Case Studies

Odys Global Review – Domain Case Study | Is an Aged Domain Worth it?

Odys Aged Domain Case Study

Watch my aged domain case study with traffic numbers and more here:

In today’s post, I’ll be sharing my experience with building a website on an Odys Global aged domain.

You’ll get to see my full Odys review, and learn about my experience building a website on a premium, aged Odys domain.

First, we’ll go over why people (like me), buy aged domains, and how buying an aged domain can speed up the website ranking process.

The main reason people buy aged domains on marketplaces such as Odys.Global, is that brand new domains and sites tend not to rank.

Do Brand New Domains Rank?

Brand New Sites Take Time to Rank

With a brand new site you have two options. You can either wait it out, and build site links and authority, or, you can build a site on an older, aged domain with high authority to try to rank more quickly.

Another option to help a brand new site rank more quickly is to redirect an older, aged domain with high authority to your brand new domain to transfer authority onto the new domain to try to help it rank more quickly.

One question many people have is, why don’t new sites rank?

Why don’t new sites rank?

  • The Google Sandbox
  • No time for Google to see how visitors react to the site
  • No links, trust or authority
  • Need more content / keyword-researched content

The Google Sandbox

One reason new sites don’t rank right away is the Google Sandbox. If you’re an SEO or have been in the online world for any amount of time, you may have heard of the The Google Sandbox.

The Google Sandbox refers to a general 6 month period that most websites are in a sort of purgatory before they have a chance to start ranking for any keywords at all.

As you can imagine, this can be frustrating for many website owners who are impatient to see results.

Google Needs Time Before it Ranks a Site

The reason for the sandbox is that Google tends to need time to start indexing new sites, to see if they actually have good content, and to figure out what they’re about.

Because of this, Google tends to wait at least 6 months before they will even start ranking a brand new site and domain.

This period of time is known as the Google sandbox period and is recognized by many in the SEO world and by those who have ever started a brand new site on a brand new domain.

No Links, Trust & Authority = No Google Rankings

Another reason a new site will have trouble ranking is because a brand new site has no links, and no trust or authority.

When a site starts fresh with no links this is a sign to Google it has no outside trust so Google is less willing to rank it or trust it.

Links are outside trust factors that show to Google and other search engines that a site can be trusted.

A brand new site has no trust factors that search engines can recognize to rank it.

Since a brand new site is new and without links, trust or authority, and search engines don’t want to rank something brand new with no trust factors. Lack of links, trust and authority are part of the reason it takes brand new sites so long to rank.

No Content = No Google Rankings

New sites also tend to have less content or even no content. 

Every site needs content to rank.

Specifically, every site needs content that targets keywords with some type of search volume and low enough competition for the site to have a chance to start ranking for anything.

No Content = No Rankings

  • To rank, a site needs keyword-researched content. Since new sites tend to have less content, or even no content they start out not ranking for  anything. The less content a site has, the less chance it has to rank.
  • A new site will never rank for every single keyword it targets, so part of ranking is a numbers game of how much content you can put out into the world to even have a chance to rank. A brand new site will generally have less content and fewer chances to rank.

The key to getting your site to rank in Google, is getting Google to trust your website.

What makes Google trust a website?

  • Age
  • Site history with links, content, visitors and Google
  • Number of links, quality of links, relevance of links 
  • Quality of content, visitor engagement with site
  • Sources, who it links out to & who its authors are

Website Age

There are several things that make Google trust a website, and one is age.

Google tends to trust and rank sites that have been around for a very long time. This is more often the case when the site has been around for a long time and provided good content and a good user experience.

Sites with 5-20+ years of age have already gotten past the new site ‘sandbox’ period, and Google knows them better so is more likely to rank them.

Having an older, stable, established site is a trust factor and can help a site rank, and stay in the rankings on Google and other search engines.

I’ve bought multiple sites and one thing I always look for is site age.

Buying a 10 year + stable ranking site is always a good sign for the site’s future health. Buying a brand new, rocket-ship growth site that only has 6 months or a year of traffic and earning potential is usually a red flag because the site has a higher chance of using risky SEO tactics or being penalized quickly after you buy it.

Number of Website Links AKA Authority

Another thing that makes Google trust a site is the number of links it has, the quality of links it has, and the relevance of the links it has. 

Links from other sites show Google a website is trusted enough by other sites for them to reference the site on their own webpage.

This is a positive trust signal.

The more links, the more trust a site has. Of course it is not as simple as that.

The more relevant links, meaning links from sites in the same niche, the more trust a site has. Links contribute to how much Google trusts a site, because links from a site in the same niche show that the site is “trusted” by other sites in its niche and therefore has more credibility and expertise.

When a site is trusted by other sites enough to be linked to, Google sees that as a positive ranking signal, and boosts the site in search results.

Why are random links neutral, or even bad?

Random links show Google that your site is either buying links, using unnatural link building tactics, or is looked at as less valuable by Google because the site linking to you doesn’t have the expertise to decide if your site is actually trustworthy or not.

Getting high quality links from those in your niche is the best type of link, even if the domain linking out has a lower authority than an unrelated niche.

The quality of link is also important, you don’t want links from a PBN, or a blog that advertises they accept sponsored posts, paid posts or guest posts.

You want links from high authority sites, meaning sites that have lots of trust signals in the form of links from other sites.

If other high authority, high trust sites show Google they trust your site, that means more to Google than a site with no links or authority linking out to your site.

Why do high authority links matter?

High authority links are similar to if you get a letter of recommendation from a random person on the street, versus getting a letter of recommendation from the President of the United States.

Which do you think will carry more weight with the job you’re applying to?

Of course the letter of recommendation from the president of the US, because they have high authority and are recognized by others.

Why do in-niche links matter?

Additionally, if you receive a letter of recommendation from the president of the US, and a letter of recommendation from the Owner/CEO of the company you’re applying to, which would hold more weight?

Likely both would have weight, but the letter from the CEO of the company would hold more weight, because even though the CEO of the company has less social trust and authority than the President of the US, the CEO is more relevant to the job you’re trying to get since they own the company.

 Quality of Website Content

Another Google trust factor is the quality of content and visitor engagement with site

Google’s algorithm is continually changing to try to figure out which content is the highest quality and how visitors are engaging with the site.

Since no one can figure out the exact algorithms, and since Google keeps changing them anyway and getting better at detecting good content, the best thing for you to do is always produce the best quality content for your site that will serve visitors the best.

Google trusts sites more when they have high quality content and when visitors seem to respond well to the content, ie, not immediately clicking back into search results after visiting a site, or staying on a site longer to read more articles.

Quality of Website Sources

Lastly a Google trust factor is a site’s sources, who it links out to and who its authors are.

Google is asking, where is this site getting its information? Is it linking out to reputable sources? Who are its authors? Are they subject matter experts?

Google is trying to serve high quality content to its visitors, so they try to make sure the content is factual and not made up or pulled out of thin air.

These trust factors are not present in ‘brand-new’ sites, and are why some people choose to build websites on aged domains, such as those from marketplace.

Why do people build sites on aged domains?

  • An aged domain has many search engine trust factors including age, authority/links, past site visitor engagement, past site content & sources

People build sites on aged domains so they can:

  • Skip the Google sandbox
  • Get the power of the domain’s trust factors (age, authority/links, past rankings)
  • Rank more quickly
  • Rank with less effort
  • Utilize the power of the domain to rank their site and content effectively and quickly

What are the risks of building a site on an aged domain?

  • Choosing a domain that had low traffic or declining traffic before it expired, or had bad backlinks or was previously penalized
    • When you choose a domain that never had traffic, or was penalized, or had bad backlinks, you’re simply reviving a site that never worked in the first place, so there’s no reason it should work again now.
    • The main thing I always look for when buying an expired domain is finding one that had traffic when it was live, was live not too long ago, and doesn’t seem to have been hit with any type of penalty, or declining traffic.
    • I also look at the backlink profile using Ahrefs, and make sure the linking domains are high quality, high DA and relevant.
  • Choosing a domain that is copyrighted and that can be taken away from you
    • If you end up buying in-between its renewal period like that guy did a few years ago, the copyrighted url is owned by someone else and they will be able to take it back quite easily.
  • Trying to pivot the direction of the domain once you own it
    • This is key, you want to keep the domain in the same niche with the same intent, and I’ll go over my own case study regarding this in a few slides and go into more detail about keeping the domain in the same niche and same direction for best results.
  • Writing content for/choosing a niche that doesn’t match the old site’s content or intent**
    • Again, this is super important. You want to write new content for your aged domain that is spot on with the old site’s intent. Trying to pivot the site’s niche or intent will signal to Google that the site is now different, not the old trusted site Google liked before, and this comes with ranking and SEO risks.

Note: Just like buying a live site, of course there are other risks as well. Any site at any time can have organic traffic or any type of traffic taken away from it for any reason (as likely many of you know if you have been in the online world for any amount of time).

Tips When Buying an Aged Domain

What to consider when choosing a niche

  • Choose a niche that is an exact match if possible.
  • You can choose your niche first, then find a domain with the same exact intent, OR you can choose your domain first and then build a website with the same exact intent as the old website

Choosing an exact match niche when buying an aged domain is very important.

When you pick a website where you can pick up where it left off so Google says,

‘oh look, it’s my old favorite trusted site, and it’s back again, only better! I love this site and I want to push it right back up to the top of the rankings where it was before! Yay, I missed my old friend!’

When your niche picks up exactly where the old domain niche’s content left off, it’s a signal to Google the site is back and your rankings tend to come back quickly.

What you want is content that picks up exactly where the old domain niche’s content left off for best results.

Aged Domain Case Study

aged domain case study




Buying my First Aged Domain:

  • I bought an aged domain from Odys, 6 months ago
  • The domain was a DA 33, with 1.2K or so backlinks
  • Many backlinks from very high-quality .gov etc domains
  • When I bought it, it was live. Odys keeps their aged domains live so you don’t have to ‘revive them’ completely from the dead.
  • When I bought it 6 months ago, it was only ranking for a small handful of keywords.

My Process Buying an Aged Domain

My first time buying an aged domain

Before this purchase, I had never bought an aged domain before, only websites with current traffic and revenue, or bought fresh domains and created my own sites on them.

6 months ago, I was curious about how building a site on an aged domain could help it rank more quickly and without putting in the usual link building legwork.

I had been hearing about people building sites on aged domains and the process of taking a domain that already had links and trust from search engines intrigued me.

I liked the thought of simply taking a domain that had been ranking well, and then putting content on it and having the potential to rank again without much effort.

Buying my aged domain through Odys

At the time I had been hearing a lot about Odys Global, a company that buys, curates and sells aged domains, through reading several of my  favorite SEO email newsletters I follow, so I decided to look at their site for aged domains.

I’d never purchased a domain with no current traffic for so much money before, so it took me a good two days to work up the nerve to make the purchase before I finally did

I ended up buying my first aged domain from Odys (O-d-y-s), 6 months ago, and looking back I’m very glad I did.

I like looking for aged domains on the Odys site because they curate high DA, high quality domains and they keep them live while they sit for sale.

It’s better to pick up an aged domain that hasn’t been offline for a super long time, so I like that they keep the domains sitting live while they’re listed for sale. Odys also pre-vets sites and makes sure the domains have high quality backlinks which takes a lot of the work out of your end when looking.

Buying my second aged domain at a GoDaddy auction

I’ve looked for and bought an aged domain on my own as well, and it was quite an involved long and uncertain process.

It took a few days of poring through domains on my own using SEMRush to find even a handful that looked semi-usable. then I had to wait over a month for it to fully expire. then i had to go into an auction period to actually purchase the site. 

Benefits of Buying an Aged Domain From a Marketplace like Odys

  • Marketplaces make it easy to find a curated list of high quality domains, no spending days searching for quality expired URLs
    • One thing that’s nice about Odys is all you have to do is simply logon to their website and you see a list of ready to use, high quality domains available right away when you want one.
  • Fixed, buy-it-now price, no bidding wars.
    • The Odys domains are also reasonably priced with a fixed buy it now, which is also nice.

My Recent Experience Buying an Aged Domain Through a GoDaddy Auction

The other aged domain I recently purchased through an expired domain auction directly from GoDaddy.

As I explained before I had to spend several days trying to find the domain, then once I did I placed a backorder on it, and then waited over a month for it to expire.

Then the day of the auction there was another person bidding on it at the same time I was. Luckily they only placed one bid and then I got it.

I’ve tried with other domains and it’s a ton of work to find them in the first place, and other people usually want them pretty badly so they tend to get snapped up.

Buying an Aged Domain on a Marketplace vs Buying an Aged Domain at an Auction

Pros of buying an aged domain in a marketplace

  • It is easy to find and view quality aged domains in a marketplace
    • One reason I like buying an aged domain through a marketplace, such as Odys, versus at an auction, is that you can simply login and see a list of high quality domains available to buy.
    • This means you don’t have to search through hundreds or thousands of expired URLs, trying to find a quality one in your niche, and then waiting for it to expire just so you can get into a bidding war with someone else who wants it.
  • You don’t have to wait to buy the domain, you can buy it now
    • Sometimes you need or want the domain right now, and you don’t want to go through an unpredictable auction process.
  • You don’t have to compete in bidding wars 
    • When purchasing an aged domain on a marketplace, you don’t need to compete in bidding wars, instead you pay a buy-it-now price.
    • In an auction, it is always a possibility you may have to compete in bidding price wars wondering if you’ll even get the domain you want.

The ease of buying an aged domain in a marketplace, the ability to purchase the domain right away, and the price certainty of not having to compete in bidding wars are all part of the reason I found it nice and easy to buy my aged domain on an aged domain curator like Odys. 

Process of buying an aged domain through an auction

I also personally think it’s a good experience to go through the process of finding and buying an aged domain on your own, so I recommend you try both ways to get acquainted with the entire process that goes into finding and buying aged domains.

It can be possible to get a better deal on some auction domains, as long as there isn’t too much competition or interest. This is one reason why setting up several backorders in a niche you’re interested in can be a good idea.

  1. Find quality URLS
    • If you’re looking to buy an aged domain at an auction, first you’ll have to find a list of URLs that interest you. I use Ahrefs to find these, you can use any tool, or even search on aged domain marketplaces directly.
  2. Monitor domains as they expire
    • Then, you need to either monitor the domains on your own, or pay for and set up domain backorder tracking to make sure you are notified when they expire.
    • This is so you can get the domain automatically if you’re the only bidder, or bid on them in the auction if there are multiple bidders.
  3. Bid on the domain in an auction, or automatically receive it
    • After the domain expires, if there are multiple bidders, you then have the live auction situation where you will need to bid against others for the domain.
    • Whoever wants to pay the most for the domain will win it in the auction.

Cons of buying a domain through an auction

Buying a domain through an auction means you’ll be bidding against others to get the domain if more than one person is interested in buying it.

  • You may not pay enough to win the domain
    • Bidding for a domain means you may not want to pay enough to win the domain, and it means you have to be ok with waiting all that time for the domain to expire, and then walking away empty-handed without a domain.
  • You may over-pay for the domain and regret it
    • In an auction situation, you also risk getting caught up in the auction mood, and then over-bidding and over-paying for the domain and regretting it later.

Expired domain auctions, with all of their uncertainty and bidding wars are one reason I do have a soft spot for curated aged domain sites like Odys, since in these marketplaces you don’t have to spend time waiting for a domain to expire or wonder how much it will cost you.

In a domain marketplace such as Odys, you can just browse the site and hit checkout when you see one you like. 

Aged Domain Case Study: What I did

What I did:

  • I bought the aged domain from Odys,
  • I looked up all of its high-link, high-traffic pages
  • Then I 301-redirected all the pages with 2 or more quality links to a new keyword-researched page targeting the same keywords
  • I added a ton of new content, specifically over 70 new category pages, and thousands of new content-specific pages
  • I strategically internally linked the content category pages
  • I waited 6 months

Aged Domain Case Study: Lesson #1

One takeaway: 

  • One thing I would do differently looking back is I would have matched my site’s relevancy spot on
  • I matched the exact niche, but it was more of an overlap.
  • It’s still ranking first page for the exact niche match keywords, but many of the overlap keywords are still page 2-3
  • I noticed the exact niche keywords shot up in the rankings, while the related niche keywords are ambling up the rankings on their own time more like a normal site would.

Takeaway: Related/overlap niches can work when building an aged domain, but you’ll see the rocket-ship results from exact content intent matches.

Try to keep your intent exactly as the old site was for the best of the best rocket-ship type results.

Takeaway Explained

  • Traffic and intent are the most important things to consider when buying an aged domain
  • Look at the old site’s traffic, if it was always high, then that is a good sign, regardless of how high the DA is
  • Look at the old site’s intent, if your intent is the exact same, then that is more important than getting a site with a super high DA

My site had very high DA and traffic. My intent was a 50% match.

My site is still doing quite well, likely because of the high DA, high past traffic, and that the intent is a pretty good match.

However it was easy for me to see how the exact match intent keywords went from 0 to 100 in a few days, and my 50% overlap keywords are still page 2 and 3 after 6 months, which isn’t bad, but it is a clear difference.

For the Best Results, keep the intent a 100% match. For Good Results, keep the niche the same.

  • Traffic and intent are the most important things to consider when buying an aged domain
  • Look at the old site’s traffic, if it was always high, then that is a good sign, regardless of how high the DA is
  • Look at the old site’s intent, if your intent is the exact same, then that is more important than getting a site with a super high DA

Intent Example

  • You purchase an aged domain site that helps people with low income buy “affordable balloons”
  • Exact-match intent: Reviving the site and continuing to help people figure out how to buy affordable balloons
  • Overlap intent: Reviving the site and starting to sell balloons directly on your site to all types of people searching for ‘buy balloon’ keywords

Both work, but with the exact match intent your rankings have a higher chance of hopping right back to page 1 right away, and with overlap intent the new keywords may rank much more slowly, if at all.

Note: (in my case), the exact match intent keywords ranked right away and the overlap intent keywords have slowly been ranking and after 6 months many are on page 2-5.

Aged Domain Case Study: Traffic

I bought the domain here, in April of 2021. Note the upward keyword ranking growth curve.

ODYS site ahrefs

Aged Domain Case Study Site Traffic Over Time

  • Note: Month 1 the site was already getting 418 visitors
  • The site is getting 759 visitors a month now, 6 months later (no link building etc only added new content):

As you can see in the blue Google Analytics graph below, month 1 the site was already getting 418 visitors. The site was getting traffic right from the point I set it up, from all of its exact match intent keywords that started ranking right away.

ODYS site google analytics


The site was live with other owners during these other two periods, ranking for quite a few keywords, as you can see in the first and second arrow on the left side of the orange Ahrefs graph below:

I bought the domain in April. Note the upward keyword ranking growth curve. as you can see in the third arrow on the the right on the orange graph below:


Aged domain traffic case study

I would like to note I did no link building to this site at all, I only added new content.

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How to buy an aged domain:

  • From an aged domain marketplace, such as Odys, where I bought mine
  • Directly from an owner, contacting owners of live, or expired domains using WHOIS contact info
  • Waiting it out and putting a backorder on a domain until the domain officially expires, and playing in an auction to win it
  • Putting a backorder on a domain until it expires and hoping you win it without it going to auction

There are a handful of ways you can acquire an aged domain. The easiest is buying directly from an aged domain marketplace such as Odys.

I’ve acquired one aged domain from Odys, and one from a backorder + auction.

How to set up an aged domain website?

First you’ll want to find the high link pages, and recreate these pages on your site, making sure to 301 redirect the old pages to your new site’s pages.

One caveat is to not copy the pages word for word, and don’t even copy the URLS word for word. Instead it is often best to keyword research your own new urls that will have a better chance of ranking, and 301 redirect the old URL to your new similar URL.

Then, in terms of content you want to create brand new high quality content around the same topic to avoid any copyright issues.

Here is how to Recreate & Redirect the old high-link pages:

  • Put the domain into Ahrefs
  • Go to > Pages > Best By Links

To find all the pages with links:

  • Create new similar keyword-researched pages for the pages with 2+ good links
  • If a page has a ton of links, consider keeping the exact URL for that page
  • 301-Redirect all all these old URLS to your new keyword-researched URLS

Doing this page creation and redirects will help you keep the link authority of the site in place.

How to create content for your aged domain:

  • Create a ton of keyword-researched, exact intent-match content for the site.
    • Pro-Tip: Ask yourself, what would the old site do? Then create content that the old site would’ve wanted to have.
  • Create the best content you can for pages that historically ranked top 10 or 20 (because those will likely have the best chance of ranking again now).

Keep the site intent the same, but put new great content on the site for the best chance of ranking well.

  •   I focus on creating the best content for pages that historically ranked top 10 or 20 because those will likely have the best chance of ranking again now.
  •   The point is to create new content that is targeting the same keywords the site used to rank for, or keywords in the exact same niche. Keep the site intent the same, but put new great content on the site for the best chance of ranking well.
  •   Note: When creating your new site’s content, don’t copy old content word-for-word. Create new content that is under the same topic. You don’t want to get into any copyright issues.
    • I almost made this mistake but luckily contacted the Odys support team asking how to do this and they warned me to stay away from directly copying content due to potential copyright issues.
  •    Use the Wayback Machine for content inspiration.
    • The Wayback Machine allows you to see almost any old page on the web.
    • The Wayback Machine works by archiving webpages in its database so you can look at old versions of sites and sites that no longer exist by inputting the page URL and selecting the date you want to view the page.
    • This is really cool because it allows you to see what the old site looked like and what the pages content was, so you can create pages that are similar so they have a chance to rank.
  •   I focus on creating the best content for pages that historically ranked top 10 or 20 because those will likely have the best chance of ranking again now.
    • The point is not to create a whole new different site, but take the exact same niche if possible and create a better site.
    • Google trusts the old site so if it senses you’re making a completely new or different site or a site with a different angle you’ll have a higher chance of falling of the trust radar and losing traffic.

 In Conclusion: Why Aged Domains?

    • Trust: Google trusts sites when they have age, authority/links, good history with traffic, rankings, and visitor engagement
    • Rank more quickly: People build on aged domains to leverage their power and links to help a new site rank more quickly, with less effort
    • Don’t Forget: Choose an exact-match niche, 301-redirect old website pages, and create new original content for the site

How to buy an aged domain:

  • Go to an aged domain curator such as Odys and pick out a domain to purchase
  • Contact website owners directly and ask to purchase their domain
  • Place a backorder on a site like GoDaddy and wait it out until the domain auction

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