A domain name can be…
1. Registered for 1 to 10 years
2. Renewed for 1 to 10 years
3. Purchased from a private party for big bucks
4. Parked on a MFA page and maybe earn a few bucks
5. Privately registered. Makes it hard to answer the question, “Who is the owner?”
6. Pointed to your domain name server
7. Parked on an existing domain name
8. Rented or Leased
9. Retired. Just let it expire naturally.
Domain names can cost you money or make you money.
A couple of years ago I inherited about 80 domain names. I did not register them, however, to keep them, I would need to renew them each year at a total cost of over $500 each year or else they would expire. Many were not worth keeping. What a liability!
Domain Name purchased from a Private Pary for thousands of dollars
About a year later a client called and asked me to obtain a few of domain names that were already registered by someone else. I went into Boston to meet with one of the champs at Sedo and learned a whole lot about the domain name market place. We eventually purchased the domain names we wanted for four figures. My client was ecstatic to obtain the domain names of his business name for significantly less than expected.
Domain Name Parking
During this time, I learned of domain name parking and immediately parked all of my domains at Sedo. The pennies started rolling in most days. This was not enough to support the lame domain names in my portfolio, but it definitely eased the financial burden while I figured out which I would sell, develop, park or retire.
Private Domain Name Registration
My client elected to register his newly acquired domain names privately. This keeps his contact information out of the public whois directory of domain name owners. Many of my domain name clients elect to do this. There are spammers and scammers that search the database to populate their spam email lists. Private registration keeps their prying eyes away.
Point to your Domain Name Server (DNS)
Once we had control of the domain name accounts, we pointed the domain name servers to our hosting server. This information tells all DNS queries that our DNS is authoritative and then provides the directions to the web site.
Park your Domain Names
My client also registered a number of additional domain names for future use. So, rather then letting them sit idly by, he elected to park these names on his primary web site. This redirects all traffic for these parked domains to his primary web site.
Renting allows you to keep ownership of a valuable name. The renter has the opportunity to build a business without the expense of purchasing a valuable domain name. Make sense?
Retiring – focus your investment elsewhere
I am now down to about 60 domain names after letting those with no value expire. These are typically domain names comprised of three or more words and in industries that hold no interest for me, or anyone else likely. These domain names are now available for someone else to register and develop.
Two last points of advice.
1) Register your domain name for as many years as you can afford.
2) Do whatever it takes to make sure that your domain name does not expire. I have seen business owners lose their domain names and that really hurts.