In Part 1 of this series of how to buy and sell websites, I detailed Steps 1 and 2 of the process. Those steps involved buyers and sellers coming to an agreement and the payment methods that are available to both parties to complete the deal. In part 2, I’ll detail step 3 of the process: getting the domain to the buyer and determining the hosting arrangement.
Step 3: Getting The Domain To The Buyer & Determining The Hosting Arrangement
After the buyer and seller have come to an agreement on a deal and have selected the payment method, the next thing that needs to be done is to get the domain to the buyer and to determine what the hosting arrangement is going to be. Let’s look at the options available to get the domain to the buyer.
Option 1: Push A Domain
This is the most common way to get the domain to the buyer. When you push a domain you are simply “moving” a domain from one person to another from within the SAME registrar. For example, the seller has the domain registered at GoDaddy and the buyer also has an account at GoDaddy. In this example, the seller would push the domain to the buyer within GoDaddy.
Pushing a domain has a couple advantages. For one, it’s free to do. Second, it is a quick and easy process and the “move” to the buyer takes affect almost immediately. There is also no 60-day waiting period like there can be when you transfer a domain from one registrar to another, which I’ll discuss shortly. Here is a video I put together that shows you how easy it is to push a domain:
Option 2: Transfer A Domain
The other way to get a domain to a buyer is to transfer the domain. When a domain is transferred, it is moved from one registrar to another. For example, the seller has the domain registered at GoDaddy but the buyer has an account with another registrar (i.e. NameCheap) and wants the domain transferred there. In this example, the domain will be moved from one registrar to another (GoDaddy to NameCheap).
There are a few disadvantages to transferring a domain and as such, this option isn’t used as much. For starters, the buyer will have to pay to have the domain registered at his registrar, which is usually no more than the cost of registering a new domain. If the buyer’s registrar charges $10 to register a new domain, it will typically cost anywhere from $8-$10 to register a transferred domain. Second, there are more steps involved than there is when you push a domain. Finally, you cannot transfer a domain within 60 days of registering a new domain. For example, if a seller registers a domain to build a website that he’s going to sell within a few weeks, the seller will not be able to transfer that domain to another registrar for at least 60 days. Here is another video I put together that shows you how to transfer a domain:
Should I Push A Domain Or Transfer A Domain?
This is a common question among new website flippers. In almost every case, domains should be pushed. Even if the buyer has all his current domains registered at one registrar, the buyer should still agree to a simple push. It’s free to create an account at the major registrars and it’s free to push a domain so the buyer shouldn’t have any objections. To keep the process as simple as possible, the buyer should agree to a push and then he can transfer the domain to his registrar of choice after the deal with the seller is completed if he wants to.
The only situation where it would make sense to transfer a domain is if the seller’s registrar is an unknown company and “iffy.” For example, if the domain is registered at, Bob’s Super Cheap Domains, the buyer may feel more comfortable having the domain transferred to a more reputable registrar like GoDaddy.
Determining The Hosting Arrangement
Once the buyer and seller agree on how the domain will be moved to the buyer, the domain is actually moved. While the domain is being moved to the buyer, the buyer and seller will discuss the hosting arrangement and get that squared away. I cover the hosting arrangement options in great detail in part 3 of this series but they are:
- Option 1: Seller hosts the site via a reseller account
- Option 2: Seller “hands over the keys” to a shared hosting account
- Option 3: Seller transfers the site to the buyer’s web host
As soon as the hosting arrangement is agreed on, the buyer and seller will act accordingly. This is discussed in great length in part 3 of this series. The main point is that at this stage of the process the domain is moved while simultaneously coming to a hosting arrangement. After the domain has been moved and the hosting has been squared away, the deal is officially done as far as transferring everything to the buyer.