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I have some domains that I've been building for the last few years and now I'd like to sell them. I tried several services (including Sedo) to try and ascertain just how much money each domain was worth, but not one service agreed with any other service's assessment.

I don't want to sell myself short, but I don't want to make the asking price inappropriate.

Is there a formula to determine this, based on rank / traffic / etc? I know it can't be an exact science, but I'd like to be sure that I'm not selling myself short. Additionally, I'd like to be able to tell if I'm paying to much for a domain if I want to buy one in the future.

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The question is so vague that I can't think how I would go about answering it or even researching it. What are the domains? Why are you selling them? Who are you selling them to? How can anyone tell you how to set a price unless you are more specific? –  delete Jul 10 '10 at 17:11
    
The question asks how I can estimate the value based on characteristics of the site, i.e. alexa ranking, google PR, monthly traffic, etc. I don't see how it is at all ambiguous, or why it should be specific to any single domain? –  Tim Post Jul 10 '10 at 17:28
    
You want a formula for the price? –  delete Jul 10 '10 at 17:50
    
@Kinopiko - I want a way that I can (myself) reasonably estimate the sale value of any given domain. Yes. –  Tim Post Jul 10 '10 at 18:24
    
If they are not retaining similar site content then the current pagerank and traffic means nothing. Links will become irrelevant and the ratings will be reset. This is why you can't simply base the price on a formula. –  JamesRyan May 9 '11 at 9:55
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3 Answers 3

up vote 12 down vote accepted

The quick-and-dirty answer is "it's worth whatever someone is willing to pay." I'm not trying to sound unhelpful, but it's the truth.

The pricing of a domain name is SO subjective. It's like trying to set a price for that picture of an alien spaceship you took. Someone may or may not pay anywhere from $0 to $millions.

There are domain valuation companies that will try to apply a formula along the lines of:

X number of letters + dictionary bonus + sounds-cool fudge factor = $YOUR-RICH!

...but for the most part, these are scams. The problem with trying to set a fixed value (the magic, maximum price where something will sell) is that the market is not even close to liquid. There's simply no "blue book" of domain name values that will tell you what someone should be willing to pay.

What that means to you is that, until someone is willing to write you a check, your domain name is worth exactly $ZERO.

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The thing is, I see domains bought and sold frequently. How does either party arrive at a concrete value? One party comes up with a price, the other party finds it agreeable. There must be some logic that leads them to the same conclusion? –  Tim Post Jul 11 '10 at 7:25
    
@Tim, I doubt it. Two identical items on eBay can sell for vastly different amounts. It all depends on when they're offered for sale, and where it's advertised (e.g. which category it's listed under) –  Mark Henderson Jul 11 '10 at 8:58
    
@Tim Post: That's my point: there IS NO concrete value. The price for virtually anything is set when there are enough people buying and selling to create a liquid market. That would create a "market value" ... which there isn't. Rules of supply and demand have no market-wide basis. You may (or may not) have something that is worth $1-million to three people out of the 2-billion people on the Internet. Meet them and it's worth $1-million. To everyone else, it's worth much-less-to-zero. –  Robert Cartaino Jul 11 '10 at 15:19
    
@Robert - You really know how to argue a point :) –  Tim Post Jul 11 '10 at 15:28
    
I'm pretty sure the typical (nothing special) standard price for a squatted domain is between $250-$750. –  Evan Plaice Jul 12 '10 at 18:17
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I suggest if you want to do this, put up a basic HTML page at the root of the domain that says something like...

This domain is for sale. I am not a domain squatter, just an individual looking for a fair price. Email me with a reasonable offer if you are interested.

name@example.com

Having bought one fairly expensive domain name (superuser.com) and having purchased from squatting organizations before (stackoverflow.com was $1100 or so), I can tell you I would be far more likely to offer to buy a domain from someone who looks like a real, rational person who just wants a fair price for their domain.

That said, you may have to be very patient until the right serious buyer comes along. But until that "I'm interested in selling" page is out there, you'll never know.

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I'm just stuck at the 'fair' part. BTW, your reputation is currently at '404', otherwise I'd up-vote this :) –  Tim Post Jul 12 '10 at 2:06
    
@tim well, fair is whatever someone is willing to pay. If nobody is contacting you about the domain, then the value is effectively $0.. –  Jeff Atwood Jul 12 '10 at 18:21
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You can take a look at sites like http://flippa.com/ where people are buying and selling websites. There you can search for similar websites like yours and see what price they have been sold for.

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