The idea of buying and selling websites, otherwise known as website flipping, is becoming a very common trend on the Internet. Ideally, a less functional site is bought at a low price and later sold at a higher price after it has been tweaked and modified for better presentation and functionality.
This stems from the idea that most individuals who need a website to run their business or projects, lack the time and technical knowhow of designing one. You can take this opportunity to buy websites, fine-tune them a little and your efforts will be recovered when you sell the awesome new re-designed website. A powerful investment opportunity if you know how to flip a website properly.
The types of websites you can buy
You need to understand the types of websites available before deciding on the business of buying and selling websites. Essentially, the type of websites you may venture in will depend on a variety of factors; this may include the purpose of the website, the expected traffic, audience, structure and so on.
The most common types of websites for sale in the market include:
- Dropship product sites
- Popular sales and Clickbank pages
- Clickbank ready affiliate sites
- Niche communities
- Paid membership sites
- Social networking websites
Clickbank affiliate ready websites are great and have high income potential, but this is true if you understand that specific niche. You may otherwise be required to throw in a little more effort. These sites also tend to produce high income at the start due to he launching effects, but then die off after a while.
Blogs are great, but they require extra effort to drive in traffic, unless you have a creative writer to supply constant high quality SEO content.
Community sites on the other hand are great because they don’t rely on Google or social media sites to drive in traffic. This can considerably make your venture of buying and selling websites a success story.
Niche specific or paid membership sites have proven to be lucrative as their monthly income can be maintained relatively high with some good marketing.
Considerations before website buying and selling
1. Technical know how:
If you are buying a website then you need to find out if you have the technical knowledge required to manage the website. Some sites are pretty easy to run; you may just need to update content through its content management system once in a while. Other sites may however be quite complex to handle and may require some advanced IT skills.
You need to find out how much traffic the website gets. It’s all about traffic, remember? Google analytics can come in handy for this. You can request an authentic screen shot from the person you are looking at purchasing the website from so that you can verify the websites traffic is legit.
If you are selling your website, then you can use a screen shot of your awesome flood of traffic to promote the sale of your website.
3. How much money does the website make?
Ask the owner for screenshots or video screen casts to verify the weekly or monthly income of the website. Some months may be better than others in certain niches, so you want to see a graph of their performance report as far back as possible. Just in case they are only showing you a visual of a miracle month of income, which a number of websites have from time to time.
4. Is the website established?
You need to verify that the website you are about to buy has solid roots, otherwise the income and the traffic may vanish after a few months. You can do this by checking the number of pages Google has indexed so far, age of the domain name, traffic and revenue income history and number of back links that point back to the website.
5. Does the Website have a good promotional system in place?
Once you create content for your website you want other people to share it also right? Well you need to make sure that the website you are considering purchasing has a Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram account etc… The Social Media accounts don’t have to have a strong following, (although that will give you a great knee up to drive traffic), but they at least have to have the websites full name included in the username so that you are accepted officially through these social network platforms by visitors and viewers.
Where to buy or sell websites
There are a number of websites on the Internet where listings of sites for sale are maintained. These websites can be used for website buyers and website sellers. Most sites require that you bid on the listings and the seller will choose on the best bid, kind of like eBay.
You need also to consider several factors on such websites such as security as well as the fees charged. You might also be required to develop a reputation on such sites to be more successful at bids.
The most common and reliable market places for buying and selling websites are Digitalpoint and Flippa. You may find some other smaller ones when you search on Google, but these two websites have so far gained the most trust and reputation.
Most of these sites are convenient when it comes to buying and selling websites. Some sites like Flippa may however charge up to 5% transaction fees, but this should not be an obstacle if you have found a potential site to buy.
You may also opt to go to website owners directly, if there is some way of contacting them. Some owners even announce the sale of the site or domain name on their platforms. This might be a viable option considering that sites that rank highly for certain keywords may be relatively expensive in the marketplaces.
If you have trouble tracking down the owner of the website you can always head over to whois.com and run a search on their websites domain address. Most sites will come up with the webmasters email address and this is usually a good way to reach out to the website owner.
How much should you offer when buying or selling a website?
You should first keep in mind that a website is generally valued by how much revenue the site is generating at the present. For transaction purposes, do not allow the website owner to value the website based on foreseen “potential”. This is because if such potential existed, they would not be selling it in the first place. The following three other means should assist you in finding the value of an existing website.
Website Valuator Sites
There are a number of websites out there that can determine the site’s value, but this is not always reliable and should only be a rough estimate of the true value. What a number of people do is, they will visit 5-6 websites that value your desired site and then you average the total value that the 5-6 sites equate to.
Value by Comparison
Another way to value a website is to compare it to a number of sites in that niche or field and see what other similar sites have sold for in the past or are currently priced at on the market.
Website’s intrinsic value
This is how much you get when you break down the components of the website. Look at the key traits of the site, applications, programs, design, social media following, mail subscriptions.
How to improve your site before selling
There are thousands of ways in which you can improve on your purchased website before selling it at a profit. Such value addition practices include:
Design: you can make the website to be a little more eye-catching by changing style, colour theme and even fonts. There are various templates that can do this for you to make the process a little less involving. If you are running a blog through wordpress then google “wordpress themes” and download some to play around with for a better layout or style.
Add content: You can also add some rich SEO content to increase the visibility of the website and improve ranking on search engines. This is especially useful for niche specific websites. SEO, stands for Search Engine Optimization and is highly convenient and very rewarding to understand if you are interested in mastering the art of “increasing your organic website traffic”.
Rethink your hosting: you may want to move your newly acquired website to a more reliable hosting company that runs at least 99% of the time. A number of sites guarantee a 99% up time, and are more reliable with a lot better support in case you have any technical issues.
One thing I have learnt through running Addicted2Success.com is that it is highly important to have a fast enough Dedicated Server with enough CPU, Storage & RAM to manage the high amount of traffic during peak times. It may cost around $100 or more per month for a dedicated server but at least your site wont crash and your page loads are a lot quicker, resulting in better google rankings, which is something any serious website owner should strive for.
Add some personality: A personalized site draws in more of an audience and ensures a steady supply of traffic as people feel more like you’re their friend than some corporation or robot run business that they go to from time to time.
You may want to also brand you domain name, add a logo, open forums, throw in a bit of your personal experience, create a bio or any other way that connects you with the audience and builds more of a friendly rapport.
Others: Depending on the type and purpose of the site, you may add applications, plug-ins, change the structure/site map, link to social sites and more.
Selling your website
As mentioned earlier, there are websites that act as marketplaces for buying and selling websites. You can list your websites here after you have done all the necessary improvements and wait to select on potential bidders.
Similarly, you can set aside a space on the website for an announcement that shows the website is for sale. This might be a slower process but it puts you in control of the transaction and pricing. Better still, you can set aside a small website specifically for the purpose of your website buying or selling activities especially if you are an established figure in the website flipping business with several websites on the line.
One more thing, do not overprice your websites. Always make sure you sell at the true value and this will cultivate more happy returning clients in your venture of buying and selling websites.
We hope this gives you enough information to buy and sell websites successfully, best of luck!
Article By Joel Brown | Addicted2Success.com