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How to Respond to a Domain Name Inquiry

Respond to a Domain Name Inquiry Like a SharkHave you received an email from someone interested in purchasing a domain name you own? Do you feel like you’re in the dark on how to respond to an end-user? A reply to buy a domain is a sensitive matter. Replying back with too much information, or even the wrong information can turn a sure sale into a dead deal.

An end-user may email or call when they have interest in the domain name and have performed a WHOIS lookup on your domain name. They will usually ask you if you plan to use it, and will often request the price of a domain.

The sample below will demonstrate how to respond to a domain name purchase inquiry.

Hello [First Name],

Thank you for your inquiry about the domain name [domain name].[extension].

[domain name].[extension] will definitely help [Company Name] compete online. You made a great decision to secure this domain name, which will help your company gain additional traffic and leads in the [industry name] industry.

I’m asking $1,000.00 for the domain name. The keywords “[keywords]” are very competitive online (as viewed in Google), and cost on average of $[cost] per click.

[domain name].[extension] is registered at Go Daddy. I noticed that you use Network Solutions as the registrar for [Company Name].com. I’m familiar with transferring a domain name from Go Daddy to Network Solutions, however, if you have an account at Go Daddy I can push the domain to your account after payment and you will have almost instant control over it.

I prefer to use PayPal to accept payments. I can prepare an invoice, itemizing the domain name and the agreement between your company and myself.

Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you for your inquiry. I look forward to closing this transaction quickly for you.

Best Regards,
[Your Name]
[Your Contact Info]


Additional Notes on Responding to a Domain Name Inquiry

The sample above thanks the end-user. In responding back to the end-user’s request to buy the domain name, the seller shows respect throughout the correspondence. The seller provided basic information on the domain name, but avoided mentioning anything regarding traffic, sales, how to use the domain name, or any other topic that might complicate the sale.

The seller requested $1,000.00 for the domain name. There are many sellers who may be reluctant to reply back with a price. They fear the end-user will reject the price or be put off by seeing too high of a price. Don’t be afraid to ask what you think the domain is worth, especially if the website generates traffic or has inbound links.

There may times when the end-user will request more information, or even ask the reason they need the domain name. As a seller, you can then supply performance statistics such as average keyword results and average monthly searches, providing both local and global searches. If the domain name generates traffic, you can reply with the amount of unique visitors and page views per month. Furthermore, identify whether the domain has a Google Page Rank, Alexa Traffic Rank, backlinks, and sites that link in. The reply back to the request for information is your time to shine in order to close the sale.

Show confidence in your reply. Be persistent if the buyer doesn’t reply back. Treat the buyer with respect to show you have professionalism.

Additional Resources When Responding to a Domain Name Inquiry

Estibot.com: Appraisal and keyword metrics.
Compete.com: Monthly Unique traffic and page views.
SeWatch.net: Site tags, backlinks, and Google PageRank.
Alexa.com: Keyword search terms, Alexa Traffic Rank, and sites that link to it.
Classic Response to a Domain Inquiry, from Elliot’s Blog.

[Photo credit: alq666]

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Keywords:
Companies:

Uniregistry.com

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23 Responses to “How to Respond to a Domain Name Inquiry”

  1. Arseny Kardash says:

    Great tips and great reply template! Thanks for sharing!

    I have one question on “Show confidence in your reply. Be persistent if the buyer doesn’t reply back..” So what’s your next step if the buyer doesn’t reply?

  2. Thanks Don for your contribution. You definitely have a strong business mentality. The sample is more so a guide, but not my standard inquiry. I have produced results with less work. Nonetheless, I put in more work to get no results.

    I do customize every reply to buy. It’s rare I will let an interested buyer walk away without the domain in their possession. I have been known to make a few mistakes that cost me sales. For the most part, I’m confident enough about domains to communicate with a potential buyer.

    My persistence has enabled me to keep deals alive. Your woman example is right on the money. I find that quick replies work, but I put in the work to demonstrate the value of the domain. If I’m going to ask a higher price, I want to be sure the buyer knows what they’re getting in return. Price is also the main challenge.

    Thanks again for your feedback and for visiting DomainSherpa.

    JAG

  3. Don Edmands says:

    Wow Jason seems like your ability to deal with “dreamers” might be your greatest asset. As for my dealings I have easily had 40 or so inquiries in the last 5 years. I have probably 400 excellent city geos and know what I have. Dealing with inquiries has never changed for me. If the dreamer doesn’t get it I really don’t want to hold his hand till he does. I have been in a professional sales (I own my own business) for roughly 9 years. One thing I have realized about most people is they have to be told how to think told what to eat and told what to buy. My position has nor ever will change. If you don’t get it you will down the road and when you do you might realize in the future or get back in line with the rest of the sheep. I liken it to a woman. A woman will never approach an attractive man but she will talk to an average guy if he approaches her all night long. So another words she might think your good looking but will not risk approaching.The average guy however is a safe bet and came to her. Get my drift? They won’t pay for what they want but will settle and hand reg. I think people naturally feel dejected from the start thinking that it is “their” domain. They feel you have no right to it and they have all the right. If you have to hold someones hand for them to make the best decision for their business it goes back to the “woman” story. If I personally want a domain I will pay a fair or even higher price. If I get an inquiry and they do not send something back that is all I need to hear. Anytime I have ever responded as you outline they never respond. They are dreamers out of their realm. They know it and I know it and responding back only sets me up to look desperate. Think about it… if you send back as you say then it appears you are the over priced individual and you are open to lower price. I am sure your method works and I by no means question your effort or ethic in fact I am quite impressed with your abilities! I have just been around long enough to know holding hands with adults can be embarrassing unless you are at church and if they don’t get it get away from me cause I do!

  4. @Gregory,

    I appreciate the feedback. I customize every reply to purchase a domain because it gives you an opportunity to build a rapport with a potential buyer. The best method is to compare the replies that work up against the ones that don’t work. This will help you to determine what captured their attention. I find that asking price and providing subtle information are effective.

    Check out the new article on contacting a non-domainer to purchase a domainer. Thanks for reading.

    JAG

  5. Gregory says:

    I’m impressed, I have to say. Rarely do I encounter a blog that’s both educative and entertaining, and hit the nail on the head. Your concept is excellent; the difficulty is something that not sufficient individuals are talking intelligently about. I am very completely satisfied that I stumbled throughout this in my seek for something relating to this.

  6. “I hope you see you soon.” I meant, I hope to see you soon. Thanks.

  7. @Edward
    @Nathan
    @Maria

    Thanks for the feedback. I appreciate the support. I hope you see you soon. Good luck on scoring a big sale :) Thanks again

    JAG

  8. Edward Boatner says:

    Nice post. I was checking continuously this blog and I am impressed! Very useful information specifically the last part :) I care for such info much. I was seeking this particular info for a long time. Thank you and best of luck.

  9. Nathan Megna says:

    Great post thanks for the info I’m going to link to this on my facebook page so my follower see this, I’ll be back soon keep up the good work.

  10. Maria Arnall says:

    Good Post!

  11. @mike,

    Your best bet is to build a relationship with domain investors that operate in the niche. They know the value of a domain name. Another strategy is to prepare a 1 page proposal to educate the end-user on the value of a domain. Tell them why the name is important, recent sales in the niche, what advantages they have in acquiring the domain, and how the domain can elevate their business to a higher level.

    I had my fair share of challenges, but I also contact people that purchased domains from me on domain platforms using DomainTools.com. If there is a want, you will get a reply back. I just received a reply back from a top domain investor. Whereas, he didn’t
    purchase the domain, which is not mine, he told me I can contact him in the future.

    I know another domain investor that will buy job domains. The people that threaten you with spam are not serious buyers. When you build professional relationships with an end-user, they will buy from you. It really depends on the domain you’re offering them. I can sell one domain, but then they will turn down future domains.

    Every company has a budget. You can contact Marketing teams because they understand the value of a domain. Make sure you mention past sales in the category. That will make them want your domain even more. They want to compete too.

    If you think the average end-user doesn’t realize the potential, inform them with a proposal or write an email giving them information about the recent sales, the importance of them securing a name of a service they provide, and etc..

    Sometime a domain with less appealing stats will produce a big sale because it is a great name of a product or service they offer. You have to be confident. Don’t let all those past experiences disrupt you. I had many bad experiences, but I continued to press on. If you present a name that is relevant to the end-user, they will listen.

    Contact the most popular sites that have money to spend. The small end-user is going to make excuses that a $200 purchase is too much and they need to think about it. That’s why they’re not getting any business or overspending on advertising costs because they don’t understand the value of a domain name.

    I know all about these end-users. I call many resume companies, and never convert with the small company. They have too many objections. Big companies will spend. Read the DNJournal. Contact these new owners if you own relevant domains. Money will not be the issue then. It will come down to if they want your domain. And I’m sure you know that ahead of time.

    I’m not going to present the TheVeryBestResumeWritinyService.com. However, I will present ResumeStructure.com, ExecutiveCoverLetters.com, ResumeCompanies.com, NursingCoverLetters.com, PrResumes.com and others. Those are services they provide. I may not sell now, but I will eventually find a buyer.

    The best resume and cover letter names are taken. There are still many more available. A recent owner purchased a cover letter domain and developed it into a service site. I didn’t care if he offered me less for the site. I knew he would only pay a certain amount, and no more. However, he’s using keyword of two generic domains I own in the niche. I will not leas those go for cheap. I have an advantage. I can call the shots later.

    Keep trying. Don’t look back to the past. Focus on the sale. Develop new strategies. If they don’t know the value, educate them. Most people don’t realize the value of many things, so they depend on another to inform them. People are spending millions every week to buy. I don’t enjoy that aspect, but I know that owning the top names will give me a piece of the action.

    I own several GEO job .com in the Bay Area. When the time comes I will be able to sell them. Form partnerships with others to sell your domains for commission. Think about how easy it is to get a job when you know a person than if you don’t. Connections work in your favor.

    Go after the sale. Good luck. Thanks for your comment.

  12. Mike says:

    @Jason:

    I really dont think that the average end-user truly understands what a domain name, a good domain name, can do for their business. Sure, a domain name alone is not much but it can be the foundation for the store-front (web site) or the vehicle for traffic (leads) for these end-users that contact us. I go into that aspect too. And, sure, I try to contact them again but there are no replies. Some have gone so far as to threaten me with spam. This AFTER they contacted ME!

    It really is a challenge, you are correct! :-)

  13. @Mike,

    I would be more personable with the buyer. Do you contact the buyer again after you wait for the reply back? I’ll go the distance, sometimes to the point in which I’m still being professional but also direct about selling the domain.

    Let them know that a few others are inquiring about the domains and you want to ensure they secure it. They may be competition for the company. I waited for the buyer to close the deal, I would probably have given up on domains. Some deals can drag on a few weeks, and even a few months, or you can close in a matter of 10 minutes.

    The domain industry is a challenge. There are many people that have little respect for the next person. Sometimes you have to cross the professional line, and move into a more interpersonal mode to demonstrate you are trying to help this company.

    You don’t have to toss around the stats. The sample above is more for guidance. A short reply that is direct can produce results. If one technique is not working, try another until you get results.

    Thanks for reading. Good luck.

    JAG

  14. Mike says:

    Do you know how many inquiries that I receive for domain names? I respond with a very similar letter…. almost to the T. After my reply back, there is usually no further reply. 95% of the time. The inquiries come in with obscure email addresses. Rarely do they say they’re from any particular company.

    With the 5% that do reply back, there is no further response AFTER agreement on a price is made. WTF. The other 95%, are, in my opinion, fishers. They’re Afternic, BuyDomains, Sedo, maybe even other domains who are fishing around for pricing. Nice, eh. And the 5% that never reply after an agreement, while my escrow.com transaction sits idle for a week or two are losers.

    This behavior does not happen in the real estate industry. But behind computers people turn to behavior that they’d never do to someone in person.

  15. @Ben S,

    Thanks for the comment. You can customize the reply. Find the one that works best for you. Good luck on selling your domains. Thanks.

    JAG

  16. Ben S. says:

    This is brilliant and it help me a lot. Thanks very much.

  17. @Tom,

    I appreciate the comment. You’re definitely right that the first reply sets the tone. You have to think about the right price and how to respond professionally. Domain investing is a business like any other. You will likely do business again. Professional, patience, and persistence does it every time. Thanks again for the feedback.

    JAG

  18. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by DomainSherpa, DomainSherpa and keith carasco, Domaining365. Domaining365 said: An excellent sample letter for #domainers –> How to Respond to a Domain Name Inquiry http://bit.ly/gByoR8 RT @domainsherpa [...]

  19. @Andrew,

    Thanks. I will always reply to every inquiry. Selling takes strategy. It is much more of a challenge to find a buyer than to buy a domain.

    You never know the buyer’s strategy. They may offer a small amount, but then they’re willing to pay more after you build value in the domain. People will do the same to a car salesman. They want to reduce the price, even to the point to which the price doesn’t make any sense.

    Every sell wants to maximize a sale, whereas a buyer wants to save money. You have two opposing goals. They have to want the domain enough to be willing to continue pursuing it. When the end-user sends a reply to purchase a domain, the main obstacle is the price. Only throw in the domain’s use if they contemplate the price or the need for the domain.

    For example: an end-user replies back with,”Those are great domains we can use. How much do you want?” You can reply back with, “Hello (name), Thanks for inquiring about the domains. I agree you with that they’re two quality domains. I’m asking $1000 for them as a pair. Since you already use Go Daddy as your website’s registrar, I can push the domains to you quickly. I prefer to use PayPal. Let me know when you’re ready to acquire the two domains. They’re good and ready to begin working for you.. I appreciate your reply. I’ll keep on the lookout for your e-mail. Thanks again.

    You can customize every response. You can too, walk yourself into closing a deal. Mention price, and justify it until they reply back with no thanks, or I prefer to pay this amount. Finding an end-user to want your domain is one challenge, but don’t let price prevent a sale. well unless they only want to pay $75 for a $1000 domain.

    Set limits to how low can go on the domain. And when the price is not met, then thank the end-user for inquiring about the domain, and move on. If they want the domain, they will think it over. Always put yourself in a direct position to make a sale.

    As a seller, think like a pilot that is ready to engage on a target. The sale is the target. You may make a few mistakes, or ruin a potential sale with too much information or eagerness to sell a domain. Use every sale as a stepping stone to master the next. Rushing to sell the domain will show an end-user that it’s not that valuable. If you rush to sell a car, then a buyer will think it’s a lemon.

    Build value into the domain, and stay firm on your price. You can negotiate on a domain if you really need the funds, or when you want to make a sale to purchase another quality domain. And of course, on a domain that is less appealing to you, but a buyer really wants. Thanks for the comment and for reading.

    JAG

  20. @Chuck,

    Thanks for the comment. I appreciate it. To be honest, I would not let any potential buyer walk away from my domain. I’m more than willing to work out a deal. If you own a domain name that you refuse to accept less than the asking price, it is best to stay firm on the price.

    I received a reply to build a domain a few days after I contacted the company. They requested the price. I wrote a 1 page proposal on the value of the domain. I gave them a price. We never had to negotiate because they already knew the market value of the domain.

    However, there are end-users that will try to reduce the price in half, or even lower. It really depends on the domain. If I’m selling a domain I know I know has excellent market value, I will stay firm on the price. Because the interest is there to buy the domain, you can build off of that to close the sale.

    However, I rejected offers such as $100 for two keyword domains that another company would have paid 10 times more to acquire. The company sensed I needed to make a sale. I couldn’t let the two domains go for $100.

    In another scenario, a past buyer offered $100 for 10 domains that were worth 20 times that amount. I reject those offers, even if I don’t have a meal to eat. :)

    For the most part, you build a relationship with the buyer. You can gain their trust in a few e-mails, and then work on the best price that will benefit both the buyer and seller. Don’t let a potentially low offer keep you from making a sale. Many times, the buyer has no idea what you want for your domain. They don’t want to make a mistake to make a higher offer, only to figure out later they overpaid for the domain.

    To answer your question, I will respond back and negotiate for a higher price. I will never let an intent to buy cloud my judgment. Take for instance; I give an end-user a great price because I know they will not pay more than a certain amount. But then I find an excellent domain in an auction for 15 times less than what I sold the other domain at. And this domain is 10 times better than the one that sold.

    Every sale is different because you may know how certain past buyers operate. You know that some make small offers on certain domains, but are willing to pay good money on another. You can evaluate a domain, and determine whether you want to sell it at a lower price.

    I will not accept $100 for 10 domains that are worth 20 times that amount, or $100 for a pair of domains I know a company will use to brand their business. However, I will let a domain go for $100 to another domain investor that wants it.

    Sometimes you can’t get too attached to a domain. Making a sale offers motivational rewards. You will gain experience to assess the future value of the domains when selling to an end-user. You can definitely ask for a good money for a .com and a high traffic .org. I still haven’t sold a .org, but I do have a few good ones.

    Stay firm on a price when dealing with a high traffic website. Don’t let them walk away without at least trying to work out a price. Thanks. Good luck!

    JAG

  21. Tom says:

    I find that the first reply really helps to set the expectations going forward. Get it “wrong” and you may wind up spinning your wheels with a tire kicker, leaving money on the table, or not making a sale at all. A professional well run organization replies with a professional, well thought-out and thorough response. Your sample is such and I appreciate it.

  22. Very good sample letter, I agree.

    When do you ever NOT reply to an inquiry, Jason?

  23. Great article, Jason. I love the sample letter provided — very classy.

    Do you ever respond back to an end user with a price, say $500 or $1,000, and then get a response back saying, “I could offer you $200, but I don’t want to insult you. Thanks anyways.”?

    How do you handle this type of situation?

    Do you respond back and try to negotiate them up? Or do you just let them walk away? Or something else?

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