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Domain Buy Service: Customer expereince

Just wanted to share my experience here, as my attempt at buying a domain through Domain Buy has just concluded. This might be helpful for future GoDaddy customers (and for the GoDaddy Product Development Team.) I'll try to keep it to facts only.

 

1. 25th March, I bought the Domain Buy Service for a domain

2. 26th March, I was emailed asking me to place my minimum and maximum offer

 -> I entered my bid immediately

 -> I did not get a confirmation email

 -> I did not get an email telling me what happens next

3. 31st March, I got an email telling me that:

 -> GoDaddy emails the Contact email of the domain 1-2 times a week

 -> If that does not work, GoDaddy phone-calls the Contact Phone number

 -> GoDaddy also states very clearly that they only use publicly listed WhoIs information

 -> If a Domain Owner has privacy service enabled, they cannot contact the owner

 -> They say they'll update me on a regular basis

 -> I did not get regular updates

 -> The website (dcc.godaddy.com) was static the whole time

 -> From the outside, I felt that GoDaddy was doing absolutely nothing

5. 4th April, I got an email saying that they have not been able to contact the owner

 -> The email said that I should reply or call if I have questions

 -> I was curious about: Who they contacted, When they contacted, What did they say when they contacted, How did they contact

 -> I still had no clue what was happening

6. 5th April, I emailed domainbuy@godaddy.com

 -> I got no response

 -> Complete silence since 5th March

 -> No one has contacted me. No contact has been made. No offers or bids have been discussed.

7. 14th April, I called GoDaddy's 24/7 support line

 -> Since I made already made a bid, no refund for me
 -> It doesn't matter that the domain owner doesn't even know I exist

 -> My only option is to wait for 11 more days, and hope that GoDaddy will make contact with the owner and maybe my bid will be good enough

8. I've informed GoDaddy to give up on my request, keep the money (which wasn't going to be refunded anyway), and let me off the hook:

 -> Because apparently GoDaddy has taken several hundred actions on my behalf, but I've only seen 2 automated emails and zero human responses (except from Jesse on this community who is doing a great job).

 -> Because I cannot go buy another domain while I'm on the hook for $10,000 (+20% GoDaddy commission) "just in case they find the owner"

 

 

Overall, I think this has been a waste of time and has delayed my product branding process by about 19 days. 

5 REPLIES 5
Community Manager
Community Manager

Re: Domain Buy Service: Customer expereince

Thanks for sharing your experience @User837932. We never want customers to feel like they've been left in the dark. I will make sure this feedback gets passed on so we can any necessary training can be provided to those involved who need it. You should have received more timely responses when reaching out via email. 

 

I'd like to clarify the typical process that happens when someone purchases Domain Buy Service. Once we get the minimum and maximum amounts the customer is interested in offering, we begin trying to make contact with the owner. I was wrong in what I mentioned before, but we do send 3 automated emails to the domain owner, using their WHOIS information. However, that isn't the only thing we do. We also use other methods to try to find the owner (looking up online profiles, searching their website, etc.). We use any additional information as well as the WHOIS to try to manually contact the owner as well. 

 

JesseW - GoDaddy | Community Manager | 24/7 support available at x.co/247support | Remember to choose a solution and give kudos.

Re: Domain Buy Service: Customer expereince

The problem that I see here is that:

 

1. You have no idea who the owner is. My best guess is the same as your best guess (ie. looking at whois records)

2. You promise to buy this domain for me, by attempting to contact someone you don't even know exists or is trading or even alive

3. I end up blocking my branding processes, assuming that this might come through

 

It would have helped me decide to *not buy your product* if I had known:

1. That you don't know who the owner is

2. That you don't know if the owner is an active domain trader

3. That you don't know if the domain is actually for sale

4. That you don't know if my bid is going to be worth this domain owners time

 

You're literally willing to sell me "google.com":

2019-04-16 11_41_04-Window.png

 

 

All businesses need to make money. I get that.

This however is not just "making money", it's another word that I'm sure you've heard enough times.

 

 

 

Community Manager
Community Manager
Solution

Re: Domain Buy Service: Customer expereince

I think I understand what you're trying to say @User837932. I'll see if I can address your problem points. 

 

  1. "You have no idea who the owner is. My best guess is the same as your best guess (ie. looking at whois records)"
     - WHOIS information should always be accurate per ICANN regulations. When we say we'll contact the domain owner (rather than "try to contact"), it takes the above fact into consideration. It's more than simply a guess. However, you're correct that you would also have access to this information. 
  2. "You promise to buy this domain for me, by attempting to contact someone you don't even know exists or is trading or even alive"
     - I don't see a promise to provide the domain in the text in question. It's true that the current registrant may not be available for contact. However, the words "...if he or she is willing to sell the domain..." indicate that we might not be successful if the registrant does not want to sell. 
  3. "I end up blocking my branding processes, assuming that this might come through"
     - It's definitely not our intention to hold up any of your plans. 

 

The explanation of what Domain Buy Service does (from your screenshot) seems to make the assumption that the person purchasing the service has a general understanding of how domain registrations and brokerage services work. However, that may not always be the case, so I can see how it might be confusing. As always, we appreciate your feedback.

 

JesseW - GoDaddy | Community Manager | 24/7 support available at x.co/247support | Remember to choose a solution and give kudos.

Re: Domain Buy Service: Customer expereince

Let me start by saying: This is 100% on me. Your are legally, technically and in all other ways 100% correct. I accepted your offer to do exactly what you did, and I ignored all the warnings and red flags. This is entirely my fault.

 

After weeks/days/hours of frustration, finally finding a domain that could work for my business - I saw a ray of light. I jumped on that "Domain Buy" service like I hadn't eaten for days. I should have known it was too good to be true. (like seriously, what was wrong with me?)

 

I can't believe I'm turning into a crotchety old man complaining on web forums about a mistaken purchase that I willingly made and is entirely my fault. I guess I'm one of the new old-people Smiley Happy

 

 

Regarding your statement:

the words "...if he or she is willing to sell the domain..."

  • But you don't actually get to the real owner every time
  • After 30 days you give up
  • If you actually got the real owner to say, "No", then I'd understand
  • If you actually knew that my bid was even worth discussion, then I'd understand
  • You could easily show that "The domain is not registered on GoDaddy, so we don't have the owners direct contact info. But we'll go through their existing registrar to find them." and ask for an additional checkbox to confirm that the buyer is aware.
  • And several more things.. but all those will reduce your monthly KPI of "# of Domain Buy sales". So I get why it's probably a bad idea to fix this. Might as well cash in on some unsuspecting buyers who don't understand how the internet works /s.

If you had stopped me from making mistakes, I'd trust GoDaddy a lot more. And the service should really be called "Domain Negotiation Service", not "Domain Buy Service".

 

(Also I just realized now that I have to accept one of your comments as a solution, or this post remains open. So I will select your last comment as the solution. And I'll probably delete my account now as well.)

Community Manager
Community Manager

Re: Domain Buy Service: Customer expereince

Thanks again for the candid feedback @User837932. There are definitely things that could be done. We're not trying to fool or mislead or leave things as is just because it's convenient for us. In writing a product description, it's often tricky to find the right balance between having too much information and too little. If the message is too long, it is often not fully read. Too short, and it can be misunderstood. We value what you've shared and appreciate you taking the time to do so. 

 

JesseW - GoDaddy | Community Manager | 24/7 support available at x.co/247support | Remember to choose a solution and give kudos.