do the checking on all backlink to make sure the quality of each backlink.
But if it is not possible because the backlink is too many then you can do it randomly especially for backlink that comes from domain with the highest score of TF and also gives backlinks at the most.
On the page of Majestic Site Explorer, click “Ref Domain” tab. You can see the list of website that gives links, like the picture below.
Then sort the referring domain list according to the highest TF or the highest number of backlink to make the checking process becomes easier.
Then you check the actual backlink that comes from each referring domain.
In order to see the backlink source’s URL, click the number of backlink on each referring domain that is located in the “Backlink” column (A).
Now you can see the information of backlink source along with the page title (B), backlink source’s URL (C), anchor text (D), TF and CF value as well as URL target.
To see the actual backlink, click the “External Backlink” column and click the backlink source URL (C) to visit the origin page of backlink.
And then you can check whether or not the backlink is still on the backlink source’s page. If it is still there then it is a good sign.
From the picture above, the backlink use “Fabulous Travel: A Thrifty Tour of Scotland” as the anchor text and it came from USA Today website.
Make sure that the page of backlink source does not provide banned contents and it is better if the content is relevant to your website.
Check if the link is dofollow or nofollow, link with nofollow attribute will give nothing for SEO strength.
Also, check the link locating, is it in the content, comment box, footer, sidebar, or anything else. The best link should be located inside of the content.
Please repeat the steps to check the next backlink. If you’ve finished it and sure with the domain quality then you can buy the domain now.
To find the expired domain with a low price, you can start with a deleted or dropped domain because you can register it with the standard price like the new one.
Or look for the domain with Closeout listing type where you can buy it at the price range between $5 and $11.
If you want a high-quality domain, you should surf the auction or marketplace with the listing type of Bid, Buy Now, or Make Offer.
Even though you must compete with other bidders or the price is probably more expensive, the result may be worth it.
If you are lucky, you can get a domain with good quality but very low in price because there is no other bidder.
Please share this guide so it can be useful for your beloved family and friends!