Domain investing is a complex series of activities to acquire, monetize, develop, and sell domain names. The foundation of it all: a domain portfolio that performs all of those function.
How do you build a domain name portfolio? This is a question that many newcomers to domain investing are seeking an answer to.
In the early days of the internet, before domain investing was a common activity, owning one or two domains was the most likely limit. Those that had a vision early on, accumulated domains by registration alone and at the beginning all domain registrations were free but limited: a manual approval process ensured that it somehow made sense for the registrant to claim that particular domain.
But times have changed, and the entire useful English dictionary of keywords has been depleted, along with other languages too.
Domains are being traded in the aftermarket based on their characteristics as a noun, verb, or gerund—potentially the most valuable types of dictionary domains. Other combinations, such as two word composites, are next up on the domain investment food chain, offering brandability opportunities to end-user buyers.
You can still register domain names that are "creative" or invented words, plenty of two (or three) word composites in the primary TLDs, and a lot more in TLDs that are considered generic or new as of their introduction in 2014.
That being said, domain auctions are your next best option as a domain investor looking to beef up a domain portfolio.
Bidding at GoDaddy auctions, for example, has become more transparent in recent months and there's more to come as GoDaddy utilizes technology from Uniregistry—a GoDaddy company—to present its inventory in a useful yet competitive manner.
By definition, domain investors are a competitive species and domains that simply exist in the secondary aftermarket can fetch a premium dollar when sent to auction, or when they expire. Increased interest among "domainers" results in multiple bids and such domain auctions close at a premium that is still, most of the time, well below the end-user price.
In other words, by bidding at domain auctions, domain investors stand a good chance to build a strong portfolio, leveraging the cost of winning these auctions with sales; for that, check out the options presented by Uni brokers that can help you sell your domains to interested buyers. Domain investing is not a passive act where only acquisitions occur—it's a live ecosystem that carries the ebb and flow of a digital asset bazaar that buys and sells domain names 24/7.
Lastly, there's the private acquisitions that complete the toolchest of domain portfolio-building.
By engaging in private purchases of domains directly from their registrants, domain investors can circumvent the increased cost of auctions, as long as they are able to negotiate a fair price below the "end-user" levels.
Once again, Uni brokers can help get that particular domain for you, at a minimal cost, protecting your privacy. Or, you can try your hand at doing that yourself. It's the best way to see negotiations from the "other side" and build up confidence for bigger and better domain sales.
In a nutshell: There are still opportunities to register "by hand" domains, but your domain portfolio will most likely grow by winning domains at auctions, and by private acquisitions. Give the Uni Market and Afternic a chance as well.