We’ve all been a part of this scenario. You put your dream domain name into a search box and it comes back registered to someone else – and you just knew you’d make your fortune with this name for your business website. Now the registrar wants to know if you want to backorder it and you don’t know what to do.
As a rule of thumb, it makes sense to backorder only under two conditions: one, you’ve got all the time in the world; or two, the domain name is already expired–and you’ve got all the time in the world.
Keep in mind that backordering a domain name isn’t like back ordering most consumer goods. A domain name is a one-of-a-kind thing; the domain registrar can’t simply order another one from the domain manufacturer in China. Somebody already has the name and he probably thought he was going to make his fortune with it also. No, you either have to approach him with an offer or wait until he lets it expire-which he isn’t likely to do if it’s really as valuable as you think it is.
But let’s just suppose that the old owner died the day the day his domain name expired. You’ve got him, right? Wrong. His estate can still re-register the domain for something like 45 days depending on the registrar. The actual “gotcha” time is still a month or so in the future. But at least there’s a chance the domain name won’t be picked back up and you can get it-if you’re real, real lucky. Not necessarily winning-the-lottery lucky, but certainly a good-day-at-the-track lucky. You’ve still got to get it before the other two hundred people that are already standing in line waiting to get their hands on it.
Have I said anything about your not getting involved with backordering unless you have all the time in the world? While you’re fooling around trying to get what you think is the perfect domain name your potential customers have already moved on to open site. By all means backorder if you just have to have that domain, but in the meantime register one that you can use right now.