If you've read about the domain name lifecycle and expiry process, you know it amounts to a waiting game full of "what-ifs." But once the name moves through the expiration period without being renewed or acquired through a backorder, it comes to the deleting phase (also referred to as pending delete.)
A domain name in the deleting phase stays here for 5 days, in which is it on hold. It is still technically being managed by whichever registrar it had previously been registered with, like Register.com or Network Solutions, but nobody can renew it, transfer it, or buy it.
At the end of this 5 days, the domain name gets deleted by the registrar, and it is up for grabs. The point at which a name is deleted is called The Drop, and is where SnapNames is head and shoulders above the competition.
Companies then compete to grab the name so they can sell it, a process called "dropcatching." SnapNames was one of the first companies to build technology to grab a name as soon as it is deleted by the registrar, and still holds the patent to the technology.
Every day, we publish a list of names being deleted in the next 5 days so customers can place backorders on any they want. Once there are orders on names, SnapNames then attempts to grab the name on the Drop as it is being deleted, before anyone else. Names are deleted in a specific order, and within milliseconds. This makes it difficult for someone to wait to register a name themselves as soon as it becomes available to the public (when it drops) because any dropcatching company that has a backorder on the deleting name has technology used in attempt to gain a higher probability of acquiring the domain name before someone trying to register it by hand at the same time.
If it sounds complicated, it's because it is! We utilize significant resources to continuously improve our technology and algorithm, to ensure that we remain the most successful dropcatching company. We also publish a list of the Top 100 deleting domain names every day. It's a fun way to get domain names, and there are always a few great gems always to be found!