Step Away from a Negotiation


Negotiating a deal to its conclusion is an aspect of this business I enjoy. Negotiations can be exciting, frustrating, annoying, thought provoking, and emotional. Sometimes a negotiation reaches a point that it would be more productive to step away and hand the reigns to someone else.

It doesn’t happen often, but there have been times that a stalemate has been reached. It sort of comes to a point where the counterparty and I have dug our heels in so deeply that progress has stopped and we aren’t really getting anywhere. Taking some time to let things cool down is one approach, but it also gives the counterparty an opportunity to seek out a different domain name or find a different buyer. When this happens on a domain sale negotiation, it makes sense for me to hand the negotiation off to a trusted domain broker.

I don’t love involving a domain broker when it isn’t necessary. I value the effort and expertise of a domain broker, but I would prefer not to have to pay a commission and involve a third party in a private negotiation unless it is absolutely necessary. Sometimes it becomes necessary.

A domain broker may be able to offer a different perspective on the value of a domain name and may have the expertise to be able to change the tone and tenor of the discussion. The broker may also be able to offer other options that hadn’t been considered. The counterparty may be more comfortable negotiating with someone else – or may appreciate that a third party is involved to steer clear of landmines that came up during the initial negotiation.

If a broker can help close a deal where I couldn’t, the commission would be well spent. There are many great brokers in the business. I enjoy operating my own business, and I have become pretty proficient at negotiating (at least I think I have). Knowing when to step away and hand off a negotiation is important and it can help get a deal done.

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. Excellent points made here, Elliot.

    Not everyone is comfortable with, or skilled at negotiating, so in cases like that it may be better to engage a professional.

    Few things make me prouder than closing domain acquisition deals that others have told me were “impossible.” I love challenges like that!

  2. hmmm… i say either enlist a broker from the get-go or not at all..
    a hand off once negotiations have reached an impass is not going to play out as seamlessly and productively as you might think imo (adding more moving parts to anything rarely simplifies it)

    there are sooooo many techniques for getting past the inevitable deadlock/stalemate in any serious negotiations. (i could probably write a book)
    please feel free to give me a ring the next time such a situation presents itself on one of your deals and i’ll be more than happy to share some of my own arsenal with you or help walk you through forcing buyers final hand

    as for related advice for your readers…. delve deeply into everything here….

    your dragon will be breathing fire in no time 😉

    take care..


  3. Look what happened to Kevin Ham who represented himself. He saved a few buck on a broker and ended up selling his highend portfolio for about $167 per name.

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