Installment Plans or No...?


#1

I was hoping to get some feedback on this. Do other creatives have better luck selling marketplace names using the installment plan or just waiting for someone to buy the name upfront? Sometimes I wonder if they do installments, after a couple months they might decide to bail. Has this happened to anyone? I figured too with enough listings, using an installment plan on each of them it would provide a steady income monthly if enough were sold in the month but may also create more risk…Any thoughts? Sorry for the crazy questions as I have been on a hiatus for the past year helping husband start up a business so a LOT has changed since I have been off here.

Thanks!


#2

Yes, I have sold more names since the installments were introduced, and yes, I have had someone bail. And it really, really sucks. Most discouraging thing to happen to me here in a while. I think the installments are basically a good thing, but you have to be willing to accept the fact that your sale can quite easily disappear.


#3

Did you get to keep the money from the payments you had already received? And I bet it sucked. That is kind of what I am leary about. Just my honest opinion but I figured if they were serious about it then they would buy up front. I recently sold one via installment plan, however I did not know it was on installments as I was off here for so long. I am just curious if it is worth doing installments, I mean if you get to keep the earnings you have already gotten and then they relist it for sale then it isnt totally bad then I guess.


#4

They did relist the name, and I wasn’t asked to return any money. I suppose in the long run, if the name sells again, I might actually come out ahead, but I don’t feel very confident about that happening. I understand what you are saying about doing installments and building up a regular monthly income that way. I thought the same thing, but it is proving difficult. Maybe my portfolio isn’t big enough or maybe my names just aren’t up to par, idk.


#5

Well all we can do is keep trying! I just selected all my marketplace listings under installment max 6 months. Just wait and see what happens over the next few months. Keep on trying to get more in and best of luck to you and everyone else! Thanks for the help also :slight_smile:


#6

Not sure my input matters much here because I have not sold a name on installment. In fact, I hesitated to do installments on a lot of my names but just the other day before this announcement I enabled it on all my names. I have to say that I am leery of installments but others have said they do increase sales. I don’t care to wait 6 months for $200, you know? I asked SH if they could add a 3 month option. Before I go changing all mine again, I’d like to have a 3 month option. I am really in a quandary now about what to do with installments. I may remove all of them. 12 months is way too long…because I don’t think I could amass a nice, steady income from them. I don’t know. I’ve left mine for the moment because it is going to take me a lot of time to make all the changes and I am waiting to see is SH will add that 3 month option or not.


#8

I’m quite new here with 2 names in Marketplace, so this is pretty much just my reflections on this matter, which I don’t know is a good thing or not from a Creative’s standpoint since I haven’t been affected one way or another. Yet.

It just seems to me that when you’re talking about domain sales that net a Creative only $200-$300, the installment plan kinda blows because really, 6 months or more is a long time to wait for a little bit of money that trickles in — especially if you’re not one of those rare Creatives with a whole mess of domains in Marketplace.

Compounding the issue is that when you submit a name and give SH the option to set the price, you don’t know what price SH is going to set until it shows up in Marketplace. So at that point, I really have no idea if I’d even want to agree to installments. If I was able to know beforehand that SH was going to list my domain name for some huge money that only a Big Business can afford, then yeah, i’d consider installments. But only maybe, because Big Business can afford that kind of expense in one lump upfront. If they can’t, when then perhaps either they should reconsider their choices, or SH should reconsider that particular price point at the outset. And yeah, if the buyer bails, it becomes a major de-motivator for us.

Maybe if we Creatives had the choice of installments after we see/know the listing price, it would be a different story. But I don’t recall seeing that option presented.

In all, IMO if a client can’t afford to pay the cash upfront so SH and Creatives get paid upfront, then tough nuts —let them do all the creative and administrative chores themselves and see what it costs them in time and aggravation. Personally, I’ll opt to have my domain names languish as long as they need to until a buyer pays the freight upfront.


#9

Three out of my nine sales have been on installments. One of those domain names just got re-listed back in the marketplace today because the buyer only made one payment in five months… They only made the first payment all the way back in January and no other payments since. I did get to keep that installment. After a couple months, I asked Squadhelp about how long the buyer is given to make installments before the name would be put back in the marketplace because the payment was already a couple of months overdue, and all they said is that once a payment was made to them, I would be paid the installment on my account. So I didn’t really get a concrete answer. I believe the rules say they only have a week (or something like that… I have to re-read the rules) before the domain gets re-listed, but mine went on for 5 months. Squadhelp sent me an email today that said they have made multiple attempts to reach the buyer and cannot reach them, so they put it back on the marketplace. Only frustrating thing is that took up a good bit of the year where they held onto the name when someone else may have purchased it, and now I will have to either accept a lesser percentage or pay for the re-registration when the year is up. Anyways, I still don’t mind the installments, but I do think 12 months or 24 month installments are way too long to manage this sort of thing.


#10

JustScott, you can change your installment options at any time on your dashboard.

I agree with what you are saying, too.


#11

@Commulinks
Unfortunately at this point we do not plan to add a 3 month only option. We do not see a strong demand for such an option from a customer perspective.

@JustScott
You can enable or disable installments any time after your domain is accepted. With our recent changes you now have the ability to also change the installment terms at any time (i.e. 6 months, 12 months or 24 months).

@Betslogan
This is not an acceptable wait time in any situation. When our installment plans were initially introduced in Beta, several aspects of payment tracking and followups with buyers were manual. Since then, we have added quite a bit of automation and our policy now is to wait 10 days after the installment is missed before putting the name back on Marketplace. However in some cases, we do allow an extended wait option (if the buyer provides a valid reason and the seller is in agreement to wait). We have now begun implementing this 10 day policy across all previous installment purchases that were delayed.

With some of our recent changes (12 and 24 month plans), we plan to invest more resources in technology as well as installment support so that we can manage these installment purchases more effectively.


#12

Oh my gosh, Betslogan, that is not fair at all. I am so glad you brought it up and I hope SH will fix that, too.


#13

Grant, thank you so much for taking the time to respond to this and explain as well. I was wondering if in my case the buyer requested an extension since it had gone on so long. That’s what I started to assume, but the name went back in the marketplace, and my email stated there had been multiple follow-ups and attempts made to collect the installments. So it looks like they may have just changed their mind/s. I should have asked more than once. For what it’s worth, based on my experience, I do have some concern that extending the installments to 12 months for names under $2,000 and 24 months for domains over $2,000 would create more scenarios where buyers just back out of installments after 1 or 2 installments and/or continue to request more time. As creatives, we don’t know when those requests are made & honored and can wait indefinitely for installments with the name being kept off the market for quite some time. I feel that lengthening the installment plan adds to the confusion, and also the buyer has less skin in the game. If someone purchases a domain for $2000, their installments are only $83.33 and installments for creatives would likely be around $18.00. A lot can happen within 24 months where they back out. Plus domains need to be re-registered at least once throughout that duration. And I feel that creatives will be torn between offering the longer installment option to remain competitive and not offering it in order to prevent a scenario where the buyer loses interest because they won’t have the domain transferred to them for a year or two, and they may figure it’s worth abandoning because they haven’t paid that much. I do understand and appreciate that Squadhelp constantly comes up with new ways to market our domains and create value. Those are just a couple concerns I thought I would bring up in regards to lengthening the installments.


#14

Thank you, Commulinks. It is fine. And, on the bright side, even when they bail you do keep whatever installments you made, and the name just gets re-listed. If the name sells again, you end up better off for it in the long run. I feel it’s a good program but difficult for us creatives to keep up with if we have several names purchased on installments that fall behind… You never know if the buyer requested an extension or if they are in arrears. I wish there were a way for us to see extension requests or ones that are honored, so we knew the additional length of time they are given to make payments.


#15

Excellent points made, and yes, I believe in my heart of hearts that this is a means for SH to make our Marketplace domains more marketable and buy-able, especially for smaller/startup businesses working on shoestrings. I’m no hard-arse, but I think there’s a lot of work and value in what we Creatives work at (heck, just getting one of your names even approved for Marketplace is a massive accomplishment). Yes, having a client back out after X installments made and getting your domain name re-listed can be some gravy, but there’s always the possibility that someone would have paid the full upfront freight on your name while some person/company was in the meantime twiddling their thumbs over whether they really could afford it, like it, or pay for it entirely over the long haul.

I really do appreciate SH giving us the option of whether to have our accepted domain names open to installments or not. Having that choice (at our own peril or not) is awesome, and thanks for that, @grant.


#16

I ultimately decided that I am not in the business of lending money to people I don’t know so they can start their business on a shoestring. I have a business, too and have my own shoes to tie. Buyers can use credit cards. Without more control over this and much shorter time frames, I’m just not into funding other people’s businesses. A website is an essential - like rent.