Cold Calling Website Owners to Buy Websites

June 04, 2014  |   How to Buy & Sell Websites   |     |   Comments Off on Cold Calling Website Owners to Buy Websites

Often you may want to acquire a website that is not listed for sale. The only way to buy it is to cold call or cold email the website owner. This may involve pulling contact information from Whois or using the contact form available on the website.

Buyers generally believe that website owners will jump at the chance to sell their website. But experience has taught me that website owners are very skeptical. Most of the time, they will decline an anonymous offer. In many cases, they may simply not respond to a buyer’s inquiry.

Buyers often find it strange that a website owner wouldn’t be interested in a sudden windfall of cash. There are a number of reasons why website owners decline to sell or don’t respond to inquiries at all:

1. Website owners are bombarded with product offers and money-making schemes by email everyday. These offers are almost always spam offers that are trying to squeeze cash out of people.

So website owners are inherently skeptical of all offers even those offers that are legitimate. They believe that the buyer’s offer is too good to be true like the rest of the spam offers.

2. The owner does not want to share his financial numbers with a stranger. In order to close the deal, at some point, the seller will have to disclose his financials to the buyer. Business owners hate sharing their confidential financials.

The financial numbers may not be very good. Or the website owner may fear that the buyer is a competitor trying to look into his business and steal his secrets.

Some owners that do respond to buyer offers will sometimes request an offer before disclosing financials. It’s impossible for the buyer to make an offer without knowing how much money the business makes.

3. The owner may truly not want to sell. A website owner may be in the middle of new website development plans and so the timing isn’t right for a sale.

So what do you do if you really want to buy a website? Most communication on the Internet is by email. But in this case, the best approach is the traditional cold call.

A cold call means you don’t compete with the pile of emails in the owner’s inbox. In our modern world of email, text messages, and social media, most people do not speak on the phone anymore. A human voice adds a real human element to communication. By phone, you can build an emotional rapport with the owner and receive significantly more information than you would by email.

Now, if the website owner doesn’t answer the phone, leave a voice-mail clearly expressing you interest in acquiring the website. Don’t forget to leave your phone number. Also state that you will send an email to follow up your voice-mail.

In this way, the owner can look for your email in his pile of emails if he prefers to communicate by email. Your additional effort will prove that you are a serious buyer making a serious inquiry.

How about the problem of making an offer before seeing the financial numbers?

The solution to this problem is for the buyer to offer to pay a specific multiple of sales or profits. This offer is contingent on the financials being verified by the buyer. In this way, the buyer sets his desired ROI and can do proper due diligence before making the investment.

So, if you want to buy a website and the website isn’t for sale, pick up the phone and give the owner a call.

Or Contact Us and we’ll handle the entire website purchase process for you.


Kris Tabetando provides mergers & acquisitions (M&A) advisory and brokerage services to Internet companies. He also partners with investors to acquire & manage Internet businesses.

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