Most of my inventory of cute business names is acquired from domains that people drop. I generally search all domains dropping in .com between 4-7 (or sometimes even 8 letters). This is about 30-40k names a week. It helps that I speed read, somewhat.
While it’s technically possibly to download lists directly, it’s a lot easier to use a service that allows you to eliminate certain names and sort. I have been using dropday.com because it was the lowest cost alternative out there that worked.
Truthfully, it’s perhaps one of the buggiest pieces of software I encountered, but it got the job done at $20 a month versus 40-50 for most of the competitors.
Recently, I had the opportunity to free trial for a month domcop.com which is the same price and I switched.
It’s a very clean interface. Unlike DD as long as you search under 200 results a page (a bit laggy 200-500) you can actually work from the result page. In addition, there’s actually customer support which the lack at dropday was especially annoying as the site would stop working for days at a time. For example there’s a functional watchlist. However, I was having problems seeing the colorchange when I favorited a domain. I messaged support and they edited the site within a couple days.
Also, if you’re looking for an aged domain that’ll help with SEO, the site has an impressive array of statistics including from majestic which is probably the premier provider of non-google link data.. (I really need to write an article on implications of buying used domain names.)
The only thing I really miss from dropday is a pattern search so you can look for specific vowel and character combinations. I attribute this to domcop being focused mainly on the buying expired for SEO crowd.
There are a couple things I’d like to see added. First, it’d be nice to have the page turn feature at bottom and top of the results. As it is if you advance pages and search and scroll up you have to scroll all the way back down to advance the results. Having the turn at the top and the bottom would save time. The beginning and ending filter is a bit buggy and sometimes you need to reset. Also, it would be good to be able to delete names from the watchlist that you’ve added.
Overall, I think for most expired domain buyers this is probably the best alternative out there for the price.