8 Tips to Sell Your Domain Faster
If you're like most serious Web workers, you have collected hundreds, maybe
even thousands of domains. If you have done all you can do and are ready to flip
them for profit, listed below are a few considerations to make if you want to
sell your domain names faster. Most aspiring domainers have trouble selling
their domains simply because of a lack of experience; domaining is an
ultra-competitive business. As a serious domainer you need to remove all errors
and limit the appearance of amatuerism, put your best foot forward and indicate that there
is real value in the Web presence you are selling.
So here are a few tips to
help you increase the chances that your domain will be sold:
2) Remove weird links: Remember the free link you gave to that friend of yours starting up a ink cartridge refill website? It's time to remove it. While giving away links to your friends earns you big karma points, it could give prospective buyers the sense that you were (or are) free wheeling in your link love which in the long term could devalue your domain. Those that purchase domains, purchase them for the long term benefit they provide - so don't screw it up and remove outbound links that you know to be questionable at best.
3) Fix errors: There are few things more aggravating than seeing internal errors when you try to access a section of a website. Before you put your domain up for sale, make sure that a potential buyer of your domain will not see such problems. If they exist, they may give the sense to the prospective buyer that there will be a lot of work to get the site functional again. Your job as a professional domainer is to make the sale as easy as possible. You would not buy a car without a windshield or was leaking oil right? Why would someone with a domain with similar problems (e.g. database errors) do the same?
4) Remove the "personality": Removing sections of your site which don't necessarily fit in with the theme of your website is a smart move. While some of your website visitors may receive loads of pleasure from seeing your vacation pictures, a domain buyer is threatened by the community you've built. Your job as a domain seller is to build the buyers confidence and let them know that the value in the domain is not so much in you the seller as it is in the niche you're focusing on or the domain name they are buying.
5) Roll back new features: Good, nay great, Web workers are always on top of the next big thing and may roll out every new opportunity that comes around the vine. While it's essential you test and deploy solutions that are of interest to your existing users (e.g. social networking tools), you may want to keep a few features under wraps, just to sweeten the pot a little when it comes to closing the deal. If you were about to sign a contract on a house and started having second thoughts, it would make a world of difference if the seller casually mentioned that there was more than meets the eye. You didn't know there was a pool in the basement? Oh yeah!
6) Smooth out link navigation: More than just a few broken links, navigation usability is an important consideration. Well structured sites which provide ready access to the "deep content" that you've created over the years gives prospective domain buyers the sense that all the puzzle pieces are aligned and ready for them to take over. If users can't easily immerse themselves in your site and find their way out again, savvy domain buyers will see quickly that a lot of work will need to be done to squeeze out every potential drop of revenue from your site. The end result is that they'll probably pass on the opportunity. Domain buyers want ready revenue streams - not pet projects.
7) Clean the comments: Remember that flame war that one of you site users started? How about that recent spam attack? User-generated content is a wonderful way to build community, but it's also a disaster waiting to happen if you don't remove questionable material before selling your domain. Taking even a few hours to see what on your site has been indexed in popular search engines, clearing out anything you find may give buyers an anxious feeling and images you've poached from another site will set the groundwork for an easy sale.
8) Pre-promote, promote, post-promote: Promotion is the key to selling domains quickly. While there are an infinite number of ways to actually go about selling your domain, some that work best include announcing the sale to current visitors and building a list of your competition and asking if they are interested in buying it from you. Other opportunities include utilizing popular services such as Sedo.com and dnforum.com. Many people I know have the best luck by going direct to prospects rather than employing services to handle sales for you. Pre-promote by building new recent links, promote to existing audiences and competitors and post-promote through press releases and forum announcement once you have a few bids on the table.