Why I Don’t Price Domain Names in End User Sales Emails

24

One thing you’ll notice in the end user email I shared is that I don’t tend to list the sales price in my emails. It’s not an omission, and I want to share why I tend to leave the price out when I am trying to sell a domain name to an end user buyer.

When I am looking to sell a domain name, I have generally done my due diligence to know what the domain name is likely worth in optimal conditions, what it is worth for a quick sale, and what it’s worth if I want to dump the name quickly. Clearly, I want to sell the domain name for its optimal value, but there are reasons why I might take a lower offer.

When you price a domain name in an email, you may automatically eliminate every single potential buyer who thinks the price is too high.  If potential buyers do not reply, I can’t negotiate with them to close a fair deal. Unless I decide to re-contact the same people, which I would not do, I would never know whether any of those prospects would have an interest at a lower price.

When people reply to my emails asking for the price, I know they are interested in buying one of my domain names. If it’s a matter of price, and they are reasonable about the valuation, there’s a chance we could bridge the gap and close a deal. There’s also a chance we could potentially work out a lease, financing, or some other type of mutually beneficial deal.

Not pricing my domain names in an email opens the door to communications with several parties, and when there are multiple parties interested in buying a domain name, it makes selling for an optimal price easier.

I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts and experience with pricing or not pricing.

24 COMMENTS

  1. I agree that pricing should NOT be included. Think it makes sense to let the potential buyer think about / imagine / fall in love with the name first. I never sold a domain, but am getting ready to sell the one spare I have, Azuba.com and have been mulling these same considerations

  2. Not sure if not pricing a name is a good idea. People are used to seeing prices on items they buy whether it’s in a store, online or stock prices.
    I’ve done it both ways and to save time from tire kickers & low price bidders (which a lot of inquiries are) I’m pricing them now.
    I threw out a number yesterday on a name to an end user that inquired. It would be same the same price regardless based on market potential of name.
    They countered with their best price being low in my mind & said they could buy some lengthy extension to the .com. I told them go and buy it.
    I saved time of going back and forth or getting no response which always has one wondering what they would pay.

  3. I’m in FULL agreement with you here Elliot. I rarely ever attach a BIN price on my domains and always want to open up negotiation talks, partnership opportunities, etc…. (my domains arent “lease” quality I don’t feel, you need a monster usually for that to make sense to the buyer)

    In all end user emails, the goal is to let them set the negotiating floor and go from there. You’re starting behind the 8 ball and usually leaving money on the table if you fire first.

    Just last month, for example, two offers came in on two different names of mine. I valued each name at approx. $3k-$3.5k. The first offer came in at $500 and I ended at $3k- win. The second offer came in at $1k and we ended at $3.5k- win. Now this is what happens when they lead and I counter, I’m noticing. Just two of my recent, personal experiences. Never shoot first in negotiation, never, never, never. I’m sure some will disagree, but I don’t strike first.

    • Ok, then what do you do when they refuse to put forth an offer? Walk away? I had a rep from a company leave me a voicemail about a name they wanted to acquire. I waited a couple of days, called the guy back, asked what plans they had for the name, and what sort of offer they were considering.

      His answer: “We’re not quite sure how to value it at this point. What price did you have in mind?” I named a price, but did so because I thought it would sound foolish to ask them AGAIN to name one first, even though I knew exactly who they were and why the name is relevant to them.

      They probably knew exactly how valuable the name was to them, but I didn’t see how I could strongarm this guy into throwing out a number (which probably would have been too low, anyway, since their counter was low) first.

      • I will determine if I think there’s a chance of a deal and negotiate. If we are in the same ballpark, I will give a best offer, and if they take it, great, and if they pass, I will look for other buyers. Always good to have a solid opening offer in hand.

  4. I price the names since I also know the optimal amount I will take.
    From experience people usually come back with 20%-30% of the quoted price and from there we negotiate. On average I get between 70-90% of the quoted price. So yes I do overprice them to reach my optimal price.

    The only issue here is the that big sale we all dream of will never happen with this strategy. At the moment I am ok with it as I rather see the cash flow until I have a substantial paid for domain inventory.

  5. I think relpying any end user we have to be very careful. Even when our domain is generic we can end up with UDRP (there are many examples around).
    You can win UDRP but do you want to waste money or/and time or take potential risk meeting stupid panelist.
    Pricing is not a good idea, particularly at the beginning.
    However, You can price your domain but not directly. I mean a potential buyer can work out from your creative email what you want but s/he realizes that cannot use it against you..
    I always deal that way, one exception is when I deal with other domainer.

  6. Might as well raise the UDRP fee to $5K or $10K a filing.
    It’s being used as a form of blackmail in some cases such as generics, product domains, no TM’s on domain etc.

  7. The funny thing is 🙂 I often get mail from so call domain seller( broker)
    With the price tag and more over the domain that I had let it expire ….

    @elliots I like your point. I have been doing the same from time to time but there times where I put the price so, I know that if the buyer is interested he will make some offer and the we take it to next level.

  8. I’m having a better response rate when I do not mention a price. ‘Wow much?’ is better than no reply at all and may eventually convert into a sale later on.

    In addition, when people reply with ‘how much’ and none convert into a sale, i may consider a lower price eventually.

  9. I agree 100%! The price to me depends on how badly the individual wants it. If it is some blogger looking for a catchy name, they may only pay $XX. If you are talking about a major brand, you can get $xxxxxx. Big difference.

  10. Elliot, that sounds okay… especially if your name is… (drums please) Elliot Silver (lol). Remember that you’re already a household name in this business. It ain’t that straightforward for domainers who are less famous, imo.

    • I don’t send these types of emails to end user buyers. While many people in the domain space know of my name, 99.999% of end user buyers who would receive this email wouldn’t know me.

      When I reach out to other domain investors to sell my domain names, I almost always price them.

  11. Hi El,

    I can say from my experience that a simple “or counter offer” to a BIN will tell you immediately how interested the company might be in buying a domain. Saves you time. If they want your domain, they’ll counter. If not… buh bye and no waste of time.

    I always state my BIN, because in sales, everyone knows (even in the top domain auction (listing) sites) the mantra is “make offer” rarely gets anything close to what YOU know you’ll sell your domain for. Most companies still think you’re ripping them off anyway, because you are a “cybersquatting ass” who bought a domain for $10 (they don’t know if you bought it for more in the aftermarket).

    All my sales are quick, and to the point for pricing.

  12. I have a question. If I am trying to negotiate a price of a domain would the person get offended with my offer ( reasonable offer) and try to price it higher, because now the seller know that I want it?

    • Either tell them to make an offer, or name your price.

      I’ve found it very difficult to get someone to make an offer when I had emailed them out of the blue. It’s far easier when they inquire about a domain name.

Leave a Reply