Of course everyone wants to sell their domains at retail level pricing. Find the perfect end user whether they be a startup, local mom and pop, Fortune 500 or non profit organization.
There is also a need to move inventory at wholesale pricing for many, many domain investors. Most own too many domain names and will never be able to sell everyone of those names to an end user.
Others own names where the volume of sales lies in the domainer to domainer market. We saw this play out in the 4L.net,4L.org chip market along with 5L.com and 6 and 7 numeric .coms.
By being the largest community in the domain industry, Namepros provides an opportunity for domain investors to sell their domains on a commission free basis.
Namepros provides many different sections where you can sell your domains. You have the option to list your names with a fixed price, make an offer, or run an auction.
Now one important note that everyone selling or looking to sell on Namepros should know. Your membership level matters !
If you would like to be a member at Namepros it’s free, you never have to pay a dime. You move from being a new member to an established member and you may go on to VIP member.
As a free member you get 2 active marketplace listings, if you should move up to VIP you get 3 active marketplace listings. So you have to keep in mind an auction may take a week or more to close. You can only run two total listings at the same time.
You can pay $5 a month and become a Namepros supporter, you can do this day one, so you don’t have to wait to become established or VIP. The sole reason for doing this IMO is to double your available marketplace listings. You have 4 active listings available to you at this level.
If you feel like spending $10 a month, you can get a business account. There are some good perks with this account, number one being you can have 6 active listings, although currently this number is at 10.
Again let me make clear, right now even though the official account level page says 6 active listings, I spoke to Eric Lyon and he told me the following: “It used to be 6 and still says 6 in most of the official guides, however we have been allowing up to 10 for now until we are able to gather more data, research.”
If you are looking to sell on Namepros this makes the business account even more valuable imo. You want to have the ability to run multiple auctions and fixed listings.
You want the flexibility for a variety of reasons:
- a niche may start picking up steam and you own some of those names, you see people bidding on other auctions, but you are stuck with only two listings and cannot put a fresh listing up.
- The marketplace moves fast, you can only bump your thread once every 24 hours, your one or two listings can be bumped off the first page pretty quickly sometimes.
- You want to be able to run the kind of auction that is going to be most effective. Sometimes someone lists 10 separate auctions in one thread, it is allowed, but buyers don’t always like keeping up with 10 different auctions in one thread. This brings about a lot of bad bids where someone didn’t see that one name already had a bid of $20 but another name did not.
Make an offer
Make an offer has 110,897 discussions or threads started. There are two sub forums where you can list your domain Min $100 offer and Min $500 offer.
In my personal opinion make an offer is the least desirable way to sell. There are more threads started under make an offer but there are fewer replies and sales made using this method. A lot of people I know including myself pay little attention to this section of the marketplace. Why ? Because most see it as a fishing expedition, the seller is not serious about selling and certainly not at a wholesale value which is what Namepros buyers are looking for.
I am sure a rebuttal will be, “Well I am not looking to sell quality names cheap.” No one should be, just like they don’t sell Armani at Walmart. You need to know the audience, budget and buying habits of your customers or potential customers.
The most popular section of the marketplace, 71,618 auction threads with close to half a million replies.
Now there is an art to running an auction, strategies you should employ to get better prices. I want to start out by saying that auctions run the right way can take up a lot of your time. You want to give the auction time to breathe. You have to be cognizant of the fact that you can only bump an auction once every 24 hours. The first page can move fast and you are bumped off the first page pretty quickly. That’s why you not only want to pay attention to your stuff, but you want to watch the auction section as a whole.
You will quickly get to know the power sellers, people who are running auctions day in and day out. You want to watch when they bump their threads. Why ? Because a business account member may bump 10 auction listings at once. Your new post you were so excited about is already half way down the page.
I checked the top first 10 pages of the auction section, I want to pay attention to the times on the right hand side, I see yesterday 11:18 am for a block of BrandXDomains listings. Now I have done a lot of business with this member, they are highly professional and active.
I am going to be cognizant of what they do, I don’t want to start an auction between 11 am and 11:30 am. I want to let them bump their block of names before I start my one auction.
If I wasn’t paying attention to what was going on, I might start an auction at 11:16 and almost immediately I am halfway down the page.
Now I am not saying this is the worst thing in the world if it happened, but the goal of this article is to give you tips and strategies that will help improve your overall selling experience. The little tips over time add up to being a smarter and better seller.
Another thing I try to do is get a feel for the pulse of an auction. If I got a bidding war going on, I don’t even bump my auction, there are two or three bidders going back and forth, I don’t want to interfere, they will keep the auction going higher and I don’t have to burn my 24 hour bump. That’s important in this method of selling.
Another thing you want to take notice of is the bidder’s local time. Namepros added this feature and it is a helpful extra imo. You may think someone who was bidding has lost interest but they more than likely are asleep.
You want to look at the user’s time for all your bidders. This may make you decide to wait to bump an auction. I am not going to bump an auction just because I can, it’s 24 hours 1 minute since my last bump but I may wait for another 8 hours. Why ? Because there are two members bidding on my auction and they are sleeping at 24 hours 1 minute, I want to wait til when it makes sense they are up (of course this is not 100% not everyone sleeps at normal times, myself included), look at the auction and see if these members are now online. You can see they are online by the little colored mark in the upper left hand corner of their avatar.
Again this does not mean they are going to increase their bids, maybe they are at their max bid. You still want to increase the odds in your favor of another bid.
Now another thing you are allowed to do, and this is not spam as I have verified this with Eric Lyon, you can tag members who have bid in the auction, again they must have already bid, you cannot tag just anyone.
Here is a proper example:
This let’s previous bidders know that the auction is close to closing. Some forget about a name and may appreciate the alert so they can make another bid. I personally have not done this as I don’t want anyone getting pissed that I interrupted their Namepros experience.
Again it’s perfectly legitimate and I have no problems with it, I personally don’t want the potential hassle of someone not knowing it’s legitimate and yelling spammer.
One type of auction you should think about is a “Winner’s Choice” auction. Sometimes when we auction a group of names as one lot, there are many potential bidders for one name that won’t participate because they don’t want the other names, the cost and transfers associated with them.
Winner’s Choice allows you to list 20 names for example, but the auction is only for one name that the winner chooses. It allows you to have bidders bidding against each other that wouldn’t bid against each other otherwise.
Using a buy it now makes sense when you want to wrap things up, the bidding was fast and furious for a day or two and now you have no bids for a day, add a buy it now to induce someone sitting on the fence.
Auctions are my favorite way to sell on Namepros, but I do understand some buyers don’t like to wait for 60 hours after the last bid or possibly even 120 hours after. You have to balance getting the best price with the buyer losing interest in the auction.
I never recommend setting the buy it now at the start, you are taking away the possibility of a bidding war.
Namepros official rules on Buy it now:
6.2.4. A Buy-It-Now (“BIN”) price may be changed (added, reduced, increased, or removed) on an auction prior to it being accepted, in accordance with rule 6.2.3. The BIN price in an auction must be publicly accepted by a buyer.
I like to give the auction time to play out, when the bids dry up edit the first post with the buy it now price. You then include the buy it now added when you bump the auction thread.
There are 82,157 threads in the fixed price section.
The fixed price section allows you to cut to the chase, requires a lot less effort than auctions. You simply list the name and your price.
I like to post in Fixed Price and if there are no sales in the first 24 hours close the thread. If I think I have priced the names cheap I will close the thread after just a few hours.
On many occasions I have listed names at fixed price and nothing, closed the thread, started an auction and got more than the listed fixed price.
The sale that stands out the most was like 7 years ago, I put up a .us name $20 fixed price. No sale, left it up for 3 days. I came back later and put on auction and sold it for over $300.
Same Namepros marketplace but I got lucky that there was a bidding war. Auctions are more work but they provide you with extra opportunities like two members both wanting a name.
In addition to the Fixed price section, Namepros offers a Bargain Bin section. All Bargain Bin domains must be sold at $20 or less.
I can say from time to time I have purchased in the Bargain Bin section but never sold.
You want to protect yourself while selling on Namepros. Selling for no commission is great, getting paid is another story. You want to be careful when accepting Paypal.
First thing that most people look at is the trader rating of the member, that along with join date. Now to be fair nothing is 100%, there are some new members who come on the scene and buy names and pay quick and are excellent additions to the community.
I just transacted with one new member Bull Domains who is quite active and very professional.
You can exclude people from bidding on your auctions and posting sold in your buy it now threads.
6.1.24. Participatory criteria, eligibility, and restrictions imposed by sellers on their sales listings and auctions must be reasonable (e.g., established members only or bidders must have ten positive Trade Reviews) and must be nondiscriminatory based on race, gender, personal preferences or opinions, etc.
There are no fees paid by buyers on Namepros, does not matter Paypal, Escrow.com, whatever. So if you don’t trust a member enough to take Paypal and you want Escrow.com, you are paying the escrow fees.
Sometimes a member likes to put buyer pays fees in their sales thread, they are immediately corrected and that is edited out. So make sure you understand the part fees play in your Namepros selling strategy.
The proper form for selling
Post at least one name in the title
Buy it Now (For auctions only)
Payment methods you will accept
Restrictions (0 trading rating not allowed to bid)
Time Frame with which to pay, Namepros official stance:
Default timeline for sales: transactions must be initiated within 7 days of an offer being accepted. The domain transfer must be completed within a grand total of 14 days from the time the offer was accepted. Alternate timelines are only accepted if both the buyer and seller agree to it before the deal is accepted.
Closing A listing
You should always close a sales listing when it’s completed or if you got no interest. This way you free up one of your active listing slots.
Author disclosures: I was a moderator at Namepros for over twelve years, no one at Namepros commissioned this article and I received no remuneration for publishing it. Thanks to Eric Lyon for taking the time to answer questions.
I hope you got something from the article and if you need any help send an email or leave a comment.