Why the age of a domain matters

There are good reasons to purchase older domains


an apple computer from the early 90ies

We often hear from web experts: "The older the domain, the more valuable". But is it true that what usually applies to wines also applies to the virtual good of domains? Generally, yes. Especially companies can profit from older domains. But there are a few things to keep in mind if you don't want to experience any unexpected surprises. In this article we’ll explain:

  • when aged domains can be valuable
  • what advantages they bring
  • when it’s better to avoid them
  • which tools you can use to find out the domain age

What are aged domains?

An aged domain is an Internet address that has been registered and in use for a considerable period of time. The term "age" refers to the age of the domain compared to other domains. Due to its long existence on the Internet, older domains have the opportunity to establish themselves through existing page content and build a positive image. Companies and website operators can benefit from this if they invest into buying aged domains. Nevertheless, you should be careful, because the domain age alone shouldn’t be the sole reason for a decision.


At what point do we start talking about aged domains?

There is no set period of time from which a domain is considered aged. As a rule, one can say that a domain that has been registered for several years or decades can be considered aged. For comparison: registration of .com domains has been possible since 1985, .app domains were not available until 30 years later. So a .com domain registered early had theoretically three decades to gain a good reputation (authority) through content on its website.

Speaking of content: This is where the mantra "content is king" comes into play, as it has a big influence. Even a new domain can gain importance much faster if it:

  • has high quality content
  • offers a good user experience
  • and is linked to by other (high-quality) websites (backlinks).

Therefore, age is not the only criteria for the success of a domain. Even if there is no exact rule or consensus in the industry: When it comes specifically to search engine optimization (SEO) and the age of a domain, domains that have been active for more than five years can be considered aged. In addition, search engines like Google or Bing take into account many other factors to evaluate the authori ty and relevance of a domain.


There are several tools and services that you can use to check the age of a domain. One well-known option is to use "Whois" lookups such as https://www.whois.com/whois/ to get information about the registration date of a domain.

Here's an example of a Whois lookup for Sedo.com showing its registration date

What are the advantages of aged domains?

For companies and website owners, advantages of aged domains are attractive for several reasons:


SEO-Advantages: Search engines like Google or Bing consider the age of a domain as a ranking factor. An aged domain has usually had more time to build authority and accumulate backlinks. This can lead to better visibility and higher rankings in search results.

Trust and credibility: An aged domain is seen as more trustworthy and credible. Visitors are more likely to trust a website with an established domain that has been online for a long time.

Awareness and brand value: If an aged domain is well-known and has a certain brand value, this can help strengthen the image and perception of one's brand. Visitors may recognize the domain name faster and associate it directly with the company.

Avoiding competition: By acquiring an aged domain, you can theoretically get one over on the competition. If a domain is established and well known in the respective industry, owning this domain can put you in pole position from the start.

Established backlink profile: An aged domain may have built a lot of backlinks from other websites. These backlinks can contribute to the authority and visibility of one's website. They are interpreted by search engines as a reference to high-quality content and relevant information.

Traffic benefits: An aged domain can have a steady flow of organic visitors. This can help your website generate traffic faster. It saves time and resources for building a new domain.

Less risk of spam: An aged domain usually has less risk of spam than a new domain. Spam websites usually have a short lifespan. They are quickly detected by search engines and removed from search results. An aged domain has a long history and is less prone to spam.

Higher resale value: The value of aged domains can be both a curse and a blessing. It depends on your perspective, if it’s an advantage or a disadvantage. For domain owners who are selling domains, the advantage is that aged domains have a much higher resale value. This in turn is the disadvantage for buyers who have to dig deeper into their pockets compared to a newly registered domain. But in the end, this investment is also worthwhile, because the value of the domain will increase and you therefore own a valuable asset.

What are the disadvantages of aged domains?

While the age of a domain usually comes with convincing benefits, there are also potential disadvantages. These are still manageable, but should be considered:

Old-fashioned design and technology: This disadvantage can arise when you are dealing not only with the technical takeover of a domain, but the entire business. Fictitious example: A well-known manufacturer of eyeglasses acquires the descriptive domain glasses.com including the entire content (website, content, customers, brands, etc.), which would be a so-called project purchase. If glasses.com has not been regularly updated and modernized, this could lead to having an outdated design or relying on outdated technologies and platforms.It could have a negative impact on the user experience and reduce the attractiveness of the website for visitors. As a result, the relevance for search engines is impaired. In most cases, only the name and the existing traffic are in the foreground for buyers when purchasing a domain plus project.

Spam risk: If an aged domain has been abused by spammers in the past or has violated search engine guidelines, this can lead to a negative impact on the domain's reputation. Search engines can impose penalties on domains that can negatively impact ranking and visibility. If a domain has received this stamp, also known as a “burned domain”, it’s difficult to get rid of it. As a rule, spammers tend to use newer or new registered domains for fakeshops, so whatever happened in a domain's history should always be checked before purchasing. Archive.org's Wayback Machine can help with this: It’s like a digital time machine for domains and provides snapshots of the website going back to its launch. This way, you find out the age and also gain insight into the content that could be found under the domain.

Here's a view of the Domain History at archive.org for sedo.com

Higher costs: Almost all good domain names are already taken. If you are looking for a good domain that is suitable for strong branding, you are very likely to find it on the secondary domain market, where you can buy already registered domains from their owners. Compared to the costs of a newly registered domain (approximately $10 per year for a .com domain), the value of a taken and aged domain is often associated with higher costs. Furthermore, an aged domain can have a negative reputation if it has been used for spam or fraudulent activities in the past.

Misperception: Rare but possible: Sometimes an aged domain creates difficulties in aligning with new business models or brand identity. There can be barriers to aligning an aged domain with a new brand or business model if it doesn’t really match the offering, service or user group.


In summary, an aged domain is invaluable for businesses and website owners.

It offers:

  • trust and credibility
  • better placement in search engine results
  • less risk in competition
  • a higher resale value

It is worth investing in aged domains and the best place to find them is the secondary domain market. At Sedo, the globally largest domain marketplace, we have an inventory of 23 million domains listed for sale by its owners.

Here are some tips and advice that will help you in finding relevant aged domains:
Take a look at our marketplace Sedo.com and enter your desired domain or a search term into our domain search.

You have a domain in mind, which is not for sale? Don't worry, our domain brokers will help you to get your desired domain.

Would you like to look for special bargains first? In that case it's worth visiting our Expiring Domain Auctions. All domains have a starting bid already at $79. There are various filters including the domain age.

Do you have any further questions? Contact our customer support team.

Do you own domains and no longer need them? Listing them for sale at Sedo is free. Find out how easy it is to earn money with domain trading here.