Flippa Seller Showcase – Happiest Camper Blog

Flippa Seller Showcase – Happiest Camper Blog

Happiest Camper is a blog about creating the happiest life in any space. It currently receives 66,978 page views and 46,204 unique visits per month and generates considerable revenue through Mediavine and Amazon Affiliates. Content includes tutorials and step-by-step instructions on furniture makeovers, renovating an RV and other projects — from sewing and gardening to raising animals. The business is currently for sale on Flippa and we interviewed the owner in the video below. 

We currently have 92 articles on the site. A seller could easily continue to add to these and create more evergreen content. 

Watch the full interview below and click here to see the business listing on Flippa. 

Flippa Seller Showcase – Established Sports Publication

Flippa Seller Showcase – Established Sports Publication

This week we caught up with Derek Hanson, the owner of an 11-year-old sports publication that is currently for sale on Flippa

 

How does this sports publication make money? What are the current revenue streams?

Our primary income stream is from advertisements.  We monetize our traffic using traditional display advertising and also do a large amount of direct selling of native advertisements and sponsored posts.  In addition, we also earn affiliate income from various online sports streaming partners.

 

How did this business which is over 10 years old come about?

The business grew out of my personal blog.  I found success with the design and marketing of my blog and decided to offer my services to other sports bloggers.  This “network” of sites that I managed eventually grew into something quite substantial. Today, these sites are all grouped together under thesportsdaily.com, which has become a legitimate sports media outlet with major partners such as USA Today.

 

Due to our strong collection of organic backlinks and authority in the sports space, the articles that we produce rank well in search engines and bring in a substantial amount of new visitors.  Our ad buyers find us organically as well and we get between 20-25 new inbound inquiries daily from advertisers looking to purchase space on our site.

What marketing channels are most profitable for the business?

We do not actively market the site or pay for traffic.  Our belief is that quality content will draw an audience and we focus on putting together the best publication that we can each day.  We’ve seen our audience numbers go 4x in the past year without a marketing budget, so our commitment to our content has paid off.  

 

How does the business acquire new customers/readers?

Due to our strong collection of organic backlinks and authority in the sports space, the articles that we produce rank well in search engines and bring in a substantial amount of new visitors.  Our ad buyers find us organically as well and we get between 20-25 new inbound inquiries daily from advertisers looking to purchase space on our site.

 

How big is your current team? How many people does it take to run this online publication?

The site is primarily a two-man operation.  I handle the business aspects of the site, while our editor-in-chief oversees the content.  We have a staff of around 80 freelancers who also produce content for us and are paid on a revenue share basis.

 

What opportunities are there for a prospective buyer?

This is a proven business that has been consistently profitable for over a decade.  The site runs lean with minimal overhead. We have built up a tremendous amount of search authority.  Our ability to rank well goes beyond simply driving traffic and could be a strong foundation for large affiliate sales.  We have only begun to scratch the surface of affiliate sales this past year and we have seen big returns with minimal efforts. What’s the reason for selling the business? I am reaching a point in my personal life where I would like more time to spend with family and pursue other hobbies.   The site does not take a large time commitment to manage, but I have a very busy day job that I am committed to. While the site is a very nice revenue generator and secondary income, I can’t buy myself more time and would be willing to step away from the site for the right buyer and situation.

 

You can view this business listing here. 

Buy and Sell Websites – I Spent $35,700 on Sites – What Did I Learn?

Buy and Sell Websites – I Spent $35,700 on Sites – What Did I Learn?

Authour bio: Stacy Caprio

Stacy is an entrepreneur who has bought and sold several profitable websites, and learned a lot of lessons along the way. Her background is in online marketing and one of her favorite things in the world is helping websites and companies grow.


 

I was trapped.Or at least I felt trapped. Anxious. Smothered.

Sitting in a spacious white cubicle, in a beautiful office complex, inside a building filled with free coffee and tea, sunlight streaming in nearby windows and friendly coworkers stopping by to chat.

I may have looked free to any onlooker, but inside I knew the truth.

There was an invisible chain hooking me to my cubicle, 5 days a week, 8:30am to 5:30pm, and it didn’t matter how much value I provided, or how much work I did, all that mattered was that I sit in my chair during that entire time every day, every week, and every year.

If I did not stay seated that entire time, I would not have any money to live on.

I could not even walk outside, other than on my lunch break, without attracting unwanted attention.

All I could think about was how to break free, but nothing I tried was working.

One of my favorite past-times was, and still is, reading income-report blogs and how other people make money online. One day I was reading a blog post about website investing, and it clicked.

I thought, why not?

I had already tried to start several sites on my own but none were making any money. I wanted to try buying one that was already working and then build on it.

My thought process was, let’s give it a try and see if we can build on an already successful and profitable site and learn to make an income like all my favorite online bloggers are already doing.

I’ll take you through the lessons I’ve learned from buying 4 sites for a total of $35,700, all purchased through Flippa.

My current working view, in large part thanks to Flippa, I’m no longer inside of a fluorescently-lit cubicle, instead able to work outside on my balcony in the heart of Chicago.

 

Lessons Learned From Buying Websites 

 

Good judgment and experience can come from making mistakes yourself, which I have done, and is where my experience comes from.

It can also come from reading about other’s mistakes, and avoiding them, and then reading about other’s successes, and emulating them.

My hope is that you can learn from my failures, but also my successes, in website buying and selling.

 

Avoid my Mistakes: How I Lost Money Buying Sites

 

1. Never trust data unless you verify it

 

I had just bought my first site and I was more excited than I could remember since Christmas morning when I was a little kid.

The seller had listed the site as making $350/ month, and I had paid him only $1,300 for it.

Of course, it was too good to be true.

If a site is really making $350/month, no one in their right mind would ever sell it for only $1,300, so that should have been red flag number one for me right there.

At a minimum, a site making $350 profit a month would be going for 20X $350, around $7,000 or more, depending on what the site owner was looking for.

The mistake I made buying this site was not only ignoring the price red flag, but going into the deal with blind faith and trust without even attempting to verify any analytics or revenue. 

 

Flippa has a great Google Analytics traffic verification feature and a great Google Adsense revenue verification feature, and after that first purchase, I now never even consider a looking at a site unless the seller has enabled both forms of Flippa verification.

Additionally, I now always request access to the site’s Google Analytics as well as proof of income including video screenshares and income screenshots.

I also use something I call the common sense test.

In the common sense test I combine Google Analytics, average RPMs and conversion rates to determine what the income numbers should be if the site owner is telling the truth. Then I compare the common sense estimates to the numbers the site owner provides and see if they are in the same ballpark.

Learn from my blind trust mistake and always verify traffic and revenue before purchasing a site.

Not everyone is an honest fairy God-mother and some people will try to cheat you out of your money.

 

2. Don’t buy out of desperation

 

When I was ready to buy my second website, I was desperate for another income stream.

My life may have looked nice and comfortable from the outside, but I was anxious and desperate to start having more freedom.

This desperation led me to spend a lot of money on my second site.

I had a lot of confidence because I had verified the site’s revenue, the lesson I learned from failed site purchase #1.

My newfound revenue-verification confidence combined with my desperation lead me to spend a lot of money, $10K, on a high-revenue site without really thinking about if the business model was sustainable.

The first few months were amazing and I was even able to more than double the monthly revenue. I was ecstatic, to say the least.

My happiness was short-lived.

The site traffic plummeted when the “fad-site” I had bought turned out to be a short term trend based on an app, something I could easily have spotted if I had been buying out of a calm, measured mindset instead of my overly confident and desperate mindset, possibly the worst mindset to make any decision in life with.

Learn from my lesson and never buy out of desperation. Or worse, desperation combined with over-confidence.

 

Copy My Successes: How I Made Money Buying Sites

 

3. Test Ad Networks & Make Partnerships

 

My third site was my first success. You didn’t think I’d give up after two expensive failures, did you?

I bought it for less than what I’d paid for site #2, because I was still wary that anything could happen.

It was a great deal I found on Flippa with a price of only 20X the monthly profit.

Quickly I was able to test different ad networks and monetization methods until I found ones that were making around double the original.

Then an ad network rep reached out to me and wanted to advertise on the site for a flat monthly fee that was more than double what I had already doubled the site to, so of course I accepted.

For the next few months revenue was 4X what I had bought the site for, since I was still running the better ad network and had an ad partnership that was paying me a flat fee monthly.

This had worked out better than I could have ever imagined, and I made back what I had paid within 10 months, and was making pure profit each month after that.

 

4. Keep going when you find something that works

 

My fourth site I used all the principles I learned from my previous mistakes and successes.

I verified the analytics and revenue before buying.

I was not completely desperate, not overly-confident, and used as much common sense as I could, all keys to making a well-informed and level-headed purchase.

I used the ad networks I knew already worked and leveraged my ad partnerships.

Using these approaches, I was able to buy a second successful site, my fourth website purchase total, from Flippa, and build on its success.

This site I also made back the purchase price within 10 months and have been able to grow revenue substantially since then.

The key on my fourth site was buying an online site that was already successful and that I could build on by producing more content.

I worked with adding to what it already had and was able to grow the revenue that way.

The lesson to learn here is you don’t have to start from scratch if you’re looking to own a profitable business or website. You can buy something that is already working and then build on it.

Even more important, once you find something that is already working, run with it and help it grow. To do this, you can produce more content and help it grow in the direction it is already growing successfully to increase profit and revenue over the long-term.  

Hopefully this website buying and selling article helps you avoid some of the mistakes I’ve personally made as well as helps you emulate some of the successes I’ve also been able to have.

 

I am forever grateful to Flippa for being the catalyst that helped me transition from being the girl at the beginning of this article who felt trapped and chained in her cubicle, to the girl I am now, living in my dream apartment overlooking the bean and Lake Michigan in Chicago, with the freedom to set my own hours and run outside by the lake any time of any day without feeling even a little bit guilty.

Let us know your own website buying and selling mistakes and successes in the comments below.

The big increase in women-owned online businesses

The big increase in women-owned online businesses

The trajectory is clear. There is a surge in female business entrepreneurship. However, the finer details reveal a more complex pattern than appears at first impression. The 2018 American Express economic study ‘State of Women-Owned Businesses Report’, presented an exciting picture of the rise in female business ownership. It reported that in the US there are almost 2,000 new businesses being founded by women each day and that women now own around 40% of businesses overall. However, the devil is in the detail, and in stark contrast the highly regarded tech industry reviewer TechCrunch reports that only 17% of all business startups have a female founder, and that proportion has not grown significantly over the past 6 years. A glass ceiling also applies to female-owned businesses which have been backed by venture capital investment. So, what explains the apparent disparity in these reports?

The highest proportion of women-owned enterprises are in the small business and non-tech business sectors. Since the 1970s the number of all women-owned businesses in the US has increased by a staggering multiple of more than 30 times, and importantly the employment created by those businesses has increased 40-fold. Yet they still account for only 6% of total workforce employment and under 5% of all business revenues.

While there was considerable growth over the past decade in the proportion of businesses generating more than $1 million dollars per annum in revenue which are female-owned, women-owned businesses still remain predominantly small ones, with businesses generating more than $1 million dollars per annum accounting for only 1.7% of all female-owned businesses. For proper understanding of the statistics it’s important to clarify that where a business involves partnerships and multiple owners/founders, the classification of female-owned and female-founded is defined as at least 50% of the ownership is female. In this context TechCrunch clarifies that only one-third of female-founded businesses are entirely female-owned and led. 

So, notwithstanding the undeniable impression of a dramatic improvement in the overall level of female business ownership, the detail is complex and masks the reality that women are still under-represented in both online businesses and tech-based startups and particularly in VC-backed businesses. 

This is so notably the case that in 2018 a mere 2% of all VC investment funding for all startup businesses in the US went to enterprises with all-female founders. The reasons for this are clear. Firstly, the vast majority of all-female businesses are too small to attract venture capital. Secondly, investment decision-making in venture capital still remains so male-dominated that over 90% of those who allocate investment funding in the US are male. However, the consequent financial favoring of male enterprises is arguably based primarily on unconscious affinities and informal, unintentionally-gendered business networks rather than any deliberate bias.

As a potential change driver, the present under-representation of women in VC-backed businesses actually presents a massive opportunity. The current time seems poised at a critical turning point for a substantial and sustained increase in female entrepreneurship in online businesses. In February this year, Forbes published a report on the many reasons for women now being more motivated than ever to start up or buy into their own businesses, instead of being content to remain an employee of someone else’s business. 

Multiple large-scale surveys consistently establish that women are motivated to start their own businesses in the pursuit of freedom, financial independence and personal fulfillment. For many women, independent entrepreneurship is also a way of circumventing the glass ceiling they have encountered in their professional employment.

More and more women are recognizing unmet service and product needs in society and developing innovative solutions to create and capture a lucrative and professionally rewarding market niche. 

 

Key enablers for the trend to gather momentum

Increased Access to Business Finance

The National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) urges women to make greater use of network support opportunities including Small Business Administration support and loan programs and partner networks such as SCORE and the Women’s Business Center. Networking, including online support networks, can provide valuable encouragement, advice and practical resources. This can create access to existing networks of ‘angel investors’ who are specifically focused on female entrepreneurship – or at least consciously predisposed to financing women-founded, owned and led businesses. 

Greater female access to business startup capital is poised to be a powerful game-changer. As this development gains traction it may re-focus the targets of larger scale venture capital financing which, as stated, is currently deflected from female-founded and female-led business ventures.

Effective Mentoring for Women in Business

Successful established female entrepreneurs can provide crucially important role modeling and a powerful source of practical advice and guidance for aspiring and novice business founders and also for women who buy an existing online business with the intention of managing it well and developing it further. Female mentoring networks are thriving, widespread and very easy to connect with. They can be expected to result in real and sustained improvement in women’s participation in all kinds of business ventures, maybe particularly in the online and startup environments. Male mentors have a valuable role to play too and many women in business have found the supposed boys’ club is actually far more open, supportive and collaborative than it’s sometimes perceived to be. 

Time to Seize the Day

For women, this is the greatest of times to create your own business space and join the growing community of female online business leaders. The necessary success factors are in place, the momentum is gathering, and the opportunity awaits right here and now.

 

Flippa Seller Showcase – SU Hotels for couples

Flippa Seller Showcase – SU Hotels for couples

Traditionally, it has always been difficult for unmarried couples to book hotels in India owing to cultural and religious reasons. Stay Uncle, a leading hotel booking in India provides hotel stays for unmarried couples and those within the LGBTQ community. The 4-year-old business has been a strong advocate for LGBTQ rights. Through thought-provoking marketing, Stay Uncle has worked to break down prejudices and discrimination that the community often face. The business is currently for sale on Flippa and we interviewed the owner Blaze in the video below. 

We are operating in about 45 cities at the moment in India. These ‘cities’ are large metropolitan areas and Stay Uncle is not available in any smaller towns across India. This in itself presents a huge opportunity for a prospective buyer.

Watch the full interview below and click here to see the business listing on Flippa. 

The Rise of Alternative Domains

The Rise of Alternative Domains

Max Guerin founder of Claim.Club a domainers club which has celebrated its 10th-anniversary last year and over $1 million dollars in profit. His new venture D.NA is a premium domain boutique aimed at Blockchain entrepreneurs and other crypto startups. Max is most notably known as the “domain hacker” for having registered hundreds of (now premium) domain hacks at registration fee as did the .com pioneers in the 1990s.


 

Some domain investors have been complaining about new gTLDs (new general top-level domains) seeing in them a threat to their almighty dot-com and while the latter has not yet been dethroned as “the king extension” the competition has definitely been felt.

As an investor, you often hear the phrase competition is good and should be supported so why should it be any different from the domain industry? It’s not like .com stands for “communist” (it’s “commercial” dummies) although when you listen to people like Rick Schwartz who calls himself “Domain King” (why not “The Father of Domains” while he’s at it) it sometimes feels like it.  

 

Yet this phenomenon is not new and not limited to new gTLDs. I see in the rise of these “new” domains something I saw before with domain hacks — the best example to date is musical.ly which grew a billion dollar business on a .ly domain name before being acquired by Chinese giant TikTok — and more particularly with ccTLDs (country code top-level domains) like .io .tv .am .fm .to .ai & .et which have throughout the years proven themselves to be reliable alternative domains for their users and valuable niches for investors like myself who are not afraid of the dark and “obscure extensions” as the old .com guardians like to call them.

These smart extensions or alternative domains as I prefer to call them because they actually stand for something other than the generic “commercial” word or the countries they are associated with. They also offer many available domains and have gained in recognition and momentum thanks to their rather wide adoption by:

 

  • i/o startups
  • online “AM” & “FM” radios
  • web TVs
  • Torrents & crypto
  • the artificial intelligence or “AI” community
  • the soon-to-be extra-terrestrial community (E.T. phone home)

 

Let’s take the .to extension of the Kingdom of Tonga which as long been known for its sense of humour in forbidding offensive domain registrations but more so for its association with torrent websites and the crypto community.

The cryp.to domain has been online for as far back as 1997(!) and was registered by a German cryptographer. It’s for sale for $1 million for those interested (I asked). While Nakamo.to short for Satoshi Nakamoto (the creator of Bitcoin) is used by a Berlin-based Blockchain startup and Tether.to hosts the cryptocurrency of the same name. It can also be used to create meaningful phrase domains like link.to or tips.to. Adding additional subfolders you can create SEO friendly branded short URLs like link.to/flippa, tips.to/invest, etc. It’s also worth noting that the Tonic.to the registry and Toronto-based Register.TO have been providing free whois anonymous privacy many years before GDPR or why it has been a favorite of torrent sites and the cryp-to community (crypto strands for “secret” in greek).  Register.TO officially partnered with Tonic.to and the Kingdom of Tonga in 2012 to provide the .to TLD to Toronto and the rest of the world, to help increase its global use and popularity. Also worth noting Register.TO also provides emoji domain support and .to domain name back ordering.

Since a few years now the .AI registry has seen an explosion in the number of domains registered and has become the de facto extension for AI startups like the Microsoft-acquired Bons.ai (a domain hack of “Bonsai”) or Nuro.ai which has raised $940 million for its AI car delivery service. Let’s just say they can afford the $100 yearly renewal cost.

And the last comer (or “comet” like its top-level tld .com.et) .et which thanks to the recent liberalization of its registry Ethio telecom could soon position itself as the next big thing: space exploration. It also offers amazing domain hacks like intern.et plan.et etc.

 

Domain sales have also gone up despite not being widely enough reported on by the traditional domain press.

The startup-loving .io has been a very lucrative niche for Flippa sellers (Meet One of Flippa’s Most Successful .io Domain Sellers) with mix.io sold for $40,000 and cloud.io for $45,000 while the backorder service park.io have prided themselves to making over $150,000/month mostly catching .io domains in the British Indian Ocean Territory and selling them to the best bidder.

On the .to side alternative.to topped $11,100 late in march and au.to hacked its way at $7,200 earlier this month.

The monthly .ai auctions ran by the registry have resulted in tens of thousands of dollars in extra revenue for Anguilla and its economy.

Two .ET’s di.et sold for $10,000 and w.et for $25,000 have made their way to the top charts on Flippa for the years 2016-2017 introducing Ethiopia as a new Eldorado.

Tuvalu’s own .tv stands out with the most sales over $10,000 and five over $100,000 according to Namebio.com.

Only .am really made it big from the .am / .fm duo with the sale of the single character domains 9.am for a record $169,000 seconded by 6.am for $45,000.

 

The internet turned 30 this year and counts over 4 billion users making the top 3 gTLDs (.com .net .org) totally saturated with domains. As a 30-year-old myself if I learned anything is that I want to have more choices not less so I welcome and celebrate new (and older) extensions that have yet to show us their true potential thus to disrupt the domain world for years to come.