There are many potential benefits to starting new sites on aged domains as opposed to a brand new domain name with no history. The idea of starting a new site with backlinks already pointing to you before the first article is appealing, but is it realistic?
While the market for aged domains with backlinks is competitive, there are multiple options for finding a good fit for a new site.
This requires heavy research, patience, and solid due diligence.
Here is what I cover in the article:
- Basics about age domains
- Pros and cons of domains with backlinks
- Ways to buy a good age domain
- Is it worth it?
Let’s get into it!
What is an aged domain?
An aged domain name is any domain that has had something active for a certain number of years. While many aged domains will have had websites on them previously, that isn’t always the case.
Some may only have had landing pages or “domain for sale” pages. However, if Google recognized the domain that started the clock ticking on its age and older domains tend to have a positive SEO benefit.
A domain that Google first saw 6, 10, or even 15 years ago has the potential to bring major benefits to a new niche site.
What is an aged domain with backlinks?
While an aged domain doesn’t necessarily have links to it, most that were sites at one point or another have some links pointing towards them.
Maybe it was a business that closed down after many years, but all those old links still point to the domain name. Maybe someone made a hobby blog then quit.
Aged domains with backlinks are just that: they are domain names where there’s no website built on them but there are backlinks pointing to that name.
Aged domain example
Here’s an example of such a domain with backlinks but no traffic:
This example domain has 122 referring domains and 418 backlinks. The AHREFs DR is 21 but it has zero organic traffic. The original business on the domain shut down, thus their site was shut down, resulting in no traffic.
However, the backlinks still point to the domain thus it can be repurposed.
Here is the same domain’s historical traffic and referring domains:
As you can see, the domain/business had organic traffic when operational but then it went to zero. However, the referring domains (green) still exist. That’s the power of an aged domain.
Note that there are potential landmines to go this route. Let’s cover the pros and cons.
What are the pros?
The top benefits of aged domains with history come from fast indexing in Google and sometimes immediate rankings.
When a new niche site is built on that name, Google just sees an old domain with backlinks, and the algorithm goes to work.
This may mean skipping the Google sandbox. If the domain has enough really good backlinks pointing to it, a new site could rank for very competitive keywords.
Fast rankings and traffic also equal early cash flow.
What are the cons?
If you buy an aged domain with a poor backlink history, you’re stuck with that history. Maybe there are a lot of low-quality links, spam links, or the previous owner used a shady PBN.
If the site was penalized with a Google penalty, that punishment will be in place when the new niche website gets built.
In the same way that a good backlink history on a domain can boost a brand new website, a terrible backlink history can sink a new website.
This is why due diligence is crucial when it comes to buying aged domains. Never buy without looking at the backlink profile and checking out previous sites built on that domain name via the Wayback Machine.
How do I buy a good aged domain?
There are many options when it comes to finding a quality asset with a good backlink profile.
Good sources for aged domains include:
- From ODYS.global
- Flippa & other online marketplaces
- Individual research and outreach
ODYS.global is one of the most trusted curated dealers. They search, perform due diligence, and buy used domain names that they then sell. They also have a program to work with clients who are looking for a branded name in a specific niche.
Flippa and other online marketplaces also sell aged domains. Due diligence is still key, but with so many domain names that once housed sites, there are still options out there.
Finally, if you know of local businesses that closed down but had a website and a history, reach out to them. You might have an owner happy to offload a domain to you before it ever hits the open market.
Should you buy an aged domain?
Building a successful niche website on a brand new domain is possible, and how most people do it. Buying a good aged domain can speed up the process and help a new site start with a big head start, but it’s not a necessity.
Here are case studies that we’ve done:
- Dating site case study: domain was a forum/website since 2004. Domain was bought at auction, and then repurposed with topical relevance. The site now earns $9,000-$10,000 per month average.
Whether this is the right move for you depends on a variety of factors with the budget being a big one.
If you do proper due diligence, see an aged domain with great backlinks in the profile, and it’s available at a reasonable price, buying it can be a great way to start a new niche website off on the right foot.