Welcome to Website Investing Weekly, bringing you up-to-date with what’s been going on in the world of website investing. If you’re not already on the list to receive these updates, sign up below. You can also leave comments at the end of the post.
💵 Building Vs Buying - Which Is Better?
On the latest Authority Hacker podcast on building vs buying, Mark & Gael recommended that every (active) investor should build their first site before buying and operating. We have seen many examples of investors buying six-figure assets for their first purchase and having them tank, so would agree. It was also interesting to hear Gael stating that the Google updates over the last year have been more volatile and that he is surprised that multiples have not dropped because of this (likewise).
If you’re thinking about building and want to save the 9-12 months it takes for a new domain to rank well, you can do what Adam, Ewen, Ruaan & Steve do (plus more scheduled for the podcast) by building out on aged domains picked up at auctions that already have good authority (such as from ODYS).
The ROI from investing in content is also higher than on an established site and you remove the downside risk from losing revenue. However, if you’re looking to buy income, then acquiring revenue-generating sites is obviously the play. We vet and feature the best content site deals across the marketplace in our Deals email every Wednesday. [RP]
🔍 Due Diligence Might Be Easier Than Ever
The adage “you make money when you buy” is as true in website investing as it is in real estate… and it might be important to remember until SERPs stabilize or the sun explodes (we expect these to happen at about the same time).
In a move to boost buyer confidence, Empire Flippers released their due diligence checklist. It covers pretty much everything you’ll need while doing due diligence without being an actual SOP. If you’re in the market for a good due diligence SOP, we just so happen to have one for our premium subscribers.
And if you want due diligence done for you, Flippa has started offering this as a service. It costs more than a Bahaman cruise, but less than a mistake. [BC]
🦄 SEOs with Skin in the Game
Smash Digital - a growth agency, filled to the brim with unicorn images and SEO memes. A team of SEOs with actual skin in the game, ranking their own portfolio of profitable businesses, and offering the exact same services to clients. An agency with so much link juice you’ll need a mop and bucket to clean it all up. Check. Them. Out.
📼 Click for Fake Video
Allen from Ezoic wrote an interesting article on fake videos that some ad management companies encourage their publishers to create, so they can run high earning video ad units inside. I’ve seen first hand how creating a fake video out of a series of images can jack up the overall ad RPM a site can get. But the article states that this manipulative practice is unlikely to last as advertisers are will blacklist sites that do this. [RP]
🤞 Beginner’s Luck?
In a move that makes every website investor jealous, a beginner created growth and had a successful exit on his first site. And he made a whopping 1,670% return on investment. The investor, Nathan, found an asset that had some age and was making a little money, but the site had not received a good dose of new content for years. The owner was ready to exit. Nathan took the site into his hands, did some renovations, and worked on some easy wins.
He ended up increasing the income by 10x and selling the site for a whole 17x what he paid for it. The only consolation to our fragile egos is that Nathan was working with smaller numbers: the site was earning $20-$30 per month and had a $950 price tag when he got it. He sold it for $16,900.
It’s easier to have big percentage wins with small numbers, but Nathan’s smart acquisition and renovation made it easy for him to roll up his earnings into a bigger site. Someone should probably forward him an email newsletter about investing in content sites, or something. [BC]
🤖 Intelligent Platform for Publishers
Ezoic is an AI-driven platform built for publishers to optimize ad revenue and maximize site speed. As a Google Certified Publishing Partner, they have access to Google Ad Exchange, as well as top-performing ad networks. Their real machine learning optimizes ads and layouts for each individual visitor, resulting in much higher revenue, whilst improving UX. You can drag-and-drop ad testing locations using the Ezoic Chrome extension, and their AI ad inventory drives up bids.
Ezoic also offers access to Big Data Analytics where you can break down revenue at a page level to learn how valuable different blog categories (and even authors) are, and to be able to effectively measure the ROI from SEO. You can start a free trial of the Ezoic platform today.
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That’s it for another week, hit us up in the comments on the web version of this post.
Richard Patey (& Brady Cargle)