10 tips for making money selling domains on Flippa

I haven't made a fortune selling domains, but I have done better than I expected when I started less than a year ago. So far I've made 5-figures selling domains on flippa.com without a lot of work or risk, and some other sellers on the site have asked me for advice. Here is a list I put together of my top 10 pieces of advice:

1. Get their attention

Figure out a way to get a decent domain and list it on flippa as a premium listing. This will get people's attention and they will follow all of your future listings. Before I listed pic.io, no one followed my listings, but afterwards a few dozen people started following me, which means that any time I create a new listing, it already has a few dozen people who are notified.

2. Use a premium listing

Premium listings are expensive ($250), but based on my experience they are usually worth it. If you have a crappy domain, it won't help. But if you have a pretty good domain, the premium exposure will get you a lot more bids and a higher sale price.

3. Post relevant comments every few days to keep people interested

Once you have the listing up, post a comment every now and then with some relevant information. As an example, check out my listing for fit.io - the domain sold at the BIN price right after my last comment. The current high bidder felt the pressure of the exposure from the blog article I posted about in the comment, and decided to "buy it now" to lock in the deal.

4. Put a realistic BIN price on the listing

Some buy-it-now prices are way too high. I've seen astronomical prices of like $100,000 for not that great of a domain. I think the sellers are afraid of selling themselves short, which is a good thing, but the buy it now price can be a handy tool to sell your domain faster for a better price than you would otherwise get. It is more of an art than a science, but the BIN is valuable to the buyer because it gives them the opportunity to snatch the domain for themselves at any time. This added value should be priced in to the BIN price.

5. Be honest and do good business

Respond to comments and messages quickly, and make sure the sale and domain transfer go smoothly. In the description and title, try to make sure you aren't lying or trying to deceive the seller in any way. I hate it when I see a listing that is clearly trying to deceive someone into buying a domain different than what they expect (e.g. a domain with a number "0" in the name, instead of the letter "O", etc...).

6. Be pro-active

Reach out to people who may be interested in the domain but don't yet realize it. For example, when I was selling pic.io, I sent an email to the owner of pics.io, or pic.me, etc.. letting them know about the auction. You only need two people who really want the domain and are willing to bid it up, in order to get it to sell for a nice price. I've sold a lot of domains this way.

7. Optimize your listing settings

From my experience it is best to list at $1 with no reserve. This way you get a ton of bids, which generates its own buzz. I also usually list it for 2 weeks, to give it some time to get more bidders and interest. These probably aren't the optimal listing settings, but I learned to do it this way from past experience listing with different params, which didn't work out as well for me. Sometimes I put in a reserve price if I want to guarantee a certain sale price.

Again, this is more of an art than a science, but you will need to experiment on your own to figure out what works best for you.

8. Learn from others

Look over the listings that have sold in the past. Learn from them. Look over the current listings. Learn from them. What works, and what doesn't? Pay special attention to listings similar to the domains you want to sell.

9. Get a niche

I love startups, and I like to build and launch projects on the web, so I naturally gravitated to .io and .ly domains, because I wanted to build stuff with them (and I still do). But by focusing on a specific type of domain (.io and .ly TLDs), I learned a lot about them and was able to understand them in a way that many others don't, which gives me an advantage when it comes to buying and selling these types of domains.

10. Just start selling

The only way to get better at it is to get experience. Once you start selling and watching other domains sell, you get a feel for the value of domains. The more you do it, the better grasp you have on the market.