Seller showcase: Dion Lovrecich, oktoberfest.com.au – eCommerce business for sale on Flippa

Seller showcase: Dion Lovrecich, oktoberfest.com.au – eCommerce business for sale on Flippa

This week we caught up with Dion Lovrecich, who along with his sister Andrea, are the owners of business oktoberfestcostumes.com.au. The business is currently listed on Flippa. Here is the full conversation below. 

Background of the business 

Tell us a little bit about the background of oktoberfest.com.au? I understand your sister is involved in the business in some way?

Yes she is and we can’t believe how this has taken off! Within three months it’s doing $60,000 in revenue and has already made $14,000 in profit. This is my sister Andrea’s business and I’m helping her sell it. She’s had ten years experience in costumes but always in a bricks and water capacity. I told her she had to take it into an online capacity and I was open to helping her since I have worked in digital marketing for years. Within just a couple of months, it absolutely took off and we are still getting sales even though October has finished now.

 

That’s probably a big question and tell us more about your customer base? What do you sell on oktoberfest costumes.com.au?

We sell a traditional German costume with the ladies wearing a dirndl and gents a lederhosen. These costumes are actually used all year round which many people don’t realise. In truth, this a highly seasonal business and we did more than 800 transactions over the last two and a half months. The thing is, customers still come through, but if I’m being honest it is a seasonal business. It has achieved huge growth and the potential is there for someone to build the business with other types of costumes or for a buyer to attach the business to something else.

 

The customer base and how this was grown

 

There are customers coming through thick and fast from the October period, in celebration of Oktoberfest of course. As you have said, the opportunity for the new owner is to obviously take it on in its current form but is it also to grow this into a generalist costume business?

Yeah, it could be a generalist costume business or it could be a closer niche to German costumes or you could pick another niche entirely to get into. There is a lot of organic traffic coming through and we have used social very successfully, along with some paid advertising too. The combination of the two was such a beautiful start. Andrea and I are keen to sell it but she is torn because she wants to keep the business given the phenomenal results we have seen in the first few months. At the end of the day, we’ve decided ‘let’s do this, it’ll be good for you (Andrea)’ and hopefully, we can find the right kind of buyer. Andrea wants to pass the business onto the right buyer.  

 

The business opportunity and marketing efforts to date 

 

Fantastic, when we talk about buyers, we here at Flippa often educate buyers and tell them to make sure that they know how the business is acquiring customers. So from the perspective of Oktoberfestcostumes.com.au, how has it been so successful early on? What are your marketing methods?

You can’t be that successful without paying for traffic. If you see a website that says they don’t pay for traffic and claim to have thousands of viewers, ask them a few questions. In fact, ask the guys at Flippa, they’ll help you out with that.

 

So you guys are buying keywords around the Oktoberfest period and around no doubt the specific product units so lederhosen and dirndl. You mention social, so how has social been beneficial? What platforms have been working for you?

It has been Incredible and the cost per click has been so low. There can be a lot of industry terminology that people throw around. But, at the end of the day, the cost per acquisition/cost per sale was exceptionally low. People liked the adverts, and they were being shared a lot on Facebook and Instagram and that’s how we built the business so quickly.

 

Andrea and Dion’s business is now on Flippa and its Oktoberfestcostumes.com.au. This successful start-up is six months old and has already made $60,000 in revenue. Make sure you check this profitable listing out. 

Interview with Online Investment Expert Jeff Hunt

Interview with Online Investment Expert Jeff Hunt

We caught up with website investor and internet marketer Jeff Hunt this week. In the interview below, Jeff shares his experiences around becoming an entrepreneur, his favourite monetization methods and growing his own website portfolio.

What was your background before you started operating in the website/online business space and how did you make the switch to being your own boss?

I worked for IBM as a Project Executive, operating 9-figure outsourcing deals for Fortune 100 companies. Then I took a totally opposite direction moving my family to a small central Asian country where we served students and families in a humanitarian role.

While overseas I started some small businesses that needed websites, so I got my feet wet in the internet world for the first time. Soon I discovered that websites were not just marketing channels for brick and mortar businesses but could actually be income-generating businesses in their own right.

Seven years later when we moved back to the United States I had started generating cash flow from my websites. I decided not to reenter the corporate world, and instead to grow my online portfolio primarily through buying websites.

What prompted you to make the jump?

When I bought my first successful website – Note: my first website purchase was NOT successful – I discovered I could make a couple of thousand dollars a month from a relatively simple online business.

I didn’t know exactly how to do it at the time, but I knew that if I could make $2K per month, I could probably grow that to $10K per month. That was the magic moment that convinced me it was possible to do this full time.

What does a typical day look like for an online business investor?

I think it is different for everyone but I start every day at Panera Bread which is a coffee shop/bakery about a mile from my home.  I work from my laptop and sometimes I stay there all day, but usually, I hang out in the morning and work from my home office in the afternoon.

I don’t have an official office because I use freelancers to do all the day-to-day operational tasks. Although I’ve had websites using almost every business model, I tend to focus on content websites that are more passive.

Depending on the phase, there can be plenty of work to do, but it is almost never urgent. That gives me the flexibility to take days or even weeks off to do non-business projects. It also lets me meet with friends, family and other entrepreneurs any time during the day that they are available.

When did you first discover Flippa?

My Flippa profile says I made a purchase 9 years ago. I probably had an account before that.

What is your favourite monetization method?

I love non-transactional monetization because it doesn’t require customer service or personal selling. Display ads, lead generation and affiliate monetization methods fit these criteria.

I’ve done dropship, FBA, SaaS, eCommerce for digital products and straight services business. All have pros and cons.

What are the first three things you look for on a website?

I start with the fundamentals.

Traffic and income graphs should be flat or going up. If there are peaks and valleys, there should be good explanations for those. Age and consistency are important.

I look for inappropriate concentrations. Too much traffic from one source, too high a percentage of traffic landing on one page, too much traffic from the wrong geographies, an unusual mix of device types, concentrations of expense or revenue – all of these are potential negative signals.

There needs to be a well defined and understandable process for customer acquisition. If I don’t understand a repeatable process for getting traffic or customers, I back away.

Why do you buy websites?

I try to identify opportunities that have the potential to be held for the long term. Occasionally something will turn up that is riskier but has some strong upside potential. These deals have to come at a lower multiple to offset the risk. They typically either do well and lend themselves toward a flip, or don’t do well and hopefully at least pay for themselves before going to zero.

What are the steps you take to grow websites that you’ve recently purchased?

The quickest wins are usually in the financial realm. On the revenue side, adding entirely new monetization sources using existing traffic usually increases revenue by more than it cannibalizes. A classic example is adding display ads to a site that is monetized only with affiliate links.

You can also easily increase revenue by patching holes in the funnel. Adding upsells and downsells, optimizing conversion rates, making additional touch points to prospects and following up with existing customers can all yield revenue growth.

Another financial move is eliminating or reducing expenses. Business owners often spend money on non-critical functions or overspend on basics like webhosting or freelancer support.

Traffic improvements often take more time. Basic on-site SEO improvements can sometimes result in substantial traffic growth. Things like site speed, title optimization, heading optimization, and content updates make a difference.

How did you learn how to run and operate a website?

I learn from anywhere I can. The basics of WordPress and setting up a website were all self-taught. But I’ve taken many courses over the years to learn methods and systems. I’ve also hired coaches along the way and pay for membership in high-level mastermind groups. Spending money on mentoring and networking can help you focus and speed up success.

You’ve been focusing a lot more on teaching and coaching recently, even writing a few articles for us talking about website multiples and another discussing how to make one of your website investments passive. Do you still actively buy and sell websites or is most of your time spent helping others acquire and grow their own portfolios?

The vast majority of my time, energy and resources is spent on growing my own website portfolio. I negotiated the sale of two of my sites this morning. While I really enjoying teaching and coaching, my main focus is on growing the value of my website assets for an eventual exit.

You also have several courses and webinars over at FlipMinds. Can you tell us more about what Flipminds is?

Flipminds is a community of entrepreneurs that Sunil Jaiswal has developed over a period of more than 10 years. They are investors in property, traditional business and online businesses.

In the early days, most of the group were property investors. As online real estate became more compelling, I joined the Flipminds team to help train entrepreneurs on how to develop cash flowing assets in the world of web businesses.

Now we have an active member community, mentoring resources and training in topics like paths to Financial Freedom, Website Investing, Property Investing, Online Business and Content Website creation.

When it comes to making mistakes when buying websites, what’s one thing you wish you knew sooner?

It is natural to think that putting less capital at risk is safer than putting more capital at risk. That would be true if all businesses had the same intrinsic risk profile.

But the truth is that older, more established, higher quality online businesses are much safer investments than their less expensive but lower quality counterparts. So I would have avoided many mistakes simply by focusing on businesses with better fundamentals.

That is not to say that it is impossible to find good websites at lower price points. It is also not to say that all, or even most, larger online businesses are low risk. That isn’t true. Even very high-income sites can have attributes that make them bad bets. Websites generally have high ROIs and with those ROIs come risks that have to be accounted for and mitigated.

Compared to 5 years ago, is it easier or more difficult to find a deal when looking for a website? How does the future look for this?

It is more challenging to find underpriced deals today than it was 5 years ago. There are more buyers now and the buyer community is better educated and has more resources for making informed investment decisions.

Additionally, price levels are going up. Multiples are growing not only because more buyers are entering the market but also because website assets have attracted the interest of private equity groups, larger private investors and institutional investors.

Despite the fact that big-money investors have entered the fray, there will continue to be opportunities for buyers and sellers at every price point because there is a market for websites at every stage of size and maturity.

As technology evolves, online apps take on different forms, adapting to a variety of devices and platforms. This creates new business models, new niches and new ways to deliver online solutions that will continue to create opportunities for anyone willing to master a little corner of the market.

I am very optimistic about the marketplace for online business. Economies grow by increasing the productivity of their workforces and websites and internet technologies are key elements of that productivity growth.

 

If you want to learn more about buying an online business, you can sign up for Jeff’s free training course via Flippa here.

Jeff Hunt is an internet investor,  marketer and website owner. He actively buys and grows websites with the intent of creating multiple passive income streams, and enjoys capitalizing on internet opportunities to help others to do the same. You can learn more about Jeff and his courses here.


Seller Showcase: Madeleine Saric Dubleup – eCommerce Business for Sale on Flippa

Seller Showcase: Madeleine Saric Dubleup – eCommerce Business for Sale on Flippa

This week we spoke with Madeleine Saric, owner of Dubleup business which is currently for sale on Flippa. Here are some highlights from our conversation with her.

Can you introduce us to Dubleup and tell us how it all got started?

So Dubleup is on an online e-commerce platform and we sell tech accessories for Apple and Android products, phones, tablets, watches. Everything is on there that you can imagine, from power banks to cables and cases. The list goes on.

 

Your top seller is the credit card power bank charger, so tell us a little bit more about this?

I developed the worlds smallest power bank. It is the size of a credit card and fits into the credit card slot of your wallet. It is essentially designed to give that extra bit of charge for when you are out. That was the idea behind it, I did travel a lot and didn’t need the chunky power bank, I just needed a little bit of extra charge.

 

Let’s us back up a little bit, who are you and how did all of this come about?

I’m Madeline Saric and this came about when I was doing an internship overseas and the boss I had told me, ‘start something when you are young and you won’t regret it’. So I came back to Australia and whilst I was still studying I came up with the designs for the power bank. Working at Apple, I came to understand what consumers wanted and what was missing from the market. This is what led to the evolution of Dubleup and this small power bank. From there I started working with teams in China, R&D and engineers and coming up with the final product which is the power bank.

 

Approximately how many units of this product have you sold into the market?

Apple and Android combined we have sold tens of thousands. Apple is obviously a lot more successful and we have Apple certification as well so it is approved by Apple and supports any products that they sell.

 

Looking at your business, what is there for a potential buyer to take over?

At the moment most of the operations are outsourced, marketing, production, manufacturing etc. You as a purchaser for the business would just simply use your laptop and your phone to run the business. Everything is produced and manufactured in China. It’s a very self-sustaining business with a huge opportunity for growth in terms of building new products and investing in marketing to grow the business. You could get the product into brick and water stores and also grow the online store

 

Do you own the brand and have the ability to continue with manufacturing in China?

Yes and definitely.

 

Why are you selling Dubleup?

The first reason is that I wanted to build a business, get it to a stage where I could sell it and differentiate myself from other people. The second reason is I’m a firm believer in doing something that you absolutely love and are passionate about and as much as I love technology, I’ve lost the passion for it.

 

 

 

Madeleine Saric is the founder of eCommerce electronics business Dubleup, which is currently for sale on Flippa.

Influencer Series: Matt Raad eBusiness Institute – How to start out on Flippa

Influencer Series: Matt Raad eBusiness Institute – How to start out on Flippa

This week, Flippa CEO Blake Hutchison sat down with Matt Raad as part of our Influencer Series to discuss buying online businesses.

 

Matt is the CEO and Co Founder of eBusiness Institute and with wife Liz, they have been recognised as Australian experts in buying online businesses. Their courses help students to look for businesses that they can buy and build and their platform of choice is Flippa.

In this video interview (see below) he reveals some key insights. In referring to their live events Matt remarked about the ease of using Flippa. “When we run a live event, we love getting onto Flippa and we do it unscripted. We are pretty much guaranteed to find a good deal” (2m:34s).

What are your favourite types of businesses?

“We like sites that sell advertising and the next level (up from here) would be affiliate sites, so sites where we promote a product and then (earn money) get a commission if someone buys it.” (3m.40s). Matt also discusses Ad Sense websites and the success he’s had with those. “It’s where we started and we have made a lot of money. What we are seeing now is that where those Ad Sense sites are in good niches, there is a lot of opportunity.” (3m:15s).

Should you be interested in the subject matter?

“It’s nice to start out in your passion but the reality is you don’t need to once you know how the system works” (5m.00s).

When it comes to website audiences Matt mentions that he loves finding sites that he can drive traffic towards. “On Flippa if we can find someone that’s owned a website for years and they were really passionate about it (but couldn’t figure out how to make money out of it) and they have a bit of an audience following, that’s gold. That is what we want” (4m:28s).

Blake and Matt spoke a little about Amazon and the various business models.

Matt remarks that he’s less familiar with ecommerce but that doesn’t detract from his ability to make money from Amazon. He likes affiliate businesses. Matt gives the example of a dog products reviews website. He notes that an Amazon affiliate revenue stream, in this example, is where reviews of a particular product might convert to an interested customer. In this case, interested customers click off and buy. Where they do buy, the website owner is paid a commission. “A reviewer might do a review of a dog bed and (on that basis) say to customers, ‘BTW if you are interested in this dog bed here is where you can buy it on Amazon’” (9m.38s).” If the customer then clicks this link it is tracked and Matt is paid a commission on the sale of between 4-8%.

For more information around how Matt buys websites on Flippa and monetizes them, watch the full interview below.

Matt Raad is the CEO and Co Founder of EBusiness Institute Australia, a digital training organisation and is passionate about helping others to buy online businesses. Check Matt’s website to learn more or you can connect directly with him via Linkedin.

BuyBrandWeb Broker Interview

BuyBrandWeb Broker Interview

I’m joined here with Praveen Chidaboyina, a long time Flippa user who recently started his own brokerage. He’s now a partnered broker on Flippa and eager to help others sell their domains! Check out our interview below.

What’s your background and how did you get started on Flippa?

I used to do a full-time job as a web developer and have 5+ years of technology experience. Fortunately, I got/ created many opportunities and played different roles like Senior Web Developer, Team Lead, and Offshore Delivery Lead during my 5 years in the corporate world. I had experience working with top-notch clients like Pfizer, Mercer, Merkle, Avanade, DigitnityHealth, RideUTA (Utah Transit Portal), Presto (Canadian Govt Transit Website) and many more.

I used to work more than 10 hours daily during my day, then I started looking for other income and tried freelancing, t-shirt designing and few. One day, I read about domaining on local newspaper and started a hand-registering bunch of crap domains but had no luck in first one year. By the second year, my balance sheet was in green.

I was searching for online auction houses and found Flippa on search engines. I had great success with Flippa and sold most of the domains to end-users.

You have been a user on Flippa for 4 years. How has Flippa changed during that time?

Flippa Escrow and Flippa support improved a lot. Flippa Escrow is one of the fastest Escrow in the current market. QQio.com domain transaction completed within 30 minutes.

Amber (one of Flippa’s broker managers) has helped a lot by promoting qualified listings and it has worked well for me.

You have completed over $100,000 in transactions over the past year alone. Can you tell us about that experience?

I have changed my strategy in mid-2017 since I have enough budget and started purchasing expired domains/ domains from other marketplaces

Purchased Renew.al on Namepros for $40 USD then sold it for $305 USD on Flippa and purchased Confirm.co for $284 USD and flipped it for $1051 USD within 45 days. It goes on. Below were few sales (quick flips)

  • I have flipped VegX.com within 25 days for 3,850 USD and acquired for $400 USD.
  • Sold VapingSupplies.com for $5,000 USD within 45 days and acquired it for $500 USD.
  • I have also flipped Leaking.com within 43 days. Sold for 7,827 USD and acquired price for1,644 USD
  • Sold DispatchSoftware.com for $6,000 USD. Acquired it for $500 USD
  • Flipped VRIO.com for $8500 USD.  Acquired it for $811 USD

I have listed “Call To Action” domains on Flippa and outbound to end users (my most of the Flippa sales went to end users like Leaking.com, vrio.comdispatchsoftware.comvapingsupplies.comriversiderealty.comredbrain.com).

The uniqueness of Flippa is to provide a “sales pitch” area so that you can write a nice sale pitch and explain how the domain can be used. And also it shows feedback from previous listings which has helped me to sell more domains, unlike other marketplaces.

You also joined our brokerage program just about a month ago. Have things improved for you since then, and if so, how?

I was getting many requests to do brokerage so I started a brokerage. So far it’s been good and I’ve brokered domains like Purify.net, Antibiotic.net on Flippa successfully. I have also listed uMad.com, and plan to list more domains soon.

What makes you different from other brokerages and does your brokerage specialize in any specific type of online assets?

We have a specialized team and do outbound outreach as well. We will contact well-qualified leads only. We are looking for single word .com/.net/.org/.io or liquid(3 letter .com’s) domains for brokerage. I have sold most of the domains to same buyer(s) and have a good client base who are actively looking for bulk deals. Anyone looking for our service will contact me at [email protected] or message on Flippa.

For people out there who are interested in selling their online businesses, what advice would you give them?

Opportunities are everywhere and you need to study the marketplace and analyze the sales from the specific marketplace and list the similar domains/online businesses and make a reasonable reserve to encourage the bidding.


Praveen is a founder of BuyBrandweb.com and also a crypto investor. Praveen is passionate about technology and specialized in networking. You’re welcome to schedule a call at BuyBrandWeb.com or connect with him directly on LinkedIn or follow on Twitter. 

Pendulum Insight Brokerage Interview

We’re joined here with Colton Moffitt, a former Flippa Account Manager who founded Pendulum Insight, an online business brokerage. We break down his recent sales and learn how he started his brokerage!

Tell us about your professional background and how you became a broker.

During my time at Flippa I worked as an account manager focused on assets in the $30k-$200k range. If an asset wasn’t an ideal candidate for brokers, I helped the seller achieve a fast exit at a fair price.

There are unique advantages to the live, open auction format. I learned to appreciate and leverage these dynamics instead of trying to mimic the traditional brokerage process.

Outside of my experience at Flippa, I have a background in open source intelligence and security consulting.

You’ve now sold two businesses totaling $99,000 on Flippa in the two months you’ve been an online business broker. Can you tell us about each of the businesses and why they sold for $19,000 and $80,000?

The e-commerce site was the brainchild of a creative gentleman with a gift for spotting trends, marketing novelty products through online PR, and automating e-commerce operations. This site had a lot going for it from the buyer’s perspective: streamlined operations, minimal time commitment, no inventory hassles, established influencer relationships, and organic traffic from viral posts and media coverage.

We weighed our options and decided to let the market speak. The risky $1 reserve strategy paid off for the seller because he provided a clear, compelling description of the opportunity and delivered fast responses to every question bidders sent my way. Bidder confidence was reflected in the volume and frequency of bids.

The FBA business had some issues and, recognizing this, the owner priced it to sell. He was ready to walk away from the business and focus on other things.Despite these issues there was value in registered trademarks, excellent seller feedback, supplier relationships, and advantages granted within the Amazon system. We had multiple strong BIN offers at and above the reserve price. The assets eventually sold for a very low multiple but it was a quick close that both the buyer and seller are pleased with.

What’s the most important thing you learned as an account manager that has helped you become a now successful online business broker?

Valuation is so much more subjective than I expected. In fact, I’ve often been pleasantly surprised by which assets really take off at auction. I’ve been equally disappointed by duds that I was sure would be winners.

An auction is more chaos than analysis: timing, competition from other attractive listings, bidders’ emotions, seller’s patience, and so on.

How were you able to launch your brokerage so quickly? How has the Flippa platform helped with that process?

I’m focused on the range of assets I worked with as an account manager. These assets are below the radar of brokerages, they’re easy to transfer, and they’re quick to close out. This allows me to benefit from the advantages of the live, open auction format and forgo competition with traditional brokerages.

For sellers out there who are interested in selling their websites, what advice would you give them?

1. Take advantage of exit planning resources and sell when the business is consistently growing.

2. Work with people who specialize in selling assets like yours. If you’re in a time crunch or have an appetite for risk, talk to me about an auction. If your business is more complex, you require discretion and proactive outreach to vetted buyers. In that case, a team like Dealflow Brokerage is my go-to recommendation.

3. Above all else, keep calm and be polite. When a deal falls apart, it’s almost always an attitude problem arising from a miscommunication. I’ve seen a seller kill a $200,000 offer over negotiation for one extra dollar. Yes, $1.00. Don’t do that.


Colton develops high leverage opportunities for his partners and clients. He’s currently traveling the world, assembling a consortium of deal makers committed to the pursuit of preeminent ingenuity, integrity, and intuition. You’re welcome to schedule a call at PendulumInsight.com or connect with him directly on LinkedIn.