A parked domain is a registered domain name that is active but is not associated with a specific website. Instead, a parked domain displays a "parked page" to users who visit the URL. A typical parked page has a simple layout with a list of links related to the domain name. These links may generate advertising revenue for the parked domain's owner when users click on them.
Domain parking is done for several different reasons. Some people register domain names hoping to generate "type-in" traffic for common words and phrases. If enough people visit the parked pages on a daily basis, the owners can earn consistent revenue from the clicks on the links or ads. Domainers or "cybersquatters" register large numbers of domain names as an investment, hoping to sell them to interested buyers in the future. The parked pages for these domains may contain advertisements, but they also include a contact link that visitors can use to make an offer for the domain name.
Many web hosts display parked pages by default when a domain name has been registered, but a website has not yet been published by the owner. These pages often state the website is under construction or coming soon and may also include advertisements. The advertising links on these temporary parked pages generate revenue for the hosting company rather than the owner of the domain name.
In some cases, a webmaster may register domain names similar to his or her primary domain name to prevent competitors from using them. These domain names often display parked pages by default. The webmaster may also choose to forward the domains to the primary site. If the domains are redirected, they are no longer parked domains but rather "forwarders" that direct users to a different URL.
Updated: September 18, 2015