3 Common Mistakes People Make When Trying To Contact A Domain Owner

An email from a blog reader last night inspired this post. The reader was trying to find the contact information for a domain owner but was having some trouble. What he was encountering is the same problem I ran-into when I started in Domaining, however I quickly learned that it actually wasn’t the problem I thought it was.

Let’s face it, if you really want to buy the domain name you want, there’s an incredibly good chance someone owns it. If you’re okay going with your second, third, or fourth choice, then you could get lucky and hand register it but most first choice domains are owned by someone else.

So you’ve found the domain you want, now it’s time to contact them. Below are three common mistakes people make when trying to contact a domain owner:

  1. Assuming that privacy protection email addresses are invalid – this is problem the #1 issue people encounter when they are trying to contact a domain owner. The domain is under privacy which means the email address shows something weird like n123fjdfg@networksolutionsprivateregistration.com or similar. Most people assume that you can’t send email to these addresses, but that’s incorrect! Rather than spending more time searching for the personal email address of the domain owner, simply email this address and it will find its way to them. If they don’t respond, that’s a whole other issue, but don’t think that because a name is under privacy protection, that you can’t email the owner.
  2. Using contact forms – contact forms are great if you are using a product or service and need help from the company. Making offers on domain names or determining if they are even for sale may be hard with a contact form. The reason for this is that contact forms are often filled-out by more than just customers, there are plenty of people who put in offers for SEO services, etc. into contact forms. These contact forms are usually fielded by a technical support department, which probably has absolutely nothing to do with selling a domain. They could easily disregard your note thinking it’s another spammer trying to sell them some service. Also, think about if the domain is really for sale if it has a website and business behind it, or at least think about that fact that this will most likely be factored into the price.
  3. Not using the phone – last but not least is the telephone. I’ve heard too many people tell me they’ve tried everything to get in contact with the domain owner but have had no luck. Usually everything means emailing two different email addresses and filling-out a contact form. These are your first lines of communication but when all else fails, the phone really is your best friend. Calling someone will also show you are serious since it can be hard to tell domain offer emails from spammy sales emails that people get. Picking up the phone will show someone that you’re not just some guy trying to sell them a service, you are actually trying to buy their domain.

Of course this list extends well past three. Feel free to add more in the comment section below or comment on any of the ones I’ve listed above. Comment and let your voice be heard!

{ 3 comments… add one }

  • Steve December 20, 2012, 9:24 am

    I fully agree with this post. I’ve had great luck buying domains by e-mailing the privacy e-mail. The only reason this wouldn’t work is if they don’t have a valid whois e-mail address. Which like you said is another issue itself.

    One thing I find that helps is include a fair offer along with the e-mail/contact attempt. Many times people will disregard a legitimate offer because they think it’s some spam/scam attempt. I find putting in an offer at 40% of my total budget for a domain many times will help get a response. Heck, I did this the other day and we went directly to escrow with my 40% offer!

  • Morgan December 20, 2012, 10:12 am

    Thanks for the comment @Steve and really excellent point! Leading with a reasonable offer is often the best way to get a response, especially on a quality domain. I always think about how many offers someone gets and try to determine how I can differentiate mine from the others.

  • Adam Strong December 20, 2012, 2:10 pm

    There are a few domain privacy providers that do not deliver the emails to the domain owner.


Leave a Comment