From $25, To $250, To $2,500 – Why Sticking To Your Guns Can Pay Off

You never know who might be making an offer on your domains, which is why you should never ignore an offer, not matter how small it might be in the beginning. I spoke about this on a panel at WEBfest and can’t emphasize it enough, don’t ignore offers, and definitely don’t insult the person making the offer. Yes, you may know that their offer is too low but telling them to get lost or ignoring their email definitely won’t do anything for you. Another great example of this happened last week so I thought I’d share it with all of you.

I received a $25 offer on a one-word .TV name I own. Like I said, never ignore an offer. So I responded back letting the interested buyer know that his price was too low but that I would consider higher offers. Notice I didn’t say, “You can’t afford this name find another” or anything that might turn the buyer away. At the same time you don’t want to throw out a price yourself, you want the buyer to come up with the price themselves because you never know what increments they will use to get to their next price point.

In this case, the next offer came at $250. Still too low and I let the interested buyer know that once again their offer was still too low. At this point they responded by asking me to throw out a price. I refused. As you probably know by now, I never like to throw out a number until I absolutely have to in order to close the deal. In my mind I had pegged this name at around $1,500. A day went by and I thought I might have lost them, then they came back in $2,000, at this point I responded back “$2,500 and it’s yours,” and it was a done deal.

I paid $150 for the name so not a bad return, still only $2,500 so nothing to write home about. What it does illustrate is another situation where many investors would tell the buyer to take a hike when really the potential to sell to them even above your expected price point might be just within your reach. Businesses don’t do business with businesses, people do business with people. Hear out any offer, no matter how small, and be courteous every step of the way and you might just find that a low offer can turn into a nice sale.

As always I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to share your own stories of low offers that turned into solid sales, comment and let your voice be heard!

Morgan

Co-Founder at Fashion Metric
Morgan Linton was born in Berkeley, California but spent nine years traveling the world as an early employee for digital music startup Sonos. In 2007 Morgan founded Linton Investments, a domain name and branding company that has helped some of the most recognized startups in the world acquire their top choice domain name. In 2012 Morgan left his full-time job to co-found Fashion Metric, a next-generation platform aimed at changing the way guys shop for clothes online.

{ 12 comments… add one }

  • @Domains February 26, 2013, 7:04 am

    That’s great, not easy to turn 150 into 2500 in this economy.

  • AbdulBasit Makrani February 26, 2013, 7:11 am

    Congrats Morgan!
    I always try to respond all lowballers and recently I closed one deal where the buyer started with $150 as their initial offer. I refused and informed the offer is too low. Their next offer was $1,500 and we closed the deal at $2,000. By the way, it was .net domain.

  • Arseny February 26, 2013, 7:17 am

    great example and advice! I’m always curious how do you exactly react when the buyer asks for the price? thanks for sharing this one with us

  • Viljami February 26, 2013, 8:28 am

    Being polite as possible should be a given. Might lead to a decent sale, but also to up the general image of domaining. A lot of people still see the domaining community as some kind of a murky club preying for a victim, which doesn’t exactly attract deals. I think it’s everyone’s responsibility to change that.

    Also, stumbled on this http://www.dailydot.com/society/confessions-tumblr-url-hoarder/. Thought you guys might find it funny ;)

  • Logan Flatt February 26, 2013, 8:32 am

    “I paid $150 for the name so not a bad return, still only $2,500 so nothing to write home about.”

    Sure it’s something to write home about — that’s a 1,566% ROI (over an unstated holding period, so your return may be slightly lower if you had to pay annual renewal fees). That’s awesome compared to any alternative speculative play or bona fide investment out there in today’s environment.

    Don’t be so modest, Morgan! :-)

  • Morgan February 26, 2013, 9:18 am

    Thanks for sharing your experience @Abdul and congrats!

    Good question @Arseny – when a buyer asks for a price I always let them know that I’m open to offers but don’t have a set price in mind.

    @Vijami – spot on and agreed!

    Thanks @Logan, I like your way of looking at it! :)

  • Richard February 26, 2013, 10:47 am

    What kinds of tactics do you use, in other words what exactly do you say when you want to avoid throwing a number out first?

  • Morgan February 26, 2013, 11:23 am

    @Richard – I just let them know that I am open to offers but don’t have a set price in mind.

  • joe February 26, 2013, 3:17 pm

    Well here I have a dilemma you would like a response from those who read this post, also be of interest to my reply Morgan.
    I put an example with real data. Domain name registered dot-com in 2008 and have 185 Million global and local usurios each month for more than three years to offer price you pay. ?
    It is a new experience for me as no one ever make deals.
    Thanks.

  • joe February 26, 2013, 3:23 pm

    Sorry, 185 Million global and local users each month………………………..
    I apologize for the error.
    Thanks you.

  • Tarik February 27, 2013, 8:27 am

    Good advice, Morgan. You would be surprised to who is really buying your domain. Most companies hire a 3rd party these days. Always be an unmotivated seller and you can get some really nice ROI. and of course, be professional.

  • Tommy Shellberg February 27, 2013, 10:19 pm

    I’m curious about other’s methods for responding to offers when you MUST choose a price(Sedo, for instance). You don’t have any real information on the seller to determine if they’re an investor or end-user, other than the seller’s index rating, so it’s not always easy to throw out a number if you must do so. Do you pick an amount close to the highest reported related domain sale? Double your floor price? Do you ever re-offer for a lower amount after the offer expires or just sweat out the interested party and wait for a new offer? I’d love to hear what kind of tactics leads to other people’s success.

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