I want to share a tip with you that can help you drive traffic and improve your search rankings. Keep your eyes on domain names that are related to your business, both in terms of current registrations and dropping/expiring domain names. If something comes available and it’s not a trademark, acquire it and 301 redirect it.
There have been a number of times I’ve bought descriptive domain names for my websites that have either expired and become available for registration or are in a drop auction. Organizations and companies seem to frequently change domain names, forget to renew domain names, or think they have no more use for a particular domain name.
Whatever the case is, they let great names with inbound links drop. These names may be worth something due to traffic levels, or they may be worth more in terms of search engine optimization value. I discussed buying the domain name previously used by an arena after the management confirmed they didn’t want it. Not only does it bring enough traffic to the page on my site that it’s become a top 5 most visited page, but it has great inbound links from sites like Boston.com.
To watch domain names, I use one primary tool, which is the Domain Monitor tool at DomainTools. This is perfect for domain names I know about, and I follow quite a few, even though I don’t anticipate a drop.
What’s probably more helpful for this type of situation is creating filters at Freshdrop which contain specific keywords I want to monitor. This will let me know when any related domain names will drop, which is helpful because there are plenty of names I don’t really even know about. Freshdrop also allows me to see the domain name’s analytics (age, links, PR…etc), helping me decide if its worth pursuing.
If you have developed websites or a business that you care about, I recommend monitoring domain names that may be beneficial.
What if you not only redirect it, but setup a catch all for the email ?? In conjuction with a spam filter and an auto reply service.
I grabbed some old domains a few months ago. Setup a catch all email for them and let the emails come in.
Alot of junk even though i used spam filter but also alot of real emails. The auto reponse with the message “this domain name is under new management your email is no longer read” did wonders.
2 companies got reports from old customers they got an email that the domain name was under new management.
Amazing how fast they wanted the domain names back. Didn’t even have to throw in a sales pitch 🙂
I guess this tactic is not used alot. But instead of parking i redirect to a sales page and throw in a catch all email into the DNS records.. Amazing stuff you can catch.
Sorta off topic but your post about monitoring made think of this tactic.
Do these services cost?
Yes, both services have a monthly fee, but I couldn’t operate my business nearly as well if I didn’t use them.
I don’t know if there are any legal issues with doing what you are doing. I guess it would be like returning misdirected mail back to the sender with a notice on it, but I don’t know if there are privacy issues you should look into. There may be federal regulations, depending on the country in which you live.
Get Verisign’s domain name zone alerts for the TLD’s they manage. Better to get it from the source than anywhere else, in my opinion..
How would you know if a domain was forwarded or was a 301 and does it make any difference?
You you typed in xyz.com and you ended up at abc.com, it’s likely forwarded. I am not an expert on forwarding but here’s an article that might provide some insight on why to do it: