Musings of a Domain Broker

My primary focus in the Domaining world right now is domain name brokerage, which is really a brand-new industry onto itself. It’s not like real estate brokerage where there are any formal certifications or procedures that must be followed. Domain Brokerage is now in its Wild West stage where the rules are being defined and the game-changers are being created. Like brokering a house, domain brokerage is a LOT of work and in a down economy like we’re in now the buyers out there are expecting a deal – but what represents a good deal?

With houses it’s easy to say – well the next-door neighbor paid “x” for their house so I won’t pay more than “y” in this economy. The same isn’t true for domains because while there certainly are comparable sales the value varies based on the end-user. I just wrote the first in my three-part series about domain pricing and discussed the importance of looking at comparable sales. This is the starting-point, the reference that you can give an end-user for why a particular domain is worth a certain price – but there’s a lot more to brokerage than pricing.

Like finding the buyer for a house, you want to find someone who NEEDS the domain you are brokering. Being a domain broker does not mean you have to know tons of domain investors or buyers, although I do know plenty, but my clients want to sell to end-users NOT other investors. Thus – at the end of the day domain brokerage and home brokerage are similar in one very important way – it’s all about sales! By sales I mean being a salesman (or saleswoman) and actually cold-calling companies, sending emails, sending letters, doing absolutely everything you can to reach your target customer.

So what’s my point with all of this? Domain brokerage – like home brokerage – is a LOT of work! This is why domain investors use brokers to sell their domains. I broker domains in the $50,000+ range – anything under that can be included in my brokerage newsletter for $2/domain with a 10% commission. At one time I keep a maximum of ten brokerage clients so I can give my clients the focus they deserve. I can make the same amount of money on a $500,000 domain name that a real estate broker makes on a 3 million dollar house so if you want to know if it’s worth the time – it is!

I hope this post gives you a bit of solace if you are a domain owner trying to sell your domain. See – many domain owners feel like all they should have to do is put their domain on Sedo and Afternic and just wait for the offers to come in. Imagine if it worked like this in the real estate world – you just put your home in a newspaper and BOOM your house magically sells itself! While you might get offers – the people making the offers are not end users – they are domain owners and they want a wholesale price for your domain. If you own a domain and don’t want to go through a broker be prepared to put on your salesman cap and get out there into the real world and find your perfect end-user. It’s still the Wild West when it comes to brokerage and I’m one broker that won’t take no for an answer!

For those of you who think this article is a sales pitch I’ve got some news – I‘m not accepting new brokerage clients at this time. That’s right – rather than ending this post with a link to send me your domains so I can broker them I actually am saying I can’t take-on any new clients right now. It’s a good problem to have and if I had a bigger team I’d bring-on more clients. So what I will say is this – if you think you have what it takes to broker domains send me an email because I’m always looking for new salespeople to add to the team!

Morgan Linton

Morgan Linton