Every month, I detail what actions I’m taking to develop this portfolio of websites and what kinds of revenue and expenses come with it. The goal of these websites is to supplement my regular employment income with multiple streams of passive income; money that I can earn while I’m at work or asleep without me having to interact.
This month I’ve been taking some serious steps to close the chapter on one of my biggest niche websites. Not only will the immediate income be great, but I’m also very interested to learn more about how buying/selling websites actually works, and what steps you should be taking as you develop the website to best position it for a future sale.
And so with that, here is what happened in November.
Niche Website Income Report – November 2015
Here is my income and expense report for the month:
Here’s a closer look at my income sources for the month:
- Amazon = $155
- Clickbank = $274
- Google Adsense = $238
- Web Hosting = $0
- Personal Capital = $0
- Private Advertising = $0
None to report this month!
Putting NS1 up for Sale!
Just like I was teasing above and mentioned at the end of last month’s update, the big news for this month is that I’ve been taking steps to put NS1 up for sale. Though it’s not officially listed yet, I’m pretty far into the process and it won’t be long now.
Why sell this website?
Why am I selling a website that I’ve been developing for the past 3 years?
For a lot of reasons:
Like the California gold rush of the pioneer days, I still believe that when it comes to websites, there is still “a lot of gold in the hills” to be found. Translation: Websites are still relatively new, and you can still make a lot of fast and easy money simply by building, owning, and selling them.
BUT … I’ve always been skeptical about how long this will last. I remember back in 2011 when I first started blogging, there were a lot of “glory stories” about bloggers like JD Roth from Get Rich Slowly who had sold their websites for SUBSTAINTAL amounts of money (some of them in the seven figure range! Just check out this list and it will make your jaw drop!
However, lately, you just don’t really hear about that as much anymore. Perhaps investors have turned to other forms of marketing or maybe those valuations were bloated. At either rate, the value and opportunity for a lucrative sale at the level of website I’m capable of building seems to be dwindling down each year.
So then, I have to ask myself (realistically): How long is this gravy train going to last?
Would I be a lot smarter to “cash in my chips” right now while the getting is good, as opposed to waiting it out and potentially seeing my website dwindle down to next to nothing in value?
What about the draw and significance of the website itself?
Every day Google changes who ranks first and who ranks last. So even though NS1 has been on the first page of Google for a long time, how long it’s not? (How long before ANY of the websites I’ve built are no longer on the first page of Google anymore?) What happens when the traffic drops to less than 1,000 visitors per month? When the revenue drops below $100 per month?
Again, if I truly feel I’m at the peak (or even the tail end of the peak) for my journey with this website, then wouldn’t it be better to capture 18-30 months worth of income right now in one big up-front payment rather than to gamble and possibly have $0 in revenue in 12 months?
Accepting that this website may have peaked (in terms of what I can do with it) has been one of the most frustrating things about this decision and the journey overall. No one likes to admit a failure or that they don’t know what to do next. Yet, when I look at the stats for the site and all the attempts I’ve made over the past 12 months to resuscitate the website, the opportunity for me simply isn’t there.
Like I mentioned in my “should I write an ebook or start a new website” post, at this point I’d like to instead invest my time and energy into a new project, and start with a clean slate (lots more to come on that project as I develop it).
Perhaps the site would be in much better hands of someone that was able to invigorate it with new content, new backlinks, and new opportunities.
Plus, let’s be real … getting a nice up-front chunk of change is always nice!
Selling a Website:
So how does one sell a website?
I’ve been looking around the Internet and considered a couple of different options. Flippa is probably the biggest option; but there are a lot of challenges to using a platform like that.
Instead, I’ve been talking with the folks over at the Empire Flippers.
When the process is complete, I plan to write a review about my whole experience. But for now, here’s a few details as to “why” and how it’s going:
In case you’ve never heard of them, the Empire Flippers is a group that used to build niche websites. But eventually they found that they had a much more profitable business model selling them. So they sold their niche website inventory and started brokering websites for other people too.
Unlike Flippa, they do a complete “vetting” of a website before it gets listed to make sure it’s legitimate (and not a scam). This is a big problem with websites on Flippa. By doing this , the shoppers on Empire Builders have more trust in their listings, and therefore they can command a much higher price for the site.
Now, here’s the part that stings: They charge a $297 listing fee AND take 15% of the sale price for commission. But, when you consider that they might get you 6 to 12 times more in sale price for your site than if you tried to sell it on your own, it might be a cost well worth paying.
Plus they are full service. Empire Flippers will put together all the documentation that buyers are looking for (revenue statements, screen shots, etc). AND they will also handle the migration of the website. That’s actually a big benefit for me, since I have no idea how to do this myself.
After the listing goes live and the website sells, I’m sure I’ll have a lot more details to share. So until then, wish me luck!
Readers – When did you know it was time to close the chapter on one of your website projects? Did you end up selling the site? Why or why not? How many of you have sold a website either through Flippa or Empire Flippers?
Featured image courtesy of Dylan Meconis | Flickr