Most domain investors have faced a situation where they received a solid – or perhaps reasonable offer for a domain name that is either lower than the asking price or just not good enough to accept the offer. One strategy I have used in the past is to use the threat of shopping the offer around as a negotiating tactic to try and close a deal. If that tactic doesn’t work, shopping the domain name around might yield a deal.
Let’s say I have an offer of $50,000 on the table for a domain name I have priced at $100,000. Realistically, depending on the name and circumstances, I might be willing to sell the domain name for $75,000. Perhaps I would even sell the domain name for that $50,000 offer if necessary, but I wouldn’t lose sleep if the offer disappeared. In the past, I have told the other party that I will give one more day to consider the price or I will reach out to other companies that might want to buy this domain name.
The threat of losing a deal, particularly when the prospect has made a strong offer, might be enough to induce an improved offer or perhaps an agreement at the asking price. This is the primary goal. A secondary goal is to use the first offer as leverage to other prospective buyers that may not even know my domain name is for sale. By reaching out to other prospects, I can both notify others that my domain name is for sale and possibly fish out a better offer or an agreement at the buy it now price. I feel like I am in a stronger position on outbound when I already have a reasonable offer in my pocket when a prospect questions the price or makes a lower offer.
One rift on the tactic, if I am willing to accept the $50,000 offer if nothing better materializes, is to tell the prospect I will reach out to others and if no better offer is received he can have it for his offer. Alternatively, he can try to reach a better deal with me before I spend the time and effort on outreach.
There are a couple of risks I see in doing this, particularly if that $50,000 offer is appealing. For one, it could irritate the prospective buyer who thinks the tactic is sleazy and that offer could disappear. This is not a big deal since I would have already accepted the fact that it was too low and declined the offer. Another, perhaps greater risk, is that one of the prospects I reach out to decides to file a UDRP (or other litigation) against the domain name. That prospect could have a TM and realize they could never afford the domain name and filing an action could hold up my sale while potentially getting the domain name.