It’s been a while since I shared a domain sale experience. The reason I’m highlighting today’s story is based on my latest experience selling a domain to a buyer that’s likely a Chinese domain investor.
How do I know that the domain buyer is a Chinese domain investor? I don’t know with great certainty, but it’s highly likely based on what I’m about to share with you.
I’m glad to report a few months into 2018 that I’ve been blessed with an influx of favorable domain inquiries. In fact, most of my sales started last November.
However, this specific domain request arrived a few weeks ago and intrigued me because of the following reasons:
- the domain inquiry was for a 4-Letter (4-L) .net domain
- the domain was purchased last September via GoDaddy BIN/Closeout Auction
- could not find one ounce of info using domain buyer’s name and email address
- buyer sprung a special favor once we agreed to price and escrow
Being this is a single data point, I highly encourage you to review and study 4-L domain sales before you run out and start buying based on my most recent experience.
It could very well be that my domain sale of a 4-L .net is simply an anomaly. Only time will tell though.
Nevertheless, I received a GoDaddy email inquiry a few weeks ago via GoDaddy’s Cash Parking service. The thing that caught my attention in the inquiry was the domain buyer stating the following:
“…please let me know the price if we can deal via escrow.com or dn.com.”
In my opinion, this statement alone validated the request as one coming from a serious domain buyer, and one likely with previous experience.
We played cat and mouse a few times until the person spouted out a four figure value, and agreed they would pay the buying cost.
I requested the domain buyer’s email address to use for the Escrow agreement, and everything was going good up to this point.
The domain buyer notified me that their agent started the Escrow transaction and that they would like to transfer the domain from GoDaddy to their chosen domain registrar.
And this is where the story took a turn that I didn’t see coming.
Two days after the transaction started, I received an email from the buyer *requesting a favor*. Really, the domain buyer email “So, would like to do me a favor?” 🚩
Red flags went up as well as the hair on my neck. 🚩🚩
This favor as requested by the domain buyer was for me to send scanned versions of either my personal identification card or Passport to [email protected].
The buyer states that the only way to unlock the domain and for the buyer to take possession of the domain is that I prove I previously owned the domain.
Wait a minute… what kinda shenanigans is going on here? Should I continue or cancel this deal? It surely carries a slight stench of being scammy. 🚩🚩🚩
Nevertheless, I pressed forward and starting Googling and contacting folks in my network to see if they had experienced such a request when completing a transaction. Unfortunately, no one in my network had, but they all wished me luck — I was starting to feel I was going to need more than just luck on this deal.
I figured I might as well include everyone should this deal go south and things get squirrelly. After all, how do I know that my information will not be used to steal my identity? 🤨
Then I remembered I had to email my send license to verify and activate my DN.com account for 2 4-L .com domains I sold about a year or so ago.
I was highly skeptical about the deal then as I was now, but figure not too much damage could be done seeing my license is about to expire soon.
Before I emailed my driver’s license, I kept Googling but couldn’t find anything in regards to eName until I stumbled upon a post by Shane Cultra. 👏
Shane’s post and experience appeared to mirror mine somewhat or close enough. Just as I was reading Shane’s post in its entirety, my inbox received an email from [email protected] containing the following message:
Thank you for your email.
We can confirm to you that [email protected] is a current active email address used by eName.com.
As per checking, we can see the domain: [domain redacted] is registered with [registrar redacted], a subsidiary of godaddy.com. For transfers from godaddy and their subsidiaries, we need to verify that the transfers are authorized by the registrant at the time of transfer to avoid unauthorized transfers. To verify, please provide the verification documents of the registrant person (it can be passport, ID, driver’s license)or organization (business license) at the time of transfer.
Please be assure that we only need those info for verification purposes, we will not use your info for other uses or disclose it. If you are concerned, you can add the note:
For domain: [domain redacted] transfer verification only
Hope our answer helps, should you have other inquiries, please feel free to contact us. Thanks.
What truly settled my spirit and gave me peace about completing the deal was that the person, Mia, Shane named in his post was the exact same person that sent the email. Having included her signature following her response, Mia included her first and last name, email, phone number, and fax to reach her.
In my humble opinion, reading Shane’s story and having received Mia’s response was enough information to take a chance on closing the deal.
Again, my license is due to expire soon. My hope was and is that not too much damage could and would be done.
Nevertheless, the deal was closed, transferring the domain to new registrant and I received the funds to my bank account a few days ago.
In closing, I’m sharing this story in hopes that domain sellers encountering such a request from a domain buyer will perform their due diligence instead of simply writing it off as a scam.
I would have missed a nice return on this quick flip had I not dug a bit deeper and engaged all parties involved in completing the domain transaction.
Hope this helps! Thanks and that’s all for now!