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Making an Offer Despite Domain Privacy Services


While doing Whois searches to try and acquire domain names in the aftermarket, I often encounter privacy services, and I generally don’t send an email inquiry. I’ve always figured the owner wasn’t interested in selling if he or she had the privacy shield in place. On second thought now, it might be a good opportunity to contact these people.

Did you know that you could send an email to the privacy email address on file, and many privacy guard services will forward your email directly to the owner?   This is the case with many companies, so if you have a compelling offer, you might want to try emailing the privacy service.

Despite the improving economy, some domain owners are still selling domain names that would not have been previously on the market. If you send a good offer, you might be surprised at the results. At the very least, you will probably be more likely to contact a domain owner that doesn’t receive as many inquiries as he would if his email address wasn’t privatized.

Keep in mind that this could result in an angry reply, as many owners really do not wish to be solicited even if you think your offer is good. One thing to keep in mind is that you should always make an offer that you wouldn’t be embarrassed by if you met the domain owner in person. There have been a couple of times where I’ve made the mistake of a lowball offer and it’s generally embarrassing 🙂

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 sold seven figures worth of domain names in the last five years. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest.

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Comments (9)



    This may be a little off topic….but I was wondering if you use any of the drop services such as FreshDrop, GoDrops, ExpiredDomainNames, etc.


    May 3rd, 2010 at 9:03 pm


    a little off topic is an under statement :-p

    May 4th, 2010 at 12:59 am

    Todd Mintz

    Spammers know this trick too…unfortunately :.)

    May 4th, 2010 at 8:30 am



    If you use a drop service to identify names you want, you can then contact the registrant before they drop and try to work out a deal. I believe Elliot has written about this before. So it ties in.

    May 4th, 2010 at 11:57 am


    I really have never tried to do this as I felt it was some sort of invasion. Now with reading your article I may have changed my mind. I might just give it a shot, Keeping in mind your lowballing theory.

    Thanks for the info.

    May 4th, 2010 at 12:18 pm


    @ Alex – couple of months ago I would of teared you a new…

    But like the old saying goes, can’t beat them? Join them! Fortunately for me I have a better sense and deeper pockets then to offer $4k on a domain like premium 3 LLL dot f’king com ( – which in return only gets you in return is the domain owner who forgot to renew three things:

    1) ROFL (rolling on floor laughing)
    2) LMFAO (laughing my f’king a$$ off)
    3) Thanks for notifying me (click)

    The click part is where the previous domain owner hangs (clicks) the phone on you.

    Through these “methods” I once was angry about, I have acquired 6 domains out of 10 I’ve contacted. The two prefer not to sell and the other two currently in negotiation with. So from those who only get 2-5% turn around rate, just keep thinking you’re getting good karma by notifying the previous owner their domain dropped and hey “RENEW IT AND SELL TO ME FOR $25 BUCKS YOU DUMMY”

    Sorry for all the enthusiasm on your blog Elliot, I am just that way when I get excited…yeah, don’t start with the questions…

    May 4th, 2010 at 12:25 pm


    “which in return only gets you in return”

    My lovely grammar, I know. I live in China for the past 6 years so be happy my English isn’t entirely ENGRISH! I speak Hungarian too, but none of you would understand wtf I am saying! hogy szere’tem 😉

    May 4th, 2010 at 12:37 pm

    Ira Zoot

    “One thing to keep in mind is that you should always make an offer that you wouldn’t be embarrassed by if you met the domain owner in person.”

    I really think the above is an important thing to do in the case of domain privacy, via whois or one of the various sales sites. I’m sure that you get as I do loads of low ball offers that don’t even
    warrant a response. If people had the common sense to do the above and not still think they could low ball with successful results I think there would be loads more of happy buyers and sellers.

    May 4th, 2010 at 7:51 pm

    Fred Mercaldo

    Elliot….excellent topic and commentary….as usual, you bare your soul and tactics.

    May 5th, 2010 at 12:28 am

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