Don’t Regret The Deals You Make (or Don’t Make)

A week ago, Rick Schwartz posted an interesting article regarding Google’s announcement about the launch of Helpouts and its acquisition of the and domain names. Rick linked to an old DNForum post from 5 years ago where the former owner of had it listed for $250 and then reduced to $100.

There were no subsequent posts in the sales thread, so I don’t know if the domain owner ended up selling it. Judging by the domain name’s creation date of March 20, 2010, it appears that the domain name was dropped and re-registered by someone else who had privacy guard in place. Although it changed registrars a couple of times, the domain name registration remained under privacy until July of this year.

Whatever happened in the case of this domain name, I don’t think a domain owner should regret deals that are made, no matter who the buyer is. Many companies have budgets for domain acquisitions, and if the domain owner insists on more than that number for the domain name, that company, no matter how large they are, might opt to pass. In some cases when a company needs the domain name, the domain owner has more leverage, but it comes down to negotiating and having the guts to pass on an offer that you should take with the hopes of getting an even better offer. It feels pretty shitty to be gutsy and turn down a $50,000 cash offer when I paid $8,000 for a domain name, and then not sell it.

If the company opts to not buy your domain name but buys something similar for its brand, it would become difficult for the domain owner to sell it since another person couldn’t monetize that traffic easily without violating a trademark. In addition, it’s unlikely another company would build a different brand on a similar domain name because that would likely lead to consumer confusion, as Andrew Rosener pointed out.

As someone who frequently buys and sells domain names, I can’t help but wonder if I could have made more on a particular domain name than the selling price. I don’t dwell on this because it’s speculation that does me no good. When I sell a domain name, it’s for a price that I deem acceptable, and I use the money to fund other acquisitions and to fund the growth of my business.

When you are making a deal on one of your domain names, you need to do what is best for your business at the time of the deal and not have any regrets.

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. Easier said than done. What if you sold a domain for extremely cheap after losing on several deals? What if this domain was acquired by an end-user that transformed it into one of the most visited websites in a large space?

    That’s what happened to me. 18 months later, this company uses this domain as their company name and generated 10 million unique visits since then. They went off to buy a lesser domain and paid 20 times more for that than what I got.

    I do regret this deal every day. My situation sucks. I recently lost a high paying job and other unfavorable events compromised my future. What if I would have offered what this domain name deserved? I would have a far better life than I do now.

    I would rather make this mistake than to have sold or other similar domains and see these become the most popular companies worth billions. That would suck!

  2. Elliot,

    So true. It is important to remember the seller’s issues (eg, need cash flow, etc.) as well as the buyers budget,etc.

  3. I’m not the least bit surprised this domain was listed on one of the forums.

    Very early on I posted a lot of domains for sale on DNF in about the same $200 price range, these were mediocre brandable domains, about 20 of them altogether and I didn’t receive one offer, It was then I realized that trying to sell these kind of domains to resellers was a losing cause so I stopped posting domains altogether and I’m glad I did because over a 2 year period I sold almost a dozen of these same domains to end users in the $1500-$4000 price range.

    Today all of my sales are to end users and I must say it’s far more rewarding to see a fully developed web site vs a parked lander.


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