Buying domains – where to look for and buy domains?

SEO SEO Basics
Krystian GrabianowskiKrystian Grabianowski
Published: 11.06.2021
11 minute

Whether you run a service company, a store, an seo background or a blog – wanting to function on the Internet with your website you face the choice of a web domain. Before buying it, it is worth considering what features it should have and what domains should you beware of? Is it better to buy a “used” domain that can help your site’s positioning, or is it better to opt for a “fresh” domain? In the following post I will try to present the pros and cons of each of these choices.

What is a web domain and what is it used for?

.
In a nutshell an Internet domain is the name / address at which a website is availablea. By typing the name of a particular domain in the browser bar, you can get to the homepage of a particular website.

It can be compared to a physical address in the real world. Interestingly, such a direct procedure was performed by IT FASHION POLAND GROUP & PARTNERS sp. z o.o. as part of the online store moliera2.com. The domain name is the same as the streetwhere the company’s headquarters is located.

.

domain purchase
Moliera2.com store contact information
.

Continuing the comparisons to the real world, without an Internet domain, just as without a land address, we will not build a house / launch a website. What’s more, we have to buy the right to a given address and pay for it regularly – by renewing the Internet domain.

What impact does a domain have on SEO?

.

As I mentioned earlier, without a domain, there is no website on the Internet, so it is of great importance in SEO. Let’s see the basic components regarding domains that affect SEO.

  1. Domain name – it used to be much more important than it is today, but it should not be depreciated. Let’s assume that we run a bicycle store in the English-speaking market. In such a case, a domain of, for example, bike.com could be a catch-all. With reasonable linking to it, getting top positions for phrases related to bike could be easier than with other names.
  2. Domain extension – it’s a good idea to make it consistent with your site’s location and profile.

  3. Domain age – the older the domain, the longer and richer its history may be, which is worth checking.

  4. .

  5. Penalties from Google, i.e. filters and bans – if the domain has been positioned, especially before the Google Penguin and Google Panda updates, then there is a possibility that it has been penalized by Google, which significantly hinders effective SEO efforts on it.
  6. Link profile – that is, who is linking to a given domain or its sub-sites and how. Since this is the main element of offsite activities, you should pay close attention to it.

  7. .

How to choose the right domain?

.

Choosing the right domain and what factors you should consider depends on the purpose for which you want to acquire it. You should take a slightly different approach when building your next site for a seo backend, a different approach for a blog or private label, and a different approach for a store or new branding. When choosing a domain, it is worth paying attention to the following aspects, among others:

.

  • Domain extension – for a business in Poland, it is worth opting for a .pl domain, but operating on a global scale and not limited to one country, choosing a domain with a .com extension seems reasonable.
    Check out Senuto’s material on international SEO if you want to position yourself abroad.

    .

  • Remarkable name – an easy-to-remember address will be able to be distributed more easily and will look better on print and advertising materials.

  • .

  • Domain history – and I will focus on this element later in the article.

Domain history matters

.
It is debatable whether the mere age and continuity of domain maintenance matters. It’s hard to imagine that the fact that a domain that has and has had no links and its content is just a few sentences on the home page should be a significant ranking factor.

Nevertheless, one can proceed from the assumption that the longer a domain has been maintained, the greater the chance that it has valuable (but also harmful) linksand for this reason it may be worthy of attention. Therefore, domains that have had valuable content and a healthy link profile for a long time can positively influence and accelerate the process of positioning a site.

How to check a domain’s history?

.

First of all, in order to check the domain history, you need to answer the questions:

.

  • What content was previously on the domain, with what subject matter?

    .

  • What was the visibilityof the service in the search engine?

    .

  • What is the age of the domainand what was the continuity of its renewal?

    .

  • What are and have been the incoming links directing to the domain in question?

  • .

Let’s see how you can answer the above questions before buying a domain.

.

How to check what was on a given domain?

.

With the help of a tool like Internet Archive Wayback Machine (http://archive.org/web/), you can without much trouble check the history, appearance and content that used to be on the analyzed domain (provided it was active long enough).

Overview of Internet Archive Wayback Machine snapshots for senuto.com
Overview of Internet Archive Wayback Machine snapshots for senuto.com
.

Excerpt of preserved appearance from the Internet Archive Wayback Machine for senuto.com dated November 24, 2015.
Excerpt of preserved appearance from Internet Archive Wayback Machine for senuto.com as of November 24, 2015
.

This makes it easy to see what kind of content appeared on a given website, and even read it.

How to check the visibility of a domain?

.

You can proceed from a simple assumption:if the pages from a given domain ranked for a large number of thematic keywords in search engines – then the domain was and maybe still is valuable, and the people who handled the SEO of the website did a good job. The easiest way to check a domain’s historical visibility is with the help of … Senuto ????.

Historical visibility of wahingtonpost.com domain according to Senuto
Historical visibility of wahingtonpost.com domain according to Senuto
.

Of course, in case the site previously had high visibility and was abandoned, it is worth verifying why this happened.

How to check the age of a domain?

.

The age of a domain is easiest to check with the help of such services as:

.

after specifying the domain of interest, we will get the desired data.

Information on the age of the forbes.com domain from who.is
.

 

Forbes.com domain age information from whois.domaintools.com.
Information on the age of the domain forbes.com from whois.domaintools.com.
.

 

How to check inbound links to a domain (backlinks)?

.
Checking inbound links to a domain is best done with dedicated tools. Moreover, it is good not to limit yourself to just one of them, and the analysis is better done with the help of more SEO tools. Among others, you can use:

With their help, you determine not only how many and what sites are linking to a given domain, but also the overall (subjective) quality score of those links and the anchors from which those links are coming. It’s worth remembering to mainly after buying a domain, and before starting any activities, check the links coming to a given domain with the help of Google Search Console. For more on how to use this tool, see the post: Google Search Console. A Comprehensive Guide.

See below for examples of the data you can approach using Ahrefs.

.

Basic parameters of wahingtonpost.com domain from ahrefs.com
Basic parameters of wahingtonpost.com domain from ahrefs.com
.

 

Anchor distribution and geographic distribution of washingtonpost.com domain links from ahrefs.com
Anchor distribution and geographic distribution of washingtonpost.com domain links from ahrefs.com
.

Domain purchase – where to look for and buy domains?

.
When buying new domains (or expired domains without an owner), you can use the services of many companies. When deciding on a particular “operator”, it is worth paying attention to the cost of both the purchase of a domain and its renewal (the same should be paid attention to when choosing hosting)..

Buying domains directly from registrars, you will mostly find domains “without history”. First of all, this is because the secondary market for (expired) domains is very competitiveand the best domains are snapped up pretty quickly by people for whom positioningand domain trading are the daily bread. However, there may always be a “gem” in the clutter of domains, which for various reasons has been overlooked..

When buying a domain you should not decide just by the price for the first yearof domain maintenance. Be sure to check what costs you will have to pay in the future. Let’s see how it looks like for 6 selected companies, offering to buy an Internet domain..

domain.com

.

View before buying a domain on domain.com
View before buying a domain on domain.com
.

 

Summary of purchase and renewal prices of selected domains on domain.com (as of 06.2021)
Summary of purchase and renewal prices of selected domains on domain.com (as of 06.2021)
.

bluehost.com

View domain availability and purchase on bluehost.com
View domain availability and purchase on bluehost.com
.

 

Excerpt from price list for buying Internet domains and their renewal on bluehost.com
Excerpt from price list for buying Internet domains and their renewal on bluehost.com
.

hostgator.com

.

View of domain purchase and availability on hostgator.com
View of domain purchase and availability on hostgator.com
.

 

Renewal cost information for a purchased domain on hostgator.com
Renewal cost information for a purchased domain on hostgator.com
.

godaddy.com

View of domain availability, purchase and renewal costs on godaddy.com
View of domain availability, purchase and renewal costs on godaddy.com
.

 

View of domain availability and buying opportunities on namecheap.com
View of domain availability and buying opportunities on namecheap.com
.

Review of sample domain purchase and renewal costs on namecheap.com
Review of sample domain purchase and renewal costs on namecheap.com
.

 

View of domain purchase and availability on dreamhost.com
View of domain purchase and availability on dreamhost.com
.

 

Summary of sample renewal costs for a purchased domain on dreamhost.com
Summary of sample renewal costs for a purchased domain on dreamhost.com
.

Summary of domain purchase sites

.

. .

.

.

.

.

.

.

LP

.

Place of purchase

.

Registration

Renewal

Currency

1.

.

domain.com

9.99

.

13.99

$

2.

.

bluehost.com

12.99

.

17.99

$

3.

.

hostgator.com

12.95

.

9.99

$

4.

.

godaddy.com

11.99

.

18,99

$

5.

.

namecheap.com

8.88

.

12.98

$

6.

.

dreamhost.com

7.99

15,99

$

Summary of presented places where you can buy a domain along with purchase and renewal prices.

As you can see from the above summary, the prices for registering a free domain can often differ from the cost of renewing it. Before deciding where to buy, it’s a good idea to detailedly check what the costs will look like in the future. In some cases, it may be cost-effective to take advantage of a package of services (such as hosting + domain), which will reduce costs.

Domain exchanges – purchase from the secondary market

.

The Internet has been around for many years and many attractive domains have already been registered and are being used or… put up for sale, most often on special exchanges that, like many auction sites, offer a “buy now” option or open bidding – who will give more.

Buying a domain from the secondary market, it is worth checking its history and link profile (when buying new/expired domains too, but there the financial risk is lower).

.

In most exchanges with domains, you can search for desired domains by keyword of interest to see which ones are listed and currently (usually) unused.

The following are sample listings:

.

List of domains for sale on sedo.com - search by phrase: car.
List of domains for sale on sedo.com – search by phrase: car.
.

 

List of domains for sale on namecheap.com - search by phrase: car.
List of domains for sale on namecheap.com – search by phrase: car.
.

Summary

.

If you are still reading this article, it means you really want to know what to choose: a domain with history or without? Let’s summarize the discussed advantages and disadvantages of each of these two choices.

.

.

.

.

.

Benefit or drawback?

.

New domain without history

.

A advantage or disadvantage

.

Domain with history

.

.

About

.

No history – no danger.

.

Benefit

The domain already has inbound links.

.

A benefit

.

Fresh start, no worries about spammy links.

.

Benefit

.

Can have a thematically compatible story.

.

Benefit

.

Low cost of buying a domain.

The advantage. .

A benefit

.

Possible faster start with positioning, based on existing authority or name.

.

About

.

High possibility of matching the domain to one’s own branding.

.

Disadvantage

.

Risk of having spammy links.

.

Disadvantage

.

Lack of potential natural links to start.

.

Disadvantage

.

There is a risk that the site has a penalty from Google.

.

Defect

.

Lack of subject domain history

.

.

Disadvantage

.

Potentially higher cost of purchasing the domain.

.

Disadvantage

.

The necessity of building a domain authority from scratch.

.

Disadvantage

.

Less options when choosing a name to match your own branding.

Despite the clear disproportion of advantages and disadvantages of both solutions, the decision is not easy, as the different aspects are not always equal.The decision should be made based on the purpose of the created site and potential opportunities, as well as calculate the costs

Share this post:  
Krystian Grabianowski

Starszy Specjalista ds. Pozycjonowania.

Try Senuto for 14 days for free

Try for free

Try Senuto Suite for 14 days for free

Start the 14-day trial for free

Meet Senuto in 1-hour online training. Free.

Choose a date and sign up