One gripe I seem to read quite a bit is that more successful (and generally the wealthy) domain investors get all the breaks and special deals from companies with whom they do business. If you look at this objectively, it makes sense, because these people are bringing more business and spending more money, so special deals are expected to ensure the business stays and grows. Some people get frustrated seeing the rich get richer with special offers and deals though.
That being said, I think deals can be made by everyone if you ask for them (and do it in a nice way). It may take some time to find the right person to offer a concession, and they will not likely be given all (or maybe most) of the time, but if you work out one or two deals, you can save a lot of money.
Here are some things you might be able to get concessions/deals on in the domain space, depending on the company, length of time you’ve been a customer, and the amount of business you do:
- Domain registrations
- Domain renewals
- Sales commissions
- Exclusivity periods on sales
- Account representation or VIP service phone number
When it comes to special rates, coupons, or offers, many companies don’t openly offer them, and some companies don’t even offer them at all. However, in almost all cases, you need to be your own advocate to make an unadvertised deal happen.
There are a couple of tips I recommend when seeking a special / unadvertised deal. Try to speak with a company decision maker. It doesn’t have to be Bob Parsons when dealing with Go Daddy, but some of the account management supervisors may be able to put you in touch with the right person/people. In addition, when seeking concessions, make your own concession to the company to try and work something out.
Here are a couple of examples to illustrate how you might get a concession.
- Let’s say you own 500 domain names at three domain registrars, and you pay $11.00/year for .com domain names. Contact the smallest registrar with whom you do business and ask to speak with an account manager. Let the person know you own 500 domain names and would be willing to transfer them all if you can get a discount rate of $8.25/name for renewals and registrations from now until the next Verisign price increase. If this company says no, call another company.
- Let’s say you own a valuable domain name that you and an auction company agree is worth $100,000. Instead of agreeing to pay 15% sales commission and giving exclusivity for 6 months, you might offer 12.5% commission and exclusivity for 4 months. It doesn’t sound like a lot, but if the name sells, that’s $2,500 more in your pocket. Always negotiate before you sign any deals.
Getting good deals isn’t entirely related to how much business you do with the company. If you can find the appropriate person at the company and advocate on your behalf, you can make better deals for yourself and save some money, while building a relationship. Be nice when you ask and don’t expect to get everything you want. Some companies have flexibility and others don’t.