GoDaddy Should Add a Year of Registration for Aftermarket Purchases

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In July, I noticed a domain name I had sold for five figures on Afternic was coming up for auction at GoDaddy Auctions. The domain name had been sold less than a year before, so it was surprising to see it had already reached expiry status. I posted a tweet mentioning that I think GoDaddy should add one year of registration after a domain name was sold via Afternic:

This morning, I was doing some diligence on upcoming GoDaddy expiry auctions when I noticed two domain names that appear to have been sold within the last year are coming up in expiry auctions:

Centrist.com is coming up for auction in 8+ days. There have already been quite a few bids and the high bid is $590. Using GoDaddy’s Appraisal tool, I can see the domain name is listed as a comparable domain name that sold for “more than $25,000.” A DomainTools historical Whois search shows that the domain name was registered to GoDaddy’s NameFind portfolio as recently as January of 2019. To me, this would indicate that the domain name was sold less than a year ago.

SmartChoices.com is coming up for auction in 7+ days. Bidding has exceeded $1,300 already. I do not see this domain name listed as a comparable sale, but I do see something else that appears to show the domain name recently sold. In July of this year, the domain name was registered to Afternic DNescrow, according to DomainTools. In April of this year, the domain name was registered to GoDaddy’s NameFind portfolio, also according to DomainTools.

From what I can tell, it would seem that the registrants still have at least a couple of days to renew these domain names before the redemption period passes. Because these two domain names have made it to this point, it would appear that the registrants have not taken action on the renewal emails they should have received. As much as I would be happy to own either one of these domain names, it does not seem fair that they are already being auctioned when it would appear they were recently sold.

When a domain name sells via Afternic, it is either pushed to the buyer’s GoDaddy account if the name is registered at GoDaddy, or it is transferred from a different registrar. With a registrar transfer, a year of registration is automatically added. If the domain name is pushed to an internal account, it does not appear that an additional year of registration is added. In my opinion, a year of registration should be added to all aftermarket sales.

There is a chance I am wrong about the two domain names mentioned above. Without having knowledge about their history, it is possible they may have sold more than a year ago. Perhaps the Whois did not change at the time of sale. That being said, I won the auction for the name I sold less than a year ago, so I know it is an issue.

You might ask why I did not reach out to the buyer as a courtesy. I would have done that if I could have found the buyer’s email address or contact information. However, there was no email address for the registrant archived in DomainTools’ Whois History tool. I would offer the name back to the buyer for what I paid at auction if that person or company asked. It would be the right thing to do.

By giving an extra year of registration for domain names sold via Afternic, it will cost quite a bit of money. When you consider that GoDaddy would also lose out on the auction proceeds, that makes an even larger cost to GoDaddy In my opinion, this is the right thing to do.

Update:

I spoke with a friend about this and wanted to clarify something a bit. I am not condemning GoDaddy here. I think it is more of a courtesy to customers rather than a call out that GoDaddy is doing something wrong. I also think it would be a courtesy for companies like NameJet, SnapNames, and Sedo to add a renewal year before pushing a domain name to buyers. Domain investors should consider doing the same thing as a courtesy when they have the margin. For instance, a $50 deal on NamePros doesn’t really give the seller much room to pay for an additional year of registration.

7 COMMENTS

  1. Disagree. If anyone buys anything more expensive than $500, why not renew it for max (9-10) years immediately? Or at least add a reminder in every possible calendar app you have. People need to learn not to be careless about their digital life, as more and more of our lives becomes digital.

    • Maybe they do not realize it needs to be renewed right away. At larger companies, the buyer (and initial Whois contact) is not the department or person responsible for renewals on the company’s portfolio. Sometimes it is a corporate lawyer or CMO who doesnt pay attention to renewal emails and just assumes they will have the name for a while.

      It’s a non-issue when a name is transferred from a different registrar because the extra year of renewal is given at no extra cost.

      You might buy a $25,000 name, and it retains its expiry in 2 weeks because it was an inter-GoDaddy account change rather than a transfer.

      Buyers are not treated equally, due to no issue of their making, simply because of where the domain name is registered and where it is purchased. It should be uniform – and it should be a cost borne by GoDaddy/Afternic/registrar partner rather than buyer or seller.

  2. I have found afternic is very sloppy in how they handle transfers from the seller to the buyer when the domain is going to GoDaddy.
    6-9 months later I would receive notification that my domain is expiring. It is not mine but the buyer. I have notified afternic a number of times that the domain they sold is expiring and it is in my name. I have no idea who the buyer is because the whois was never changed. I don’t think they ever contact the buyer about the expiring domain.
    Now, I just ignore the emails because afternic does not care. I guess 20% is not enough to justify good customer service.

  3. If you sell a name via escrow.com and the domain is at enom and the buyer says push it to my account, do you renew the name for them before the push??

    • Good question. I try to make sure there is at least a full year remaining before pushing a name.

      In fact, on a recent deal I realized I had not done that and asked GoDaddy to pay for an additional year of registration after I had already pushed it. Unfortunately, they would not let me renew a name in someone else’s account and I felt badly about that.

    • It is interesting you raise that point.
      I have renewed some before I push the domain. Especially if the transaction was good for me and/or the buyer was easy to work with. Most enduser buyers do not realize a push does not increase the expiration date.

      However, with GD or Netsol, I believe they lock the domain down after the domain is renewed.

      Afternic and Sedo use to do a lot of transactions where the seller pushed the domain. I believe that is rare today.

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