Advice Buying Selling

A Basic Guide to Dofo Domain Name Search: Part 1

Whether you are looking for a domain name to use in your business, or are a domain investor engaged in acquisitions and sales, you should be using the great free domain name search tool Dofo! This guide provides a basic introduction.

Basic Dofo Search

Dofo is a fantastic domain name search resource that, in my opinion, all domain investors, as well as many of those searching for a domain name for business or individual use, should be using.

I am planning a followup NameTalent post that will guide you through using aspects of Dofo advanced search, but in this post I wanted to concentrate just on basic use. The elegant user interface make that pretty self-explanatory but here are the steps.

  1. Go to Dofo.
  2. Enter the search term (with or without extension) in the box and press Enter. If you enter no extension, it will assume that you mean .com.
  3. Dofo will indicate if the searched domain name is registered, for sale, or available to hand register (the latter has a nice graphic display to make it stand out).
  4. Just to be specific, let’s say I am interested in the biological editing acronym CRISPR. Dofo shows me (as of the date of writing) that the exact term CRISPR is registered in .com and gives me when it was first registered and also what the current expiry date is.
  5. Just underneath that display (see figure below) Dofo shows the status in some of the other most popular extensions such as .net, .org, .info, etc.
  6. But the real power of Dofo is in the little box at the bottom right. As of the date when I did the search, the exact term CRISPR was registered in 131 TLDs (top level domains) of which 26 are actively for sale.  
  7. If I then click on See More and subsequently select For Sale it takes me to a scrollable list of the extensions for sale in the term, along with the asking price if a buy-it-now has been set. I can similarly look only at the extensions available to hand register, or the complete list of all registered or available extensions in the term.
Screen display for basic search courtesy of Dofo, showing the results for the search term CRISPR.com. Note in particular the box on the far right and the See More button.

If You Are A Domain Buyer

If you are looking to buy a domain name, Dofo can save you the effort of individually searching in four or more different marketplaces, and it also picks up domain names for sale in some of the smaller venues that you may otherwise miss. For example this screen display shows a portion of the listings for sale for the term CRISPR.

When the For Sale option is selected, Dofo shows a scrolling list of domain names for sale, and if a buy-it-now price has been set the asking price in US dollars. The green buttons are active links directly to the marketplace for sale listing. Screen display courtesy of Dofo.

Also, Dofo shows you the prices in different extensions, which may open up possibilities you had not considered, or at least provides useful intelligence if you are negotiating a purchase.

If You Are A Domain Investor

One of the most important questions to ask when considering a domain acquisition is in how many other extensions (TLDs) that name is already registered in.  If you are looking at acquiring a .com or .org these may represent, at least if developed, existing users who may upgrade to your domain name.  It also is useful intelligence about how many investors have seen worth in the term. As we have seen, Dofo now makes it trivial to research how many extensions any term is already registered in.

Particularly in new technologies and trends, there may be only a handful, or even zero, other TLDs registered, yet it still makes sense to acquire the .com. But you should at least know this information prior to deciding on an acquisition.

What Marketplaces Are Covered?

Dofo is only as good as the domain sales venues that it includes. The for sale database in Dofo currently includes the following venues (and a few others):

  • Afternic
  • DAN (Undeveloped)
  • DropCatch
  • Dynadot
  • Epik
  • Flippa
  • GoDaddy
  • Namecheap
  • NameSilo
  • ParkIO
  • Sedo 
  • SnapNames
  • Uniregistry

Dofo has come a long way toward replacing Whois search, domain marketplace search, and basic domain research all in one place.

Dofo has come a long way toward replacing Whois search, domain marketplace search, and basic domain research all in one place. As they say, all domains are here! Well almost all.

Are Parallel Domain Listings Still Necessary?

I am sure that Dofo has a priority order for which marketplace is shown at the buy now link, if you have your domain name listed multiple places, but it is not clear to me how that is determined.  

As a domain seller, as Dofo becomes more well known, I wonder if it will still be necessary to list a domain name on multiple marketplaces.  Rather, why not just list the domain name on the one you prefer, and let buyers find the name through the lander or Dofo?

I wonder if it will still be necessary to list a domain name on multiple marketplaces.

Of course you may potentially lose out if someone is searching for a domain name only through one marketplace venue such as Afternic or Sedo, or its network of partners. For now I would keep listing multiple places.

Dofo Is Much More!

Dofo offers much more than I have covered in this article, and I will have a followup article looking at some of the more sophisticated things you can do with Dofo, This includes both domain research and advanced search.

One of my favourite features is that it makes it easy to see how many domain names are for sale in a certain extension or in a certain price range.

Final Thoughts

Dofo was introduced in mid-2018, and already has found wide use within the domain community. Dofo is free to use. The co-founders of Dofo are Macit and Sacit Tuna. They are active on NamePros and on social media. 

Dofo has become one of my most frequently used domain tools. I can in seconds see how many extensions any exact keyword is registered in and for sale, all in one place. It is almost magical!

Dofo has become one of my most frequently used domain tools. I can in seconds see how many extensions any exact keyword is registered in and for sale, all in one place. It is almost magical. 

About the author

Bob Hawkes

Domain analyst and commentator with particular interests in quantitative analysis, new uses for domain names, nontraditional end users, and bridging the gap between the domain community and end users. Background in science, research, education, outreach and communications, as well as almost two decades running a small home-based business. My first domain name acquisition was 2001. I hold a modest domain portfolio with legacy, country code and new extensions. Based in western Canada, but my domain outlook is global! My goal is to provide fresh insights and an evidence-based balanced outlook on the domain industry.

Leave a Comment

*

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.