Learn How To Find Powerful Expired Domains Step By Step

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Are you taking full advantage of expired domains at the moment?

Imagine being able to buy a domain name that already has an awesome backlink profile and existing targeted traffic for the same price as a new domain.

You can use expired domain names to:

Whatever you do, you simply cannot ignore the power expired domain names offer and today you are going to learn how to harness that power properly.

What Is An Expired Domain?

Expired domains (also called dropped domains or aged domains) are domain names that have been registered, but weren’t renewed beyond the initial registration period.

That means they become available for re-registration and anyone can snap them up!

Domains can expire for a number of reasons such as a business closure or just forgetting to remember to renew the domain, which is more common than you might think:

googles domain name expired

But expired domains come with a number of hidden benefits such as established link profiles and authority that can be repurposed in a number of different ways.

What Can You Use Expired Domains For?

Although there are lots of things expired domain names can be used for, I personally use expired domains in 3 different ways:

  • Building authority sites
  • Building a private blog network
  • 301 redirects

In a moment I am going to show you the easiest way to find powerful expired domain names with traffic & how to check domain name availability.

But before I do that, I want to make sure that you understand exactly what you can use dropped domains for in a bit more detail.

Method #1 – Building Authority Sites

When I build a new authority site or niche site, I never do it on a brand new domain.

The problem with new domain names is that you have to invest in building up their page authority and from an SEO perspective this costs significant time & money to do.

Instead, I prefer to buy an expired domain that already has high domain authority and an established link profile.

expired domain organic traffic growth

That gives me a huge head start and quite often building out a content-rich site on a powerful expired domain is enough to crack the first page rankings without any work.

You just wouldn’t have that advantage with a brand new domain!

Method #2 – Building A Private Blog Network

In essence, you use expired domain names to build a fleet of high quality highly authoritative sites in a specific niche and then you use those sites to rank your site.

Look at how we used them to 14x search traffic for this site

14x Search Traffic SEO Case Study Infographic

But all of that starts with finding & buying expired domain names in your niche that have a clean link profile and spam-free history which I’ll show you how to do shortly.

Method #3 – 301 Redirects

Simply take the expired domain you bought and 301 redirect it to your main site.

This will pass over a portion of the link juice and authority of the old domain to your site immediately. Bonus points if that domain name has existing traffic!

However this method comes with a warning, you can get away with doing 1 or 2 of these to your main site for a quick shortcut:

But I wouldn’t recommend it as a regular link building habit.

How To Value Expired Domains

Ultimately when buying expired domains, I am doing so to get a head start with SEO.

In fact – it gives you such a head start, that at this point there is no reason to build sites on new domains anymore unless it’s a branding play.

With that said:

95% of an expired domains value comes from it’s backlink profile.

referring domains

Essentially the question you want to ask when valuing any domain name is:

How much would it cost to replicate this backlink profile?

And not just how much would it cost financially, but also how long would it take you to build a similar backlink profile.

Reputable link building services are charging-

  • $170 each for high quality niche relevant links
  • $2,000-$5,000 each for editorial links from sites like the BBC & New York Times

So that makes it very easy to appraise the backlink profile of an expired domain and figure out it’s true value from an SEO standpoint.

Click here to learn how to check domain ownership history & historic domain authority

How To Find Powerful Expired Domains Easily

Now you know how to use expired domains to your advantage, I am going to show you the easiest ways to find them.

If you don’t mind getting your hands dirty there are two tools you can use to find expired domains.

  1. Spamzilla – A cloud blased platform (read my full SpamZilla review)
  2. Domain Hunter Gatherer – A desktop application (read my full Domain Hunter Gatherer review)

Both of these tools will help you to find expired domains but you must pay close attention to vetting the domains to avoid any of the most common pitfalls.

For example:

You should make sure the domains have clean backlink profiles, a clean histroy in archive.org, were never used in a PBN or deindexed from Google because of a penalty.

Wrapping It Up

So there you have it, now you know not only how to use expired domains to your advantage but also the easiest way to find them.

Whether you want to buy expired domain names with traffic or a huge SEO authority – you are armed with the knowledge you need to gain an unfair advantage and compete against other domain investors.

So I only have one question for you

How will you take advantage of expired domains in your business?

Frequently Asked Questions

When the registration period of a domain expires, the domains registrar will mark it as expired or dropped. Most domains are registered for a year when they are first purchased which means that domains drop every day.
The easiest way to find out if a domain name has been dropped is by using one of the many free WHOIS lookup tools like https://who.is. By doing this, you’ll not only check if the domain name has been dropped but also when the domain name expires (if it hasn’t been dropped yet). Note: WHOIS Tools tell you an awful lot of things about the domain including precisely when it expires when it was registered, who is the current registered owner along with the contact details.
If you want to check who owns a domain, you can use Whois or websites such as Tucows or GoDaddy. All you need to do is enter the exact URL or the full domain name and you can find all the information available about that domain.
If your domain expires then it will immediately become inactive. This means all the services that are attached to it also stop functioning. You cannot make updates to an expired domain but the domain should be available for you to reactivate with your previous rate within the Expired Domain list. Also, your domain will be declared as expired domain and domain registrar will start bidding for that domain.
A domain renewal ‘grace period’ is the period of time that someone can renew their domain registration for the normal renewal price. Most domain providers will offer a 40-day renewal grace period but this could vary so be sure to check out and make note of how many days you have to renew your expired domain when purchasing.
Once the period grace over, the domain name will fall under the “deletion” status, wherein names are officially deleted from the lists after five days, between 11 AM to 2 PM Pacific Standard Time.
Buying an expired domain can be a great way to:
  • Build authority sites - with solid page authority & domain authority
  • Buil a private blog network
...without investing time, effort and tons of money to do so. Indeed, buying an expired domain costs the same as registering a new brand domain!
Yes, it’s completely legal to buy expired domains. Indeed, when the time of expiration comes, the owners get emails to remind them to reniew their domain mane. If they don’t do it, that means that they are no longer interested by that domain name. So, after the redemption period, the domain name will be open for everyone.

What Are Your Thoughts?

437 Responses

  1. Hi Matt, I am learning slowly about backlinks, and how to create them by myself. Thank you for this video.

  2. Nice information. I must say expired domains are like gold in this seo business. In my case I we able to build a 100K visits site with an expired domain I bought for chicken change.

  3. Perfect information in this article as I am building my PBN right now, I also buy expiring domains that have lots of power.

  4. Thanks for the Spamzilla recommendation. It made finding decent domains way easier compared to expireddomains.net. I actually ended up buying my first 2 expired domains yesterday. I did 301’s to my homepage and blog page for these 2 and will monitor the results. I’m really curious to see if the 301 redirect method adds any value as John Mu’s take is that it doesn’t help.

  5. Thanks Matthew! Very helpful post, since I’m building up my PBN network right now. For German domains I can also recommend Nicsell.

  6. There are now quite a few done for you services that can build affiliate sites on expired domains – from their own inventory or your own expired domain, very valuable as you’re leveraging not only their content team but also their vast knowledge & experience in building out expired domains – great for both newbies and experienced affiliates.

  7. Thank you for sharing this vital information. Before now, I do go to expired domain website to get one not until I read this content which made me to understand what I am doing.

  8. Thanku so much for great guide, I build site on an expired domain it cut-down sandbox period. It helpful to save a lot of time.-Michael Norman

  9. What is the most appropriate tool to find an expired domain that could make a difference? Is there any indicator that could tell us what domain is perfect for the business?

  10. Thanks for the article Matthew!How do you feel about expireddomains.net? That service is free to use I believe.

    1. To be honest, I’ve never used it so I can’t tell much about it. Just be careful, especially if it’s a free service 😉

  11. Great. But that video is 4 years old now. I was hoping you would have made a new video to go with the newer released software. 4 years ago you probably could easliy find expried domains. Today there are lots of others doing this as well. A new video in 2021 would be great.

  12. Tip: IF you’ve found a promising domain which looks good enough to work with, DON’T hang around. Get it.A few times within my inital research I’ve added really good domains to my ‘Watchlist’ in Spamzilla, only to find them unavailable and snapped up just a few hours later. Frustrating to see good things get away.Remember, you won’t be the only one in your niche.

  13. Thanks, Mathew, One more great article and post that we can all use. I will teach this strategy to our students within the SMART Affiliate Program. Many are new to online marketing and teaching them good SEO tricks and techniques is important.One very strong focus we have is the need to build authority sites. Using an expired domain makes a lot of sense to shorten the time required to get decent traffic (even with an SEO optimized theme and content)!We (members) are paying close attention to everything that you publish, as it is gold! The main method we recommend likely will be for niche websites, but the other two uses are also interesting. Really enjoyed going through this article!Cheers!Dave : )…

  14. I saw your review on both Spamzilla and Domain Hunter Gatherer. Which one would you recommend for price and ease? I noticed Spamzilla is $37 as opposed to DHG $17, but Spamzilla looks easier to use.

  15. Thanks a lot. Please tell me the process of checking penalty, niche, backlinks of an expired domain before buying it.

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