Mass “Individual” Domain Inquiry Emails from Domain Investors

A few weeks ago, I received an inquiry on The person inquiring had what looked like a real email address and he made a low offer for the domain name. It wasn’t a $500 offer, but it wasn’t all that reasonable either. I replied “nope” and moved on. Two weeks later, the same person emailed me about, this time without an offer and telling me that he needed it for a project. Clearly, this was a domain investor rather than an end user buyer.

I get quite a few inquiries on my domain names asking about their availability. Many of these seem to come from what sounds like a real person based on the email address. Instead of using a throwaway Gmail or Hotmail account, these buyers will use something like  (made up)  or some other real sounding domain name. Although these emails seem like an end user wanting my domain name, they are most likely another domain investor using a pseudonym.

There are several ways to get an idea about whether or not the email is from another domain investors masking his or her identity. Here are a few telltale signs that it is a domain investor sending automated emails:

The email came via my Whois email address rather than through the contact form on the landing page or through other means. These domain investors use the Whois contact emails because it’s easy to send these emails en masse using an automated email program rather than sending them by hand using domain name landing page contact forms.

There will either be a very general email asking about the domain name’s availability or a very low offer. For instance, if someone is offering $3,000 for a good 3 letter domain name, that is a pretty safe offer. I’d buy average to above average 3 letter .com domain names for $3,000 all day every day if I could. This helps prevent the person from making deals that he can’t afford.

The domain name may be all caps or all lower. When these emails are sent, it can be more time consuming to ensure that the domain name looks right. For instance, instead of saying “,” it will be MASSACHUSETTSREALESTATE.COM OR This prevents an error like or, which would make it clear that it was automated.

You won’t get a reply when you send a counter offer or ask questions. Unless the buyer really wants your name, he or she will probably figure that it’s not worth the time to negotiate a deal because there are other deals to be had.

The website on the domain name from the email address will be minimal, and the domain name may have been a recent pickup or registration. Buying a name like this at auction is a good way to keep the creation date and look more serious. I’ve seen some minimal landing page websites with a very vague description.

In my opinion, there isn’t much wrong with this method of buying domain names. It can be a bit annoying to receive, especially when someone sends to all city .com names or other vertical where I have multiple registrations. On the other hand, it makes it easier to see that it’s an automated email that way.

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. Some unnamed people are hiring offshore workers, to send these out, they have been coming from tech outsourced countries for at least the last year like clockwork, on the higher end names. They look legit, but these people are just poking around, trying to find a uneducated seller.

  2. I have been receiving some emails regarding domains “for sale” that are either at auction at Namejet or which have already expired and I own a similar name. In either case these emails are not originating from the domain registrant.

  3. “if someone is offering $3,000 for a good 3 letter domain name, that is a pretty safe offer” –> indicating that they are a fellow domain investor/reseller and not an end user! 😉

    Happens all the time on my’s though oddly enough mainly from the Chinese using email address’s. 😆

  4. I think you’d be surprised at how many well known domain investors attempt to buy domains under assumed names at low ball prices, some even have employees purchasing domains on their behalf, If you own some good single word generic or LLL dot coms, you surely received offers from them now and then…

    Counter offers are usually ignored, the reason I think is because they already did their homework on how much their willing to invest, based on what the return would be and how long it will take to resell it.. It’s a take or leave it offer.

    For the end user, buying a domain is must have for their business, but for the domain investor, it’s a investment they can do without or find another that has equal potential.. It’s all a numbers game, make 100 low offers per day and maybe 1-5 will accept… Lot of domainers out there waiting for the chance to cash in.


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