Dangers of Dropped or Expired Domain Names

Published: 24th April 2008
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There are many dangers in buying a dropped domain name. A dropped domain name is basically a domain that was purchased by someone else, but that person let the domain expire. This can happen for many reasons. The owner may have forgotten to renew the domain, in which case you may be able to turn a profit in selling the domain back to the original owner. The owner may have let the domain name expire due to any number of reasons as well, although the most common reason for this is that their enterprise failed.

Beware of the Danger
This is where the danger lies. Expired domain names come with a history, and that history remains with the domain even after you buy it. If the domain has a low PR rating, it could seriously affect your success with the domain. The domain may also have been used for spamming or other illegal activity, in which case you may have problems getting visitors to your website. Search engines can also be wary of the domain, or simply have banned it from their registries due to a break in terms of service.

Before buying any domain you should be certain that it is not a dropped domain name. Many people will engage in illegal, unethical, and immoral activities with a domain until it is banned from all emails and search engines, and then drop it for a new domain name. If you get one of these domains, you will be stuck with a designing of website that no one will list, no one will visit, and everyone will ignore.

Check Out Domain before Purchase
The best way to protect you from this type of situation is to check out the domain thoroughly before purchase. You can do this in any number of ways, but the easiest way is to use the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine. This handy free tool allows you to enter the domain you are considering and view snapshots of the pages at several different dates. If the domain has changed multiple times you can see this, as well as how long the domain has been in existence. 

You should also check that the domain has not been pointed to a parked page, meaning an "under construction" or "buy domain now" type message. These parked pages cause a loss in PR rating, back links, and search engine rankings. These issues can take some time to fix. You can visit the domain to see if it is on a parked page, and if so, use the Wayback Machine to determine how long it has been like that.

In the end, it is simply easier and less stressful to buy a new domain name. However, if you find that perfect domain, check it out thoroughly and make sure you have a plan to dig it out of the gutter. Contacting search engines and other traffic building websites and services to let them know that you recently purchased the domain may help in this, but nothing is guaranteed. Be wary, and enjoy your web experience!

For more information on domain names, please log on to http://www.smartimeinc.com

Smartime Inc. is a leading web designing, development and hosting company providing large assortment of services like web designing, site maintenance, Site marketing, promotion, Ecommerce, software development etc.

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