How to Spot a Diamond in The Rough on Flippa.
Well, we all make mistakes right? The best way to overcome them is to learn from them.
This week I made a mistake, that mistake was hesitation. I hesitated, it potentially lost me a good website. I missed out on a deal that could have made me some good income in the future… with a bit of hard work.
I’m going to show you what to look for when buying a website on Flippa. I’ll explain why you shouldn’t hesitate if you think you can make something work.
What I mean by this if you find something that you think will work and you have a plan then just do it. But, don’t take my advice and start buying things if you have no experience in that department :), Just wanted to clear that up so this isn’t taken the wrong way.
What I’m Going To Cover
- What to look for on Flippa
- Spotting that diamond in the rough
- What type of research you should do
- What to look for when looking at website stats
- Finding issues with load times
- My plan that I had in place
- Video version below article
I scroll through Flippa on a regular basis, looking for sites that have potential. So far no luck. This week I finally found one called Maine Coon, It’s a cat website.
I was very interested in buying it, I made up my mind and I wanted it. I then thought to myself “do I really need another website… do I have the time?”.
I then went to bed and when I woke up it was sold. I hesitated even though I was 100% certain I was going to buy it.
I’m going to give you a rundown on why I wanted this website. Flippa is full of people selling dead websites. Take this information and use it to help you on Flippa if you use it. I actually have a friend who sold a domain on Flippa for 17k so it can be a great money maker.
So you’ve found a website you want to buy. The most important thing you can do is research, this in itself can save you a headache down the road.
The First thing I look at is the domain name. What are you looking for.. something catchy? something simple? In this case, I was happy with the Domain because it had my main keyword in it. EMD as we call it.
Now to the stats. What type of traffic does it have? is it consistent? Is it organic? Organic is the best traffic. For those of you who don’t know its search engine traffic. This is traffic that has come naturally.
If you look at this picture you can see that it’s had a steady increase in traffic since it started and it’s 74% organic. The bounce rate is also good
I also take a look at the bouche rate, I’m happy with this. Most of the websites I come across on Flippa are 80%+
Now just have a look through all the info and make sure everything else checks out ok.
I would recommend asking for a Buy Now if it doesn’t have one. Why? It can help you in two ways.
1: The seller puts up a Buy Now that’s lower than what the websites actually worth. You then get a chance to buy it before the big players come in and start bidding it up.
2: The seller put up a Buy Now that isn’t in your price range so you can stop there… or you could have a chance and bid hoping to get it for cheaper. Usually, the buy now is close to the reserve.
Checking the site speed now can save you time in the long run. I wanted to check to see if the website had any major bottleneck slowing it down.
I went over to GT Metrix and ran a test. The website loaded in 4.3 seconds, that’s slow but a simple fix. Click on the “Timeline” tab and you will find the information you need.
Most of the problems in the red box are images. The images haven’t been optimized for the website. Wrong image size and no compression etc. This is a simple fix so nothing to worry about. Remember this is just for the homepage. If you really want to dig deep you can check every individual post and page.
The problem in the blue is Adsense…. this slows things down. This isn’t an issue for me, I don’t plan to use AdSense to start with.
You can get restricted access to the Webmasters Account. Ask the seller then provide him/her with an E-mail that is @Gmail. If the seller says no then think about not buying the website, they could have something to hide.
You can find some good information, I wanted to see what keywords it was ranking for. This gave me a good indication of what it’s ranking for.
The main income on this website right now is AdSense, in my opinion, it’s not enough. Unless you just want it for a micro niche website, you would have to look at other ways you can make money with this website and probably do some more backlinking to increase traffic more.
These stats below indicate to me that I shouldn’t rely on Adsense for income from this website.
I see a lot of Lows and low CPCs so I wouldn’t use Adsense…. But I also see some good stats so I would think about using AdSense once I get some good traffic for a little extra income.
I would suggest having a plan for the website you’re interested in before you buy it. I’ll outline the plan I had for this website.
- Grow the website
- Ditch the AdSense for now, It can be unattractive if I’m trying to grow a site.
- Fix the speed issues
- Tweak the theme and sidebar
- Start a Facebook and grow it
- Outsource my articles and upload then 3-2 times a week.
- Sign up to pet forums and start posting
- Build Facebook
I would post on forums for at least a month and see how much interest I can get. At this stage, combined with organic and forums views I should have a good flow.
Monetizing the site. This is how I would make my income.
- Amazon products
- Pet training ebook
- Large pet store affiliates. I checked and found 3 decent ones.
- Create a platform for adoption agencies to list their services for a small monthly fee
- Sell T-spring campaigns for the Facebook fans. Boosting campaigns with adverts if needed… bringing you new visitors at the same time
If you come across something online that you have an interest in then do some research. If everything checks out, you have a plan and you think it can benefit you then dive right in and execute that plan.
This article is the basic research I would do, sometimes I dig even deeper making sure my plan and goals are going to succeed. Starting a blog from scratch can sometimes be hard so this is another good way to kickstart things.