In December 2018, I sold one of my niche websites on Flippa. I thought my experience would be interesting for my readers so I decided to write a post about…
My Second Sell On Flippa: How I Maxed Up My Earnings From The Sale
Happy New Year guys! 🎉
It’s the end of the year and I am publishing my last post for 2019! I just want to fulfill the obligation I gave to myself about writing about what happened in 2019 in 2019! (it’s that a mouth-full hehe 🤪)
You know what I think is one of the most valuable things I learned over the years of being an entrepreneur?
It is to not spread yourself too thin!
It’s fun to jump on new interesting projects and try to run everything at the same time. It was also very challenging because spreading your efforts when you are not experienced enough can lead to diminishing results.
That’s why I decided to consolidate my niche website portfolio and reduce the number of niches I work on.
This decision led me to sell yet another website of mine, Honeybee 🐝 Website 😏
This time, like the last time, I went with Flippa again.
What is Flippa?
In the case you have never heard of it, Flippa is an online platform for selling and buying online assets such as websites and domains.
Flippa works similar to eBay.
They provide you a platform to post your listing and tools to track the sales process. Everything that comes beyond that (due diligence, asset transfer, etc) is all on you.
Similar to eBay, a site can be sold by an auction or as a fixed price offer. In any case, as I already said, Flippa only provides a sales platform and the rest is on the buyers and sellers.
What was Honeybee 🐝 Website about?
This was a website in the home appliances niche that I was building myself. At the time of the sale, it was 4 years old.
For ranking, I decided to try building a “homemade” PBN. And I did… only to learn that it’s freaking hard!😫
Still, I had about 6 websites in my network and they helped 🐝 Website to rank for some keywords that were bringing me a few dollars a month.
However, on the other hand, I was also spending about $45 a month on supporting the said PBN 😬
Why did I decide to sell?
As I mentioned in the intro, I was spreading myself too thin. I realized that I should focus just on a couple of niches.
So I abandoned this website a while ago but it was still pulling in resources 😣
Plus, it was a good time to sell. The website rankings were going up a bit and the revenue followed.
Meanwhile, Flippa had a promotion that month: “List your website now and get the seller fees waived!” I saw it and thought it was a great opportunity to save some money on the sale!
Aaand on top of that, some of my PBN domains were expiring in October-November and I did not want to pay for them.
As you can see, all the signs were telling me to sell! 😆
How I sold my website on Flippa
I decided to go with Flippa again because my website was too small to go to any other online business broker/platform.
Here’s the Flippa listing:
This time, I decided to try running an auction.
Why going with an action?
I went with an action for a simple reason.
I wanted to maximize the amount of money I could get from the sale. I also did not care about closing the sale fast.
So, an auction was perfect for me.
There are a few rules you need to follow when you want to auction your website:
- Set up a low reserved price
- Make the auction not very long, for example, 2 weeks
- Be present to answer the questions
I basically just followed the suggestions laid out in this post by Flippa.
Apart from all the usual preps such as took the screenshots to prove the income, etc, I also made sure I still had access to all my PBN blogs.
All the PBN passwords were stored in LastPass. I double-checked they were valid and I can log in to the registrars, etc.
In the description of the website, I did not mention I had a PBN. I just wrote that “For more info about the website backlinks, PM me.”
Increasing activity for my listing
One of the ways to make your listing more visible on Flippa is to increase activity around it.
For example, when a comment is posted, it counts as an activity.
I listed my website for sale at the beginning of October so I could not yet give the October revenue. Each day in October when my website made money, I posted a comment about it on the listing.
This increased activity around my listing and got more eyeballs on it.
Running the auction
In the beginning, the action was slow.
I got a couple of private offers but I did not budge and refused them.
Then, the bidding started heating up!
To avoid any surprises in the future, I wanted to make sure that bidders knew that the website uses a PBN from the very beginning.
Each time someone bid, I PMed them whether they had any questions about the backlinks. I made sure every potential buyer understood the nature of my PBN that’s self-managed and not a 3d party service.
I was afraid it would be hard to sell a website with a backlink profile that cost a pretty penny to run. But surprisingly, nobody seemed to be too concerned about it.
It was exciting to see how the bid price was growing 😄
Eventually, after 23 bids, the price grew so much that the multiplier became 97 🤯.
If the website had higher revenue, for example, a hundred or two hundred dollars per month, I doubt the multiplier would be that high. It would be probably somewhere around 20-25.
Handing the website over to the buyer
Once the website was sold, I shared with the buyer the PBN credentials, website login info, transferred the domain, etc.
However, the buyer decided not to take the PBN 😮
He wanted to focus on white hat methods and asked me to keep my PBN for myself! 😆
I did not need it either, so I just let the domains expire and cancel my PBN hosting.
Getting money from Flippa
I wanted to save on fees so I did not want to use PayPal to get money out of the Flippa escrow.
Last time when I sold a website, I did not use the Flippa escrow. The buyer wanted to get money in PayPal so he agreed to reimburse my PayPal fees.
This time, I did not have such an agreement.
So I chose a direct debit to my US bank account as a payment method.
However, the accounting team at Flippa was quite confused by the fact that I am Canadian who got a US account 😵😕
It took them a couple of weeks to get my bank credentials straight. They kept thinking that BMO Harris was a Canadian bank 😒
When they eventually figured it out and sent me the payment, I got less money than expected 😱
The Flippa accounting department decided to charge me some kind of fee 🤷♀️
I complained to the support and they quickly resolved the situation 😅
Here’s how to max up your earnings from a Flippa sale
Turns out, it was quite easy:
- Run action and follow these steps
- Request a payment as a direct deposit to a US account (even if you are not a US citizen, you can still open a US account)
- Make sure the Flippa accounting department did not screw up 😂
How’s Honeybee 🐝 Website doing now?
As usual, I stopped tracking the website after the sale. However, I am still getting some revenue from it 😎
The buyer is redoing the website page by page while also working on the rankings. The traffic grows and more and more sales happen.
However, the buyer has not yet changed all the tracking codes on each page. So, some of the tracking codes there are still mine.
I don’t mind 😜 the buyer is also aware of it so it’s all good 👍
Flippa is not that bad?
My main conclusion here is that Flippa is a pretty decent place for trading websites? 🤔
It was the second website I sold there and this sale went very smooth as well 👍 (here’s how the previous sale went).
I also saw some of my competitors selling their websites in this market place. I have not yet bought anything on Flippa but it’s probably only a matter of time ⏳
So, I do think now that Flippa is not as bad as a marketing place as I imagined before. After all, I am not aware of any other online business marketplace where I can buy and sell small cheap websites.
What do you guys think about Flippa?
Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. I will receive a small fee if you choose to buy after clicking on any of these links. Thank you if you do! 🤗