Auction rules for Buyers and Sellers

DomainLore Auctions

Welcome to the #1 .uk domain name auction platform. DomainLore is the one and only auction site in the UK with the largest number of daily active users (buyers + sellers) and the highest number of domain auctions held on a regular basis.

Advertise your domain for sale through the auction to receive the widest possible exposure on the secondary .uk market, immediately attracting attention of hundreds domain name investors, marketers, advertisers, SEO professionals and ultimately - end users.

Platform concept: Free to buy, often free to sell

Less popular auction sites still seem to be getting away with charging sellers 10%-20% of the final sale price to merely let them sell their inventory in a public auction. Such fees are exorbitant and unwarranted.

DomainLore presents a new concept in domain name trading. The platform is completely free for the buyers and we let sellers run auctions on our platform by only paying small listing fee, which is usually £5. And if your domain name sells - we credit your listing fee back! Sellers with good inventory enjoy paying nothing to sell their domain names on DomainLore.

It works easy as 1-2-3:

1. We will hold a listing fee of 10% of your starting (or reserve, whichever is greater) price as a deposit on your account. Since minimum starting price is £50, the minimum listing fee is £5.

2. If your domain name sells, the listing fee is released back to your balance, so it can be re-used or requested to be returned to your Paypal, credit card..etc.

3. The listing fee will be charged if your domain name does not sell or not transferred to the buyer in the allowed time frame of 21 days (when the transfer is deemed unsuccessful).

If your domain name qualifies to be approved for the Spotlight section and your starting price is a minimum £50 with no reserve - you don't need to deposit any listing fees at all and nothing is charged even if the domain does not sell!
Read more about unsold domain fees

The auctions consist of two sections: “Spotlight Auctions” and “Hidden Gems”

Spotlight is a premium section with this eligibility criteria:
- generic, single dictionary words, popular keyword phrases and 2-3 letter .co.uk domain names.
- any domain which received advanced bids.
- any domain which received an opening bid from another customer.

"Hidden Gems" section eligibility criteria:
- meaningful, keyword-rich domain names.
- brandable domain names.
- expired traffic domain names.

Kindly note that we do not accept famous people`s names, typos, most misspellings and obvious TM domains.

DomainLore is an eBay-like open marketplace where buyers and sellers deal with each other directly. We attempt to have a minimal interference in member's dealings.

Listing Domains for Auction

Once you list a domain name, you are accepting to be entering into a legally-binding contract with the highest bidder. You are obliged to sell your domain name at the highest bid price, with the Reserve Price auctions as the only exception. Also, you cannot sell that item to anybody else until the auction you started has ended. If the highest bid does not meet your reserve - you are under no obligation to sell. In all other cases, you are obliged to sell the domain name to highest bidder and transfer it within 7 days after the payment is received.
Once an auction has started, sellers can not change the starting bid, or reserve price amounts. Other auction properties can neither be changed.

Bidding on Domains

You must be a registered user to bid on domains. By bidding, you are stating that you are ready and willing to purchase that domain name for your bid amount, plus pay domain ownership transfer charges to Nominet (which is historically being paid by a buyer) and Escrow fees if you believe you must use that service. If you are outbid, or your bid does not meet the seller's reserve price, you are under no obligation to buy. But in all other cases, you are entering a contract with the seller to buy the domain name and to deliver payment within the time period specified. If you can't pay, on time, don't bid! All your bids are final and non-retractable.

VAT and auction payment fees

All domain prices listed on DomainLore auctions are gross (i.e. - VAT inclusive). This helps making bidding fair for everyone (whether VAT registered or not) and results in more transparent what you see is what you pay prices. If you are a VAT registered seller please ensure that your desired auction starting price takes VAT inclusion into the account.

When sending payments to sellers, buyers do not pay BACs or Paypal fees. Paypal recipient (seller) fees should not be requested from the buyer (Paypal`s MassPay is now charging 2% fee, so is no longer a good substitution for buyers).
When sending payments to sellers who do not accept payments via BACs and/or Paypal and only offer 'EU/international' payment option, it is a responsibility of the buyer to cover wire transfer fees, so the seller receives the exact amount the domain name was sold for.

Reserve Price auctions

Sellers may choose to set a Reserve Price that is above the minimum starting bid. Bidders can see if an auction has a reserve price, and whether it has been met or not. (This is indicated above the bids display table). The actual amount of the reserve price is not shown to bidders, until it has been met or surpassed. The seller is not obliged to sell if the reserve was not met, nor is the high bidder obligated to purchase. If the high bid meets the reserve price, then both parties are obliged to carry out the transaction.

Overtime

Normally, an auction closes at the scheduled time as displayed within the listing. However, if there are successful bids entered within the last 10 minutes of the closing time, then the auction will go into overtime. The auction is extended until there are no further bids for a continuous period of 10 minutes. This is similar to an auctioneer continuing to take bids until there is no further interest. For example, if a new bid comes in with 4 minutes left in the auction, then there will be 6 minutes of overtime, unless more bids come in. It is possible for auction to be extended continuously, but the longest overtime normally wouldn't be more than 20-30 minutes.

Overtime helps dissuade "snipers" or last second bidders. For example, you may have spent considerable time achieving your high bid status at an auction. Without overtime, someone could time their bid entry to within a few seconds of the closing, leaving you without enough time to notice the bid and enter one in response. This is a common practice at online auctions, and unfair because you would not know that this person is waiting to pounce on you. At a live physical auction, at least you can see your competition, and the auctioneer will continue with the auction to give you a chance to respond. This is precisely why DomainLore employs an overtime system at our auctions. We have found that 10 minutes is enough time to receive an outbid email from our system, log in to our site, and place a bid.

So what's the best strategy? If you have the time and enjoy hanging out at online auctions, then wait until the last few minutes of an auction to bid. Your competition will have 10 minutes to respond, but maybe they are not available. On the other hand, if you do not have the time to attend the closing of an auction, then use the Proxy Bidding method. Together, these two features save you considerable time online, while still protecting your chances of winning auctions.

What to do after the Auction

The DomainLore system will send notifications to both the highest bidder and the seller after the end of a successful auction. Both the buyer and seller are expected to contact each other via email, within 3 days after the end of the auction. (Email addresses can be found in the notifications). After email contact, you might wish to exchange phone numbers to speed up communications. If repeated emails go unanswered by either party, after 14 days of the auction end a deadline warning is sent to both parties and contact phone number will be revealed under "My account -> My auctions" section of the website. Please use this number to reach the other party if online communication is not working.

Once contact has begun, the payment arrangements, domain transfer arrangements, and expected dates should be settled upon. The goal is to complete the transaction within 7 days of auction closing. This may vary a little, depending on payment type, how long to wait to clear, when Escrow is used, etc. Basically, the specific dates should be worked out between the buyer and seller, and each party should follow through with their part of the schedule. You might need to exchange several emails or phone contacts, updating the other party with every step. However, if after 14 days the transaction is not successfully closed and the domain name is not transferred, our system will issue a final reminder to the buyer and to the seller. The purchase will be deemed failed and is cancelled if there is no further action after 7 days of the final reminder. The system is not able to determine at whose fault this has happened, but it presumes a buyer's fault. This will negatively affect buyer's competence score, however seller might also incur a small penalty. For sellers this will not affect their overall competence level in a significant way. The situation for the buyer is different as it could be a 'one strike and out' rule. We will not tolerate non-paying / non-responding buyers on DomainLore.

DomainLore Membership / Competence Level / Trusted Seller

DomainLore Membership is limited to one account per person or household. Your membership will be terminated if you register more than one account.

Every verified member starts with CL = 2. The competence level increases with every successful purchase by 1 point and decreases by 2 points for buyer in a failed transaction and by 1 point for seller. When the CL reaches zero, the member can not place any more bids, unless competence can be increased. If CL falls below zero, the member becomes permanently banned from using DomainLore Auctions.
New members who have not yet received a good competence level may have some restrictions imposed on their bidding activities until they prove to be trusted members.

Seller with CL >= 20 and with 15 or more completed sales becomes a 'Trusted Seller'. This adds a 'trusted' badge to his auction pages. Trusted sellers do not receive CL penalty for failed sales of their domain names.

Fees for unsold domain names

Seller is charged a listing fee of 10% of the starting or reserve price (whichever is greater) in case the auction finishes without bids OR the domain doesn't sell(*see note below). There is no listing fee when the domain name is approved for the 'Spotlight' section listing and starting price is £50 (minimal starting price) and there is no reserve price.
Sellers are requested to top up their account so there is enough funds available for the listing fee deposit. Top ups are currently processed via Paypal and funds can be paid from Paypal balance, Visa/MasterCard/etc.. credit cards or a bank transfer.
If the domain name is sold, the listing fee is automatically released back to the account balance. Seller can request any unused topped up amounts to be refunded or keep it and use for seller`s next auctions. PayPal transaction top-ups can be refunded for up to 60 days after the original transaction date. This is Paypal's restriction to process refunds.

Please note that the domain is considered sold only after the ownership (registrant) transfer. (It is not enough to push domain within certain registrar). Listing fee will be charged if the domain registrant hasn't changed within 21 days of the auction end and/or transaction was deemed unsuccessful. Please also note that members caught bidding on their own domain names will be banned immediatelly and without warning, with all their paid fees forfeited and their names and criminal activity exposed to the public.

Resolving disputes

DomainLore members are expected to conduct business with the honor system in mind. All members in good standing have shown their integrity by registering, and following through with any commitments they have made. But we are all human, and mistakes and miscommunication can lead to disputes. If you find yourself in a situation where you and another member are at a disagreement, contact us. While we cannot promise a satisfactory resolution, we will try to contact both parties and help mediate the situation. Any illegal activities, violation of a contract, or outright statements of falsehood should be reported to us immediately. The DomainLore staff will cooperate with any law enforcement agencies if needed, and will at the least terminate the offender's membership.
With our long experience in the industry, we have found that most UK domainers are honest, and trustworthy people. We are extremely confident that members of the DomainLore Auctions will behave in an honest manner, and be able to resolve any minor differences by themselves.

Account / Membership Termination

DomainLore membership can be terminated for any breach of the DomainLore Rules and/or based on the DomainLore sole decision for any reason and without further explanation. In a case of termination, member loses the ability to request refunds of any unused fees and will have all account balance forfeited.



Revision 1.08, 17-Feb-2014

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