In some ways, selling a website can be just as exhausting as selling a house. Some might be easier to sell than others. That said, even if you think you have a fantastic website that many buyers might be interested in, you’re not the one calling the shots. The market is. The market decides what kind of website is going to cash up your wallets and which isn’t. Many people don’t know how to sell a website, and that becomes a problem.
Also, the online marketing world is getting more and more competitive. If everyone relied on the same, monotonous business models to sell their website, they wouldn’t get far.
Adam Audette rightly put it, “It’s a battle to get noticed online amidst the noise and crowds.”
- How to Sell a Website in 7 Steps
- 5 Websites That Were Sold at a Significant Profit
If you’re wondering how to sell a website at the most optimal price, below, we cover the most valuable advice proven to help website creators and/or admins do so.
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How to Sell a Website in 7 Steps
Here are the 7 best tips for selling your website and generating a decent profit.
1. Understand Your Audience
Just as ‘know thyself’ is an important slogan to live by, so is ‘know thy audience.’ A lot is riding on this 3-letter sentence. There’s a reason why you’ll see this nugget of wisdom written everywhere ─ in self-help guides, books, articles, or blogs you might read online.
As Kim Garst said, “Sell-sell-sell sales methods simply do not work.” Selling a website without knowing who you might be selling it to or interested in buying it is like trying to sell with a blindfold on.
Once you identify your target audience, you can improve, modify or revamp your website to suit the interests and goals of your potential buyers. You can sell a website quickly if it attracts a large group of audience.
However, that alone is not enough. The niche, for instance, must be something that you think people will be interested in for a long time. This’ll help in selling a website and getting greater value.
So, how can you know your audience to begin with? This is where technical SEO saves the day. With the help of search engines, it’s becoming more and more commonplace to identify what people are interested in and what they’re searching for most. When you are learning how to sell a website, this is critically important.
So, before you decide to sell your website, make sure it’s something that the audience will love to scroll through. Not just because they can but because they need to. Such websites are the ones buyers will be most interested in.
Tip: If you end up identifying multiple types of audiences your website caters to, you can further narrow down your choices by dividing the identified groups based on behavioral, and demographic, geographic, and even psychographic factors.
The psychographic segment refers to groups of people based on certain personality traits such as beliefs, values, lifestyles, interests, etc. You can also narrow down your site’s target audience based on socio-economic factors.
2. Know What Your Website’s Worth
Why will anyone want to buy your website when there are so many others like it? Does your website have the potential for long-time growth and revenue? Is the niche so unique that people who don’t buy it will miss out?
The most critical factor to consider while deciding your website’s worth is identifying its potential for long-time growth and revenue. Take, for instance, Facebook, with its current $50-billion-valuation. This amount doesn’t reflect Facebook’s overall net value. In fact, it is the platform’s potential disguised as a ten-figure income in the long term.
You can apply the same principle to sell your website. How much profit will it generate in the long run? What value will it offer users? For example, if your website has an ever-increasing ranking on Google, it will attract more favorable bidders because of its long-term value potential.
If you’ve held a website relaunch in the past year or so, make sure you track metrics since the relaunch too.
3. Create a Lead Funnel
A lead funnel or a marketing funnel is a step-by-step process that raises buyers’ awareness of your website (What is your website all about?) and convinces them to purchase it(Why should they buy your website?). The four main stages in every lead funnel are the same: awareness, interest, decision, and action.
This marketing process lifts off with a generic, broad objective (raising awareness). It ends at a very narrow, specific one (turning potential customers into buyers and perhaps even promoters for your website). This gives you a rounded, well-balanced understanding of how to sell a website.
The following depiction contains all the critical stages involved in the lead funnel process:
Source: Martech Zone
Creating a lead funnel to sell your website helps you brainstorm every single step to sell your website quickly and efficiently. If you’ve already been using B2B lead generation strategies, this shouldn’t be a problem for you. When learning how to sell a website, it’s important you also focus on lead generation strategies.
For instance, the last stage of the lead funnel process lets you ‘immerse’ yourself with your customers. You can achieve this by creating newsletters, loyalty rewards, and similar content.
That way, you don’t just end your relationship with your buyer once your website has been sold. Staying connected this way helps make your website buyers into its promoters.
Here is a simple example of creating a lead funnel, keeping in view the four stages mentioned above:
- Awareness: Creating an art-related website to ‘funnel’ the targeted audience towards it.
- Interest: Offering something—like a subscription to your business newsletter— to your website viewers, capturing ‘leads’ instead of ‘prospects’ in return (both referring to your website’s viewers/customers). This’ll increase your chances of selling websites quickly.
- Decision: Informing viewers and customers alike about your website’s niche via subscriptions, such as by asking them to share indoor art projects for children, sharing tips for pricing their art, etc.
- Action: Offering customers and viewers coupons they’ll be interested in, for instance, discounts on purchasing artsy merchandise.
4. Research Marketplaces for Buying and Selling Websites
Research, research, research!
In today’s developing world of marketing and commerce, there is more and more of everything. There’s something new rearing its head every second, from software and search engines to blogs and marketplaces. Instead of relying solely on your gut to select between these, research which marketplaces are booming before you sell your website.
- Which marketplace is the most successful right now and why?
- What are they doing differently?
- How do they keep their audience informed?
- Which business and sales models do they use most for selling or buying websites?
- What do they consider a ‘weak’ website that no one will want to buy?
You can make a checklist of all the things that marketplaces consider dos and don’ts while buying and selling websites. Apply those tactics to your own website before selling it. In other words, learn from the best to be the best!
Tip: Did you know: Flippa, Exchange (Shopify), and Empire Flippers are some trending marketplaces to sell a website.
Focus more on selling websites instead of worrying about downtime or hosting issues.
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5. Optimize Your Profits Before You Make a Listing
As mentioned above, SEO is an essential tool to know your target audience. However, it’s also the backbone of a good website. Without it, a website crumbles and falls into nothingness.
SEO has become the first thing on the tip of buyers’ tongues as they ask website owners and managers, ‘Is your website optimized?’ If the answer is a no, they won’t think twice before moving on to the next big thing.
So why is optimizing your website before selling it so important? Optimization helps:
- search engines understand the and why of your website better.
- rank each page of your website higher up on Google.
- bring your target audience to your website more through keywords which ultimately leads to higher click-rates.
- turn visitor clicks into cash for you or your website’s buyers.
Besides, Google penalizes unoptimized sites. Its algorithms only rank the fastest-loading, most user-friendly, and authoritative web pages. Without optimizing your website before selling it, you run the risk of lowering its SERPs or search engine results pages.
There are several practices in use today to optimize websites. In the broad sense, you should increase your website’s:
- conversion (making your website’s audience do what you want them to do, e.g., subscribe to your business’ newsletter)
- visibility (making your website pop up quickly when users search for it through search engines)
- usability (making your website and its pages load fast, perform better) to increase its optimization.
More specifically, you can optimize your website by using tools and methods like:
- content delivery network (CDN)
- using a better host provider—like virtual private servers (VPS) host—to speed up website loading times
- database optimization through your website’s central management system (CMS)
Bottom-line: If you’re learning how to sell a website, you have to learn how to optimize your website. It’s as simple as that!
6. Learn to Approach Interested Parties the Right Way
Approaching potential buyers is not the same as knowing and understanding your target audience. The latter has to do with who your website will attract the most, especially if you want to sell your website quickly.
However, narrowing down your target audience helps narrow down interested buyers. It’ll greatly help in selling websites. If you have experience in client management, it could go a long way in helping you figure out how to deal with clients.
For instance, if you’ve identified your target audience as sports enthusiasts, approaching a buyer who mainly deals with online art sales won’t do you any good.
Once you have successfully identified the right kinds of buyers for your website, you should approach them the right way.
A widespread mistake some website sellers make is auctioning their website on a marketplace that’s intended for a larger, general audience. If your website has a defined niche, try to sell it at a marketplace that deals with buying the same niche websites.
7. Get The Right Statistics to Present to Buyers
Statistics are everywhere. Mainly because people believe what they see and because numbers don’t lie. Any person you want to sell a website to is going to ask for statistics.
Backing up a claim like “My website will generate a lot of revenue in the long run” is not going to convince your website’s potential buyer(s) if you want to sell a website quickly.
However, complementing the report summary or an item with statistical figures—perhaps in the form of a statistical infographic, for instance—will make them turn their heads and listen to what you have to say.
For instance, consider the following website statistics’ overview for a hypothetical website:
This is a BAD example of presenting statistics to potential website buyers. You can also give the same information like:
Or in a more infographic-like format, such as:
Most website sellers use SEMrush or Ahrefs to gather and present their website’s statistics. However, Google Analytics makes the task much more accessible. It holistically offers website stats, which can then be made more presentable to buyers like:
No matter how you decide to present your website’s statistical information to a buyer, make sure it’s:
- reliable, valid, and authentic.
- supports the claims you are making about your websites’ strengths or weaknesses.
- is not too ‘stuffy.’
- doesn’t have general or swooping statements.
- is as specific as it can be.
- paints an overall picture of your website’s what, why, and how to your potential buyers. If you have any existing agency contracts, be sure to mention those as well.
In other words, when they look at your website stats, they instantly get a good idea of the website’s worth and promising search presence. If you are wondering how to sell a website quickly and efficiently, always ensure that data is presented in the right manner. Do mention any high ticket clients, especially recurring buyers.
Tip: If you don’t want to go through the hassle of creating a statistical chart from scratch or presenting to your client whatever Google Analytics shows for your website, there are many free, downloadable templates for presenting website statistics.
5 Websites That Were Sold at a Significant Profit
Now, here are 5 tips from professionals who have sold their websites at a profit.
1. Jamie Hickey Sells His Fitness Site
“I’m the founder of Coffee Semantics, we design coffee sites and perform product reviews, teach brewing techniques and review coffee gear. we’ve been featured in Healthline, Bustle, Wirecutter, Woman’s world magazine, Delish, and Readers Digest.
My fitness site was generating $2,000 a month, I sold it for 3 years worth of profit which turned out to be $72,000.
I waited to sell it at the beginning of March which is the end of the fitness craze in the beginning of the year to make the numbers look elevated and I changed the theme to give it a fresh look before selling it.
I did not offer any services after the sale.”
2. Ebony Chappell Sells on Flippa
“There are hundreds of auction sites where you may sell your website, but only a handful of them are worthwhile. Flippa is the most popular, and despite its reputation for sometimes hosting unscrupulous websites, it is really the finest choice available. I recently sold two websites on Flippa for mid-four-figure amounts, one of which had a return on investment of over 400%. However, don’t mistake a big audience for a good audience.
If you run a website in a particular specialty, for example, it’s nearly always preferable to target other people in that area directly rather than using an all-purpose platform like Flippa. As I said in step two, it’s critical to understand the kind of individuals you’re selling to, not simply the number of prospective customers you have.”
3. John Frigo Has Sold Multiple Websites
“I oftentimes setup sites, get them profitable and then flip them, and the amount of money you can flip a site for these days is often several years multiples of the monthly profits. I’ve seen sites going for upwards of 5 year multiples which is insane knowing so much can change in terms of Googles algorithms and serps as well as affiliate programs coming and going.
While I oftentimes could continue to improve and grow a site, if I can get a 2 or 3 year multiple I’d rather just flip it and do it all over again.
My most recent site I built up and sold was a Google Blogger Blogspot site. I initially started it almost just as a fun experiment to see if a blogspot site could still be ranked as many people say they’re dead. The type of content I put up is pretty low effort, I write about new products and new supplements hitting the market. I learn about these products from brands Instagram page, do a brief writeup and that’s about it, it takes me less than 15 minutes per day to run.
Within about a year I was making about $1,000 a month off the site through a combination of Google Adsense, sponsored writeups and affiliate marketing. I recently flipped the site for $23,000.
I hadn’t really planned on selling the site and honestly wouldn’t have thought it would sell for more than a couple hundred bucks but honestly right now people are paying crazy valuations with passive income being a hot trend and a buzz word.
I wound up having someone reach out to me asking to buy the site which got me curious otherwise I wouldn’t have even bothered looking into selling it as I wouldn’t have figured anyone would want it. After having an unsolicited outreach I wound up beginning to advertise it on Flippa as well as some forums and marketing groups and ultimately found a buyer for $23,000.
I stayed on for about a month to help with the transition and to continue writing some content before fully passing it off to the new buyer.”
4. Alex Smith Sells on Motion Invest
“I sold my first website, an affiliate website, on Motion Invest. All I did was fill out their online form and they require proof of income via screen recording. After I filled it out, they reached out and said they were interested in buying it.
They then made an offer of 25x the monthly profit, which I accepted. I maximized it’s value by creating great content around buyer intent keywords and designing it where it would convert when people got on.
Overall, I had around 50 articles on that affiliate website. Everything on the website was very consistent, and systems were in place so that when someone would look to buy it, they knew it was lower maintenance.
This website was in the baseball niche. It was generating $400 per month over a 12 month period, and I sold it for $10k (25x the monthly profit).
To prep for the sale, I just made sure I had all of my information in a spreadsheet to make it really simple to turn everything over. I’ve done this before, and I actually do it more now as I do affiliate marketing full-time, but I valued my site at 20x the monthly profit, so I felt like I got a good deal. I did not offer any after-sales service.”
5. Steve Morrow, Founder of Paddle, Sells on Flippa
“I started a website in late 2017. This was the first website I had built. Honestly, I kind of floundered with this site for a little over 2 years. In 2019 I made a whopping (sarcasm) $2,500 from the website with affiliate commissions.
The site was in the health niche and I didn’t have the required E-A-T. I was constantly being impacted by Google updates. I decided in early 2020 to sell the website. My commissions had been anywhere from $0 to $500 in a given month in 2019.
I used Flippa to sell my site and the folks there helped me value the site. I ended up listing it for about $12,000 and sold it for just over $8k. My valuation was difficult because the site didn’t produce a consistent income each month. Some sites consistently generate $500 or $1,000 per month and I think those are easier to value.
I didn’t really do any prep to sell the site, and I didn’t offer any after-sales service. I think the individual who bought the site was looking for an aged domain that had some decent content.
With the money I earned from the sale, I started my new site, paddleabout.com. This site is doing much better after only one year than my other site ever did. I took my experience and used that going forward.”
Focus more on selling websites instead of worrying about downtime or hosting issues.
We are 4.8/5 on G2. With load times as low as 79ms, Cloudways is one of the fastest hosting providers out there.
Learning how to sell a website is tricky business in today’s super competitive, ever-evolving marketplaces. That is why every website seller can benefit from some time-tested tips to sell a website to potential buyers. In a nutshell, you should:
- decide your website’s long-term value and growth potential.
- following a step-by-step process, find and sell to buyers using a lead funnel.
- Identify your target audience as well as buyers.
- benchmark the best marketplaces to sell to or at.
- optimize your website and present reliable information.
Q1. How to Sell a Website to a Client?
To sell your website to a client, first make sure you have the stats associated with it. Then, you can put it up for sale and get bids.
Q2. How Much Should You Sell a Website For?
Ideally, you can sell a website between 25-35x of its monthly revenue. Therefore, if a website generates around $2,000, you should consider selling it for around $50,000.
Q3. How Long Does it Take to Sell a Website?
The time it takes to sell a website varies. From the moment it’s listed,it can take between 15-90 days to sell it. Obviously, the duration can be longer or earlier, but most websites sell in this period.
Q4. What Is the Best Way to Sell a Website?
The best way to sell a website is to first hire a website broker, or list it on a website marketplace. They can market your website on multiple social media pages, and can also act as intermediaries, handling the entire sale process through escrow.
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