What makes the difference between a site that’s worth a few dollars vs one that’s worth $100’s, $1,000’s or even ones valued at six figures or more? Well it’s many different components, and if you have at least a few of them, you are basically multiplying the value of yours.
In this article, I want to cover the topic of selling a website and how to do it in a way in which you can extract the maximum value for it. The “real estate” business of buying and selling a website is huge and it is a business which I’ve come to understand more and more as I’ve made numerous money generating pages.
As a disclaimer though, I want to point out I’ve never actually sold a website, but I have made multiple, six figure earning ones and if I were to sell them on the platform I am going to discuss today (Flippa), I would make about 2-3x more the value of it’s earnings in a year. So basically, what I’m trying to say is, I know how it’s done.
Here are some examples (my resume so to say):
1) High profit weight loss page made 6 figures over the course of a year. In it’s peak, it probably would have sold for $300,000. Today, I will be honest, since the niche is no longer that huge, it would probably earn $1,000 on a sale. Here are the specifics.
2) I have this existing site, which annually earns about $60-70k. I’ve made numerous examples on how if I wanted to, it could sell for $200,000+ quite easily. Though I’ve chosen NOT to engage in this and continue building it as a steady source of income. Here are the details.
3) I’ve made numerous pages over the years that have grossed several $1,000’s in profits. I’m also actively engaging in creating new niche websites (one is one drones and the other is on doing races in mud) that are also growing.
The point again is that, my knowledge on this business has helped created more than a few profitable examples and ANY website that is profitable can sell for at least twice it’s monthly/annual earnings.
So the big picture here I want to focus on is a checklist of things I would suggest you have should you decide to create a page, then sell it and/or if you have an existing page that you wish to put up for sale.
How much is a website actually worth? Your checklist to raise it’s value:
1) The domain name needs to be brandable.
For marketable purposes, the domain name you use have initially huge, eye catching value. Brandable names are worth more. A domain name such as:
Burtssurvivaltips.com will not have as much “intrinsic value” as a domain such as Howtostayaliveinthewilderness.com.
That is the most simple example I can provide. If you currently own a domain with a “marketable name”, you will likely be able to sell it for several times more. Burtsurvivaltips.com (without any of the other checklist components below) would probably be worth under $100 while the other domain name could possibly cross $1,000 if not more, that’s how huge a difference in the domain name can make.
Now I never suggest that people go out and buy “brandable” domains because depending only one this factor is risky. And with all the domain possibilities out there, you can always find a marketable domain even if you think they’re all “taken”. Just use your imagination…
2) A .com is worth far more than other gTLD’s, especially to the eye.
I made a post recently on other domain extensions and how their value in name at least isn’t very marketable, although it can get high rankings and earnings if you do the proper things, for the eye, it simply doesn’t sell well.
So my point is, buy a .com, a .net or a .org, but ideally do not buy other names such as .sale, .tv, .guru, they just don’t have that marketable value behind them (yet).
I would argue the same “brandable” domain name I used above would have at least 5x more value if it had a .com behind it vs say a .sale.
3) A niche site with a large niche audience is the best way to go.
A .com page on survival tips, on camping, trail running, belly fat loss, taking care of a particular type of pet, drones are all examples of niche pages with huge niche audiences and creating a page based on that, and better yet having traffic come to it dramatically raises it’s value in more ways than you can imagine.
Now I’m sure you may have heard of stories where huge websites get sold for millions of dollars and this is indeed a possibility, but it is a rare circumstance and one that you have luck with, because those are examples of pages which get millions of hits and that traffic value is what raises the price. Usually those examples take decades to develop into the net worth they get sold for.
A niche site on the other hand HAS the potential to reach huge value, but it is also easier to get to that point. Here is an example of a simple niche site that is being sold on Flippa right now, it is based on survival gear such as watches. There is bidding going on and as of now it’s estimated to be worth $4,000. And with several days of auctioning left, I wouldn’t be surprised if this page surpassed $100,000.
Here is a screenshot:
I took a look at that page and it’s honestly quite easily set up. It’s an eCommerce page with several plugins installed I’m familiar with such as Woo-commerce and other simple, free widgets that most people can do on their own. Now in this case, we have quite a mature page example that’s making money, but my point here is that it’s a niche page with a .com and brandable name and these 3 components alone will help it surpass $1,000’s in value.
Now I did estimate it can cross $100,000. Why did I say that? Well that leads me in the next point…
4) A page that has sales, especially consistent ones sells easier.
Look at the top image image again. See where it says that it’s grossed over $400,000? That’s a HUGE resume booster for any potential buyer out there. It shows them that they have a gold mine in the mix.
Now this can really blast off profits for you. If a simple, brandable .com, with a few pages of content can sell at several $1,000, then the same type of page, that’s more mature with more articles, more content, and most importantly a lot of profit can sell for 100x as much.
It’s a very simple formula:
Take the same domain name I used above (Howtostayaliveinthewilderness.com), good brand name potential, a .com and let’s even add that it has a few pages.
I would price this at $1,000.
Now if I developed that page, added more content, had rankings, had traffic come to the page and made profit, say several $1,000 a month, I would value this at $50,000.
See how much difference a profitable page makes? And why wouldn’t it? Any page that is already banking is going to give any potential buyer that gold mine impression.
5) Content value counts.
More content = more traffic.
More traffic = more possibilities to make bank.
This is why if you know about traffic generation and SEO, you can really do a little bit of work on a page and make 100x over for your efforts.
So if you have an existing page (niche page preferably), add more articles in the form of niche topics for a more added value increase. Here are tips I use to make my pages profit generating, use them too as they will only improve the value for your page/s.
6) A pretty looking page also gets more value.
Even if there’s little traffic, a page set up with things like a checkout cart, an organized menu, banners gets more value added to it. How does one make this happen, especially if they have no experience?
Simple: Install a WordPress platform to your page, you’ll find that it offers free plugins to get those things up on your page easily and you’ll find plenty of YouTube videos that go in detail on how to make those things show up on your page.
7) Does the page have an email list? If so, ka-ching!
A page that has an audience signed up to receive things like a newsletter, active sales emails is one that can be made money off consistently. It’s like a goldmine on top of another one (that other one being the page itself) and it can further improve your efforts in selling it.
Again, let’s put this into perspective:
-The same wilderness site I talked about, with a few pages that sells for $1,000.
-Then I said if I added more content and had profits, I could hit $100,000.
-Now if I add that the same page has an email list of say 10,000 subscribers with the potential to grow even more, man, we could cross $150,000 or even $200,000.
Here’s tips on email building success.
8) Is the page overall set up to run turnkey style?
No buyer wants to purchase a page that that they then have to redo, clean up and fix, they generally want to buy something that works on it’s own and requires very little if any maintenance. So if your page that you’re looking to sell is easy to maintain and the buyer knows this, they will only be more likely to get it.
Now I have said in the past that I am not a big fan of turnkey websites, because generally, they do come with the issue of fixing it up and having to “restructure” the whole thing. So the less you make this an issue for your buyer, the better it’ll be for you.
Furthermore, if the worst case scenario comes about and the buyer has to fix a lot
9) Is there good history with the said page?
Has it ever been Google slapped? Has the page ever had to deal with lawsuits or had a bad history at any point? If not, GREAT, you have a fresh page waiting to go, if so, I would re-consider putting it up on auction or any other form of selling because it can lead to buyer’s remorse and a lot of trouble for you.
Never sell a website that has violated Google rules of SEO (black hat). This is an important example and thing to kep in mind.
10) Can you provide evidence that the page is successful?
Keep a memo, screenshots and generally proof that your page that is selling is actually doing well.
-Is it making money? Provide proof.
-Is it getting traffic? Provide proof.
-Does it have an email list? Provide proof.
Anything and everything that shows the buyer this page is a goldmine will make it a very profitable sale for you in the end.
My final thoughts:
Websites can sell as much as physical businesses sell for and these above tips will certainly raise the value of it if you do it right. At the same time, you have to understand that on the other side of things is the actual buyer and they are NOT looking to get anything that will give them problems, they want a guaranteed, profit generating page and it’s only fair that you give them such a thing.
With each of the above tips I have provided, think of your page that you’re looking to get money out of it as something which if you keep adding more and more of the above tips to, you are only increasing it’s value more and more, perhaps even multiplying it.
Where to put up the site for sale:
My main recommendation will be Flippa, because they are great at organizing both parties, putting your page up for auction and giving you a good platform and wide space of potential customers with a lot of money to see and prove that you have a very profitable page waiting for them.
Want to learn how to create profitable pages that you can then sell?
There’s people who do this for a living, buy domain name after domain name, fill it up with content, get it going well on a profit level, then sell it on places like Flippa. You can do this too but the best recommendation I have is to do it when you have a great understanding of the online business world.
Certainly the tips I gave you above are going to be huge parameters to increase the sale of a page, but you have to understand how to do it on your own first before you engage in this. If you already do, then these tips will only help. If not, you will need more than those 10 tips.
Now I personally have chosen the route of keeping any profit generating page I make, because I have sentimental value for it and I know I can grow it to be a nest for me at anytime with the knowledge I already have.
But with this same type of knowledge, I can always go the other route and start selling it, and they will all have most if not all of the 10 tips above, and it will help me have a huge payday for it. You can do this too if you follow my tips.
Update: Man sells website for over $10,000 following the same types of tips I use above!
An awesome coincidence just took place. Today I was reading a blog post from the platform I recommend above and on it a man was talking about a 2 year old website he recently sold (on Flippa) to make a healthy 5 figure payday. Now I can right away tell you that this person used the same tactics I recommended above because we both come from the same educational background when it comes to building up pages and creating businesses out of them.
Here is his full blog post I recommend taking a look at:
People, this is an industry and people can make amazing profits out of their pages if they follow simple steps to build them up. Now certainly, depending on how much potential money your page is worth is proportionally related to how much you work on it as well as how much you let potential buyers know about this.
When you truly know the worth of the page and work on it enough to be worth that amount, you can really make a living building and selling websites.