I Just Flipped My Very First .Com Domain Investment! #newbie

New readers to the blog: Welcome! Please read What is this Blog About. It explains how I am an experienced ccTLD domainer, but completely new to .com domain investing. You may also like to read about My Domain Investing Journey So Far.


I’m as happy as a kid in a candy store right now! I just sold my very first .com domain investment! The name was HaloSolar.com.

To be honest I am surprised the name sold this quickly. Around 7 weeks ago I blogged about HaloSolar.com being my very first .com domain purchase for $100. Unfortunately this sale now brings me down to zero domains in my portfolio…

I have been away from .com domains in the past few weeks, tending to other business. I haven’t had much of a chance to buy more .com domains just yet. But let me tell you, this fast sale has stoked my .com fire even more!

How Did I Price My First .Com Domain Investment?

I set HaloSolar.com up on an Efty landing page, like I do with all my domains. While I owned the name for 7 weeks, the landing page was only live for around 4 weeks. I received the buyers initial offer 9 days after the landing page went live.

domain-landing-page

Note: I did no outreach on the HaloSolar.com. My strategy is to never reach out to buyers. I like the passivity of clear, for-sale landing pages, and the targeted visitors that type in your name. When a buyer approaches you, you have the upper hand in negotiation too.

The domain was listed with a Buy Now price of $2500, but also open to receive offers of any amount. I did not do too much research into this pricing to be honest. All I had was a hunch, which came from my initial Domain Paper Trading research.

I had seen that two word names such as HaloSolar were likely worth $1000 – $5000 to an end user. Solar names do sell, but surprisingly on NameBio there weren’t an amazing amount of them in the past 2 years.

I picked $2,500 as the Buy Now price, and I wanted to see what kind of enquiries might come through by having no minimum offer level.

My First .com Domain Offer

So nothing happened for about 1.5 weeks. I was busy with other things. I wasn’t hoping or praying for an offer to come in on my one domain. I actually forgot about it. But then an offer came through!

I feel a bit funny writing about receiving one offer, on one domain name. But when it’s your first offer, it’s special. I’m sure we can all remember the feeling of receiving our first real offer on a domain.

So the offer amount was $250. A decent offer, but 10% of where we needed to be.

I countered by saying that the Buy Now price was $2,500. And that I needed a reasonable offer to consider selling the domain.

About a week went by. No reply. So I followed up.

Again, no reply.

At this point I had been wondering for over a week if I had a genuine buyer or not. I Thought I had lost it. I was even emailing the person on their company email.

But I followed up 3 days later, asking if they still had any interest?

Negotiation

They came back the same day with $1000! We were finally getting somewhere!

So at this point I was at a crossroads. Do I try to get them up a little or up a lot?

With this being my first domain investment, I was quite eager to get a score on the board. I would usually negotiate a bit harder, but I was keen to get this sale in the bag.

I knew a $1000 counter would very easily go up a little bit more, so I countered at $1250 + 3% PayPal fee. (Yes I know Paypal is potentially risky for domain sales, but this is a lower level sale)

I knew I had it. Adding $250 to a $1000 offer is easy for the buyer. They accepted!

The Handover

So we had a deal! The buyer requested to pay by credit card, so I suggested PayPal as a fast and easy option.

Being an employee the buyer was worried about making a payment to persons unknown, but I explained how the transfer of the domain would work after payment. It was enough, and I received one of those beautiful PayPal emails: “New PayPal Transaction Initiated” – I had the money.

From there it was as simple as the buyer creating a GoDaddy Account, and pushing the domain over. It’s great when a transaction happens fast.

I thought It could be useful to include the “journey” of this domain flip in my inbox! You can see the purchase on Aug 25 at the bottom, and money come in on Oct 13 at the top. Beautiful!

domain-flip-life-cycle.png

Note: For privacy reasons I have covered the buyers name. The buyer was not the HaloSolar.net business discussed in a previous post.

Disclaimer: To potential buyers of one of my domains, who is reading this post….

Every domain negotiation and sale is different. While I was happy to reduce my expectations on this sale for certain reasons, it doesn’t mean I would be negotiable at another time, on a different domain.

There are a lot of factors that go into domain pricing and how movable a domain investor is on price. It may depend on the time of contact and whether the investor needs some cash, or conversely has no desire to liquidate in a hurry.

The domain itself may be a “hold till a big pay day” name that an investor may never move much on. Low ball offers are usually quickly left alone, if they show no sign of a decent follow up offer.

One simple fact to note as well, is that a domain may have actually cost the domainer very close to the listed price. They may have recently dropped the price, and not be likely to lower it further.

There is no way for a buyer to know the owners thoughts and rationale behind the price of a particular name. Now back to the sale….

What Did I Learn with this sale?

Could I have held out for more in the negotiation? Yes

Could I have priced this even higher to start with? Potentially Yes

Is a Confirmed Sale at 12X, better than a “Potential” One at 25X?  Yes

Whether this was a $1250 sale or a $2500 sale, it’s still a sale, and the money is in the bank.

It turns out the buyer is a multinational company, so I’m sure I could held firm and got more. But sometimes you never know. With two word domains there are plenty of alternatives, and your buyer may be making offers on several names at once to see their options.

I’m happy with a 12X return in 7 weeks. If my math is right that would be a 8,990% annualized return. Not bad for my first domain flip!

Getting some sales velocity means that what I am doing is working. (Or I just got lucky with this one). I’m sure if I hadn’t received a sale in my first 6 months with .com investing, I would not be as excited to continue buying more names.

This sale is a perfect example of why you should get your for-sale landing pages live the same day as you acquire a domain. I left the domain sitting with no landing page for 2 weeks after I purchased the name.

An offer can come through at any time, and often right after a domain moves to a new owner. If you have no landing page, you don’t know what offers you are missing out on. I mucked around with this domain by waiting, I am very lucky my buyer didn’t skip over the name!

My First .Com Domain Flip…It’s a Start!

Obviously this is just one sale, of one domain name. I have a long way to go.

But I am excited by this first flip, and with a fast turnaround of just 7 weeks.

I will of course keep you all updated as take my next steps to grow my .com portfolio!

QUESTION: What period of time was your fastest domain flip?

Comment below, or Follow/Tweet me @NZDomainer  – Adrian

11 thoughts on “I Just Flipped My Very First .Com Domain Investment! #newbie

      1. NetworkSolutions has a promo where you can buy up to 5 domains for $1 each. There’s a thread on Namepros about it. Best part, the link can be used over and over again… 🙂

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  1. Perfect purchase and flip, and great inspiration for other new investors to do the right things when getting into investing (paper trade, find a great opportunity, only buy one domain name to start with, follow the process to properly list it for sale, take your time, don’t dismiss lower offers, negotiate, follow-up, close, make it easy for the buyer to transact).

    Congratulations, Adrian! Keep up the great work and keep us in the loop by continuing to post on your blog!

    Like

    1. Thanks Michael! Its hard to not go out and start buying up everything I see, but I want to buy right.

      DNAcademy.com is definitely giving some great tips on traps to avoid when selecting names. I particularly like the section on tenses like Run, Ran, Runner, Running where you want to aim to buy the root word. All words off the root are way less valuable.

      The ‘dont dismiss lower offers’ point is key too. Most people low ball offers to test the waters. But you do want to find out their real intentions before you walk away.

      Im looking forward to getting more buy and sells and building the portfolio!

      Like

  2. You’d only calculate a 8,990% annualized return if how you generated the return were repeatable. In this case, it is not because your domain name was a unique asset that could only be sold by you once. Your ROI% here was 1,150% within 7 weeks (excluding transaction costs), which is still excellent.

    I do believe you undersold the domain name. Do not so readily dismiss two word .com domain names — those with good keywords sell very well and we have sold multiple two word .com domain names for five figures USD. You can aim a little higher with .com domain names than with ccTLD names due to the worldwide demand and highly limited supply.

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    1. Yeah I definitely did undersell this name. I guess I was eager to get my first sale under my belt. Impatient to get some results I guess. Will negotiate harder in future.

      I like the sound of 5 figures for two word domains. I need to get hunting for more names and get things rolling 🙂

      Thanks Logan – I appreciate the comments.

      Like

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