Domain Market new domain brokerage and appraisals

Mike Mann just posted a lot of details on the new domain brokerage and appraisal process on his Facebook page.

You can see what we knew up to today (including how the landing page looks like) on this previous detailed post.

Here is what Mike Mann wrote today:

Domain Brokerage Appraisal Process, brainstorming and action items, feel free to comment on all
-Potential customer enters URL and sees price of $48 and features
-Marketing text
-They must have an appraisal over $10,000, from our authorized list of domain appraisers, or from us, in order to be entered on our site / in our database. They have to affix a price at or below that appraisal price which cant be changed without future approvals

The Authorized Appraiser list process:
The potential appraiser, who I know who comes referred, gets a list to appraise, if they do a good job they are in.
Mike reaches out to domain broker/appraiser/dealers who may be qualified, they enter URL and take tests, one test is a random list of names from our site, then I appraise them after, blindly, without seeing prospects guesstimates.
In both cases they should get near appraisal values to then get approved by me subjectively. Most times they wont be close but if done enough times should average out and be within 50% on average Id think, we shall see.
Create Society of Domain Appraisers? For free or cheap? Put that badge of honor on the appraisals and appraisers?
Must be .Com for now
Customer chooses their own price which has to be displayed, and whether or not to display the appraisal and appraisers name, cant go over appraisal, can go lower if they want, don’t have to display it
Can get a second appraisal from DM at a second cost, an appeal of sorts, disclaimer that our appraisals and decisions are subjective by nature, cant be held accountable
Can buy a crowd appraisal from 3 experts averaged from our list, cost is price of 2.
Appraisers get 51% of fee. Fee is $48. All subject to change.
Appraisers should leave comments with their appraisal price. Form guides them through appraisal and comment process, Mike will provide ideas.
If the name sells, 5% of sales price brokerage fee, plus 4.5% for all the ecommerce services we pay out of pocket visa/wiring/bitcoin/all , should make ourselves Escrow agent too, how to? Need separate company domain?
Only names pointing to landers, if they get unpointed they are automatically removed from the brokerage market, can they go back dynamically when DNS is fixed? or client needs to go back to form?
Only names I approve; only priced names with prices I approve

Thanks for your ideas and input and signing up, hope to launch by April


About Konstantinos Zournas

I studied Computer Engineering and Computer Science in London, UK and I am now living in Athens, Greece. I went online in 1995, started coding in 1996 and began buying domain names and creating websites in 2000. I started the blog in 2012.


  1. Now it seems he’s making it more complicated than initially proposed and more expensive. No thanks Mike. I’ll just stick with my Uniregistry landers which are working fine. If I understand correctly, a 0.5% gain in commission ain’t work the time or effort (not including appraisal fee). Went from excited to BS in a few seconds of reading this.

    • You have to be careful of uniregistry or DNS as on old lead followups before communication used to be transparent, now it is purposely being hidden.

      There had been instances where leads were being pitched other domains, and gtlds.

      My guess this ramps up more now everything is cloaked, maybe a new story for you K.

      • I self broker and use BIN prices only. No Uni staff involved other than accounting staff who process customers payment. Hear you on other stuff though.

  2. There just doesn’t seem to be enough benefits there. With the likes of Sedo, DomainMarket is just not strong enough.

    So here’s the deal. If Mike determines a domain is worth it, he should be excited to possibly earn a commission from it’s sale and cover the marketing costs, etc. That’s how it works.

    Avoid the “domain appraisal” ideas. They are gimmicks to most all domainers.

    I suggest the approach be “You can’t find a better group of brokers with a better track record.” That should be it.

  3. If Mike is looking to make money, he should just write a great book!

  4. Sounds like an appraisal scam, most visitors inquire via direct type in, no thanks, a dozen other backup listing companies I can use as 2,3 sales channels.

    What a hot mess MM

  5. I agree with the comments above. Completely incomprehensible and complicated. Nothing new or noteworthy. You would expect that Mike Mann would have better thought through things before publishing his ideas, certainly when you take into account that he is already for decades active in this industry.

    And why would he start to become a domain marketplace, when he has already more than 250000 domains to sell? Why add more domains that are only competing with his own domains?

    Maybe there is not so much demand anymore for his own domains (because of the ngtlds?) and he is trying to think of new ways to attract more visitors…

  6. Yeah, that ain’t gonna work.

    Mike Mann himself said, “Great domains resell at around 2% per year”. So you’re going to pay 50 of these $48 listing fees for every 1 sale! That adds up to $2,400 up front.

    He also reported a “Sales average: $2,598”.

    So you sell 1 domain for $2,598.
    Minus a 5% commission of $130.
    After paying $2,400 in fees for 50 listings.

    Which means you keep $68 out of $2,598 – just 2.6%.

    Or suppose you list everything for sale at $10,000.
    Minus a 5% commission of $500.
    After paying $2,400 in fees for 50 listings.

    That’s effectively a 29% commission.

    And that’s leaving aside the craziness of finding Mann-certified appraisers, who at this stage don’t exist.

    Fat chance!

    • hey joseph the Certified Appraiser is mann himself in his underwear at 8am smiling from ear to ear at his desk raking in thousands a day from this operation meant to pay some of his renewals. LOL

    • Joseph you’re exactly correct – not always but this time you are lol. This is nothing more than Mr Mann opening an appraisal service ( I don’t blame him) with zero risk to him and you end up competing with his 200K names. It’s actually an even better model for him than BrandBucket . Pretty smart on MM’s end i’d say. Semper fi Joseph.

  7. If your domain is good or great you will get a buyer no matter if you list it on a sales platform or if it doesn’t resolve at all. if a buyer really wants it they will search WhoIs and they will email you.

  8. I can’t follow all the mishmash in his post but does it come down to paying him or appraiser $48 per name to appear on his platform?

    That’s a game changer for sure 🙂

  9. All this translates to is you better buy good domains, and don’t expect anyone else to sell them for you, they will only look to fleece you in the attempt of making it seem they are helping you, but really they are only helping themselves.

    Another Dicker type moment, don’t let big names draw your attention, these guys are just as greedy as the one out the door.

  10. I don’t think it’s accurate or fair to compare the concept that Mike Mann is publicly exploring here with the behavior of a certain someone accused of scamming domainers. My outsider’s read of what Mike is trying to do here is that he wants to innovate in the domain marketplace space. I’m not sure if the brokerage model he’s proposed will be successful (for other domainers or for him) but you’ve got to give Mike credit for trying something new. I also think it’s brave of him to put his rough plans out there publicly for everyone to comment on. Most entrepreneurs wouldn’t have the guts to do that! I wish Mike the best of luck although based on his track record he probably doesn’t need it.

    • @Bill Sweetman,

      When it was announced that Mike Mann would be opening up DomainMarket to outside sellers, I applauded the idea. Now that he’s talking about charging a $48 up-front listing or appraisal fee, however, it’s worthwhile to point out why that’s probably a bad deal for domainers. Not a scam, really; but I’d advise anyone to stay away based on the high cost.

      • Good point. Coincidentally I already advised Mike to stay away from having domainers as clients, LOL. If he sticks with his paid appraisal model this thing will die a natural death anyway.

      • @Bill Sweetman,

        Frankly, I think it’s harder for someone like Mike Mann, who achieved success by getting into this industry in a very different era, to see what’s needed by domainers in 2017. Innovation won’t come from the established players because they don’t feel the same pain points as their prospective customers. Also, to the extent that they’re already successful, they’re unlikely to have the patience for customer service and marketing.

  11. yep, domain appraisal scams are some of the smartest and most irritating scams around but ATEOTD a scam is a scam!

    • Estibot is a scam, no one trust Estbot, it is a useless domaining gimmick. If it wasn’t free, no one, except naive people would purchase an appraisal.

      DomainSherpa’s constant Estibot advertising only serves to weaken the DomainSherpa brand by partnering with a domain appraisal company that makes money scamming people so they can advertise on DomainSherpa. How else do they make money? DomainSherpa must be desperate for advertising revenue to partner with such a scam. even says “The most trusted name in domain evaluation” which is such a complete joke, i just literally fell off my chair laughing, good thing i have carpet. I would rather trust a self driving robotic car than for a robot to appraise my domains.

      And you guys give MM shit for wanting to take his time to appraise domains based on his extensive experience from decades of selling domains. $48 is nothing to Mike, you could pay MM a $1K and it wouldn’t phase him since he makes hundreds of thousands A DAY. $48 is CHEAP, he is no scammer, you are getting a REAL appraisal from one of the top domainers of all time. Take your BS elsewhere!

      I think MM is on to something here, it’s very important for the future of the indutry that domains are accurately valued as most are not.


      • @Reuben,

        First off, you misunderstood Mike Mann’s business model:

        “you guys give MM shit for wanting to take his time to appraise domains based on his extensive experience from decades of selling domains”

        Nope. Mike Mann proposed that he pocket half of the $48 fee and give the other half to who-knows-who. And it’s who-knows-who who’d be doing the appraising.

        Estibot isn’t a scam. It’s a tool. People can use it well or badly. Personally, I haven’t used Estibot for many years. Whether you pay for a subscription or not, whether you view the tool as helpful or not, it isn’t fair to characterize the people who’ve created this tool as scammers.

        Automated appraisals can be quite inaccurate. That’s inevitable because domain appraisal involves a lot of complexity, experience, nuance, and context. So it’s unwise to rely on those numbers as the “true value” of a domain.

        However, in the past I performed correlation studies based on estibot scores and private sales data. And I can say with confidence that estibot scores do have a significant degree of accuracy. Particularly if estibot is used as an indicator of value for large sets of domains.

        As I said in a comment on DomainInvesting this past week, if you’re inspecting 100,000 domains and want to start at the “top”, then you need some way to rank them. Estibot is by no means infallible, but it’s 1 way to tackle that problem. And, as I recall, there’s a lot of factual data accompanying that composite appraisal score. Packaging that data isn’t a scam.

  12. I really doubt Mike Mann is making profit with his names. Now he is just looking for ways to start making money. It is obvious for everyone that his appraisal plans are not good. His thinking is not as flexible as it was in his younger age so he has a problem to adapt to new circumstances.
    Mike Mann, wake up! it is 2017 no 1997.

  13. all this B.S is why no one is watching the Domain Sherpa show. its insider / establishment hogwash. if you own the fools on DomainSherpa say I appraise it at 2k. but if one of the “Sherpas” own it its $200,000 and the other sherpas say great domain great domain like trained seals while Mike smiles and says allright so and so, wow how did you get it and the Shyster says I bought it from a widow for 500 bucks while they all laugh.

    • Mike is no dummy, he is using his sherpa dollars to purchase names like

      All those sponsors, and all

      Mike Mann brags about buying domains for $8 and selling them for thousands, look at the poor souls who can buy 6 reg fee domains for 1 domain app… hard enough to pay renewals, let alone paying these yoohoos for an estibot estimate.

      $96 per min fee pretty much, Got rid of 1 Dicker, the thing is these type prey on good people who have good intentions of coming into a business, the business needs their dollars, they need to be spent buying domains, not getting estibot app from MM.

  14. Nobody with a good domain name will pay $48 to list it on a marketplace, nobody. The money is flowing in the wrong direction.

  15. When is everybody going to wake up and realize Mike Mann is not a good domainer. Look at the numbers, guy loses money, now he is desperate.

    Mike (little Man complex) Mann is a very insecure fool. Follow what Rick Swartz is doing, Nat Cohen, Scott Day, not clowns like Mike Mann.

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