The three foundational things to check when you’re considering an expired domain are its age, backlink profile, and indexation status. Once those pass the litmus test, you can safely invest more time digging into things like previous ownership, manual penalties, and content.
Choosing an expired domain with the right characteristics can be an economical way to improve search engine optimization (SEO) for your site. As part of your plan, you should also take a good look at private blog networks, or PBN domains.
If you’re looking to buy an expired domain to boost your site’s ranking as quickly as you can, there are several factors you need to consider. There’s no need to move too fast when choosing an expired domain for SEO–take your time and learn how to do it right.
What Is an Expired Domain?
Before we explore the process of choosing an ideal expired domain, let’s get our basics clear. An expired domain is a domain that’s registered but wasn’t renewed. At times, expired domains are a result of a business failing; other times, website owners forget to renew the registration. As a consequence, the domain becomes available for purchase in the open market, and anyone who buys it becomes the new owner of the domain.
The expired domain may or may not have existing traffic, which is something to consider when buying one.
What Can You Do With an Expired Domain?
Expired domains are super useful in boosting your site’s traffic, as you can use them to redirect traffic to your site or as PBNs. In this case, when the audience of the expired site types the web address in the search bar, it reroutes to your website. The same happens when people click on any backlinks that previously landed on the expired domain–they click those links and land on your site instead.
We don’t recommend long-term or bulk usage of 301 redirects. If you’re not careful when choosing the expired domain or do this repeatedly, Google may penalize and derank your site. Finding domains with Scrapebox is one way to get started, but it is generally a better idea to use expired domains for building a PBN, building an authority site, or bringing an expired domain back to life.
Start posting new, unique content that links to your website and redirects the audience to your main site organically. If you can convert the expired domain into a microsite and link its pages with your main website, it’ll also boost your domain authority.
If you’re interested in building a PBN, it’s a good idea to buy several expired domains in your niche. Publish niche-relevant content on these expired domains and enrich them with backlinks to your main site.
How to Choose an Expired Domain
Here are some factors to keep in mind when searching for the perfect expired domain for your business:
When buying an expired domain, the first thing you want to assess is its relevance to your niche. Let’s say you have a health-related website–an expired domain in a lifestyle niche is more relevant to you than a domain in a marketing niche.
Domain Age and Authority
As a rule of thumb, any domain with a domain authority higher than twenty-five has good SEO value. Similarly, the older the domain, the better the SEO value.
Domain age is measured from the time the domain was registered, whereas website age refers to how long it’s been up and running.
Quality Backlink Profile
The expired domain you’re purchasing should have a solid backlink profile–otherwise, it’s useless. A solid backlink profile contains backlinks from sites that are relevant to your site and backlinks from high authority sites.
You can conduct a thorough backlink audit from any SEO tool before purchasing. Ahrefs does a great job in collecting this type of information–just type the URL in the backlink checker and assess the metrics.
Check out the traffic that the domain had when it was active. If it had a healthy amount of traffic, there’s a good chance you will get some of this traffic back when it’s running again. Good traffic is also an indicator that the site holds superior content.
Finally, check the expired domain’s indexing using Google Search Console before buying it. Its indexing should be in good shape when Google last crawled it.
Thorough research and understanding of your niche and of an expired domain’s history and credibility is key. Of course, using a reliable, footprint-free PBN-hosting platform such as Easy Blog Networks is a great way to keep your money website on track.