What Are GoDaddy Domain Auctions?

What Are GoDaddy Domain Auctions?

This week, I had my first experience with an expired domain name auction at GoDaddy, and I thought I would explain this process to you while detailing the timeline of the domain expiration process. Until recently, I have always registered my own domain names; I have never been unable to come up with a domain name that I couldn’t make work for an idea, even if it meant that I couldn’t have my first choice. In general, I think that domains are very overpriced — people buy them by the hundreds, hoping that just one person will pay the $1,000 asking price and make all of the purchases worthwhile.

That changed when I attempted to browse to a website that I hadn’t looked at in a while. By random chance, this domain — which had been around for nearly ten years — was expired. According to the page, GoDaddy was currently auctioning the domain name, and I could click a link to bid on it. I clicked to browse to the auction page, and found that no one had entered a bid on the domain yet. The domain was once the home of a website that had historical importance to a hobby of mine, and I wondered if I might be able to help preserve that history by locating the author and licensing the website’s original content. Either way, I didn’t want to see the domain get released back into the pool, so I placed a bid. In the end, I won the domain for the opening bid price because no one bid against me.

Here’s how the domain expiration process works with GoDaddy. Other registrars may have similar processes.

  • When a domain name expires, GoDaddy gives the original owner 18 days to pay the renewal bill. During the entire domain expiration process, the original registrant of the domain can renew it. However, it is only during this initial 18-day period that they can renew without paying any extra fees.
  • On the 19th day, an $80.00 redemption fee kicks in. From this day forward, the original owner of the domain name has to pay the renewal fee plus $80.00 to get the domain back.
  • On the 26th day, an auction for the domain name begins. This auction lasts ten days and is only open to GoDaddy auction members. A GoDaddy auction membership costs $4.99 per year. However, it does allow you to list your own domain names for auction and monitor up to 100 domains for status changes.
  • If no one bids on the domain name, it goes to a five-day “closeout auction.” During this auction period, anyone can bid on the domain name without being a GoDaddy auction member. I didn’t wait this long for my domain name, because I imaged that someone else would want it.
  • After the closeout auction, the original owner of the domain name has one final day to renew it for the renewal cost plus the $80.00 redemption fee. If they fail to do so, the domain name goes to the auction winner. If no one placed a bid, the domain name goes back to the open pool for registration.

It is important to note that the original owner has 42 days from the date of expiration to get their domain name back. If you bid on a GoDaddy domain auction, the original owner can still renew their domain — even if you win the auction — until the 42-day deadline is reached. Of course, if that happens, you will get your money back.

Another thing to remember is that your bid for the domain name does not include the registration fee — you’ll have to pay that as well. So, in all, this domain name has cost me around $30. Normally, I would never pay that much for a domain name, but as I said, this one is a little special to me. It isn’t quite mine yet, though — the original owner still has another week to renew it.



4 Responses to “What Are GoDaddy Domain Auctions?”

  1. Danial says:

    Just now I was bought 2 expired domain names through the “Buy Now” link. Both domains have PR5 that cost me less than $20 including the fee of auction member. But the problem is, I can’t see the domain name in my godaddy account. I’m a new member in godaddy auction site. Is there any step that I forgot? Please help me to solve this problem.

    • Aiden Clinton says:

      Are the domains still within the grace period in which GoDaddy allows the original owner to renew them? If so, you will not see the domains on your account until this time has passed. After the 42-day grace period following the expiration of the domain expires, it becomes yours. Look for an email from GoDaddy titled “Your Transaction is Complete” when the grace period is over.

  2. Sam says:

    And Where the money goes? Say a bidder bids on a domain name thats auctioning… The bidder wins the auction. The amount the bidder paid to get the auctioning almost expired domain name, who gets that money? The original owner or go daddy since its in that grace period?

    • Aiden Clinton says:

      When you bid on an expired domain at GoDaddy, GoDaddy gets the money. If the original owner of the domain renews it before the grace period expires, you lose the domain but GoDaddy refunds your money.