The domaining industry has really grown over the past several years. With the huge growth in people buying and selling domain names, there has also been huge growth in the number of online marketplaces domainers use to list their names on and hopefully reach more potential buyers through. Although you can easily find dozens of different marketplaces to list on free of charge, which ones are the best? One of the biggest problems you’ll find is that not all marketplaces allow for you to sell any domain extension. Some marketplaces allow you to list domain names in all extensions, while others may only allow the more popular extensions.
I decided to take some of my spare time and perform a small test on this. I joined several different domain marketplaces to see which extensions they would allow, and what sales might be like across them. Some marketplaces were more user friendly than others. Some marketplaces required different forms of domain verification, while others did not. Although all of these domain marketplaces offer the same service of buying and selling domain names, there were actually many differences between them. Look below as I go through each marketplace I tested and what my personal results were like with them.
Sedo – This is one of my favorite domain marketplaces and I would recommend them to everyone. Sedo is a well known company that has been in this industry longer than most of the others. They have a proven track record and you will constantly see them show up on the top weekly domain sales report. They allow you to list domains in all extensions and will even provide you with a simple recommended appraisal value. The one downside to Sedo is that their pay per click payouts are usually lower than competitors. You don’t need to park domains in order to list them on Sedo, but if you do plan on parking you should do that with a different company. Creating your account and listing domains is free, but you can also pay for upgrades to get your domain more exposure.
Afternic – Recently acquired by GoDaddy last year, Afternic is another great marketplace you should consider listing all of your domains on. Considering they are owned by GoDaddy, you know this marketplace can be reliable and trusted. They’ve brokered lots of big sales in the past and have also been listed on the top weekly domain sales chart numerous times. Afternic also lets you list domains in all extensions and is completely free to join. Plus, their pay per click payouts are better than Sedo. They do not offer any type of upgrades for additional exposure. You can list the same domains in both the Afternic and Sedo marketplaces, but I would recommend you actually park them with Afternic.
Bido – Although Bido has been around for several years, the marketplace never really took off. Aside from other resellers, you don’t see many buyers around the website. Bido doesn’t bring in end users and the auctions usually end low with just a few bidders in them. With that in mind, I don’t recommend spending your time parking or listing domains on Bido. It’s a good site to find deals on if you’re buying, but not worth the time to get your domains listed there. For those who do want to list domains on the website, they will only let you list domains with some of the more popular extensions.
GoDaddy Auctions – This is another marketplace I would highly recommend everyone list their domains on. You’ll need to become a GoDaddy Auctions member which costs $4.99/year, but it’s well worth it. GoDaddy shows up on the top weekly domain sales chart all the time and their marketplace gets a ton of viewers. I’ve sold lots of domains through this marketplace and never had any problems receiving payment; The company is completely trustworthy and reliable. You can pay for different listing upgrades, but only sell some of the more popular extensions. While I do recommend everyone list whichever domains they can on GoDaddy Auctions, I would still recommend keeping them parked with Afternic.
FreeMarket – Created by the owners of Warrior Forum and Freelancer, FreeMarket is a fairly new marketplace where you can list your domain names for sale. The website had a number of bugs in its early stages and things have slowly been improving over the past several months. However, it doesn’t get as much traffic as compared to others, and you will still come across little bugs every now and then. It’s free to join and has no restrictions on extensions. They even have commissions as compared to others. Different upgrades are available for additional exposure, but domain parking is not available. They never show up on the weekly domain sales chart so I would only recommend you list here if your portfolio is small. Otherwise, it’s not worth the time and effort.
4.cn – This marketplace is extremely popular amongst the Chinese crowd. They allow you to list domains in all extensions, but the domain verification process is kind of a pain. I only recommend listing your numeric domains (for example: 1234.com) here. Chinese buyers love numeric domains in the big domain extensions, but for obvious reasons they don’t usually go for the same usual domains English speaking countries would. They rarely show up on the top weekly domain sales chart and I would recommend most people focus on getting listed in other marketplaces before this one.
DomainNameSales – Although they’re a newer marketplace, DomainNameSales is already showing up in the top weekly domain sales report on a regular basis. The company is owned by a veteran investor who is responsible for some of the biggest domain sales in history. Lots of sellers have started using this company and that’s part of why they’ve brokered so many big sales since launching. It’s free to join, but they only accept users who have large domain portfolios. You should only signup if you have at least 100-200 domains and some of those are of good quality. Domain parking is available, and it’s the best place to park if you’re wanting to show visitors a “make offer” page as opposed to pay per click ads (those are available as well). They also accept domains in all extensions, but do not offer any kind of upgrades for additional exposure. I recommend everyone join and list all of their domains here.
CAX – Another marketplace that has been around for a few years now, but has never really taken off. CAX requires users to become a member (the cheapest package is $20) before they can list their domains for sale. One nice thing about this marketplace is that it’s owned by the same people who own Domaining.com, and that website has an extremely large email subscriber base. You can get additional exposure on your listings, but no domain parking is available and they only allow certain extensions. You will hardly ever see CAX appear on the top weekly domain sales chart and because of that I don’t really recommend paying and listing your domains there. Similar to Bido, this marketplace has more low paying resellers looking than high paying end users.
DNX – I signed up for DNX a short while back to try them out, and still to this day I’m waiting for the domains I submitted to be reviewed and approved. Their marketplace looks nice and the user control panel is decent, but they don’t appear to be doing anything from a management standpoint. I don’t recommend using them at this time because you’ll signup and submit domains, only to have them sitting there unapproved months later. DNX could be a decent marketplace, although I never see them listed in the top weekly domain sales chart. All extensions are accepted, but no domain parking is available.
Flippa – Best known for buying and selling websites, Flippa has gradually gotten more and more into the domaining game the past few years. Users can pay to have their domains put into live auction, or simply list them in the user domain catalog free of charge. All extensions are accepted, but no domain parking for pay per click revenue is available. The market on Flippa is different than some of the others listed above. Odd extensions like INFO and IO tend to do well in this marketplace, while not so well on other websites. Although I highly recommend selling your websites on Flippa, I don’t recommend starting auctions for your domains unless they are premium one word COM domains or similar.
As you can see above, there are lots of differences to expect when using different marketplaces. Domain investors who have smaller portfolios may find it best to list their domains on all of the above. The more marketplaces you can get listed on, the more potential eyes will see what you’re selling and make an offer. At the same time, investors who have large domain portfolios may only want to use the sites above which I highly recommend. Managing hundreds or thousands of listings on dozens of marketplaces can be a lengthy task, and my highly recommended marketplaces are were most sales take place anyways.