Selling Domains 101: Part Four, Domain Brokers
Thursday, January 4th, 2007
Domain brokers are a good resource for selling premium domain names.
The most recent article in the Selling Domains 101 series was about selling domain names on forums, a venue that is basically free. This article will focus on domain brokers, the most expensive but potentially best resource for selling a domain.
Domain brokers are like real estate agents for your domain names. But selling domains isn’t as easy as selling physical real estate. A domain broker can’t just list your domain in MLS; he must actively contact potential buyers for your domains.
Some domain aftermarkets also act as brokers. Sedo recently brokered the sale of Vodka.com. The domain wasn’t sold through Sedo’s traditional process. Moniker is another company that has a domain brokerage service. Domain brokers can also be individuals.
A good domain broker has contacts at large companies in the industry for your domain. For example, if your domain is about a particular type of software then your broker should have contacts at target software companies.
Brokers are more expensive than other domain sales channels. But they also actively promote your domains. You can expect to pay at least a 15% contingency fee to your broker. 20%-30% may be reasonable if the broker can fetch a good value for you. Keep in mind that most brokers don’t get paid unless you get paid — they are taking on a lot of risk for their effort.
Here are some questions to ask a potential broker:
1. What are some domains you recently brokered? (They may not be able to disclose this.)
2. What are your fees? Do I have to pay anything if you are unsuccessful selling my domain?
3. What are a few examples of companies or individuals you will approach about my domain?
4. Have you ever sold domains to these companies?
5. Have you ever sold domains in the same industry as mine?
6. Do you require an exclusive contract? In other words, if I sell my domain through a different venue while you are brokering it do I still have to pay you? (Don’t be alarmed if the answer is ‘yes’. It’s reasonable for a broker to require an exclusive sales agreement.)
7. What is the duration of our contract? (This is especially important for an exclusive contract).
8. What will you do to promote my domain? (You’re not looking for someone who will just post it for sale on various forums. You don’t need a broker to do that!)
I cannot recommend a particular domain broker, but you can find a number of them on DNForum. DNForum has a section for requesting a domain broker.