flip websites
free website flipping guide

Website Flipping Tips & News

FlipWebsites.com provides those who want to discover how to make money online fast through website flipping the latest industry tips and news. If you are new to flipping websites, you may want to read our introductory article how to flip a website and download the free site flipping ebook. If you're already a reader, the latest blog posts on the topics of website building, buying, selling, marketing, and monetization are below.

5 Essential Year End Tasks for Your Website

Year end is a great time for making sure all your i’s are dotted and your t’s are crossed when it comes to your website business. The list below outlines 5 important tasks that will help keep your website and your website business on track next year.

1. Change the Copyright Year on Your Site’s Footer

When I see a copyright date on a website that says something like “Copyright 2003. All Rights Reserved”, two thoughts go through my mind.

Continue reading

Website Flipping Market Snapshot Week Ending 12/8/2011

The last few weeks have been a little hectic for me. I’ve been enjoying a little time with my newborn son Ryder and had a wonderful Thanksgiving with the family. For those of you who were waiting for an update on my new son, here it is. Ryder was born 11.11.11 at 7:59 a.m. He was a healthy 7 lbs 13 oz and measured in at 19.25 inches. Luckily he seems to be a mellow baby. I’m told this is often the case with your second child.

One thing I thought I should share with the website flipping community is that I purchased a domain for my son which is ryderyates.com. My business partner David has done the same thing for his kids. It will be exciting to see what he becomes in his professional life and I have a feeling he’ll be happy I had the foresight to protect his personal brand in case he ever needs it. By the time he’s ready to use it, the domain will already be 18 years old.

Continue reading

Yahoo! Site Explorer Is Dead – Here’s a List of Alternatives

Thanks to the merger with Bing/Microsoft, Yahoo! officially closes the doors on its Site Explorer tool. A message on their site says:

With the completion of algorithmic transition to Bing, Yahoo! Search has merged Site Explorer into Bing Webmaster Tools. Webmasters should now be using the Bing Webmaster Tools to ensure that their websites continue to get high quality organic search traffic from Bing and Yahoo!.

Continue reading

11/11/11 Big News!

Hi All,

Unfortunately I won’t be doing our usual website flipping update this week. Why, you ask? Well, tomorrow is 11/11/11 and my wife Melissa and I will be bringing a new life into this world. That’s right, my son will be born tomorrow!

I need to put all my focus in preparing for the big day so I’m skipping this week’s site flipping market update. I hope you don’t mind. I’ll be back next week (probably half-asleep from late nights with the new baby) with an update on the baby and on the buying and selling website market.

If you’d like to wish us luck or have any advice on the transition from 1 to 2 kids in a family, please comment below.

- Chris

Latest Website Flipping News for Oct 2011

Flippa Trends in October 2011

It wasn’t a bad month for Flippa. They facilitated over $3,000,000 of website buying and selling on their marketplace. Sales prices averaged approximately 7 times monthly income for sites selling in October.

Interesting fact: In October, two sites with over 100 backlinks in Google and no revenue sold at $405 and $750. It will be interesting to see if Flippa’s new backlink search feature will affect prices for these types of sites.

Scitechdaily.com – A Quick Site Flip Goldmine We Missed in October

The site sold for $34,000 and had no monetization. Let’s assume you were to increase the revenue per unique visit to a meager $0.10. That would put your monthly income at $5284.20/month. You could likely get that by adding some relevant advertising to the site starting a few days after you took the site over. Give it a few months at $5,000/month average net profit and you could likely flip the site for $60,000. This would give you a $41,000 profit on the site in 3 months. You have to love the power of the quick flip of undervalued sites!

Site Flipping Market Headlines for October 2011

Did you notice any trends or have any successes or failures? Let me know by commenting below.

Website Flipping Market Snapshot Week Ending 10/26/2011

This week we added some additional analysis to the weekly snapshot. Enjoy!

Market Overview

This week 664 websites sold for a combined $1,074,606 making this a seven figure week for Flippa. The highest priced website sold for $110,000 with a majority of sites selling in the $150 range. 21 sites sold in excess of $10,000. Several of the sites selling in the $10,000+ range can be considered internet marketing related (SEO, Make Money Online, Web Design, etc.)

FlipWebsites.com Reader’s Sites for Sale

The sites below are sites submitted on our sell your website page that we didn’t buy ourselves.

www.womensdanceshoes.org
What is the average monthly unique visitors?:  200
What is the average monthly profit?:    $20.00
How many months has the site been profitable?: 15
How many hours per week do you spend maintaining the site?: 1
How is the site Monetized?: Advertising (CPM, CPC)
What are the primary sources of traffic?: Organic Search
How Much Would You Like to Sell For?:  $75.00
Additional Comments: (I removed the adsense code for now)  This site is ranked page one #1 on Google for main keyword.

www.collegiateliving.com
What is the average monthly unique visitors?:  3598
What is the average monthly profit?:    $4333
How many months has the site been profitable?: 24
How many hours per week do you spend maintaining the site?: 5
How is the site Monetized?: Selling a Product
What are the primary sources of traffic?: Organic Search, Email Marketing, Referring Sites
How Much Would You Like to Sell For?:  $55,500
Additional Comments: The site is deep rooted in best practice organic Google placement on many keyterms.  Proper SEO practices have been administered from day 1. Site traffic spikes dramatically in Q4 and most of the sales occur in Q4. I also have another domain name for sale that will make a nice package which is www.collegiatebuzz.com, a premium domain name as part of the package.

www.wsoworth.com
What is the average monthly unique visitors?:  238 in 18 days
What is the average monthly profit?:    $0
How many months has the site been profitable?: 0
How many hours per week do you spend maintaining the site?: 5
How is the site Monetized?: Advertising (CPM, CPC), Affiliate (CPA), Selling a Product, Selling a Service
What are the primary sources of traffic?: Organic Search, Referring Sites
How Much Would You Like to Sell For?:  $150
Additional Comments: I am in need of funds and want to sell this site. The site is new but has received 238 visitors in just 18 days with not much promotion.

Please contact us if you are interested in any of these sites. If you’d like to see your site listed here, please visit the sell your website page and submit your site to us.

Notable Sellers

Most Active Seller
Seller: Sun Shine
Total Revenue: $4,928
Sites Sold: 18
Avg. Sales Price: $274
Notes: This seller primarily uses a “template” style format where he or she sells aged blogs with only 7 days of revenue and calculates the monthy revenue from the 7 days.

High Activity & High Avg. Sales Price Seller
Seller: mycompanyname
Total Revenue: $3,806
Sites Sold: 7
Avg. Sales Price: $544
Notes: This seller sells brand new “turnkey” membership style websites with no traffic or revenue.

Notable Website Sales

Highest Priced
Site: mywibes.com
Price: $110,000
Bids: 1
Seller: mywibes
Notes: This site was profiting about $1000/month by placing advertising on mobile sites generated with their system. The site ended sold with only one bidder. With a claimed 1.3 million unique visits per month, this was likely a good deal for the right kind of buyer.

Most Active
Site: BookmarkingJuice.com
Price: $952
Bids: 74
Seller: WebKing7
Notes: This site was essentially a business-in-a-box by providing an outsourced social bookmarking service. The seller used a $1 no-reserve strategy, bonuses, and created curiosity by not revealing several “secrets” such as their traffic sources or outsourced provider’s name.

Our Watchlist

These are the sites that we were close to bidding on or buying but didn’t. At the time of posting this, they were still actively for sale.

  • librarium-online.com
  • psd-tutorial.com

10 Things You May Not Have Known About Flippa

Flippa is constantly changing the way sellers and buyers interact on their system. The optimist in me always believes they are making these changes to make their system a safer and better place to do business, but the pessimist (conspiracy theorist) in me wonders if some of the changes are to improve their bottom line.

In this post, I’ll analyze 10 changes Flippa has made from an exaggerated perspective of the optimist and the pessimist. It’s a bit of a (joking) rant, but perhaps can help us get a better sense of where the true motivations of Flippa lie.

#1 – No More Buyers Success Fees

Click here for details about the buyer success fee changes.

The Optimist - Wow, great news for buyers! Now buyers know exactly how much money they need to buy a site and no longer need to consider a success fee in their buy/no-buy decision. This sure makes things clear and transparent for buyers.

The Pessimist – Bad news for sellers! Shouldn’t sellers have the option to choose who can pay for the privilege of buying their site? Sellers are about to get a bunch of money for their site and buyers are about to spend a bunch of money. Hmm…I wonder who will have the most cash and is most likely to pay Flippa their success fee?

#2 – Minimum Auction Duration of 3 days

This used to be a one day minimum auction duration, but they changed to a minimum of 3 days. I never saw a big announcement on this, but maybe I missed it.

The Optimist – Why would anyone run an auction for less than 3 days? You need time for people to see it, right? The only people using 1 day auctions were probably selling junk sites anyway.

The Pessimist – Everyone knows most of the bidding on a site happens in the last 24 hours. Why do we need to wait for 2 extra days to actually get some action on our auction. If I want to run a 1 or 2 day auction, shouldn’t that be my choice? Wait…Flippa has all those upgrades right? I bet people  are more likely to pay for that “Featured” upgrade multiple times with a longer auction.

#3 – Amounts of Pending Bids Are Viewable By Everyone

Unless I’m mistaken, wasn’t it only the seller who could see the amounts of the pending bids? Now anyone can see the dollar amounts of pending bids. I also don’t remember seeing any announcements from Flippa about this one.

The Optimist – This is great for Buyers! Now I know exactly how much my next bid will need to be if that bid gets accepted.

The Pessimist – This sucks for Sellers! If I don’t accept a high bid from a bad bidder, I probably scared off other bidders because they saw an overpriced bid pending. It also limits my ability to rack up a bunch of small bids at the start of the auction. I can’t figure out where Flippa profits from this, but I bet it’s there somewhere.

#4 – Confidential Listings

Click here for details about confidential listings.

The Optimist - This is great for buyers and sellers. If my auction doesn’t sell, I get to keep my “secret sauce” secret. If I buy a confidential listing site, there are going to be far fewer copycats trying to reverse engineer it.

The Pessimist - It’s a lot like their “Hide from search engines and non-logged in users” paid upgrade. If privacy is important to me, why should Flippa profit from that? If I had to pay my credit card companies to keep my social security number private, I don’t think the government would like that very much!

#5 – No More Trust Score

Click here for details about the trust score changes.

The Optimist - Trust scores were meaningless anyway. At least this way I know if the person I’m doing business with has a positive history on Flippa.

The Pessimist – Man those folks at Flippa are so smart. To not be labeled as “New” on their system, you have to have bought or sold a site on Flippa. Think of all the listing and success fees they’re getting just from people trying to get their trust up!

#6 – Sites Less Than 2 Months Old Can’t Claim Any Revenue

I never saw any announcements about this one, but is kind of a big one for people who are into the quick build and flip model.

The Optimist – How is it even possible for a site to be making sustainable revenue in 2 months time? Anyone claiming they are making revenue with a 1 or 2 month old site are probably lying anyway. This will sure keep buyers safe from those people claiming potential revenue as actual revenue.

The Pessimist – So, if I’m an expert at product launches and generate $10,000 in two months, I can’t claim that? I made the money and I can prove it, but Flippa won’t let me claim it. Wow, some potential buyers are going to be missing out on some amazing deals. Maybe Flippa got burned by a bunch of “turnkey” site sellers and decided to treat all sellers with new sites as liars.

#7 – Twitter Upgrade

Click here for details about Flippa’s twitter upgrade.

The Optimist – Great job Flippa! You gave me another way to get exposure for my listing and increase the final price.

The Pessimist – Here’s yet another paid upgrade. I’d like to see a twitter stream that provides value, not one that is cluttered with auction notifications from people who paid to be there.

#8 – The Flippa A-List

Click here for details about The Flippa A-List.

The Optimist – Justin at FlipFilter provides a very balanced analysis and in some cases can be quite frank about the negative aspects of the sites. There’s a lot you can learn about how to analyze potential acquisitions even if you never plan to buy one of the sites.

The Pessimist – Flippa labels these as a trial valued at $100/month. Is it just a matter of time until they start charging people to subscribe? This also could be setting up a new paid “Upgrade” to have your auction considered for the A-List.

#9 – No More Buyer Guarantees

If you’ve never read them, here’s Flippa’s terms and rules and an update on the changes.

The Optimist – Seller guarantees are difficult to enforce legally anyway. This is a safe move to protect newbie buyers.

The Pessimist – I want to provide peace of mind to my buyers and I’m willing to stand behind my guarantees. I think I should have that right. Flippa was probably losing time and money from buyers who were disputing sales so this was a move to reduce the amount of work they have to do.

#10 – All Auction Links Are No Follow

Putting an auction on Flippa used to have SEO value because the links in the auction were do follow type links. Not any more!

The Optimist - Anyone putting up an auction just for a do follow link isn’t serious about selling anyway.

The Pessimist – Maybe Flippa plans to start charging for an upgrade for the option to remove the “No Follow” tag.

Conclusion

All joking aside, the fact that Flippa exists is a good thing for those of us who buy and sell websites as a hobby or as a business. Their positives far exceed any negatives in my view. They are the largest so they have the ability to set their prices as they see fit. If we don’t like it, we can choose not to use them.

However, based on some of the policy changes we’ve been seeing, I notice a few trends.

Trend #1 - Flippa seems to favor changes that benefit buyers even if it’s at the expense of sellers.

Trend #2 – Flippa is heavily favoring established rather than startup type websites, but still seems to tolerate brand new sites with no traffic or revenue.

Trend #3 - Flippa is not solely focused on making their marketplace a better place to do business. Generating revenue seems to be high on their priority list and they will continue looking for new ways to make money from buyers and sellers.

I invite you to share your views (optimistic and pessimistic) in the comments below.

Website Flipping Market Snapshot Week Ending 10/18/2011

The weekly website flipping market snapshot is back! Here you’ll get a quick snapshot of what’s happening in the website flipping marketplaces and, in some cases, exclusive opportunities to buy sites from other FlipWebsites.com readers.

Market Overview

This week 650 websites sold for a combined $548,866. The highest priced website sold for $75,000 with a majority of sites selling in the $150 range. Nine sites sold in excess of $10,000. A majority of sites for sale continue to be sites less than one month old with little to no monthly revenue.

FlipWebsites.com Reader’s Sites for Sale

The sites below are sites submitted on our sell your website page that we didn’t buy ourselves.

www.how-to-last-longer-in-bed-for-men.com
What is the average monthly unique visitors?:  9.274
What is the average monthly profit?:    $400
How many months has the site been profitable?: 2
How many hours per week do you spend maintaining the site?: 10
How is the site Monetized?: Selling a Product
What are the primary sources of traffic?: Organic Search
How Much Would You Like to Sell For?:  $600
Additional Comments: I want to sell the website because i have to spend to many hours to get profit with my system.

www.noticesboard.com
What is the average monthly unique visitors?:  not active site
What is the average monthly profit?:    $not active site
How many months has the site been profitable?: not active
How many hours per week do you spend maintaining the site?: not active
How is the site Monetized?: Advertising (CPM, CPC), Selling a Service
What are the primary sources of traffic?: Organic Search
How Much Would You Like to Sell For?:  $9000.00
Additional Comments: i created this classifieds website as i think most classifieds website are merely text links and looks boring. Hence a noticesboard look a like site is born. Listings or classifieds are post like post-it notes or pin up notes which looks beautiful asthetically. I had also developed a CMS, user sign in, my watch list, social media sharing, payment structure, SEM, advertisement structure for the whole site. Unfortunately due to my very busy working schedules, i am not able to continue the project (this is my hobby site, merely to build something for my own fun). It is a very well developed site. I am really looking for somebody who can bring this site to a next level that it truly deserves. The price is the cost i had spend developing this site. However it is negotiable especially if you can demonstrate how you can developed this site further. Price include everything (domain, photos, files, admin panel etc). Current webhost cames with security back up purchase which will be up till July 2012.

Please contact us if you are interested in any of these sites. If you’d like to see your site listed here, please visit the sell your website page and submit your site to us.

Notable Sellers

Most Active Seller
Seller: Sun Shine
Total Revenue: $4,740
Sites Sold: 32
Avg. Sales Price: $149

High Activity & High Avg. Sales Price Seller
Seller: warbar78
Total Revenue: $2,055
Sites Sold: 7
Avg. Sales Price: $294

Notable Website Sales

Highest Priced
Site: globetrooper.com
Price: $75,000
Bids: 8
Seller: todsul

Most Active
Site: StrongTestimonials.com
Price: $4,000
Bids: 95
Seller: FreeTheNoob

Our Watchlist

These are the sites that we were close to bidding on or buying but didn’t. At the time of posting this, they were still active auctions.

  • proforums.org
  • funnycorner.net
  • beyondbeautybasics.com
  • thetechaddicts.com
  • sportsnub.com

Let Us Know What You Think

We’re still tweaking the content and format of this weekly update, so any feedback you have would be appreciated. Would you like to see more analysis or something else here? Please comment below if you have any ideas of what you’d like to see here.

The Most Important Due Diligence Task to Perform Before Buying a Website

Would you like to know the secret to being more thorough and efficient with your due diligence when buying websites? It’s to drill down on the most important assets of a website. In order to explain this better, let’s first define what “assets” and “drill down” mean.

The assets of a website are generally closely tied to the reason you’re buying the site. Most assets of a site fall into one of the following categories:

  • Automation – e.g. Outsourced relationships, software
  • Scaling – e.g. SEO potential, systems
  • Diversity – e.g. Multiple sources of traffic, revenue
  • Monetization – e.g. Adsense income, member sales
  • Relationships – e.g. Email lists, rss readers, followers
  • Traffic – e.g. Organic traffic, referrals
  • Buzz – e.g. Links, Press
  • Intellectual Property – e.g. Products, content

I’ll talk more about these in a future post, but once you’ve identified which assets of a site are most important to you in your buying decision, then it’s time to drill down.

Here’s an example. Let’s assume you’re buying a website for its Adsense income. In order to drill down, we need to ask ourselves the question, “What causes this?”. Here’s how it would go with this example.

Question: What causes the Adsense Income?
Answer: The organic traffic the site gets.

Question: What causes the organic traffic?
Answer: The SEO of the site.

Question: What causes the SEO?
Answer: The backlinks and content.

Question: What causes the backlinks and content?
Answer: Hiring content writers and link builders.

Can you see how we drilled down to find the real source or cause of the Adsense revenue? In this case, it’s the content writers and link builders. At first glance, you might have assumed just looking at screenshots of the Adsense revenue would be all the due diligence you’d need to do. In reality, you also need to perform due diligence on the organic traffic, the SEO, the backlinks, the content, the content writers and the link builders. If you want to really take a shortcut, you could simply perform due diligence on the content writers and link builders because they caused everything else.

Can you see how important this concept is? Can you see how it can save you time and reduce your risk of being scammed when buying a site?

I know it works for me. I have a checklist of about 500 different due diligence items I can potentially check before buying a site, but I might not check 250 of them because they aren’t relevant to the assets that are important to me.

If you’d be interested in hearing more about those 500 due diligence items, let me know by commenting below. If there is enough interest, I’ll share some of them with you.

What’s Coming Up for FlipWebsites.com

Things have been a little quiet around FlipWebsites.com lately, but that’s about to change. David and I have been working hard behind the scenes to come up with a new editorial plan for FlipWebsites.com. Here’s the scoop on what’s coming.

  1. Weekly Websites For Sale. The new sell your website section is live. When you have an established website to sell, we want to help. We’ve added a feature to the site that allows you to send us details on sites you’re selling. If we don’t buy them from you then and there, we’ll list it on the FlipWebsites.com blog in our new Weekly Websites For Sale post. This new weekly post will include sites submitted to us through the sell your site page as well as other deals we’ve looked at around the web on sites like Flippa.
  2. Monthly “Website Flipping How To” Post. This monthly post will be geared around quality how to information on topics related specifically to profiting from building or buying and selling websites. We’ll focus on things like how to get more money when you sell, where to buy sites for a bargain, and other principles related to flipping websites.
  3. Monthly “Ways to Make More Money On Your Website” Post. This monthly post will be focused on topics such as increasing traffic and conversions as well as improving monetization on your websites.
  4. Monthly “Interviews and Product Reviews” Post. This monthly post will focus on interviews with people who are successful at flipping websites and reviews of tools and products that make our lives as site flippers easier. If you have a person you’d like to see interviewed or tools you find extremely useful, please contact us or comment below and let us know.
  5. Monthly “Due Diligence and Scams” Post. We hope to educate you as much as we can on ways to prevent getting scammed, especially when it comes to buying sites. We look at a lot of sites and we do a lot of due diligence and we’re constantly seeing new ways sellers hide facts and twist the truth as well as blatantly try to scam you. We want to make the community of website buyers aware of this and that’s what this monthly post is all about.
  6. Monthly “Market Update” Post. We’ll gather together interesting links from around the web and review interesting Flippa sellers, auctions, etc. We hope this post gives you a quick way each month to stay up to date on the latest news, trends, and what’s hot in website flipping.

There’s more in the works that I can’t quite reveal yet so please stay tuned and keep reading!

*Important note: If you’d like to get the latest blog posts in your email, you must opt-in to our new Feedburner system. Click Here to Subscribe to Flip Websites by Email

Let us know what you think of our road map by commenting below.