How I Made An Extra $70,000 In 2015

For months or actually maybe for years I had been ignoring emails from China. These were either all written in Chinese or trying to buy my best domains for peanuts or most of the times they would simply never reply back to my quotes or when I asked them to make an offer. So I had simply given up on them.

One day while reading the blogs in late October 2015 I stumbled on this article by Michael Berkens on TheDomains.com. The title of the article was simply: “I Spend Over 2 Hours a Day Answering Offers From China”. The article now has 142 comments.

The article started:

You may have noticed I’m not blogging as much.


Its time to make money guys.

As we all know buyers from China have been moving the domain name market for a few years, but we are now in uncharted waters.

China now is making the market.

I had noticed that something was happening with the Chinese domain market (had read a few other articles) but in general I am not selling in bulk or in wholesale prices so I was not paying much attention. That, together with the fact that the months from September to December were the busiest months for me in the past few years.

But once Michael said that I knew that it was game time. I knew that like me Mike was not selling at wholesale prices. So I thought that probably wholesale prices were closing in to retail prices. And I was right. For certain types of domain names, that is…

I did some research and found that LLLL.com were selling for $2,000 or more. I owned about 40 of those for about 10 years. I bought them for $69 each in Snapnames in 2005. These were mostly good western letters but I found that I owned 22 CHIPs (Chinese Premiums) LLLL.com. These were probably the worst of the 40 I owned. Hhhmmm… the irony.

I had maybe sold a couple LLLL.com for about $2,500 each in the past 10 years.

So I started replying emails from Chinese buyers in November and December. I ended up selling these 22 CHIPs and I also sold a lot of LLL.biz CHIPs and a few NNN.biz and NNN.info.

So I actually ended up making an extra $70,000 just by reading an article. And of course by owning a few domains and a lot of work!

But I was so busy at the time that I could have easily missed it. I don’t think I would have completely missed the Chinese buyers but a delay of about a month could have costed me a lot of money in this volatile Chinese market.

Negotiating with multiple buyers for hundreds of domains with prices going up and down every day and then transferring the domains in numerous escrow transactions is not easy. I sold the domains to 3 main buyers and I made a couple of smaller deals. I used mainly Escrow.com but one of the deals was at DN.com because the buyer requested it.

That is why (when I am asked to give an advice to newbies) I always say: read as much as you can and learn everything about domain names if you want to make money in domaining. Do that BEFORE starting spending money you can’t afford to lose.

Of course you probably all know that Michael Berkens ended up selling most of his 70,000 domain names to Go Daddy for about $35 million dollars. He only kept the adult related domains and the New gTLDs.

A detailed report of my domain name sales from 2015 is coming soon. I am still working on it but I think it was my best year.

Check out 10 things I learned from selling to Chinese domain buyers.


About Konstantinos Zournas

I studied Computer Engineering and Computer Science in London, UK and I am now living in Athens, Greece. I went online in 1995, started coding in 1996 and began buying domain names and creating websites in 2000. I started the OnlineDomain.com blog in 2012.


  1. Congratulations, you’re buying beers at NamesCon next year! 😛

    The best part about the Chinese “chips” market: The non-chip LLLLs are inherently more valuable and not subject to whether the Chinese market’s success or failure. Keep those other names like diamonds!

  2. You are not alone in this train of thought, I too, always grabbed the odd 4L.com when I saw it for $15-100 ones that looked cool, or I could make the letters into something in my mind. To my surprise out of 400 4L’s, I had about 60 that fit this profile, if it wasn’t for A, or V, I would have so many more, but vowels were my friends.

    To go all these years without any offers, and now, I could bundle 10 together, and bang within 96 hours I have $20K in my bank account, felt good, almost addictive, so between Nov & Dec, I unloaded 55 of them, kept 5 ones that are worth way more than $2.5K, but it was a rush. Was looking at new cars, local dealer got a demo Tesla in wanted $70K for a quick sale, email a few Domain Uncles in China, highest offer $2500 each, bam 30 chips and I got myself a Tesla. Finally felt good to have liquidity in bloody domains, to have people fighting over domains that sat dormant for years, that could have easily been sold for $500.

    I saw it as an opportunity, knowing what I know of owning them for so many years, and the amount of end user sales that trickled in, I chose the cash today, then the possibility of a 2% sell thru rate tomorrow.

    Along with 5N.com, which were very cheap back in the day, it really did not seem like work at all.

    I had no clue what was going on, I thought China stuff was spam from a single party, until a guy by the name of Ken O’Brien started emailing me on random domains looking to purchase, as they were under privacy, and here is a guy from North America. Then I started to clue in, and discover what was going on.

    I have no regrets about selling even if they see the so called tooth fairy number of $5K one day, which I double, just based on owning them for a decade.

    • Great job Konstantinos

      Ryan, you were doing so well and then you blew your money on the worst investment you could ever make . It’s depreciating a hell of a lot faster than 4Ls.

  3. Didn’t I say that DN was shutdown by the Communist Party of China~!!!

    I have contacts in the corrupted party.

    Your Computer Engineering and Computer Science studies are worthless.
    I have the MBA from DFacademy from Dshepard and now I am earning 6 figures and on my way to becoming CEO of Ass-can

    Everybody has the MBA–my big A==sss

    I bought about 50 4L domains 4 yrs ago as low as 10$ when everyone said they are worthless.
    Those that called themselves domain Experts or Pros–they are the ones that sold me those 4l domains—they are licking their own stinky toes now.

    who is laughing on the way to the bank now?

    • In all honesty, Adam Dicker every spring used to drop a crap load of 4Ls, I must have acquired over 100 for between $15-$100 from this one party in the drops.

      I eventually found out Ken O’Brien bought about $1M worth of Chips from Adam Dicker for a little less than $100K, this was a so called domain expert, who failed to research what was right in front of him. Maybe this is why he fell off the radar, I don’t know what I would do, if I lost $1M in a matter of 2 months.

      • Wow. Didn’t know about this deal…

      • It’s true. Adam Dicker dropped so many LLLL.com’s that I assumed he must be in cahoots with GoDaddy Auctions – i.e. getting a cut. Turns out he was just mismanaging his portfolio. But it certainly looked fishy. After all, these were all getting bids and selling well. Plus, Adam used to run TDNAM / GoDaddy Auctions. Simply letting them drop didn’t seem like rational behavior.

        Last August I wrote this:

        “With Adam Dicker’s LLLL .COM expirations blocking out the light of the sun for the last many weeks, it has been nearly impossible to report on sales at GoDaddy without devoting a third of the table to just one person. In fact, although nobody seems to have noticed, I’ve been suppressing LLLL.com results for quite awhile, mainly to avoid singling out a particular domainer week after week (which can be a touchy business) and also to allow the more varied auction results space enough to breathe.”


        Back then,I told Andrew Allemann that I’d investigate this pattern, but (as usual) I never found time. So it took the industry months to understand Adam’s real situation.

      • This is actually the August before.

        I can never find the time to do all I want. Time is a bitch.

      • No, his sale to Ken O’Brien happend in 2015, for the past 2-3 years Adam had been dropping many of this 4L.com’s I guess the sheer expense to renew some 3000 domains in a given single week, might have caused him some constraints.

      • @Konstantinos,

        You’re right. It was 2014, some 19 months ago. Time flies! I have been tracking LLLL.com sales pretty much daily for at least 2 years.


        Yes, I know. The Ken O’Brien bulk deal happened later, after Adam realized the stuff he’d been dropping could be easily sold for cash. If I remember right, it was a long thread in the forum. And I transcribed notes about all the bids – who, how much, which domains from the list. It’s in my database, a 5-second query away.

  4. Thanks Konstantinos for sharing how you made 70K extra last year which is really nice and I am happy for you 😀

    Waiting to see the detailed sales report of last year which will give more info and ideas.

    Best wishes! 😀

  5. Congrats with the $70K additional revenue. The moral of the story: Always listen closely to what Michael Berkens has to say. I didn’t sadly… 😉

  6. Kostas, when I saw the title I thought you were referring to the bunch of cash you got from your new sponsors 😉 … just joking of course 😀
    Congrats for your nice 4L deals!

  7. Few months back, you shared your new domain purchases in an article..

    My comment on that article: I am surprised not to see any new 4L purchases.

    Your reply: I have enough.

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