9 Valuable Lessons From 21 Websites Successfully Sold On Flippa // Alpha Investors

9 Valuable Lessons From 21 Websites Successfully Sold On Flippa

lessons from selling websites on flippa

Everyone’s wiser in hindsight.

But decision making becomes a little more complex when you’re living in the present and don’t have the luxury of knowing what the future holds.

Unless, of course, you could learn from the success/failure of others who’ve walked on the same path before you.

Which is exactly what successful entrepreneurs do.

Thankfully, as an online business owner or investor, there are multiple ways you can analyze different businesses, understand the reasons behind their success or failure, and use that knowledge to build better, more successful, and more profitable businesses for yourself.

Flippa is one of the world’s largest website trading marketplaces. Thousands of business owners list their websites on Flippa for interested buyers.

Flippa the Website Marketplace

The buyers, on the other hand, are mostly investors or internet marketers looking to purchase established online businesses that they can improve, grow and sell again for an even higher price.

Every site listing on Flippa has all the details about its traffic sources, business model, revenue, profit, and success factors.

It’s a goldmine of marketing insights that you can use to understand what makes businesses successful.

In this article, we’ll analyze 21 websites from completely different niches that were successfully sold on Flippa for at least $10,000 and try to find the key reasons behind their success. 

At the end of the article, we’ll also share the common lessons you can learn from these sites and replicate them in your business.

This is going to be a long but really interesting post with lots and lots of marketing insights.

Make sure you read it till the end.

Let’s dive in.

The key lessons you’ll learn in this article

  • How a simple blog about bald men got sold for mid-five figures (and how it could’ve gotten an even higher price)
  • What makes a site attractive to buyers on Flippa
  • Why niche selection plays a key role in the success/failure of your online business
  • How to establish almost fully automated online businesses

#1 THE DOG DIGEST - SOLD FOR $75,000

Dog Digest Sold for 75000$
  • URL: https://www.thedogdigest.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 3 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search (75%), Direct and Referrals
  • Main Income Sources: Google AdSense, Amazon Associates, Banner Ads
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 683,289
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $3081
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 310
  • Dominant Content Type: Product Reviews, Top 10 List Posts, Info Articles

TheDogDigest was sold on Flippa for $75,000 and a quick look at the site tells you exactly why.

It’s a content-heavy site with dozens of original articles on different aspects of dog health, dog food selection, dog breeds, and everything else related to petting a dog.

Ahrefs shows that the site ranks in the top 10 for several high intent commercial keywords with medium to low traffic volume.

Dog digest Ahrefs Organic Keywords

The site has more than 27,000 backlinks originating from 310 different domains. Interestingly, most of the links come from low domain authority content sites or forum posts.

Still, the site generates more than 600K monthly pageviews mainly on the back of its interesting content that pulls in search traffic regularly.

The site generates all of its revenue from AdSense and Amazon Associates thanks to its smart content structure which is based on magazine-style posts with images and content spread over multiple page slideshows.

Monetisation of Dog Digest

Main strengths of this site

  • High quality and detailed content that targets long-tail keywords and ranks for several high traffic commercial keywords.
  • A clean backlink profile
  • Well branded site

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • Improve the conversion rate of the content pages to bank much higher revenue with the same traffic.
  • Make the design clutter-free since most of the content pages are overcrowded with ad units.
  • There’s a lot of potential to grow the email subscriber base and social media following in this niche
  • Add new income sources, for example, courses for dog owners.

#2 HAPPIEST CAMPER - SOLD FOR $37,500

Happiest Camper sold for $37500
  • URL: https://happiestcamper.com
  • Site Age When Sold: 2 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search
  • Main Income Sources: Amazon Associates, Ezoic
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 66,345
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $1831
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 221
  • Dominant Content Type: How To Posts, Step by Step Guides, Product Reviews

HappiestCamper was sold for a respectable $37,500 on Flippa when it was making just under $2,000 per month.

It’s a content heavy site in the DIY niche with lots of tutorials, info articles,  detailed step by step guides on different DIY projects.

Happiest Campers

Ahrefs shows it has 3.5K backlinks from 221 different domains, all with a DR score of under 20.

The site doesn’t rank for any high traffic keywords but attracts most of its visitors from low traffic long-tail keywords.

I couldn’t find the conventional product reviews on this site because that’s not the way it promotes products.

It makes money by promoting contextually relevant Amazon products used in its tutorials and by using Ezoic ads on content pages.

Main strengths of this site

  • Very detailed and high quality content with lots of images, annotated screenshots, and video guides.
  • The site is well-branded and neatly designed
  • Thanks to its actionable content, the site has a very high engagement rate and every article has dozens of comments and social shares.

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • Publish dedicated product reviews to rank for high intent commercial keywords.
  • Grow an email list
  • Grow social media audience, especially on Facebook and Pinterest since there’s huge interest in DIY content on these platforms
  • Add new income sources
  • Improve the overall backlink profile by building higher authority links
  • Grow search traffic by targeting a wider range of topics since DIY is a huge niche.

#3 NUTRITION YOU CAN USE - SOLD FOR $25,000

NutritionYouCanUse Sold for $25000
  • URL: https://nutritionyoucanuse.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 2 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Social Media and Organic Search
  • Main Income Sources: Amazon Associates, MediaVine, Sponsored Content
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: : 46,943
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $319
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 215
  • Dominant Content Type: Product Reviews, Product Comparisons, Best-Of List Posts, Info Articles

Nutrition You Can Use is a great example of how to create a loyal community around your site using well-researched and high quality content.

It’s a clean and well-branded site that targets closely related niches like nutrition, weight loss, and healthy living. The site gets nearly 50,000 page views per month out of which 47% comes from social media sites like Pinterest and Facebook.

Pinterest, in particular, sends a lot of traffic to this site because of its topics and because most of its articles have multiple high quality images of different food items and recipes.

NutritionYouCanUse monetisation

All the articles on the site follow a set structure and are pretty in-depth with a lot of stats and examples.

Apart from the usual product reviews, even the info content of the site has links to different Amazon products that are relevant to the topic.

A major reason for the site’s high-quality content is its owner who’s a qualified nutritionist and health coach. This is also probably why the site has a decent following on Pinterest and Twitter.

Main strengths of this site

  • Well-researched, detailed, and actionable content that offers real value to the readers
  • The owner is a qualified nutritionist and uses this to his advantage by repeatedly mentioning this in his content.
  • Large social media following especially on Pinterest.
  • Ranks for several high volume buyer intent keywords

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • Create longer and more search engine optimized headlines. Currently, most of the articles have generic headlines
  • The overall on-page SEO of the site needs improvement
  • Diversify income by launching a course, consultancy, or a membership site.
  • Acquire more high authority backlinks which can be done easily because the content quality is excellent

#4 LUUSHY - SOLD FOR $21,000

Luushy - Sold for $21,000
  • URL: https://www.luushy.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 2 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Email Marketing, Facebook Ads, Instagram
  • Main Income Sources: eCommerce Private Label Products
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 61,314
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $2612
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 215
  • Dominant Content Type: High quality Instagram Images

Luushy is a women’s apparel brand website that makes money by selling private label products. The business is almost completely automated with zero inventory and no full-time staff.

When a customer places an order, it is fulfilled directly by the supplier and Luushy takes its cut from the price.

The site has a beautiful design and gives you the impression of a major apparel brand. Unlike the other sites in this post so far, Luushy doesn’t rely on SEO or search traffic at all.

Luushy Traffic Sources

It has a huge email list, plus a combined following of 61K on Facebook and Instagram that brings in most of its traffic.

Despite selling a wide range of apparel products and accessories, and a large following, the site’s profit margin isn’t great with the overall revenue at $10K per month and profits at just over $2K.

Main strengths of this site

  • Well-branded and attractive website design
  • Already established supply chain for a wide range of products
  • The store is in an evergreen niche with consistent demand
  • Dedicated and highly engaged following on Instagram

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

#5 GET CONNECTED - SOLD FOR $20,000

Get Connected Review
  • URL: https://www.getconnected.aero/
  • Site Age When Sold: 5 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search Traffic
  • Main Income Sources: Google Adsense and Sponsored Content
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 6962
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $1057
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 229
  • Dominant Content Type: News stories and Reviews

GetConnected is a news and reviews site in the ‘Inflight Connectivity’ niche that covers the latest news and product releases in its industry.

A quick look at the site’s content tells you exactly why it has such low traffic and revenue numbers but still got sold for $20K.

The site basically publishes content with a very short shelf life that becomes irrelevant in just a few weeks. As a result, it clearly struggles to get backlinks or generate traffic from search engines.

On top of that, it has no social media presence or email list to generate traffic from alternate sources.

How did it sell for $20K then?

It’s a 5 year old site that can still grow a lot more if it expands its focus to other closely related topics and publishes content with longer life.

Main strengths of this site

  • Has a professional design.
  • It is in a high opportunity niche.
  • The content is really well-researched and in-depth

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • The current website design is not responsive which means the site is losing out on mobile visitors
  • The site can grow a lot if it publishes evergreen content
  • Revenue can grow significantly if the site publishes more product reviews plus info articles
  • Overall the site needs to expand its topic range.

#6 KICKING IT WITH KELLY - SOLD FOR $19,000

Kicking it with kelly website
  • URL: https://www.kickingitwithkelly.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 4 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search Traffic, Email List, Social Media
  • Main Income Sources: MediaVine Ads, Sponsored Content, Amazon Associates
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 4324
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $953
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 976
  • Dominant Content Type: Info articles, recipes, list posts, product reviews

With 13K followers on Pinterest, 12.5K on Instagram, and nearly 10K on Facebook, KillingItWithKelly appears to be a blog with a pretty large audience from the outside.

But a closer look at its traffic numbers shows that it barely gets 5000 pageviews a month. This is surprising because the blog is in the highly lucrative DIY and Mom Blogging niche and has more than 400 high quality posts (lots of images, videos, etc)

Several articles on the site (recipes in particular) have more than 50K social shares and hundreds of comments.

According to the site’s original owner (mentioned on Flippa), she had lost interest in the site and wasn’t actively working on it for the last several months. This is probably a big reason for the low traffic numbers.

Why did it sell for $19,000

For a 4 year old site with more than 400 articles, this selling price isn’t great.

But whoever bought it will probably work on the site’s SEO and try to use the already published content to increase traffic and revenue.

Main strengths of this site

  • Lots of high quality content (more than 400 articles)
  • Huge social media following on Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook
  • Strong personal branding on the site
  • Very high audience engagement on the site

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • The site can easily grow to 50K-60K monthly visitors with better SEO
  • Publish more reviews to increase revenue
  • Take advantage of the strong personal brand by launching a course or digital product.
  • Overall the site needs to expand its topic range.

#7 BRAWL STARS UP - SOLD FOR $20,000

Braw up Stars Website
  • URL: https://brawlstarsup.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 8 Months
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search Traffic
  • Main Income Sources: Google Adsense
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 131074
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $1685
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 244
  • Dominant Content Type: Guides, Tips and Tricks

Now here’s a really interesting site that was sold for $20,000 on Flippa. BrawlStarsUp is a site dedicated to a popular mobile video game Brawl Stars.

The site is full of strategy guides, articles sharing different tips and tricks, and success stories of players around the world.

You can simply call it a fansite of the game.

Yet, it makes nearly $3000 per month from Adsense and generates more than 130K monthly pageview.

Considering that the site was just 8 months old when it was sold, the owner did a pretty good job with it.

A quick search in Ahrefs shows the site ranks in the top 10 for several high traffic keywords related to Brawl Stars.

It’s a great example of how you can ride on someone else’s success to launch a business of your own.

Main strengths of this site

  • Useful and actionable content
  • Mostly passive income from Adsense
  • Ranking in the top 10 for high volume search keywords
  • Based on a game that’s growing in popularity with time and seems viable for at least the next couple of years.
  • A growing audience that’s passionate about Brawl Stars

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

#8 SNORING CANADA - SOLD FOR $23,000

Snoring Canada Website
  • URL: https://snoringcanada.com
  • Site Age When Sold: 2 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search Traffic
  • Main Income Sources: Google Adsense, Amazon Associates
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 7425
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $1020
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 126
  • Dominant Content Type: Info articles, Best-Of posts, Product Reviews

The moment you look at SnoringCanada and its content you know this site has huge potential for growth. As the name suggests, SnoringCanada focuses on a very specific problem in a very specific geolocation.

It makes all of its money from Adsense and by publishing reviews of different anti-snoring products on Amazon.

The traffic numbers aren’t great (just over 7000 pageviews/month) and the site was making just over $1000/month when it was sold.

But that’s mainly because it hasn’t been updated for more than a year and most of the traffic is coming from highly specific commercial keywords.

Whoever bought it can use the established authority of this site to branch into other closely related niches and grow the site’s income exponentially.

Main strengths of this site

  • A very well-defined niche and target audience
  • Insanely high quality content with images, videos, and data references.
  • Ranking for high buyer intent keywords.

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

#9 BALDING LIFE - SOLD FOR $16,600

Balding Life Website
  • URL: https://baldinglife.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 2 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Amazon Associates, Ezoic Ads
  • Main Income Sources: Google Adsense, Amazon Associates
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 23685
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $668
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 151
  • Dominant Content Type: Info articles, Product Reviews, Comparisons

Here’s another site in a unique and very specific niche. BaldingLife shares tips and advice with people who’ve either lost hair or love to shave their heads.

The site mostly publishes product reviews and comparisons of different trimmers, hair care products, and skull lotions. 

However, it also publishes tips and how to posts, along with articles on fun topics like this one

Balding Life Review

The site mostly ranks for high buyer intent keywords but considering its age and the amount of content on it, the traffic numbers are still underwhelming.

Main strengths of this site

  • Unique and well defined niche with a passionate audience
  • Well-laid out, high quality content with images and practical advice
  • Ranks for several commercial keywords.

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

#10 MOVING LOW COST - SOLD FOR $28,500

Moving Low Cost Website
  • URL: https://www.movinglowcost.com
  • Site Age When Sold: 4 months
  • Main Traffic Sources: Google Ads
  • Main Income Sources: Selling Leads, Google Adsense
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 2660
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $3114
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: N/A
  • Dominant Content Type: List posts of different moving companies

Who says you need to wait for years to build and sell an online business?

MovingLowCost was just 4 months old when it was acquired for $28,500 on Flippa. Before getting sold, it was making $11000+ in revenue every month with average profits hovering around the $3000/month mark.

The site has done zero SEO and gets all of its traffic by investing money in Google Ads. Its business model is also different from the typical affiliate site model.

It attracts traffic with Google Ads and turns them into leads using a simple ‘moving cost calculator’ where visitors get an estimated cost of moving from one state to the other.

Every time a visitor enters their contact details in the calculator, it is passed on to different moving companies who then contact them via phone. The site gets paid for forwarding the lead.

Simple.

Main strengths of this site

  • Almost fully automated business with traffic coming from ads and leads managed with a backend system.
  • The business targets an evergreen niche so the demand is quite stable.
  • The site offers several custom built tools that are quite attractive to visitors.

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

#11 HUSKY PUPPIES INFO - SOLD FOR $18,100

Husky Puppies Info
  • URL: https://huskypuppiesinfo.com
  • Site Age When Sold: 6 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search Traffic
  • Main Income Sources: Amazon Associates, Google Adsense
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 32598
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $393
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 119
  • Dominant Content Type: Product Reviews, How-To posts

Husky is the second most popular dog breed in the world in terms of pet registrations. This site is a dedicated resource on everything related to Huskies.

It does a decent job in terms of content and knowledge sharing which is why it got sold for around $18000. But it has the potential to earn much more than its existing income of $393/month.

Main strengths of this site

  • The site is in an evergreen niche full of passionate dog owners
  • Well organized content
  • Detailed and high quality articles on different aspects of petting a Husky
  • Ranks for several high traffic buyer intent keywords
  • 6 year old site with a clean link profile

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

#12 LACROSSE SCOOP - SOLD FOR $60,000

LacrosseScoop Website
  • URL: https://lacrossescoop.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 5 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search Traffic
  • Main Income Sources: Amazon Associates
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 12634
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $1853
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 89
  • Dominant Content Type: Product Reviews, Top-10 List posts

Here’s a 5 year old site about Lacrosse gear that was making around $2000 when it was sold for $60,000. The site literally publishes nothing but product reviews and a few list posts about the top 10 best products in different categories.

It has a shady backlink profile (probably used PBNs) but still ranks for hundreds of mid-low volume long-tail keywords.

One of the main reasons behind the site’s success seems to be its niche selection. There are very few competitors in this niche and even the highest traffic keywords are up for grabs.

This is why the site ranks for several lucrative search terms even with a weak backlink profile.

Main strengths of this site

  • In a profitable yet uncompetitive niche
  • Consistent demand for the topic
  • Detailed reviews about different lacrosse related products
  • The owner was a professional lacrosse player which helped in creating technical content

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

#13 LIFE YOUR WAY - SOLD FOR $55,000

Life Your Way Website
  • URL: https://lifeyourway.net
  • Site Age When Sold: 9 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search Traffic, Email List
  • Main Income Sources: Amazon Associates
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 105804
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $3023
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 3060
  • Dominant Content Type: Info articles, product reviews

LifeYourWay is one of the most complete blogs on this list. It bagged $55,000 on Flippa which is a pretty good deal for the buyer considering what was on offer.

The site drives more than 100K visitors per month, has a combined Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest following of around 50K, publishes some really interesting and high quality content, and makes money with a variety of sources including affiliate promotions and product sales. 

Plus, it has an email list of over 20,000 subscribers which is a huge business asset.

The site also offers nearly 400 printable templates for different occasions like Christmas, New Year etc. that users can download for free.

Main strengths of this site

  • High quality content and resources
  • Large and loyal following
  • Huge subscriber base
  • Diversified income sources

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • The site needs to do a better job at SEO since most of the article titles and headings aren’t properly optimized

#14 PRO DIET REVIEWS - SOLD FOR $19,500

Pro Diet Reviews Website
  • URL: https://www.prodietreviews.com
  • Site Age When Sold: 2 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search Traffic, Email List
  • Main Income Sources: Affiliate Sales with Amazon, Clickbank, Commission Junction, Ad Sales via Google Adsense
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 3936
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $1568
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 132
  • Dominant Content Type: Info articles, product reviews

ProDietReviews had all the ingredients of becoming a really successful blog but the owner chose to sell it off for $19,500 which is fine but the site could have achieved a much higher price with a bit more effort.

The site has dozens of high-quality articles and detailed product reviews of different diet programs, fitness products, and food products. 

Every post seems well thought out and properly researched. Ad placements and types are also in line with the blog’s overall theme.

Main strengths of this site

  • Good, clean, and branded design
  • Well researched and detailed content
  • Promoting a wide range of products from different affiliate platforms which reduces dependence on one source.
  • Diversified income sources

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • The site can grow a lot by improving on-page SEO and targeting mid-high volume long-tail keywords. Currently, most of the traffic comes from product searches.
  • This niche is ideal for building an email list and can help the site owner promote offers more effectively.
  • The site needs to publish more ToFU content that addresses the broader queries of its target audience.

#15 MY VEGAN OUTFIT - SOLD FOR $18,000

9 Valuable Lessons From 21 Websites Successfully Sold On Flippa 1
  • URL: https://www.myveganoutfit.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 1 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Facebook Ads
  • Main Income Sources: : eCommerce sales via dropshipping
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: N/A
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $7453
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: N/A
  • Dominant Content Type: Product description on sales pages

Veganism is on the rise all around the world and people are looking for ethical product alternatives to use in their daily lives. 

MyVeganOutfit used this trend to its advantage by launching a dropshipping eCommerce store (almost fully automated) that exclusively sells vegan fashion products.

The site gets all of its traffic from Facebook Ads, holds no inventory, and fulfills orders using the automated Oberlo app with Shopify.

Since it targets a growing niche, the sales volume is likely to go up in the coming months and years as more people start looking for vegan fashion options.

Main strengths of this site

  • Targets a fast growing niche with a very passionate target audience
  • Almost fully automated dropshipping business
  • Huge potential for growth in terms of product range and related categories.

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • Reduce dependence on Facebook Ads and diversify traffic sources since FB Ads are getting expensive by the day.
  • Most vegan blogs do great with content marketing because their audience actively advocates animal rights and shares any content that helps them create awareness about the cause. Leveraging content marketing can add a huge traffic and branding channel to this business.
  • The site needs to diversify income sources and ideally look to move towards Amazon FBA or holding inventory since sourcing from AliExpress (China) is a risky strategy in the current volatile political scenario.

#16 MENS GEAR - SOLD FOR $24,000

Mens Gears
  • URL: https://mensgear.net
  • Site Age When Sold: 7 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search, Direct, Social Media
  • Main Income Sources: Google Adsense
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 148,003
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $546
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 1.9K
  • Dominant Content Type: Product Reviews

MensGear describes itself as the digital magazine manly men want to read.

It’s a huge website that ranks for thousands of mid-high traffic keywords in niches like survival gear, automobile gear, biking, male style and fashion, and gadgets.

Most of its traffic comes from Google Search but it also has a decent following on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook which sends a considerable amount of traffic to it.

For such a big site, the revenue numbers are surprisingly low.

Main strengths of this site

  • In a unique niche with a passionate audience
  • Ranks for several high traffic commercial keywords
  • Has a strong backlink profile
  • Has published a lot of content with images, videos etc.

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • Add more revenue sources like Amazon Associates, sponsored content, lead generation contracts
  • The site can easily transition into dropshipping or conventional ecommerce because of its regular audience.
  • Increase revenue by offering exclusive discounts and special offers to email subscribers.

#17 PRODUCT ADVISOR - SOLD FOR $14,000

Product advisors website
  • URL: https://productadvisor.com
  • Site Age When Sold: 2 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search
  • Main Income Sources: Amazon Associates
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 8178
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $773
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 207
  • Dominant Content Type: Product Reviews, Best-Of posts, Comparisons

Whoever bought ProductAdvisor for $14,000 got a pretty good deal.

Why?

Because the site has all the ingredients to grow into a high 5-figure/month business. It is designed beautifully with smart calls to action all over the product pages.

It is modeled on giant affiliate sites like Wirecutter, Bestreviews, etc. and covers a wide range of product categories like automobile, health & beauty, household, gadgets, sports etc.

It has over 100 published product reviews and list posts comparing different products and sharing the best options.

Like Wirecutter, ProductAdvisor has tried to differentiate itself from other affiliate sites by personally testing the products it reviews.

This adds a lot of credibility to its brand and has a positive impact on sales.

The site’s search profile is also quite strong and it appeared to be in take-off mode when it was bought on Flippa.

Main strengths of this site

  • Brandable domain name and an attractive website design
  • Detailed content on a wide range of products
  • Personally tested product reviews with images and videos
  • A strong search profile

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • The reviews are detailed and high quality but there are very few ToFU posts to drive traffic to the site. Targeting broader search queries will help increase the site’s traffic
  • Increase revenue channels by adding Adsense and even ecommerce (dropshipping or conventional) as additional monetization methods.
  • Actively grow email list and monetize it.

#18 COFFEE SUPREMACY - SOLD FOR $19,000

CoffeeSupremacy Website
  • URL: https://coffeesupremacy.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 2 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search
  • Main Income Sources: Amazon Associates
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 13500
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $523
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 165
  • Dominant Content Type: Info Articles, Product Reviews, Best-Of posts, Comparisons

CoffeeSupremacy is a typical affiliate site earning most of its income by promoting coffee makers and other related products from Amazon.

But the thing that makes it different from low-quality affiliate sites is the kind of content it publishes.

If you browse through it archive posts, most of the initial content is product-focused. Later on, though, the site started publishing more content around the questions of its target audience.

This has helped it rank for several high traffic keywords and gather some momentum.

The overall content quality is good and the site can become a major success if it continues on the same path for the next 12 months.

Main strengths of this site

  • Well-researched and detailed content
  • Ranks for several high traffic keywords
  • Clean backlink profile

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • The site’s on-page SEO needs improvement to attract more traffic
  • The site’s social media profiles and email list is non-existent. Working on this area will increase the overall value of the business.
  • The site lacks personality and the tone of the content is quite flat. The owner should put a human face on the site and publish content in his own name to create a better connection with the audience.

#19 VEGETARIAN BODYBUILDING - SOLD FOR $42,000

Vegeterian Body Building Website
  • URL: https://www.vegetarianbodybuilding.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 6 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search
  • Main Income Sources: Digital Product Sales, Amazon Associates, Google Adsense
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 84167
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $1680
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 255
  • Dominant Content Type: Info Articles, Product Reviews, Best-Of posts, Comparisons

VegetarianBodyBuilding is different from the other sites on this list. Like the other sites, it has a lot of great content. But it makes almost all of its money from selling its own digital course V3, a complete bodybuilding system.

It has combined two popular niches, veganism and bodybuilding, to come up with a unique niche angle, vegan bodybuilding.

Every article on this site is used to drive traffic to the V3 sales page where it is converted into leads and customers.

The site has a pretty strong backlink profile and has citations on major publications like MensFitness and BodyBuilding.com

Still, there a lot of room for growth both in terms of traffic and revenue since there’s a huge audience for vegan muscle building and people are eager to know about the possible alternatives to the conventional protein diets available in the market.

Main strengths of this site

  • High quality and in-depth content on different aspects of vegan bodybuilding
  • Unique and fast growing niche with a lot of interest
  • All revenue generated from product sales
  • Huge subscriber base
  • Strong backlink profile

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • Add different product layers in addition to the main product. Add upsells and downsells, and use tripwires and lead magnets to grow the subscriber base.
  • Use Facebook Ads and Google Ads to promote the product and grow revenue
  • Diversify income sources by using Google Adsense on the content pages.

#20 HAPPY REBEL - SOLD FOR $64,000

Happy Rebel Website
  • URL: https://www.happyrebelbox.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 3 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search
  • Main Income Sources: Subscription based eCommerce
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 12038
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $4268
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: N/A
  • Dominant Content Type: Info Articles

Now here’s a unique business model that’s clearly making good money and growing at a sustained pace.

Happy Rebel offers subscription boxes of different lifestyle products for women at $100 for a quarterly subscription and $380 for annual subscriptions.

Product boxes are delivered quarterly to the subscribers who can choose from different box types like kitchen supplies, apparel supplies, poolside products, etc.

All the products are acquired through partnerships or private-labeled from overseas suppliers.

The site drives almost all of its traffic from social media platforms such as Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook.

Main strengths of this site

  • Unique business model in an ever-growing niche
  • Low churn rate (just over 2%) means the customer base is highly satisfied with products - Strong branding all over the site and products
  • All revenue generated from product sales
  • Highly engaged social media following and a large email list
  • Lots of room for growth in this business by adding new products, creating more partnerships, and sourcing more private label products.

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • The site has no SEO strategy which means its missing out on a huge traffic source.
  • The site has a few articles but they’re not targeted towards any particular keywords and are not optimized very well for search engines. Regularly publishing better and more well-researched content will help the site attract more customers.
  • The site currently does not use any paid advertising which is again a big untapped opportunity. Facebook Ads are a great way to drive eCommerce traffic and increase sales.

#21 SHAVER INSIDER - SOLD FOR $11,010

Shaver Insiders Website
  • URL: http://www.shaverinsider.com/
  • Site Age When Sold: 2 Years
  • Main Traffic Sources: Organic Search
  • Main Income Sources: Amazon Associates
  • Avg. Monthly Page Views: 7399
  • Avg. Monthly Profit: $313
  • No. of Unique Backlinks: 47
  • Dominant Content Type: Product Reviews, How-To Articles, Comparisons

The last site on our list is another one created specifically to promote Amazon products and earn commissions from affiliate sales.

Like most other small scale affiliate sites, this one is also tailored to a very specific product range, electric shavers.

The problem with such sites is that they usually publish sales content only which makes it really hard to get any authority backlinks since the more established sites hesitate in linking to reviews only” kind of sites.

Had this site been designed with a more long-term view, with a more brandable domain name and niche, it could’ve bagged a much higher price tag.

If you look at it, the content is good and well-researched. The design is also reader-friendly. But the fact that the whole site is named after electric shavers does no favor to its credibility both in the eyes of the readers and Google Search.

Main strengths of this site

  • Well-researched and very detailed content.
  • Ranks for several mid-low volume longtail keywords

Things it can improve to get a higher price tag

  • Although the URL makes it hard to do, the site needs to expand into other closely related product niches to grow.
  • Publish more info content and link-worthy resources to acquire backlinks from the highest authority sites.
  • Diversify income by adding Google Adsense or eCommerce dropshipping to the mix.
  • Grow a following on Pinterest and Instagram.

SITES SOLD ON FLIPPA - THE KEY LESSONS YOU NEED TO LEARN

We’ve examined 21 websites individually and analyzed their strengths and weaknesses and what made them attractive to the buyers on Flippa.

If you look closely, you’ll find common trends that differentiate profitable and successful websites from the unsuccessful ones.

Studying these factors will also help you clearly understand how to grow a business that you can ultimately sell off for a huge price tag.

Let’s look at these factors one by one.

1. There are tons of unexplored profitable niches on the internet

From the outside, it’s easy to think that you’ve missed the train and it’s already too late to make money online because all the profitable niches are already taken.

But a quick look at the list of sites we’ve featured in this post proves otherwise.

There are many profitable niches outside the usual Make Money Online, Personal Finance, Dating etc. sites where you can make a lot of money.

Sites like SnoringCanada and LacrosseScoop are in niches marketers rarely think about. Yet, they were able to bag high five-figure amounts in sales on Flippa.

There are dozens of such unexplored niches where the competition is significantly lower than most industries.

There’s a simple reason for this.

The internet is no longer viewed as a platform to make quick money (as was the case a decade ago). It is now a part of people’s everyday lives and they’re actively searching for information, products, discounts, and expert advice on every topic imaginable (63000 searches per second to be precise)

And this demand will keep growing since the current global internet penetration rate is just 57% and 1 million new users are gaining access to the internet every single day.

internet penetration statistics

Imagine the possibilities with so many new people with so many new questions about every aspect of life.

And even if you’re in a competitive niche, you can come up with unique angles like VegetarianBodyBuilding and HuskyPuppiesInfo to carve out your own sub-niche.

Niche selection, however, plays a huge role in determining the success of your business. If you choose a niche that’s too broad, you won’t be able to compete in it with the bigger publishers.

If you choose an overly narrow niche, you won’t have any room to grow.

The whole process of niche selection isn’t based on gut feeling or luck. There are proven methods and techniques backed by data that we use every day to find new and unique niches that we know are profitable.

We’ve covered this subject in a lot of detail in our recent article about choosing a profitable niche. Do read it.

2. It takes time & money to grow a successful online business

Most people are attracted to online businesses because they believe it’s a quick way to make money.

This is partially true.

It will take you decades to build a million-dollar business in the real world. In the online world, you can do it in just a few years (even months if you’re really smart).

There’s a reason why 7 of the world’s most valuable companies are internet-based businesses that didn’t even exist two decades ago.

But it still takes time to build a sustainable and long-term online business.

Just have a look at the average age of the sites we’ve listed in this post.

  • Most of them are at least 2 years old.
  • Some of them are even 5-7 years old.

Affiliate sites that depend on Google Search traffic, in particular, require at least a couple of years to really gain momentum.

This is not only apparent from this list but also proved by a detailed Ahrefs research study.

9 Valuable Lessons From 21 Websites Successfully Sold On Flippa 2

They analyzed over 2 million Google Search results for random keywords and found that the average top 10 ranking page is at least 2 years old.

The pages ranked number 1 were even older with almost 3 years of age.

This proves one thing.

If you’re starting a new site, and Google Search is your primary traffic source, be prepared to play the long game and wait for at least a year to gain any significant rankings for high traffic keywords.

You can’t expect to jump in and immediately start dominating a niche.

Unless, of course, you’re buying an already established site that has authority in its niche, lots of content indexed in Google Search, and backlinks from other credible sites.

In that case, you can leverage the site’s authority to branch into new niches and start ranking for competitive keywords much more quickly.

From an ROI perspective, purchasing an established site, working on it for a few months, and selling it for profit makes much more sense than starting a completely new site and waiting for at least a couple of years to cash out.

The challenge in this approach, however, is choosing the right site to buy. We’ve already published a mammoth guide that goes into the details of what you should consider while purchasing an established site.

But if you still need help, we offer a completely hands-off service in which we’ll find the sites with the highest success probability for you, help you complete the purchase, improve the site’s content, SEO, etc., and sell it for you at a much higher price tag.

If this sounds interesting, just drop us an email and we’ll get in touch.

3. Content is the most valuable asset of an online business

The most successful businesses on this list are also great at content creation. Affiliate sites, in particular, need to invest in high-quality content to drive traffic from search engines, acquire backlinks, and convert readers into referrals.

But creating engaging and in-depth content is also the hardest part of growing an affiliate site. It requires hours and hours of research and even longer to pen down articles that can stand out in the crowded blogosphere.

This is why both B2B and B2C marketers rate content creation as their biggest challenge.

The Most Valuable Asset of an Online Business

If you have the resources, it’s best to outsource content creation to writers who’re either professionals in the industry you’re targeting or have written for similar businesses in the past.

In case you write the content yourself, make sure it offers real value to your readers.

Because creating content isn’t the objective.

The goal is to create interesting, credible, actionable, and high quality content that answers the questions of your audience and convinces them to buy the products you’re promoting.

You can’t do that with generic and low quality content

To be more specific, your content needs to be

  • In line with the interests of your target audience that you identify during keyword research.
  • Better than your competitors in every way. Which means it needs to be more in-depth, more visually appealing, and more actionable.

There are some sites on this list with a lot of content that still don’t have the traffic numbers to show for their effort.

There are a few possible reasons for this.

  • They mostly publish content that sells products. Product reviews, top 10 best products, product comparisons etc.
  • They’re only targeting buyer intent keywords that are product specific and have low traffic volume.

This is an incomplete strategy because it’s only focused on selling (the last step of the sales funnel).

Before this step, you need to create awareness about the benefits of your products and highlight the key features that differentiate it from its competitors.

To achieve this, you need to publish more informational content that targets the broader topics in your niche with higher search volume, creates awareness about your products, and helps you build a rapport with your audience.

More importantly, info articles with visuals and data will help you acquire backlinks which will increase the overall authority of your site.

This would help you attract traffic to your site and funnel it to the product reviews and other sales content that you’ve already published, resulting in higher conversions and sales.

4. Profitable businesses solve real problems

Like real-world businesses, successful online businesses can only grow if they solve real problems or fulfill the specific needs of their audience.

So before thinking of money or anything else, evaluate your business idea from a value perspective.

  • What value are you creating for your target audience?
  • What exactly are you giving them for which they’ll pay you their hard-earned money?
  • What differentiates you from your competitors?

You won’t make sales just because you’ve written a certain number of product reviews or published a certain number of words on your site.

You’ll only be able to sell if the person on the other side of the screen (your customer) finds value in your content and takes action because of it.

VegetarianBodybuilding (one of the sites on this list) is a really good example of this.

Its content not only focuses on answering the most common questions of its audience using data and scientific evidence but also offers real-world alternatives that they can start using right away.

The article below is a good example because the first question most people have about bodybuilding on a plant-based diet is where they’re going to get their proteins from.

Good example of good content

It also helps that the site sells its own products and doesn’t publish overly promotional content all the time.

On the contrary, you have a site like ShaverInsider which is just the kind of affiliate site you shouldn’t look to build.

It got sold for just over $11,000 but it’s clearly a site that doesn’t care much about solving problems or answering the questions of its audience.

One after the other, it only publishes articles listing different products in the hope of making a commission.

Such businesses usually don’t have a loyal audience base and fade away in a few years (sometimes even months)

5. Email and social media presence gives you a clear advantage

Very few affiliate sites on this list have email lists or active social media profiles.

The general belief among affiliate marketers promoting Amazon products is that list building is not for them since Amazon doesn’t allow direct product links in emails.

But this is such a short-term approach.

An email list not only allows you to engage your audience, build a relationship with them, and turn them into customers but also gives you several new monetization options.

Plus, it makes your affiliate site a lot more desirable to prospective buyers.

LifeYourWay, sold for nearly $60K, has an email list of over 20K subscribers and makes money not only by publishing affiliate reviews of Amazon products but also by promoting products from ClickBank, CJ and other platforms.

More importantly, their email subscriber base allowed them to launch their own product which is by far the most profitable way of making money online.

6. Revenue diversification is crucial for sustainable success

Revenue diversification is the key to building a sustainable and long-term online business.

You don’t want to be overly dependent on any single revenue channel because that puts your business at risk.

For example, if your site earns from Amazon Associates only, you’re just one policy change away from business disaster.

In the past, Amazon has reduced the commission rates for different product categories, and even shut off the affiliate program for certain products.

Plus, it regularly bans sites for different reasons.

Why depend so much on one income source when you can develop multiple revenue streams?

How to make money from blogging
Source: YoungDigitalLab

Once you have built an audience around your site, there are numerous ways to monetize your site. We’ve written a detailed article covering all the different ways you can monetize an online business.

For example, you can add Google Adsense, Ezoic, Mediavine or other ad companies to the mix.

You can also develop and sell your own digital product and keep all the profits to yourself.

Sponsored content, banner placements, eCommerce, etc. are the other revenue options you can consider once your site gains momentum and has a loyal audience.

That’s what all the successful businesses do.

And that’s what makes them so attractive for buyers.

7. Building almost fully-automated businesses is possible

Passive recurring income is every online business owner’s dream.

And while there’s probably nothing 100% passive, it’s certainly possible to create almost fully automated businesses that run and make money on auto-pilot.

Even without SEO.

MovingLowCost and MyVeganOutfit are prime examples from this list.

Both have developed complete systems in which the traffic is generated from Google Ads and Facebook Ads, and the leads are converted and forwarded to the product suppliers (service providers in case of MovingLowCost) who fulfill the requirement.

The site owners only need to switch the advertisements on to start making money.

Just do the math.

For example, if running Facebook ads costs you $5 per lead and you’re converting that lead into $10 sales, that’s $5 of profit right in your pocket.

Doing this with a content site that relies on SEO is slightly more difficult but it can be done if you create a site with a strong technical SEO infrastructure and outsource content creation and site management to the experts (a service we offer).

8. User experience and branding matter more than ever before

There are a number of ugly sites on this list that got sold for low five-figures on Flippa.

They could’ve bagged much higher rates if only they had offered better user experience and were more visually appealing.

Google is big on user experience. In fact, it’s the number one point in its business philosophy.

google philosophy

The site BaldingLife, for example, got sold for around $16,000 which isn’t great considering the quality and the amount of content on it.

But the moment you land on the site, it gives you a spammy feeling with ad units all over the homepage.

The site’s load speed isn’t great either (one of the key ranking factors these days)

To be precise, you need to do at least the following to create a good looking site that offers a reasonable user experience

  • Use a brandable domain name instead of an exact match domain
  • Get a clean and professional logo for your site.
  • Use a professionally designed responsive WordPress theme. Use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test to confirm if your theme is responsive or not.
  • Make sure your site is hosted on fast, reliable, and secure servers.
  • Make sure your site loads quickly and doesn’t make visitors wait too much. You can use Google’s Page Speed Test to see where your site stands.
  • Make sure your ad units are placed in a way that doesn’t negatively impact the user experience.

Looks aren’t everything but they do contribute positively to a site’s appeal when its on sale. Plus, a site’s overall feel and performance definitely impact its search rankings, which is why you shouldn’t underestimate this part (even though most affiliates do).

9. Sites built with shady seo techniques don’t sell easily

Getting a quick ranking boost with PBN links is an inviting thought for most business owners who’re specifically into website flipping.

But if you go through some of the website listings on Flippa, you’ll repeatedly find website owners claiming “No PBN links, 100% clean backlink profile”.

They say this because most buyers are wary of buying websites that have PBN links pointing to them because of the risks associated with it.

Pointing PBN links directly to your main site is plain madness because it will get your site penalized very quickly. And while it’s not easy to detect a well-built PBN, an experienced buyer (with SEO expertise) can still get an idea of whether your site has PBN links by analyzing its link profile (Hint: mostly expired domains, 100,000 links from 100 websites).

However, there’s a safer way to use PBNs (well, comparatively anyway)

Instead of pointing PBN links directly to your site, publish guest posts on high authority sites with backlinks to your main website.

Then point PBN links to those guest posts so that the page authority of your guest posts increases and benefits your linked pages.

Once your site’s rankings improve, gradually replace PBN links with normal guest post links.

This way, there’s no direct connection between your main site and PBNs but you still get some of its benefits.

ARE YOU READY TO START A BUSINESS THAT SELLS FOR HIGH 6-FIGURES?

It is possible.

In fact, spending a little time on sites like Flippa shows you how websites in different industries are selling for huge sums of money even with all their loopholes and limitations.

You can buy a site from Flippa (or have us find you an off-market deal) and sell it for a profit.

Or start a new one yourself.

The observations we’ve shared in this post from 21 different websites and the lessons that we’ve outline should give you a clear understanding of how to create and grow a site that sells for a high price tag.

If you want help, we can take the guesswork out of this process, do all the hard work for you, and create a site that’ll sell like hotcakes.

Just drop us an email and we’ll take it over from there.

If you have any questions about this article, feel free to ask in the comments section.

6 thoughts on “9 Valuable Lessons From 21 Websites Successfully Sold On Flippa”

  1. Super interesting and helpful article! Thanks for sharing and for all the work this must have taken to pull together.

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