The stock and foreign exchange markets are widely lauded as great platforms for day traders or “flippers,” essentially people who buy and sell in a short period of time in order to make a quick profit.
However, these aren’t the only industries where flippers make quick sales to earn extra dollars: responsive websites and domain names are uniquely valuable when presented to the right persons.
Thousands of people make money buying and selling websites and thanks to the (relatively) low starting capital, anyone can get in on it and make a profit.
Far too many people operate online businesses with low-standard websites, and some people with high traffic are failing to monetize their platforms by neglecting the most basic elements of marketing. Since everybody operating an e-commerce website requires regular flow of traffic and social media engagement, it creates a vacuum for popular domain names in virtually all industries.
As a smart investor, you would need to purchase a low-ranking website, set up affiliate marketing, a good AdWords campaign, optimize, monetize, and upsell for maximum profit.
Why should I buy a website?
There are distinct advantages to flipping websites: for instance, you don’t have to establish any major audience or wait for months while major search engines go about indexing the site.
Basic link exchange can get even the most poorly managed website a position in the search engines. It might not be a top ten result on Google but it will be a result that you can optimize and improve.
Another reason why it makes sense to purchase mature websites (over 12 months old) is that you get to avoid the Google sandbox. Even with good content and the highest number of incoming links, all new websites have to go through a filter that makes it extremely difficult to rank highly.
Strategies in acquiring and flipping websites
The goal is to locate a website that is under-performing –- and clearly has a high potential for growth –- so that you can revamp it and sell it for a profit.
Ideally you should attempt to find e-commerce websites that sell a product or service that is acquiring a large market and still has potential for growth: and the current site owners are failing because they haven’t yet identified or implemented any effective marketing strategies in order to cash in on the new market.
In theory, you can make quick changes to the website (assuming you have a working knowledge of SEO) and put it up for sale at a premium before the industry becomes saturated.
E-commerce is a highly competitive market due to the low barriers to entry, and so in order to make profits consistently by flipping websites you really need to have your finger on the pulse of the web.
This means staying informed on what’s new and identifying business opportunities early enough so that you can make decent profits. Imagine a few years ago if you purchased mp3.com or blog.com; in both cases the URL is of significant value today and for you to identify potential trends early enough, it could potentially set you up to make a very handsome profit.
Buying the website
To find good websites you will need to search deep into the web away from the first couple of pages on Google. Ignore sites with popular keywords and high rankings as these would be very expensive — but keep in mind that some industries with low competition can toss out “bad” websites that rank relatively high on Google, and you can find potential there.
Once you locate a good website that meets all your criteria, the next step is to investigate its history.
You need to check backlinks and if the website already has an active community (such as helpdesk, chat rooms, forums, etc.) learn more about what goes on there.
Use web tools such as Alexa Rankings to check the website’s statistics and also investigate the heading, keyword density, structure of the links, domain names, and find out whether the website has had any penalties levied on by Google.
There are literally dozens of websites that allow you to do a quick history check online to identify sites with a bad history. Just search online for “check Google ban” or “Google banned checker” and you will find good tools to use.
Once you get started, experience and business instinct will make it easy to identify good (or in this case “bad”) responsive websites that you can fix up and sell quickly. Also you can gather more information from people already flipping websites to learn how to avoid potential pitfalls.
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Originally published at www.bookmark.com on November 25, 2016.