One of the most exciting aspects of investing in domain names is when you’re able to get a reply to an email or a phone call from a domain owner that was difficult to reach. Sometimes you need to do more research to contact certain domain name owners, and getting a reply to an offer or inquiry opens the door for a potential acquisition. I think many of the most successful domain investors are good investigators and have a knack for finding and communicating with even the most “hidden” domain name owners.
If you found it difficult to get in touch with the owner of a domain name, chances are good that others did as well. If that’s the case, it is very possible that the domain owner has not fielded many (or any) inquiries or offers in a long time. Your offer or inquiry may make the domain owner aware that his or her asset has value, and if that is the case, the owner may seek a public sale to get the most money for the domain name.
On occasion, when I was able to “find” a domain owner that wasn’t easy to reach, I’ve run into the issue where the offer makes the domain owner interested getting other offers and opinions about the value of the asset. Contacting someone that isn’t aware of the value of the domain name is a double edged sword. Many people are interested in turning a domain name into cash, but they want to make sure they are getting the most for their domain name.
It is certainly the right of the domain owner to get the best price and seek to market the domain name. Generally, this does not align with my own interests in buying the domain name without competition. You should always be aware that when you inquire about a domain name to someone who hasn’t received any inquiries in the past, your inquiry may lead to them listing the domain name for sale on a domain marketplace or with a domain name broker.
I have two recommendations that may help you in a situation like this. The first is to make a good / reasonable offer for the domain name. If you make a lowball offer, the owner is likely to pass on it because there’s no need to sell a long-held domain name for a low price. The second recommendation is to put a time limit on your offer. If they know the offer will be invalid after a short period of time, they will need to move quickly. If you made a strong offer, you may have a better chance of securing a deal.
Have you been in this situation before? How did it turn out for you?