I genuinely feel that the internet is one of the best places for buying and to invest your money and get a great ROI if you know what you’re doing.
Not only that, the simple fact of making money on the internet means you can run your empire from anywhere in the world.
If you are truly looking for the “secret” that successful online entrepreneurs know it is this:
There is a large opportunity to make millions of dollars on the web with much less capital requirements compared to other forms of investment.
Do you buy and sell sites frequently? Or do you want to sell a site and get it ready? What do you look for when buying a website?
Then follow these 8 hacks to make money from acquiring and selling sites.
Marketplaces To Look for Websites
There are a number of website marketplaces online which you can think of as an eBay for websites.
People who want to sell their sites go here and list all the relevant details they feel prospective buyers need.
Those who want to invest in websites browse for and purchase the types of sites they want.
There are many more and a Google search will uncover plenty of smaller ones for you, but these two tend to be the most active.
Some of these sites charge fees, others are free online communities:
- Flippa— Established back in 2005, Flippa has been able to establish itself as one of the leading global marketplaces for buying and selling of websites, apps and domains. The inventory of websites suits a variety of industries, with new websites being added to the catalogue almost every day. Flippa has been identified in the Forbes to sell businesses/websites worth more than $2 million every month.
- Empire Flippers— Empire Flippers is a well presented website selling and buying interface wherein buyers get to browse through a variety of featured websites along with important details like monetization methods and net profits.
- Exchange— specializing in ecommerce stores with a huge database.
- FE International— FE International was founded in 2010 and has since sold, an industry-leading, 300 online businesses. They specialize in all business models from AdSense websites to blogs. Not only do they provide free valuations and can sell your website but they also have a buyer networker consisting of over 400 individuals, investors and funds looking for online businesses to acquire.
- Ebay— While it is more popular for retail transactions, eBay is also growing to be a popular marketplace for selling web designs, templates, websites, apps and even domains. eBay also distinguishes itself to being a cross platform service, used by several businesses and individuals globally.
Rule #1: Always Buy Distressed Assets
The most important thing to remember when buying sites is that you always make money on the buy, never the sell.
It’s rare that someone will pay a large multiple on revenue or profit, so don’t expect to get rich when selling a site.
Where you do make money is buying sites for less than they are worth. In many cases, people are willing to sell sites for 1x yearly revenue or even 1x yearly profit. Sometimes people want out of a business for reasons such as death, divorce or financial obligations that they have to meet.
Usually, people who are willing to sell their sites for a low amount have these common qualities:
- They don’t update their site too often
- They don’t make too much money from it
- They don’t care about the business
As my rule of thumb a good blog site is worth around 2x yearly profit (or 24x Monthly net Income).
If you browse around these marketplaces or even the search results for popular keyphrases, you’ll see that there are lots of different types of websites out there.
Some of the most common you’ll find for sale are:
- Clickbank Ready Affiliate Sites
- Popular Clickbank Products & Sales Pages
- Niche Content Sites
- Dropship Product Sites
- Paid Membership Sites
- Niche Communities
There is a huge growing influence of blogs on buying behaviors from people.
If you are wondering how to find these sites, just reach out to website brokers and tell them your requirements. I myself use Flipping Enterprises.
If you happen to buy a website, don’t buy the company, just buy the assets.
If you buy the corporation, you will take on any liabilities that it may have, such as a lawsuit.
Rule #2: It’s Harder To Build Something Than to Grow It
The hardest part about running an online business is starting up a website and getting traction. Sure, getting to 10,000 visitors a month may not be hard, but getting to over 100,000 visitors a month is hard.
The interesting thing is, once you hit 100,000 monthly visitors, it is much easier to grow to 200,000 or even 300,000 visitors a month.
Once you have a website and it has the foundation to grow, there are many tools at your disposal to get more traffic.
The internet is full of creative ways to get your more SEO, creating more products, selling affiliate products, advertising, social media etc.
Focus your time and energy on lucrative niches such as finance, health, IT and anything that may have a high Google cost per click.
Rule #3: Use Social Media Before Buying a Site
I love Google as it actually drives a lot of traffic, but you never want all of your eggs in one basket.
The use of social media such as Facebook is a fantastic way to test your new site before you buy it.
It’s one of the most popular channels in the world, and you can drive a ton of traffic to your site by building a fan page.
Here’s a process on Facebook you can follow:
1.Create a test advertising campaign – before you even buy a site, you can create a test advertising campaign on Facebook by using an unfinished ad data. By entering target keywords and demographic criteria, you can find out how many people you can potentially target. Always go after an audience that has at least 5 million targeted members.
2.Build out your campaign – assuming you buy the site, you want to build out your ad campaign. Do not target general categories that Facebook provides, but instead focus your money on specific keywords that are highly related to your site.
3.Let Facebook optimize – when sending traffic to a fan page, there is a setting in which you can let Facebook optimize your bidding for you. It optimizes for engagement and page likes versus a CPC or CPM model.
4.Create good content – you must add a ton of images, quotes, and video content to your Facebook fan page to boost engagement.
5.Use Facebook insights – after two weeks of buying fans, you should be able to see the age, region and gender of the fans that are liking most of your pictures.
6.Facebook Fan Page – If you can successfully build up a Facebook fan page, you will be able to drive more traffic to your website.
This handy infographic from Dog-Eared Social will highlight the metrics you need to track and what free tools you can use to do it.
Rule #4: Collect Emails
The vey best way to grow any site’s traffic, no matter what industry it is in, is through emails.
From offering free ebooks to discount coupons, you can collect emails from your site.
This way, any time you have an offer, you can do a blast to your email list.
Here are the 10 most common methods I use to collect emails:
1.Feature a sign-up form on your website. State what they’ll get for signing up, e.g., newsletters every two weeks, deals and steals, etc. Also, the shorter the form, the better! (Just a name and email address, for example.)
2.While website pop-up windows can be mildly annoying, if it pops up while people leave your site, it’s actually pretty efficient.
It can ask them to sign up for your offers or newsletter, which many of your readers are likely to do on their way out.
3.If you sell products or services online, ask customers at the end of their online shopping experience to sign up for your newsletter.
4.Add an opt-in/sign-up form to your Facebook page, or include a link to your hosted opt-in form and write a Facebook status to your fans every now and again, asking them to join your email list.
5.Create Facebook ads around an offer or incentive, or even your newsletter itself. Link people back to your opt-in form/sign-up landing page from that ad.
6.Include a link to your opt-in page in your email signature, so people emailing with questions can learn about your list.
7.On your blog, include a link or embed your opt-inform at the top, side and/or bottom of each page.
8.Create a compelling image with a call to action (to sign up for your email list) and an incentive, and post the image on Pinterest and Instagram.
9.Give people a sneak peek of what they’ll get by joining your email list. At VerticalResponse, they have their weekly archive for their weekly VR Buzz newsletter so folks can preview what they’ll see before they hand over their email address.
10.If you’re creating any kind of content like guides, infographics, videos, etc., you want to make sure to include a call to action to subscribe to your email list at the conclusion of the content or somewhere in the body.
Rule #5: Write great content
My favourite way to grow a website is through content marketing. By creating great content and promoting it via the social web, you can gain new readers, build links and increase your overall Google traffic.
The best part about it is you are doing this by adding a ton of value to potential customers by educating them with free advice.
If you want to create a content marketing strategy, it’s important to note that you need to write really good content. Don’t regurgitate the same old information and don’t waste your time covering the news.
Also don’t write short blog posts as ones with over 2,000 words tend to get a lot more traffic and rank higher.
If dealing with rude or angry comments on your blog or Social Media then Click Here – 9 Customer Service Rules Etiquette – Social Media & Blogs.
Rule #6: Focus, Focus, Focus
One of the biggest reasons most people lose money when they buy a site is that they don’t focus on them.
You can’t expect to spend a bit of money and make a huge ROI without putting in much effort.
Stay creative and this will keep you focused.
You have to put in the time and effort if you want for something to pay off.
This is important because no acquisition is as easy at seems… you will run into roadblocks.
Rule #7: Don’t Get Too Greedy
There is always a right time to sell your business. So, when is the right time? Well, it depends on what’s enough for you.
If your growth rate slows down to 30% a year, then look to sell the site and move onto something new.
Just make sure your growth rate doesn’t die down to 10% per year because the multiple you will receive on your yearly profit or revenue will drastically decrease.
If you are wondering how to sell your business, you can use the same broker you used to buy the business.
They typically have a ton of contacts in the website buying world.
Rule #8: Things to Think About before Buying or Selling
- Here are a list of questions that you need to ask yourself or to find out when buying and selling websites for a profit:
- How much traffic does the website get?
- How long as the website been established and when was the domain registered?
- How much money does the website make?
- Does it have a diverse traffic source?
- What are the traffic sources to the site?
- Are there opportunities to introduce new revenue streams?
- How much time does the owner/you spend maintaining the site?
- Is there an opportunity to add more content or otherwise attract more traffic?
- High search engine rankings, Bing, Yahoo and Google?
- How many backlinks does the site have?
- Who supplies the products?
- What are the monthly expences?
- Who are the major players and competition?
- What are the payment terms?
My guide to buying and selling sites isn’t fool proof, but it’s worked well over the years.
Just don’t expect to get rich from the process above because it takes years before you’ll see a great return on your investment.
Buying a niche site is a great way to expedite your online income goals for the year, but don’t get suckered into buying an expensive site that’s not going to ultimately make you much money.
If on the other hand you are selling a site then make sure that you improve the site and work through some of the hacks above.
If you can use some or all of the hacks then you can be buying or selling websites for a profit.