Buying and selling websites can be a great work from home business opportunity and it’s one of the best ways to make money online. Many people use website flipping to earn a lot of money every day. If you need to make money at home working online, then website flipping should be the first on your list.
The amount of money that one can potentially earn through buying and selling websites is virtually endless. You can earn anywhere from few hundreds to $50,000 per sale or even much more if you do it the right way. There are people making fortunes from flipping websites, and the truth is, it doesn’t require huge investments.
If you’re wondering how to get started, this article will give you the necessary information about how to make money at home buying and selling websites.
Check out below the 10 Steps for Creating a Profitable Buying and Selling Website Business.
Content that you will find in this article:
- 1 Understand the basics
- 2 Know your limits
- 3 Choose an evergreen niche
- 4 Know where to find websites for sale
- 5 Ask Questions and perform checks
- 6 Make an offer
- 7 You own the site, what next?
- 8 Time to sell it
- 9 How to sell your website
- 10 Rinse and Repeat
Understand the basics
Just like any other type of investment such as brick and mortar businesses or real estate, selling online businesses comes with its positives and negatives. The key to attaining success is to start by buying low, build up the site traffic, make necessary changes to site design and then increase the site income so that you can sell it for a hefty profit.
Think of website flipping as you would with buying and selling houses. A wise house flipper looks to buy an undervalued property which can be improved at very minimal costs such that they’ll be able to sell for good profits later. Many of these websites will just need minimal work, and they can be sold for huge profits. Sometimes, you’ll even find sites that do well, but the owners are wanting to sell them for less than their value to get the sale done quickly.
Know your limits
Being honest with yourself is crucial. Can you afford to lose that $10,000 that you’re planning on investing? Could you survive that loss? Think about it.
No investment is guaranteed regardless of how attractive it is. Once you know the amount you can afford to lose or rather the amount you are willing to invest, then it’s time to think about the time you can commit to managing your new business.
While websites are passive, there are things that you’ll need to be doing to increase its value. Be prepared to spend time learning new skills or knowledge required for your new acquisition.
Choose an evergreen niche
Evergreen niches don’t have expiration dates and are fueled by the continuous human needs and wants. These niches revolve around things that will always be in demand. Examples include clothing, car insurance, health, consumer electronics, business, sports, beauty, etc.
Stay away from websites that make money from something that may soon become illegal due to passed legislation or that only sells products that are no longer in high demand.
Additionally, an advantage of buying an established website is the site has a history of good performance you can measure from. For example, if it makes $4,000 a month, you’ll know the keywords it’s ranking for and what can be improved to scale up its value and monthly income.
You can easily find the best online business valuation calculator that can help you assess the value of the online business you’re interested in. Furthermore, you’ll need to know what revenue sources the site has used and what techniques can be used to increase profits. Just like how a house flipper would look for simple fixes like replacing the carpet and repainting, you should be looking for websites that can be improved to maximize the profits.
Know where to find websites for sale
Knowing where to buy a site for sale is the next big step to make. You can buy from website marketplaces (WebsiteBroker.com, Flippa.com BizBuySell.com, etc.) or website brokers (such as EmpireFlippers.com, Wesellyoursite.com, and FlippinngEnterprises.com, etc.).
Forum marketplaces such as Warriorforum.com, Digital Point forums and Experienced-People.net can be great places to find a potential seller. If you find these processes tiresome, you can buy directly from the website owner.
Most of these websites are poorly designed and making a few changes is all that is needed to improve its value. But it’s important to remember that in most cases you get what you pay for. If a website earns $1,000 a month, don’t expect to buy it for only $3,000 (3x monthly multiple)- a good range should be 12-18x the monthly profits for a small site earning less than $50,000 per month. However, it’s important to note that this doesn’t have to be the case since each listing and its seller is unique.
Ask Questions and perform checks
Why is the website being sold? Some common red flags are recent Google update hits, borderline products and services such as movie downloads and phone unlocking or dying niches.
Analyze traffic and revenue proof. Look for screenshots of traffic and revenue that show the sites URL. Analyze the domain referring sites, and are there some of the referring sites owned by the seller and will these remain after the sale? Are the traffic sources evenly distributed or is the site relying heavily on one source?
If possible, ask the seller to provide you with a video of them logging into their merchant and affiliate accounts. One of the proven ways of gaining trust is to speak to the seller through Skype or via phone. It will not only help you get to know who they are but also increase the chances of future cooperation when making an offer.
Most importantly, if you’re not confident with all these processes, you can speak to a professional. Brokers can help you remove any emotion from the deal.
Make an offer
When you’re confident that this is the right website to buy, it’s time to make an offer. Start with a low offer but also make the offer high enough to get the seller’s attention. For example, if the seller asks for $20,000 and that’s 18x the monthly profits multiple, offering them only $5,000 will get you nothing but rejection.
Providing a 70% of the seller’s price is a good starting point. Additionally, giving reasons why you’re offering a lower price by highlighting key shortcomings of the website can help your cause. You can increase your chances of buying the site by assuring the seller that you’ll take good care of the website.
Learning how to negotiate effectively will significantly increase your chances of landing a deal, and the seller may even pick you over someone else who had offered a higher price.
You own the site, what next?
The possible answer to this question is, get to work! The more you boost the monthly profit, the more it’ll be worth once you decided to sell. There are millions of articles available on the internet that can help you build your site regarding traffic and monetization channels.
Ways to increase the site’s value/worth
- Add more content. Increasing the amount of unique and relevant content on the website results to more visitors, for example, if the site doesn’t have a blog or a forum, adding these can result to more traffic thus increasing the value of the site. You may have bought a site with hotel reviews only; you can increase the site value by expanding your content with sections for event tickets, restaurant reviews, airfare or car rentals.
- Raise the prices. If the site has an operational affiliate program, you can contact the vendor and negotiate a higher commission. If the vendor agrees to increase the commission that means that the monthly revenues will also significantly increase thus improving the site’s value in the event you want to sell it.
- Split test. If you split test call to action, you’ll be guaranteed of an increment in the conversion rates. Since almost every site is sold at a multiple of its earnings, increasing the monthly profits with a higher click-through rate on the advertising will significantly raise the value of your site.
- Acquire high-value links– according to link building expert, Eric Ward, link-building accounts for 90% of traffic to his website, with less than 10% of traffic coming from Google. Acquiring high-value links for a site you purchased will result in more traffic and higher conversion rates thus increasing monthly revenue.
However, if you don’t have time, energy or the resources to do the work yourself, you can hire a professional to do that for you. It’s important to hire an expert who has good feedback and isn’t overcharging.
Time to sell it
Once all the changes have been made, and the results are noticeable- steady increasing traffic and monthly profits – it’s high time to sell it for more than you paid for it. To determine when actually to sell a site, you need to explore several aspects.
First, determine the actual value of the site taking into consideration the cost of changes made. You’ve spent consistent efforts and hundreds of late nights trying to maximize the profit and traffic potential of your website. Now it’s time to find the real-time market value.
You can do this by finding out its monthly profits.
The revenue might come from different streams, and it’s vital to check the web stats and analytics for each one. After determining the sites monthly revenue, it’s essential you double check your work using a valuation tool.
When you should sell
- Sell only when you feel that you’ve exhausted all the earning potential with you at the wheel.
- Sell it if you are interested to work on other exciting projects or discovered another investment opportunity and need the cash.
Adopt the mindset of an entrepreneur and focus on a sale that will bring maximum profits.
But before making that decision to sell, it’s important to ask yourself these few questions.
- Have I exhausted all the possible traffic and earning optimization techniques?
- What amount of initial investment have I recouped?
- What will I do with the sale proceeds?
However, you might be forced to sell the website because of poor performance caused by unexpected changes in the available monetization channels or Google update etc., it’s important to do whatever it takes to stabilize it or sell it as soon as possible. Because, once the monthly profits hit zero, the value follows.
How to sell your website
Selling a website is pretty similar to selling any other product online- it needs to be marketed to the target audience. You’ll be able to find potential buyers in same places where you bought the site, either through marketplaces, brokers, forums or directly.
Be prepared with detailed records of revenue and traffic, be honest and readily available for questions from potential buyers, but most importantly don’t be greedy. Stick to the “sweet spot” where both buyers and sellers feel it’s fair.
You can hire brokers who specialize in website brokerage for a reasonable fee. They’ll offer you a free valuation and advice you on how you can increase its value or sell it if they can’t take it on. But if you venture into the marketplaces on your own, be sure to filter out the scammers in this industry by using an escrow service such as escrow.com. Make sure that you review a potential buyer’s past activity, feedback and speak with them via Skype or phone before accepting bids.
Rinse and Repeat
Congrats! You’ve made your first profitable sale. Like most successful internet marketers say, if you have a system that works, repeat it! But in case you end up losing some of your investments on your first deal, don’t give up, gather confidence and try again and hopefully you’ll make profits.
Just like any other traditional brick and mortar businesses, buying and selling websites can be a lucrative venture for anyone who prefers working at home. Whether you decide to build up your own website or buy an already established one, it’s evident that you can make good profits. The key is to stay committed, work hard, and you’ll see positive results.
Your turn: Have you ever thought of buying and selling websites?
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