Be Mindful of Listing Date at GoDaddy / Afternic

I have a few hundred domain names listed for sale on Afternic / GoDaddy. After re-listing a domain name for sale, I discovered something that is pretty small but could pose a larger concern. Domain names listed for sale on Afternic have a listing date on the listing page:

For most people, this is probably a very small detail that would go unnoticed. I didn’t really even think about it until very recently, and I want to share why it could be problematic.

I was reading the news and I learned that a big company had acquired a smaller company, and I own the exact match .com domain name of the smaller brand name, which is completely generic/descriptive. In this particular field, the smaller companies retain their own branding, so there is not a concern that the brand name would change.

When I saw the news about the acquisition, I went to check to see if I have the domain name listed for sale on Afternic. I wanted to make sure it was available for a BIN price should the company wish to purchase it. I discovered that it was listed for sale within my account, but it was pending some sort of review so I don’t think it was showing up to a prospective buyer. Without really thinking about it, I deleted the domain name from my Afternic account and re-added it so I could approve the listing and ensure it was actually showing up.

This was a mistake on my end. Yes, this would allow me to approve the listing so it could be purchased, but the listing date changed to the day it was re-listed. This could have been problematic for me if it was noticed because the companies could have used the listing date, the same date as their acquisition news, to suggest that I bought the domain name with the purpose of selling it to them.

I have owned the domain name for years and it is generic, so I am not too worried about a dispute. However, that listing date could conceivably be used as a piece of evidence against my company if I kept the new listing active. On a domain name in the grey area, this could be a bigger threat.

This is a relatively minor issue that impacts a very small subset of domain names, but it is something people should know.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. The listing date is a really irrelevant data point imho. Why even have it ?
    With most domains sitting on the virtual shelves for months or years it just gives a buyer ammunition to think “nobody is buying”
    I’d be curious about the logic of displaying that info at all .

  2. The bigger problem is the “review” issue at Afternic! It’s random and removes the listing and it happens a lot.

    • I have had a number of stupid problems with Afternic listing process. They know the problems exist but don’t do anything about it.

      But, we have to understand. Afternic doesn’t make any money on selling domains.
      That is why they don’t put any updating or effort into selling domains.

      They only receive 20% commission on a sale and no capital investment or risk in the domain.
      In the investment world that would be a cash cow.

      If the three private equity firms knew how bad the Afternic was dropping the ball, there would be management changes.

    • Did you know GoDaddy owns Afternic?

      Also, I presume they don’t make changes regularly because most of the sales flow is through registrar channels rather than via Afternic.

    • Yes, I knew Afternic was a div. of GD.

      I have been using Afternic even before BuyDomains owned them.
      (When the Collins bros. owned them.)

      The registrar channel (second step in the sales process) is irrelevant.
      What good is the sales channel if the listing process is antiquated?

      Godaddy is strictly milking the Afternic div.
      Putting nothing into it compared to the revenue (and high profit) it generates.

      In business strategy, it is called – harvesting.

  3. Being that the WhoIs date is quite a bit older I would believe in a UDRP or UDRS that you’d be able to use they info as evidence. Otherwise that would mean we couldn’t add and subtract our domains to sales platforms without worrying about them using that as evidence, which I believe the WhoIs registration date would supersede the sales platform add date. Just an opinion.

  4. Listing date not really useful to an end user. I’ve had one or two people over the last 15 years try to use time listed as a discount buy strategy. Last larger sale I had I owned for 8 years, got offers almost every week, just held my ground to turn reg fee times 8 years into 16k. Doesn’t matter if I’ve owned it 3 weeks or 8 years the price is the price.

    Afternic needs help in their review process. Add domains some go to pending and they rot like that forever unless you email them. Same story for years. I type this now and I’ll be typing it next year as well as nothing changes. Pending review triggers no human interaction. Shouldn’t have to email someone to make things happen. You take a cut do your job.

  5. There should not be a listing date or at least make it optional.
    The pending review status does happen a lot and i am constantly asking Afternic support to take domains out of review status.

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