5. Website Flipping: Buy and Sell Websites

Part FIVE of the 10 Ways to Make Money Online Series

By now I assume you have already downloaded and read the special report by Jimmy D. Brown that we’re discussing in this 10-part series. If not, click the link above to see the original post and download the 30-page report.

The 5th method that Jimmy discusses for making money online is website flipping, or to buy and sell websites for profit. See pages 16-17 in your PDF. Jimmy suggests one of two models, or a combination of both: creating and selling websites, or buying websites to resell...

Whether you create the websites yourself, or buy them cheap at various places online, you will earn a much higher return by investing time into the profit potential. A website that is already monetized, getting traffic and proving it's earning potential will command a much higher selling price.

Spend a few months building the content, traffic and income – and then you can sell the site at a much higher price. Since the site is pulling in traffic and a profit (even if it’s a small profit), it commands a higher price because there’s proof that it’s profitable. People are now buying into proven profits rather than profit potential. (page 16)

The general rule of thumb for the price point is 12-months earnings. So if the site is earning $100 consistently every month, you can sell it for around $1,200.

Let me just stop there and make a confession: I've never sold a website, or purchased a website with the intention to resell. I've browsed the listings, and I've watched a few people go through the process, but I have never actively participated in this particular method of making money online.

That's one of the great things about writing this series from Jimmy's 10-point report: getting to explore methods and topics that I wouldn't normally bring up for discussion here on ClickNewz. I think it is incredibly useful in helping us all to expand our vision on the opportunities available, don't you?

Here's my line of thinking:

If I have a website that is fairly new, say around 90 days old, and consistently making $100/month... I don't say to myself, "I could sell this today for $1200!".

My mind doesn't work that way. Instead I say, "I could triple the earnings on this site easily by investing some time into it now, and earn more than $3,000 over the next year."

Not only could I tweak the site until it's running at it's full earning potential, and let it continue to run and generate passive income on the side while I work on other projects... but that little site has even more potential for me in the long run. As it becomes more established in the search engines, it also begins to have link value among other things.

Now this could be considered smart thinking, or it could be completely flawed.

If you know yourself well enough to realize you'll leave that poor little site sitting on the back burner and never really do anything with it, you may be better off selling it to someone who will.

How many people have websites, or even just domain names, sitting on the back burner? That would be 99.9% of us, I'm sure :P . That being the case, it's like eBay: it makes sense to "clean house" and put the cash back into what you are actively working on in your online business.

I can also see where Website Flipping would be an ideal model for the person who has high energy in the start-up phase, but has discovered they have zero follow-through on any project they start. If you have half a dozen low-profit website projects scattered around, but fail to follow through on any of them to substantial profit, this may just be the perfect online business model for you.

It's also worth pointing out that you should always consider selling over just deleting a website or letting a domain expire. I have seen this happen so many times over the years, and it always stumps me. Keep in mind that one man's virtual junk is another man's virtual treasure ;)

I'll close this post with some helpful resources on how to buy and sell websites, and open this up for discussion in the comments. You can right-click on each link to open it in a new tab or a new browser window.

Resources:

I'd love to hear your thoughts, or your personal experiences if you've dabbled in Website Flipping yourself.

Best,

p.s. Jimmy recommended Flip Mastery in his report, as the best (and most current) course for learning more about Website Flipping.

Update: I found a coupon code for FlipMastery. This code will get you $10 off the product: 1604E -Enjoy! ;)

About Lynn Terry

Lynn Terry is a full-time Internet Marketer with over 15 years experience in online business. Subscribe to ClickNewz for the latest Internet Marketing trends & strategies, Lynn's unique case studies, creative marketing ideas, and candid reviews...more»

Discussion

  1. Hey Lynn,

    As usual a killer and very thorough article. I've been flipping websites for almost 4 years now and can certainly vouch for it's
    credibility as a profitable business model.

    In fact I just flipped one in the WarriorForum a couple weeks ago and got a buy it now offer of $7,500. Just one of those per month would be a great income for most Internet marketers.

    We've also been teaching it for the last 2 or 3 years and just
    had our first sold out live workshop on website flipping here in Boise, Idaho.

    There are people from all walks of life making money with website flipping. From rookies making their first dollar to experienced marketers realizing their old hobby site was worth $13,000 (case study from one of our clients).

    Even more exciting is website brokering! With website flipping becoming so popular these days, people are looking for experienced flippers to flip their sites for them in exchange for a percentage of the sale price.

    BE CAREFUL when brokering though. It's very important to use contracts with both parties and never connect the two parties together until after you've been paid. We've brokered 5 figure
    deals where we connected the buyer and seller before the sale
    and all of a sudden you can't get a hold of either party anymore.

    There's only a handful of serious website brokers that I know of and we're getting together soon to make an interview series. I'll send you a copy when it's finished.

    You rock! You do a fantastic job of showing your readers the most legit money making methods.

  2. Clint Anderson says:

    Lynn,
    You always have awesome perspectives about everything. Thinking about selling a domain name instead of letting it expire if you don't want it. That was a duh moment for me there, but will definately keep that in mind for the future. Also, hope you are feeling better!
    Take Care and To Your Continues Success,
    Clint Anderson

  3. I have a dozen domains. Lies like dead garbage. Will try to sell them.

  4. Juliette says:

    I had a great one a while back. When I was selling stuff on eBay, I decided to build my own e-commerce web sites for the three main product lines I was selling, and direct the eBay back-end sales to those sites (which is a lot harder now eBay have introduced yet more ways of preventing you taking any business off their site).

    Anyway, I built these three sites myself, which only took a couple of weeks or so, and they did quite well. Unfortunately, as I was only making a small margin on the items, the whole thing turned out to be more effort than it was worth.

    The great thing was that I managed to get #1 slots in Google for all three sites! This was without any back links, and no real SEO.

    I approached the people who supplied me with the items, and offered them the three sites. Just six months after I had built the sites from scratch, I sold them for around $9,000. This figure is actually better than it sounds, as one of the sites was for a fairly obscure and low-selling product. They really bought the other two, and got the third as a bonus.

    I'm not saying this is necessarily reproducible on a regular basis, but it can be done.

  5. A great way to build recurring income with website flipping is to sell sites much cheaper then they are worth but the buyer must pay monthly for hosting that website with you.

    For example you build product review pages, or take all those PLR courses you have and sell those sites. List them for $20 but they have to host them with you for $19.99 per month.

    Just one per day and in 90 days your almost at $2k per month. I can tell you from experience that 3 - 5 per day is very achievable once you get into a routine.

  6. Bertholemeuw says:

    I like the idea about paying website for monthly. But my question is you selling it for many client or just one client. What about if they just try it one month and then stop the subscription. How do you make money from this case?

    • Hi Bertholemeuw,

      You would be selling these to many clients since the website marketplaces are filled with lots of potential buyers and not just one person.

      If they try to cancel the subscription then they don't get to keep the website or the hosting. You'll lose some of them just like any recurring income model but most will not want to lose their new website that they paid for.

      For any other questions please email me sitefling[at]gmail[dot]com

  7. URL Masking says:

    This looks like a very profitable niche. I would want to try website flipping one day. Currently, I have very few domains, I think will have to buy some more. :)

  8. Lynn (and Justin),

    This sounds like something worth looking into. I'm a website designer and I just love to build new sites all the time. It's my perfect job/hobby.

    If anyone else is into building websites, but is not having much luck with affiliate marketing or other ways to make money online, then this could be the perfect match.

    I can understand why some people might not want to keep tweaking a website to make it more profitable. For some, they just aren't into the whole "tweaking" process.

    A lot of creative types are into the "creation" and not so into the "tweaking" - they create something and then move on to the next creation.

  9. Georjina says:

    Ughhh! Now I learn those little websites I built (and took down) could have been flipped! Sheesh, talk about making things hard.

    Ok, ok. I'm on this one because there's enough plr products on my computer to choke a horse and yes, I was going to delete them...shoot me:)! Thanks for this 'slap upside the head' post, it's time to get productive and make some serious money.

  10. Benjamin Harrell says:

    The whole tweaking process can be mundane and tedious. At the same time I can see how investing time can pay off. Great article!

  11. I've been flipping sites for a few years now as well, but with the recent changes in the marketplace, I went off and made my own auction place. You can check it out if you would like, we are receiving excellent feedback on bidding and sites sold within the first Phase of launch.

    The problem with website flipping are all the fees, but we took care of that with our marketplace :)

  12. If it can make you money then it can make you money. Thats all taht matters in the end right

  13. I've flipped a few websites in my time online, but don't think I'd like to do that for a full time living. However, it was great cash when I needed it. And I'd do it again.

    Nell

  14. Website Flipping says:

    Back in April I flipped my first website for $550 and now I do it all the time. I am building one to promote it and sell it for as high as I can.Love your posts and I come back often.
    Kathy

  15. Update: I found a coupon code for FlipMastery: http://www.flipmasterycourse.com

    This code will get you $10 off the product: 1604E -Enjoy! ;)

  16. I like how the hosting is tied into it... that'd lower refunds & boost retention.

  17. Website Flipping says:

    Hey Lynn, you hit the nail on the head with "...ideal model for the person who has high energy in the start-up phase, but has discovered they have zero follow-through on any project they start"

    I personally flip brand new websites on a weekly basis(sometimes daily in phases) simply because i enjoy the rush of building the ideas and making the cash up front/fast. I've become very efficient at what i do as well, from doing it so often, so it's turned into a "flipping machine" that allows me to get $$ whenever I feel like flipping a site.

    It defnitely isn't for everyone though - especially if you have your mindset of thinking you "lost something" that you could have kept as an asset.

    However, most flippers I know build "keepers" as well. Nobody should have their eggs all in one flippin' basket. ;)

    Great article
    Cheers
    Jay

  18. I've sold a couple of websites this year and was pleasantly surprised by how much money I made off of them. I don't know that I'd want to make this my only business model (just doesn't appeal to me a lot), but it's very nice to know that I have something of value should I need or want to sell later down the road.

    Nell

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Marketing Part 3: Make Money With Membership Sites Part 4: How to Make Money on eBay Part 5: Website Flipping: Buy and Sell Websites Part 6: Make Money Blogging Part 7: Turn Digital Products Into Physical Products Part 8: How to [...]

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