Domains

Selling Websites Through Flippa.com – [2010]

internet gangsters

About a month ago a buddy of mine introduced me to Flippa.com . I have been sitting on old blogs and website for a while with no intention of really doing anything with them so he suggested I try to sell them. He recently sold one of his websites for 5 figures so I figured it couldn’t hurt to at least give it a try. My only concern with “giving it a try” was that Flippa has some pretty hefty fees that come along with listing your site for sale. So I’ll warn you now, if you aren’t confident that someone would at least be interested in your site then I would suggest trying other methods of sale.

To list an item, whether it’s a full website or a domain, Flippa charges $20 + 5% success fee if the site sells, so right there you’re out $20 if you don’t sell the site, and that’s without any upgrades and believe me you’re going to want some upgrades. The upgrades range from things like bold around your listing or a different highlight to your listing, all the way up to being featured on the front page or an ad tweeted out by the Flippa twitter account. Some are as cheap as $5 and some as expensive as $40, but believe me when I tell you that the one upgrade I highly recommend is the “featured” upgrade which costs $40. The featured upgrade gets you listed in the featured section of the site and face time on the front page of Flippa.com… and this is where most people are going to find your site. The search on the site automatically defaults to the featured listings so if you don’t get featured it’s going to be hard for someone to find your listing.

The first site I sold I did a featured listing which at the time was $30 (it’s since gone up to $40) and I listed it for 10 days, which I found to be way too long. I received a handful of bids in the first couple days and that was it, the last 5 or so days just lingered while I waited for the auction to end. In the end the site sold for $600 and the transfer process went fairly smooth. I ran into a few issues with the buyer not wanting to use Escrow.com due to the fact that he needed to pay with Credit Card and was in a country that Escrow.com would not allow that… we ended up using paypal and I had to trust the guy not to rip me off, but it’s been a month or so with no issues, but I would highly recommend if it’s a large sum of money to use Escrow.com and NOT paypal.

The 2nd site I sold I started without doing the featured upgrade just to see if the site would still sell. The only upgrade I did was to highlight the line listing so that it stood out a bit from the others, $5. I also started the auction at the lowest price I would accept for the site and made the reserve the same amount. This way I could advertise that there was no reserve on the item and hopefully entice people to buy the site since if only 1 person bid and won, it would be theres. I’ve found this technique to be very useful on eBay so I figured it could work here…. and it did. Within the first day of listing the item I received a bid for the starting amount. It was at this time that I decided that since the item was going to sell for sure now, I would upgrade to a featured listing to hopefully incite a bidding war, which also happened towards the end of the auction. And the good thing about people bidding at the very end of the auction is that it extends the auction by 4 hours so that nobody can snipe the auctions like they can on eBay.

So I’ve successfully sold 2 out of 3 sites that I’ve listed on Flippa so far and I currently have another auction going right now. I haven’t made 5 figures off any site yet, but the sites I’m selling off right now are old blogs that were almost dead, basically I’m just cleaning house. Eventually I want to try to build up a site specifically with the intention of selling, but for now I gotta do some spring cleaning to make way for more sites.

Have you sold on Flippa yet? If so, what have your experiences been like? Have you ever been ripped off? I’m really curious to hear what other people have to say about the site.

About the author

Tom

Tom has been working in marketing for the last 18 years, whether that's for large companies or small agencies. He currently works at a small digital marketing agency helping clients grow their web presence. He's also been involved in a number of affiliate marketing websites over the years.

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