Buying Domain Names

Improve Your Offer – Don’t Blame the Broker

There are multiple platforms and brokerages that represent buyers seeking to acquire domain names. Two of those with the widest profile due to their partnerships or market position are GoDaddy and Domain Agents. Both of these platforms offer broker services in exchange for a fee plus a commission on a successful deal.

I have seen quite a few few posts, comments, and articles discussing experiences using these two platforms. One thing that has caught my attention is the blame placed on their brokers when offers aren’t accepted or responses to offers aren’t given. Yes, this can be frustrating as a buyer, but no, the broker is not at fault.

Twitter Layoffs Led to Acquisition

Throughout the past couple of years, there have been numerous tech companies that laid off staff. Discussion about these tech layoffs amongst domain investors centered around the idea that these laid off employees would start new businesses and acquire domain names via the aftermarket to jumpstart their business.

CNN shared a video interview with Alphonzo Terrell, a former Twitter employee who was laid off from the company in 2022. Terrell then co-founded a new social media platform called Spill. As you can see from this LinkedIn post, the platform started off with a less than ideal domain name –

It Pays to Know Random Phrases

My eyes bulge out of my head sometimes when I see a somewhat obscure term in a domain name coming up for auction. Oftentimes, the term isn’t well-known by others, and even with the ease of searching Google to understand why it has bids, people won’t understand its popularity as much as someone in the know.

Yesterday, I came across a tweet from someone who shared a graphic of a domain name sales email from Afternic:

Nick Huber: “drop a little coin” for a Premium Domain Name

I do not know Nick Huber, but I see he has a large following on Twitter and frequently offers advice to startup founders and entrepreneurs. Over the weekend, Nick shared some advice about domain names:

While the “premium” term is highly subjective for domain names, particularly given the numbers he shares, I think he is offering good advice. Either start with a good domain name or upgrade when the business has enough profits to enable the acquisition.

Vestis Gets Defensive

Many companies defensively register or acquire domain names as part of a domain name defense strategy. The most common strategy revolves around securing domain names that could be used by bad actors for cybersquatting, phishing, or other nefarious activity. Some companies take defensive domain registration further by securing domain names that could be used against the company in any negative manner.

Over the past few days, I noticed one company that has taken defensive domain name defense to a level I can’t recall seeing before. My DomainTools Registrant Monitor email identified many domain name registrations related to a brand called Vestis, and it looks like that business went on a massive defensive domain registration spree.

From what I can see, it looks like many of the domain names were registered under Whois privacy at GoDaddy in March and recently transferred to MarkMonitor, a brand protection-focused domain name registrar.

‘The Domain Name is Not for Sale’

I’ve tried to buy thousands of domain names from registrants who told me some variation of ‘the domain name is not for sale.’ That may be true at that point in time, but the status can change. It doesn’t hurt to follow-up every once in a while.

I recently spent some time looking through hundreds of old emails I sent trying to buy domain names. I followed up on some older leads to re-engage the owners. Perhaps circumstances had changed since our last discussion. I like to follow-up between 6 months and a year after an email exchange, when I see a domain name isn’t being used.

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