I use Gmail for a number of reasons, primarily because it stores all of my email and is simple to search through tens of thousands of emails nearly instantly. It’s inexpensive to use, and setting up it on various domain names is a cinch.
Did you know that Gmail can also be a great tool to identify someone who inquired about your domain name, even if you’ve never had any dealings with the person before?
Let’s say you receive an inquiry from someone that you don’t know. Perhaps the email isn’t signed (most likely a tire kicker or something else) or the buyer has a generic name like “John Smith.” Searching Google or Bing for the person might be a bit of a challenge, even with the email address. However, Gmail might actually identify the person for you.
When you search your Gmail account for the email address, if that email address is attached to a Google Plus page, it will be listed above your mail results. You can click the person’s name and be taken directly to the Google Plus page. If the person regularly posts on Google+, you can likely use that insight to find out why they want your domain name. You can obviously learn quite a bit about a buyer based on an active social media profile.
You might ask why you would search Gmail and not simply search for an email adress on Google Plus. I always search Gmail to see if that person has inquired about a domain name before. If you’ve had a contentious negotiation with the person a few years back, knowing where you left off is important. This search basically kills two birds with one stone.
Keep one important factor in mind, though. If a proxy service or anonymous buyer wants to create a fictitious Google+ page to throw you off, it would be simple. For example, if I was contracted by a Fortune 100 company to negotiate the purchase of a domain name, I might create a fake Gmail account with matching Google Plus page to make me look more innocuous.
Since most buyers aren’t huge companies, I think it’s beneficial to search your Gmail account for the email address of all who inquire about your domain names.
Google hides its email headers and it’s impossible to track the sender’s locale by IP search. That’s why it’s lowballer paradise. If you aren’t sure about a buyer’s credibility, ask them to provide a phone number; then watch how fast they disappear.
One thing I noticed with gmail and any other email address for that matter is that human nature and ego in many cases will cause folks to still leave clues in their email address even if unintended. In several cases when an anonymous offer was submitted to me with such an address, when I came up empty searching the full address, I have just searched the handle in front of the @ and may sometimes discover another email address using that same handle or perhaps forum posts using the same handle, then I can dig a little more.. It is probably the same person in only about 2 or 3 times out of 10 cases but is still another tool that helps to arm you for a counter offer…
@ACRO great point. I recently received a lowball offer from a Gmail email account holder and he actually had a Google+ account with 2 photos and had one post. Once I declined his offer and I asked him to email me from his business email and then maybe we can do business, he said “no thanks”. He never replied back nor would provide me his phone number. Perfect example.