Common Domain Flipping Myths

If you’re just getting into the domain space it can be all too easy to think that flipping domains is an easy way to make money. You hear a story about someone buying a name for $2,000 and selling it for $20,000 and think, “if I just do that with one domain a month I’ll be set!” Ask anyone who flips domains and they’ll tell you that domain flipping is a lot of hard work and buying the right names and finding the right buyers is no easy task.

The problem is that there are far too many eBooks and blog posts that paint an all-too-pretty picture of domain flipping. This leads to some pretty serious “myths” around Domain Flipping that sadly leave many new investors disappointed. Below are some of the most common domain flipping myths I’ve heard, get these out of your head and you’ll be in a much better place:

Domain Flipping Myths

  1. You can easily hand-register domains and flip them to end-users for a huge profit – while you can flip hand-registered domains, many people do it for $100-$300 profit which means you’ll have to put in a lot of work to make anything meaningful. Also, the learning curve is steep so you will most likely be buying mostly names that you can’t flip at first meaning you’ll be spending your time doing something that costs money and doesn’t generate any revenue.
  2. Flipping Can Be Done Passively – sorry, flipping is an active process. If you think you can just buy domains, throw them on a listing service and watch them sell then you better be incredibly patient. Remember, a flip means a quick sale, waiting three years to close the deal is not a flip.
  3. If someone just bought a domain for big bucks, you can sell them a similar name – I can’t tell you how many times someone has told me, “I just bought this name for $x,xxx and I’m going to flip it to a guy who just bought a very similar name for $xx,xxx so I’ll make a huge profit!” Just because someone just shelled-out five or six-figures for a name doesn’t mean they’re willing to do it again for a similar name. Knowing what someone just bought might not be quite as useful as you might think, every person is different which means every domain sale is different.
  4. Domain Flipping can be learned in a few months – there’s this notion that Domain Flipping is something you can just pick-up in your spare time and generate meaningful revenue with in a few months. In many cases be prepared to spend a year or more cutting your teeth and learning the basics. You’ll make mistakes, lose deals, buy names that you can’t flip, and everything in between. If you’re looking for a get rich quick scheme, stay away from domain investing, there’s a real learning curve here that many people don’t like to talk about.
  5. All you need to do is make one big sale a month – sure, that sounds great, but it’s a myth thinking you can do this out of the gate. As I’ve said above, flipping domains is hard and every name is different. While it might seem like closing one big deal a month would be manageable, finding that one big deal is a massive challenge and could take months itself. The reality is that most domain flippers start-out by making a few hundred dollars a month in flips for 50+ hours of work which means you’re probably working for $2 – $4/hour for yourself to start.

I hope reading this list helps dispel some myths that some of you may have about Domain Flipping. If you are a domain flipper yourself and want to add some myths to the list, please add them to the comment section below! There are certainly more than five myths and the more of these we get out in the open, the better prepared new investors can be!

{ 20 comments… add one }

  • Joe July 3, 2012, 11:23 am

    6. You can quit your day job and start domaining full time – unless you already own a solid portfolio of high quality domains/developed websites and your income from domaining is considerable, this is something you absolutely should NOT do! Very few people in the industry can afford this and most of them started out 10+ years ago.

    Reply
  • Jack July 3, 2012, 11:35 am

    Were’nt all these things you recomended in your Domain Flipping book back in ’08?

    Reply
  • em July 3, 2012, 12:11 pm

    There really is no such thing as domain flipping. You may hear about one flip someone made for $700 profit but they spent $2000 in renewals for all their other unsold domains. People who have contacts can “flip” domains easier. But that’s not a flip that’s having connections.

    Or you might have a great portfolio. Then it certainly isn’t flipping anymore. It’s a business deal based on quality product.

    Speculating and flipping are synonymous. Domain investing is based on good product.

    Reply
  • Adrian Keys July 3, 2012, 2:09 pm

    “While it might seem like closing one big deal a month would be manageable, finding that one big deal is a massive challenge and could take months itself.”

    And that for me says it all…the question then becomes…how do I live until the big “fish” comes in?

    An aside…can we not use “flip”…those late night infomercials during the real estate bubble are still ringing in my ears.

    Reply
  • d.r. July 3, 2012, 2:19 pm

    You know the saying…”pimpin ain’t easy”? Well….”domain flippin ain’t easy”!;)

    Reply
  • Troy July 3, 2012, 2:53 pm

    Wow,

    EM’s comment is pretty sad.

    Do you really think that domain “Flipping” doesn’t exist? That flipping is just having “contacts”?

    Hell no…

    I flip domains each month. Sometimes I sell 2 or even 1, sometimes I sell 5-6. My average sale is around $300 and are almost all domains I pay less than $25 for. I would say my average domain purchase price is $12ish. I can typically sell 1 domain in 4 that I send emails out for within a week. Total time invested in each sale is typically less than 2 hours total (including setting up and explaining the buying process). I would say not counting scanning the lists I am easily making over $100 per hour selling domains. I put maybe 5 hours a month into scanning lists but I enjoy that aspect and were I not doing it I would probably be wasting time online anyway.

    For a good example of a sale…

    On Saturday I purchased a three word .org domain name that has a lot of competition and a PPC over $12. I spent 30 minutes gathering email addresses of people that would have interest and then used software I had specially built for a couple hundred bucks to send all the emails at once. I sent probably 30 emails and my asking price was $349. Total cost to register it at Godaddy was less than $9.

    Within 10 minutes I had two offers at $150. I told them I would think about it and one raised their offer to $175. This morning I had an email waiting for me from someone that offered $299. I accepted the offer and am now in the transfer process with them.

    Total time spent in the entire process will be significantly less than 2 hours. Probably closer to 1.

    This is not always the way that it works. Last week I sold a domain for $500 and a domain for $80 so each week is different but even last week I didn’t put more than five hours into it. Yesterday I sent out emails on two domains, one of which I was sure would sell, and have not heard back from anyone. Sometimes you just never know.

    My point is that flipping is alive and well and although I probably couldn’t put 50 hours a month into it to assure making $5000 ($100 per hour) I can almost always put 5 hours per month into it and make at least $500.

    The cool thing is that there are people that are WAY better at it than I am. I am sure of it. For me it is strictly part time. I have other business to run online. Domain sales profits are usually pegged as spending cash=)

    I would love to get into flipping larger domains ($2000-$15000) but I think that is best done with a good ROLOdex of people interested in buying. Something I don’t have yet, and may never.

    Troy

    Reply
  • RAYY.co July 3, 2012, 4:35 pm

    @ Troy
    “…then used software I had specially built for a couple hundred bucks to send all the emails at once.”
    Hi Troy, what software did you use? When you sent 30 email at once, does it have personalized email function ?
    I like to know how to personalize emails by sending all emails at once.

    Reply
  • RAYY.co July 3, 2012, 4:47 pm

    “…Within 10 minutes I had two offers at $150. I told them I would think about it and one raised their offer to $175. This morning I had an email waiting for me from someone that offered $299. I accepted the offer and am now in the transfer process with them.”

    I assume you sent emails with sale pitch ‘ make an offer’ letter or ‘buy it now’ price ?

    Reply
  • Morgan July 3, 2012, 6:36 pm

    Great comments everyone and thanks for sharing your experience @Troy!

    Domain Flipping is certainly alive and well and I know many people very happily making five and six-figures a month doing it.

    The point of this post was to really highlight some of the general misconceptions about domain flipping. People see a $20,000 flip and think they can easily get the same results.

    Any more misconceptions not yet mentioned?

    Reply
  • Troy July 4, 2012, 1:03 am

    RAYY.co

    Yes, the software allows me to personalize the email. I rarely do so with domain purchase emails though.

    I usually include the price in the email. In this case the asking price was $349.

    Reply
  • RAYY.co July 4, 2012, 9:59 am

    Thanks Troy.

    Reply
  • Brandon June 25, 2013, 3:54 pm

    Great article! Domain flipping is still alive and doing well but its always good to get a good shot of reality. Focus on the expired domains!

    Reply
  • Tj March 24, 2014, 9:19 pm

    Is there any good books to learn how to flip and get contacts of someone wanting to buy?

    Reply
  • Dhanu March 30, 2014, 7:40 pm

    I really have some good domains.My end plan before buying them was to flip them for profit. I registered them on Godaddy. First they told I need min. 60days to transfer them. Them my flip idea was slow, atleast for a beginner who registers his first name.
    So i have question. Is this 60 days domain lock is exist in every registrar. I want a register who don’t lock domains for 60days. Is there anyone?

    Reply
  • Alvin August 7, 2014, 8:59 pm

    HI, im just wanna try this platform of domain flipping, thanks guys.. for all your comments and the article was superb.. any advice guys before i get started?

    Reply
  • Website Investor June 13, 2015, 4:44 am

    I’ve had mixed success with flipping so I turned to buy and hold, the main difference is you make money when you buy the site not when you sell it.

    Reply
  • Patrick August 4, 2015, 2:15 am

    Troy, thanks for your input! Could you pleae give me an example of a domain you were able to sell for $349?

    Reply
  • Flippandas.com November 22, 2017, 5:29 am

    Flipping is definitely alive, especially if you work hard (e.g.research top keywords, make a surefire sales pitch, etc.).

    Reply
  • oladoke Kehinde August 31, 2019, 5:56 pm

    I do keep thinking if domain flipping is profitable that one can start easily with much risk

    Reply
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