Why You Might Send Inquiries Through Domain Name Sales

DomainNameSales.comDespite the fact that the landing pages on many of my domain names indicate they are for sale and give a prospect the ability to contact me, I still receive a number of inquiries for domain names via email. I sometimes like to use the DomainNameSales.com  tools to help me with my sales. Domain Name Sales (DNS) was founded by Frank Schilling a couple of years ago, and it offers quite a few domain name sales tools at no cost to users aside from commission paid on brokered deals.

In this post, I want to share three reasons why I find it effective to either send a prospective buyer to my DNS-based for sale landing page to enter an offer, or I enter the buyer’s info in my DNS dashboard on my own. You are welcome to share why you also use DNS or why you wouldn’t use the platform.

Get more intel about buyer

The DNS platform allows a prospective buyer to login via Facebook or LinkedIn accounts, and this may provide a wealth of information. Even if they don’t log in via their social media accounts, I can more easily see their IP address and location, and I can create an archive of their inquiries.

It’s pretty obvious why having intelligence on a buyer is important, but I will expound on that. First, nobody wants to sell a domain name cheaply to a multi billion dollar company looking to rebrand or create a startup. Secondly, nobody wants to have a UDRP filed after negotiating in good faith to sell a domain name.

Option to forward inquiry to a broker

In most cases, I like to negotiate the sale of my own domain names. I have become decent at negotiating deals, and I don’t want to give up a percentage of the sale when I don’t have to do that. However, there are times that having a broker’s assistance is helpful. Last month, I received a $50 offer and told the buyer he wasn’t close, and I didn’t hear back. I then forwarded it to DNS and they were able to close a very solid deal (more than I had asked for it on DNForum a short time before).

Archive inquiries

Even though I use Gmail which archives all of my emails, it can be difficult to track who inquired about names in the past. This is especially the case on a name like MassachusettsRealEstate.com that has had several inquiries in the last couple of months and where I had also sent emails to a number of companies a few months ago. Domain Name Sales archives all of the past inquiries, allowing me to see where I priced a domain name in the past and with whom I was negotiating.

I find the Domain Name Sales tools to be an effective sales tool (especially given that it is free to use aside from any commision that is to be paid), and I have sent prospects to the lead form when I couldn’t get enough intelligence on them on my own.

Keep in mind that if you send a buyer to your DNS landing page and they end up calling instead of submitting their contact information through the form, I am pretty sure the DNS broker will be automatically assigned to handle the lead, meaning you will pay a commission on the sale.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the DomainInvesting.com 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. Hey Elliot, I feel like I’ve commented on every blog this weekend so I’ll kick it off on this one and let folks start throwing tomatoes ; )

    So the biggest reasons to use the platform:

    1: If you have an account and you get an inquiry to your admin email (from whois), most of us will reply to the person inquiring, start a negotiation or whatever and then file the message away in our mail client into the sales folder. You can still do that but with DNS you forward the sales inquiry to our sell [at] domainnamesales dot com email and the system greps the inquiry, message headers, ip’s etc and creates an inquiry in your account. That’s important because once you ‘handle’ that lead internally the system will follow up with the buyer (and if you elect to use our brokers they can follow up in person with the buyer) long after you have filed away and forgotten about the lead. Big sales happen out of the blue on follow-up.

    2. The System.. you can see old leads for the same name and compare the ip’s of inquirers – see other names they’ve inquired on.. There is too much dynamism and cross-referencing ability to adequately list here. Suffice it to say – the options at your disposal for researching leads are thick and wide. You can sell names, sell traffic and names or do traffic only. You can insert your brokers, our brokers no brokers.. different portfolios, ugh, again – options a go-go

    3. Mobile – I’m free at last. Our patented mobile application for iPhone is really a sophisticated front-end CRM interface that allows you to field offers and mange leads and research names on the move. Responses you input through the app: prices you set, communications to managers or brokers all get tied back to names and inquiries for future reference. If you are an active domainer the DNS app is nothing short of miraculous in that it sets you free. Every day. I use this app and at random moments and I’m still spellbound by the way it has unleashed me from my computer. I still thank the developer (who is still with us and proud of his accomplishment). If I could build an app like this that would unleash me from the daily job functions at Uniregistry we’d really have something. ; )

    If there is one takeaway for your readers it’s that DNS is more like a Guitar than a Kazoo .. You can make it create amazing riches for you but you need to engage with it and play it and embrace it as a platform. Anyone can can hum into a Kazoo but it won’t get you a Grammy. Good luck out there.

  2. I agree guys, great platform and have been enjoying and learning it.

    One thing I did notice which was kind of funny is…

    From time to time you get an inquiry and it isn’t really a true inquiry, someone playing or confused, I wished this was easier to weed out.
    For example I have a loan name and got notice of a offer, clearly though it was a person asking for a loan LOL, confused.

    The assigned broker did not seems to understand this and kept asking for a quote etc. I finally said listen BLANK it’s clearly a person asking for a loan not making an offer, appreciate the time but you are wasting it.

    My only other complaint was I once waited nearly 3 days for a reply from the broker, email, phone, vm, didn’t matter. Not acceptable imo.

  3. I have moved most of my domains to DNS, but am still often frustrated.

    I accept the notion that I need to “play with the system” to get the most out of it. I still often find it challenging to use, especially with do help/documentation available.

    My biggest issue is that it seems that some of my inquiries have disappeared (not in archive either). Nobody in support seems to be able to offer a explanation. This makes it difficult for me to make this my main tool at this point.

    I actually really want to like this system and leverage it even more. I also have a good feeling about the DNS brokers, even though we are yet to close a deal.

    • The DNS platform was always intended as a “no frills” product so we’re a little light on support and documentation but as we grow we are adding a lot in these areas. We have a help page within the system, a dev blog at http://dev.domainnamesales.com/blog/ where you can learn about new features and ask questions and we have a dedicated support team in place to answer questions.

      The way the inquiry system is designed is that inquiries will never go missing. They’re in the database and I’d be happy to work with you to resolve where within the platform you can find them.

    • I second everything that Jackie has said (except for inquiries disappearing). The handful of inquiries that I’ve forwarded to DNS brokers have not yet brought a sale (though I’ve handled some inquiries myself and did make a nice sale last year). But I also have a good feeling about the system and the brokers, and I’ve gradually been moving more domains there. Looking for a breakthrough year in 2014.

  4. Thanks so much Jackie ..the system keeps everything.. I
    Will have dev/ops look at your acct Monday – is it under your name?

    • Thanks for responding so quickly Frank and Quintin!

      The account is in my company name – Renaissance Computer Systems.
      If you scan my support tickets, you’ll see the issues I’ve reported.

      Also – if you want user input on future features, I’d be glad to talk to you about what I think is missing or should be changed.

  5. I have used it for over a year now and can say it is a great platform. Actually closed a deal on the beach last year with my DNS phone app. Make some pretty good residual income through parking and the inquiries are very steady. I’ve taken over the brokering myself but love the ability to do what I want. Look forward to doing the same with the GoDaddy leads in the future, despite those having a less chance of success simply due to the nature of the lead. Anyway, keep up the great work Frank…happy to be aboard!

  6. Great system, ppc is down a bit but still better than the rest. The thing I really like is the fact you can put up just an “Inquiry” page which eliminates the possibility of trademarked ads being fed to your name.
    My only concern is if someone files a urdp on a name on this system due to an ad that was displayed from the dns system will dns help fight the urdp???
    I took all of my names off of the gdaddy system as they will display anything including trademarked ads. It would be great to have a feature where you could put in advertising keywords you DON’T want to show on your name. I have many names that have different meanings for several things.

  7. I like DomainNameSales. Frank is someone who knows what he is doing and someone everyone can trust. It’d be useful though if you could elaborate how DNS brokered sales work.

  8. I think a bit more clarity needs to be given in regards to godaddy leads, as who the inquiring party is, helps to have some background info, and how godaddy leads get paid out, as I would think they timeline would be longer as DNS would have to collect funds from godaddy, then forward to seller.

  9. I totally agree with you Ron pertaining to the GD leads. All that is currently sent is a request for a net price from the DNS brokers. I know they have concerns about people skirting around them/GD if they had the lead info. Not sure if they could whip up an agreement form we could sign off on saying that if lead is revealed we commit to their brokering it … I wouldn’t have any problem with that.

    I know from my experience that I will almost never deal blindly on inquiries received via DNS or elsewhere. Not knowing whom you’re speaking too has too many downsides for us as sellers. I have found for both financial and legal reasons that dealing blindly isn’t the way to go. Sure there are those domains that we will put buy now on but those are few and far between.

    Also, as it’s DNS that is working on behalf of us as brokers and getting paid 20% for the GD leads they should be working the lead a bit to see how legit it is, get at least a serious opening offer and be able to talk with us about who they’ve either been privy to who the lead is or have found out through research so as we can best value the domain. In the end if they do this for us … well benefit. Right not when all I get is a note wanting me to price it … it comes off more as them representing that lead than me as the seller.

    • The problem is policing that Ira.. also our agreement structure with Godaddy doesn’t allow for it. The only party really earning on the go daddy leads are the seller and go daddy. It’s more of a passthrough for us. To the other commentator. The longest payout is 30 days. If you sell a name on the 1st we pay at month end. We need to keep fixed one-time per month payments to keep finance and admin costs down.

    • Re: Frank Schilling’s quote “The longest payout is 30 days. If you sell a name on the 1st we pay at month end.” This is the first I have heard of this. Although apparently true in practice, this is not what you’ve promised according to your terms of agreement: “DNSC will initiate payment to you of the purchase price less applicable commissions and ordinary transaction fees within five business days of receipt of payment by DNSC.” I was pretty ticked off when I finally sold a domain through a Godaddy lead. It took forever to get paid, between the godaddy pay lag then DNS end of month thing. I know what to expect now, but you need to clean up your user agreement to match what you actually practice. Right now the website only cites the “end of the month” payment for ad revenue, NOT domain sales.

  10. DNS is great, however here are some concerns/suggestions:

    1. Occasionally long delays in making the first offer on some Godaddy leads? Four plus days is unacceptable.
    2. When you sell through Godaddy, the wait for your $$$ can be very long, up to 60 days
    3. For lower price sales, seems like using escrow.com just adds an unecessary step. Just accept the $$$ via credit card or paypal
    4. As I remember I had to pay another percentage to get my $$$, either a paypal fee or a wire fee. Direct deposit not available. So I essentially pay three commissions per sale.

  11. To be fair to DNS, in order to have Godaddy signoff on this sales lead system, Godaddy would have wanted to protect their platform, and how their potential customers are treated, and I feel DNS has done the best possible system, based on what they have been given to work with from Godaddy. As for payments, DNS, can only payout once Godaddy pays them, so this is something you have to factor in when making a sale.

    I feel escrow is still the best possible way to transact, it keeps everyone honest, the reason why DNS works, is because it keeps all the gimmicks away.

    In order to understand the end user side of the godaddy sale, the leads that come in are people coming to hand register a domain name, they type in CAR.com, and the next page says it is available from the owner, a newbie domain buyer, would think nothing of this, enter their info, and wait for a reply, thinking maybe a few hundred dollars, or so, not understanding the industry fully. Then when they get a reply back with a 7 figure reply, they are priced out, and must find a new domain, unless they are in a position to close. This lead system is tricky, but it opens up a communication channel, that most have a short term mentality over, so this guy goes, and registers CARSCARSCARS.com for $10, then maybe he turns it into a big business, and is making some serious cash, and remembers his connection to Cars.com, and replies to that email, knowing the figure range, and now you have a real deal possibility. As well the owner is aware there is someone out there, building a business that might need their domain one day.

    Domaining is not a wham bham industry, I think I have had to say No 10X to get that 1 yes offer.

  12. i want to thank Frank for the best platform on the web for domainers.

    regarding godaddy leads i do not advice especially for premium domain owners to use as its really the opposite what dns had made for domainers till now.

    but it is a reality that for low priced domains my inquries since opting in for godaddy has tripled.

  13. One thing I’d like to see is a a more detailed status on GoDaddy leads. I know it’s more work, especially with a presumed lower close rate, but it would be good to get a better idea on where things stand.

  14. Thanks Elliot – we’re on this ..

    Thanks to everyone else too. I realize it’s not perfect but we’re trying to make DNS better and anticipate we’ll be able to keep it low cost and open.

    Reading the wish list here, I’m reminded of the words of Henry Ford who said: ” If I asked my customer’s what they want, they’d have said: “A faster horse”. ”

    On Feb 28th we’re going to roll out our registrar which will integrate with DNS and come with some new features to help you increase revenues. I think you’ll like it.

    Till then the team and I are going back to put our collective shoulders to the wheel. This is going to be a big year f change in naming. If you know any strong developers looking for a job please have them email contact@ uni registry dot com .. all replies anonymous.

  15. At this point, I am more concerned as to why PPC revenues seem to be consistently declining. Is there anything on the horizon to help out in this area?

    Anything on the horizon that says this may level out soon?

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