Buyer Brokers May Pose as Regular Buyers

Hiring a buyer’s broker can be a smart decision a company makes when attempting to acquire a domain name. A buyer’s broker can anonymize the buyer and potentially save in acquisition costs. Simply using a domain broker for an acquisition may not be enough to get a good deal for a buyer. A domain broker may mask his or her identity to reduce the chance that a domain registrant prices an asset with a major corporate buyer in mind.

Marksmen is an intellectual property company that, among other things, helps clients acquire domain names. I’ve seen the company’s name appear in quite a few Whois records, and the domain names have later transferred to corporate buyers. The company posted a tweet to an article about making anonymous test purchases on behalf of clients:

I presume domain name acquisitions can work in much the same way. Instead of emailing a domain registrant and announcing who they are, the account manager may use an anonymous looking email address to inquire. The email address may have no footprint at all – or it may have a footprint that looks like a normal person with a limited budget.

Buyer’s brokers can pose as regular people seeking to buy a particular domain name. There are a variety of techniques they can use to obscure their identity and hide their clients. It can be a smart way to acquire a domain name on behalf of a corporation.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. What you say may be true, but domainers with valuable URLs are more savvy than ever.
    If a domainer has been at it more than a year, they likely know the major startups or corps that’d be interested in a specific domain name.

    Some domainers don’t deal with brokers at all, refusing to make a deal with anyone but a confirmed principal of a startup or corporation.

    Obscuring the corporate buyer is overrated in 2022.

  2. Those who adjust their pricing basing on the “size” of the enquiring party deserve to be screwed over.

    Those who value their domains regardless will not lose anything to this tactics.

  3. A domain is worth 7-10% of revenues. You don’t need to know the company but you do need to research
    The industry
    The market
    Recent industry news that m reveal the buyer

    If you know a tire distributors annual avg rev is $20 million then the name Is worth $1.4 to $2 million

    If your a newbie domainer it’s worth $250 bucks.

    7-10% of revenues is the fair market value. What you sell the name for affects your wallet and the entire domain industry.

  4. Corporate companies trying to rip off the small guy, what else is knew.
    I’ve had many people trying to pretend they are regular person with a limited budget, when really they are a broker trying to low ball me.

  5. Nothing new, same scenario, poor student, limited budget, as I said many times, the buyers could be your own so called domain “buddies” you think they are your best buddies and they are the ones low balling you.
    They are just back stabbing you.

  6. I think it’s beneficial for companies to utilize services like that. I was attempting to buy a domain name on a lease (I was going to lease it for two months then pay the buyout price). I redirected the domain name to my website. I decided it wasn’t the right tme for me to buy it so I canceled the leased pretty much the same day. However, once I did that and the domainer saw the website it was being redirected to, the price of the domain name went up 3x the “buy it now” price. This has happened to me often.

    There’s this belief in the domain industry that because the buyer has more money to spend, that they are willing to spend premium that regular buyers doesn’t have to. I think it’s a critical mistake for domainers. I will never pay a premium just because Im perceived to have more money and willing to spend more. It just won’t happen and this is just one reason why I do stay anonymous.

    Price should not be based on the company buying it. It should be based on the market, keyword volume, industry size and other metrics.

    Just my 2 cents.

  7. LOL, what is that, a sponsored post, Elliot? I doubt I’m alone in that. 😉

    What I find DEPOLORABLE is how the “elite” get to circumvent the DEPLORABLE and UNJUSTIFIED whois privacy prohibition for .US that everyone else has to endure and suffer the consequences of since 2002 by using companies like that.

    But of course, nobody cares, ay…

    Some of us have been on to tactics like that since day 1, so the answer is still this no matter how good your 007 skills are:


    • Definitely not a sponsored post, and I imagine MarkMonitor would prefer not to remind investors that an anonymous buyer could be them.

      For the record, any sponsored post would be clearly marked as such. The only times I’ve offered this in many years is for donations to my Pan-Mass Challenge fundraiser. I don’t recall offering it to anyone besides the PMC sponsorships but I’ve been blogging for 15 years and I might have done it a long time ago that I can’t immediately recall. Again, any sponsored article would be clearly marked as such.

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