Becoming An Internet Domain Investor


You may not realize the opportunity at your fingertips. Becoming an internet domain investor has the potential to offer low risk and high rewards with a small amount of initial investment risk.

Buying and owning a domain name is relatively inexpensive. For around ten bucks per year, you can register and own the rights to a domain name. If you consider the upfront costs of other business opportunities, owning an internet domain might be one of the most affordable. So, for ten U.S. dollars, you now own a tiny piece of the internet.

You might be asking yourself why a domain name would be valuable to anyone at this point? After all, we’ve had the internet now for nearly thirty years and surly any domain name worth anything has already been taken years ago. That is true to a certain extent, but more and more people are getting access to the internet over the last decade, and if you can believe it, there are billions of people who still have no access to the internet. The U.N. recently released a study saying nearly 3.8 billion people are without access to the internet.

Internet Users

Those people will eventually, hopefully, be online in some form using websites for education, research, entertainment, and creating businesses. This is one of the arguments for investing in domain names, even when it seems the opportunity has long passed by.

Currently, there are more than 360 million domain names registered on the internet. This is according to Verisign, the global provider of domain name registry services. The company reported 5.1 million new domains registered ending last quarter, a 1.4 percent increase from the previous quarter.

There are several ways to make money from domain investing. One way would be to simply buy a domain name you feel would be desirable to someone else at some point in the future. When they request the domain from you, it’s possible to receive a decent amount if the name is desirable enough. Another option is to park your domain and place ads on the domain. Services like CashParking can help with logistics while you collect the revenue. If buyers are not lining up to request your domain, you also have the ability to auction it off. If the domain is in demand, there’s a possibility the price could be bid up from multiple offers.

Domains expire over time, and some are not renewed. This might be one of the best opportunities to find in-demand names that are now on the open market. Numerous services exist featuring recently expired domains. Every day, thousands of domains become available because they were left to expire by their owner. Consider expired domains a potential source for your investment, and you could find a valuable name from time to time.

Over the years, popular domain names have traded hands for millions of dollars. With enough resources, you could go out and purchase prevalent domains right now and own them with the expectation they will be worth more in the future. The list of most expensive domains to trade hands is continuously changing. Below are some of the high-profile sales over the years. You never really know when a person or company will decide a particular domain name must be bought for their brand. The unpredictability is one of the most exciting and fun aspects of domain investing.

Top 25 domain sales
The 25 most expensive domain names publicly reported – Image credit – GoDaddy.com

There are a handful of risks you must keep in mind if you want to begin purchasing and investing in domains. Primarily, trademark risk. If you register a domain that is trademarked or similar to a trademarked name, you may be sued. Governments, businesses, and celebrities will take legal action and force you to surrender a domain name which could infringe on their trademark. Secondly, selling a domain can be risky, and an escrow service should be used to be sure you receive payment. Consider using a lawyer to negotiate details of your domain name sales.

Jeff Gabriel of Saw.com discusses his method for appraising domain names.