Domain buyers: Strike while the iron is hot

The majority of my domain buyers are corporations, start ups, and companies in stealth mode. I’m pretty sure the occasional proxy buyer managed to get a good deal, and as long as the price is right I would sell to a domain investor as well.

All these categories of buyers have one thing in common: they are looking to spend money in order to get a domain in exchange.

This seemingly easy task has two major obstacles to overcome: time and money.

Both obstacles are interconnected, and the end result can be a quick deal or no deal at all. By stretching the time frame that a domain is acquired at, the domain buyer is risking two things:

  • I lose patience and decide that the offer is a waste of my time, or
  • I increase my asking price next time I’m contacted about the domain

Why would a seller raise their asking price after an initial inquiry failed to come to fruition, you might ask, and that dilemma often keeps domainers from maxing out their opportunity for optimal ROI.

That elusive return on investment is typically a game dependent on patience. The longer you wait it out, the more chances you have of landing the “perfect buyer” for your domain – right?

The answer is “maybe.”

Some times, the best offer arrives early on in a domain name’s life time. For example, if the domain is linked to news, events or technologies that might become obsolete after a while. For example, is a great sounding domain, as long as you don’t link it to a current telecom technology, which is no longer en vogue – it’s obsolete.

Domain buyers, and start up buyers in particular, should strike a deal while the proverbial iron is hot, by gathering capital and making reasonable, educated offers for the domains they are after.

If you wait too long to decide, or if you negotiate and then things turn lukewarm, your domain seller won’t be able to extend that offer in the future.

In fact, the price will go up once you give them the opportunity to research you better, and perhaps discover that your financial prowess was not disclosed in the first place. An initial asking price, even when made to a well-off buyer, is usually more reasonable than one which was based on additional time spent to research the buyer’s capabilities to acquire the domain.

Domain investors can be impulsive, both in their registrations and sales. As a buyer, by acting fast with regards to how you handle these domain name acquisitions, you maximize your capital and can move on quickly with a new, quality domain that’d empower your business.


  1. Some good points Theo.

    Today I received a Google alert on a company that just launched their website featuring their new line of age appropriate apparel and other products and services for pre-teen girls.

    In my annual January review of my domains against Trademarkia, I noted that they registered my exact match domain in 7 different categories, so some serious money being invested.

    Since I hand-regged the generic domain in 2003 there was no potential claim for any trademark infringement.

    Long story short, I contacted their lawyer and she put me in touch with the business owners. I negotiated with them for several months without coming to a mutually agreeable price and/or terms. The price quoted at that time was low-mid xx,xxx and I was offering payment over 3 – 5 years.

    Now that the horse has left the barn, the price is now six figures.

    Time and money.

    They had both and decided to invest their resources elsewhere, which I’m sure was very important for them at that time. It will be interesting to see in the long run whether they realize this as mistake and should have pulled the trigger when they had the chance, or they’ll be happy with their current domain choice.

    Hope all is well.


  2. Scott – That’s a great story and a perfect example about how companies screw up at branding time: If the domain isn’t available, either acquire it, or choose a different name for your brand!

    The fact that you set up Google alerts is another great idea at how domain investors need to pro-actively be aware and monitor changes relevant to their domain portfolios. Getting the price right means more money in your pocket. Having a BIN price that hasn’t changed for years is the best way to leave money on the table!

    Good luck with that company, they will come to their senses hopefully.

  3. > Long story short, I contacted their lawyer and she put me in touch with the business owners.

    Sorry if that comes off as rude, but you did it wrong.
    1. Initiating contact about sale is risky (as it can lead to finding “bad faith”)
    2. Initiating contact about sale makes you look desperate

  4. Lessons learned oh ye of Fat…


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