What Is Website Flipping – Find Out How It Works

(Last Updated On: March 7, 2019)

What Is Website Flipping?So, you want to know what is website flipping?

Well, go to some other website because I don’t know anything about it.

Just kidding.  Actually, I have been developing websites for 10 years now and have a lot of information on website flipping.

It’s becoming more of a well-known term that you may have seen or heard people talking about.   Maybe, you have heard of people that buy and sell houses.  They flip them and make thousands of dollars each time.  Well, website flipping is really the same thing as buying and selling houses except you don’t need to have lots of overhead cost upfront.

I know what your thinking right.  Those people that do those infomercials late at night about flipping houses are not really legit.  A lot of people think that website flipping is in the same ballpark.  However, they are actually quite different.  Unlike buying and selling houses; buying and selling websites is much more lucrative.

Website flipping is “kind of” a slang term which means buying and selling websites for profit.  In order to make money at flipping websites, you have to know what to look for.  You can build starter websites and sell them or you can find websites that are undervalued and sell them for profit.

Flipping websites is really a growing trend for investors as websiteflipping.com has stated.  So, if that doesn’t get you excited about getting into the website flipping business; I don’t know what else you need to hear.

What I like about website flipping is it can be done from home, in a coffee shop, at the park, etc.  As long as you know how to do it properly you can literally work anywhere.  Also, you can work on any niche websites you want.  So, I would highly recommend that you get in niches you actually care about.

This will make it easier to make money flipping websites.  I hope you’re getting excited about learning about flipping websites because I am going to be briefly touching on how it’s done. This article on website flipping is going to cover the following:

  • Flipping Websites For Profit Tactics
  • Website Flipping Brokers
  • Don’t Confuse Brokers With Flippa
  • Flipping Website Manually

Flipping Websites For Profit Tactics

There is a lot of content out there that shows you the process of flipping websites.  For instance, this website flipping Wiki on WikiHow.  It shows you what you need to do to flip websites in 10 easy steps.   Despite what you may read on the internet you’re not going to make a ton of money with little to no work, though.  There is a learning curve that you must master before you start to make some real substantial money flipping websites.  Now, I am going to cover two different tactics for flipping websites.

Build Website From Square One

tbwhs.com website I sold for $3,850Build a website from the start to sell it.  You literally do all the work with the end goal of you selling that website for profit. This is a better option for people starting out flipping websites.  The reason being is because you only need a minimal amount of money to get started. For instance, you are starting from ground one.

You register a domain name, buy web hosting, install WordPress on it.  Then, you can add content, graphics, monetize it, and then you can sell it for profit.  It literally cost you about $10 for a domain name, $25 to $60 a year for web hosting, and then optionally a premium WordPress theme.

Website flipping profit tactics are:

  • Short-term.  1 to 3 months worth or work.
  • Medium-term. 4 to 6 months worth of work.
  • Long-term.  7 months worth of work.

Buy Websites That Have Some Traction

Buy a website and Improve it.  Sell it for higher than you bought it for.  This does require you to have some startup money. When you get started out with this tactic I would suggest that you start slow.  Don’t look for the “home run”.  Again, learn from your mistakes and make them small.  Then later once you become more experienced you can take a bigger risk to make money flipping websites.

You may wish to seek out websites to buy.  Neil Patel does give us these tips for finding people that are underselling their website’s business.  Here are three things to look out for:

  • They don’t update their site too often
  • They don’t make too much money from it
  • They don’t care about the business

In order to make money flipping websites you bought you can improve the following:

  • Improve monthly revenue generated.
  • Adding new WordPress plugins to increase the functionality of the website.
  • Create more highly valuable content.
  • Improve on the SEO.
  • Increase social media following.

These website flipping profit tactics are usually short-term to medium term.  Meaning, that you want to buy a website, make the necessary changes, and then you can sell it for profit.  However, depending on your specific goals these can be long-term if you plan on making a lot of tedious changes to the website.

Website Flipping Brokers

I want to make it perfectly clear that I don’t recommend signing up with a website flipping broker if you are just starting out.  Brokers are for the more experienced website flippers.  But, I do want to cover them and what they can do for your flipping ventures.  Think of website brokers as “shortcuts” to help you do research when your flipping websites.  Also, they do have a number of promotional services that you can use.

Here are some of the more well-known website flipping brokers:

Don’t Confuse Brokers With Flippa

Flippa.com is my number one choice for flipping websites.  See my Flippa.com review.  Why?  Because, it’s more of like an eBay for buying and selling domain names and yes websites, too.  Meaning, you pay a fee to have it listed and then people bid on your website.  Their user interface is very easy to use and then your websites will get a ton of exposure when you’re trying to sell them. Again, Flippa is not a broker and they are just a platform that you can use to sell your websites.

There are two different categories of selling websites on Flippa.com.  One is “starter websites” and the other is “established” websites.  Starter websites generally don’t have any traffic and are not generating any money.  However, established websites are usually generating money and have daily web traffic.

Flipping Website Manually

Obviously, using a website broker is going to cost you money and posting your website on Flippa is going to cost you money, too.  However, one tip I have for you is to manually contact other websites when you post your website for sale on Flippa.  This helps bring exposure to your listing on Flippa, but also brings people that might be interested in buying your website to your listing on Flippa.

I wouldn’t focus a lot of your efforts on manual outreach.  For your listing, just Google 4-5 keywords that might be interested in purchasing your website.  To do this you simply go to Google and type in keywords that your website is targetting.  These people are going to be your prospects.  Make sure you let them know your website is listed on Flippa.  Probably, won’t get a lot of responses from people you contact, but you could potentially email someone that is very interested in your website.

Final Words On Website Flipping

This article was meant to be a basic article that covers what website flipping is.

Hopefully, you have a clearer understanding of what it is now.  There are lots of different ways you can go at flipping websites for profit.  Some tactics will cost you a minimal amount of money, while others will cost you much more overhead upfront.  Also, write down your goals and how long you intend to invest in websites you are going to be developing.  This will help give you some kind of timeline and keep you focused on your goals.

Obviously, if you’re going to get into website flipping make sure you take it slow in the beginning.  Nothing is worse than buying a website for several thousands of dollars and finding out that you can’t get rid of it. Lastly, for starters make sure you stay away from brokers in the beginning because your goal is to make some profit.  Once, you have made some decent earnings you can always use brokers to help maximize your website flipping earnings.

But, I would love to hear your feedback on website flipping.  Do you have experience flipping websites. Have you used website brokers?  Have you made any poor decisions when flipping websites?  Do you have success stories about flipping websites?  Please leave your comments down below.

Garen Arnold has been designing websites for a decade now. He sold his 8-year-old affiliate marketing niche site and founded SellWebsite.co to show people how to buy/sell websites and domains.

13 thoughts on “What Is Website Flipping – Find Out How It Works”

  1. In my free time I discovered website flipping about 2 years ago. At first it was just a hobby, but about a year ago I really learned that you can make a lot of money flipping websites on Flippa.com. Typically, I like to create drop shipping websites, directories, and have made a couple forums and sold them on Flippa for over $600 each.

    It’s always exciting for me when I get a push notification on my iPhone when people are placing bids for websites I have for sale.

    • Hey Sal,

      I’m glad you discovered flipping websites 2 years ago. I remember way back when I sold my first website it was a really exciting time in my life. I just couldn’t believe that someone wanted a website I created and didn’t do anything with for over 8 months. I was really surprised when my first website sold for over $1,000 on Flippa!

      I can relate; I love getting the push notifications on my iPhone when the price goes up on my auctions for my websites!

  2. Hi Garen,

    This is some very useful information for me. I recently started a website and I kept hearing about website flipping. I knew that generally it was something about buying and selling websites but still this topic wasn’t clear for me.

    You mentioned that one option is to build a website to sell it. But why would you sell a website if it is making you money? And then start another website from scratch again, which means more time and energy. After all established websites gain more traction already, so I assume they require less energy in terms of publishing content on a regular basis?

    Buying a website and then improving it sounds like a better option than starting from scratch and then selling your own “baby”, isn’t it? On the other hand, if you improve a website, doesn’t it make sense to keep it and make money from its affiliate linked posts?

    And brokers, huh? First time I heard about flipping brokers – seems like websites really are a type of real estate! Seems like there is a lot to learn for me in this online business world.

    Thank you for sharing this info and I look forward to hearing your responses to my questions!

    • Hey Zarina,

      That is a good question on why would you build up a website that isn’t making any money? You might think that no one in their right mind would want to buy the website. However, that is not the case. In fact, a lot of my income comes from selling starter websites on Flippa.com. Basically, you are creating an idea for a money making venture and people are willing to pay over $250+ for it.

      For starter websites that I create I don’t put a lot of time on content, though. I might have 2-3 1,500 word articles, but that is pretty much it. I can usually put together a website in a week with 2-3 articles and a money making system in place.

      The problem with buying websites and improving them is you have to have a lot of money to make money with this strategy. You might have to end up sitting on the website for 2-12 months, sometimes even longer.

      For me my mind jumps around so much I get bored with different niches. So building starter websites and selling them is easy to do. My mind is always going a mile a minute and I have so many ideas for sites all the time. Then, I have longterm projects on the backend, too.

      • Hey, saw your article on backlinks and remembered that I left a comment here too, since you got me curious about selling websites business.

        Initially when I commented, it didn’t make sense to me why would you sell a website that’s making you passive income of let’s say $5,000-10,000/month but based on your response it seems that you do have long-term websites, you just are involved in the buy-sell websites too for faster profit in big chunks.

        Do I understand you correctly?

        Now, in terms of starter websites – are you saying that having 2-3 high-quality articles is fine before selling a website? I thought you needed to have some sort of income before selling your website (for clients to want it)? Also, what is the money making system in place that you were referring to?

        It seems that I will have to start from your earliest post and go through all of them to understand the full process of proper website selling business! Aghhh, so much to learn (which is good but can be overwhelming too!)

        Thank you again, Garen.
        – Zarina

    • Kind of. Let me clarify.

      For me, I always have a ton of different projects going on. So, I have sites that I am only planning to keep for a couple months, some for a half year, and some for maybe several years.

      Basically, any project that I think is long term I do want to develop it and be able to sell it at any time.

      With starter websites, you don’t need to have any income generated from it. True, it might not sell for the “big” money, but I have sold starter websites for $500+. I have seen a lot of others do it over the years, too.

      However, you get more when you hang on to a website and it’s generating traffic, revenue, etc.

      The money making system could be Amazon affiliate programs (for instance integrated with EasyAzon). It could be a Clickbank product, directory where people pay to be on a website, Google AdSense, etc. There are all kinds of different ways websites generate money.

      I know there is a lot to learn about buying and selling websites. A lot of people think you can just jump right into it. But, it does take a lot of careful planning.

    • Actually, you don’t have to have any rankings to sell a website. You can create starter websites (meaning they get very little traffic) and sell them for decent money.

      However, selling websites that have traffic and a decent income stream will pay more money. Therefore, it’s good to have a plethora of website venture ideas at once. For instance, starter websites that you can flip quickly, 4-6 month projects that you can work on selling. Lastly, longterm projects that will take you longer than 6+ before you sell the website.

  3. You know website flipping has gain so much popularity over the years. I have heard about someone who said that they know of someone who sold their website for 200,000. Now that is a lot of money. It is great to see the kinds of money that can be made from flipping websites.

    However, I do have a question for you?  How can you tell how much your website is worth?

    • Yeah, it takes a lot of work to sell a website that is worth 200,000. But, if you build something valuable and find the write buyers anything is possible.

      I did write this article on “How Much Is A Website Worth“. This will give you some ballpark figure rather than those automated tools that really don’t give you an accurate estimate. Hope this helps you in determining how much your website is worth.

  4. I am always on the lookout for ways to earn an income from home. I had not heard of website flipping, but this sounds very interesting to me….and something that I can do! Since I don’t have a lot of capital, I would be starting at square 1 with a new site. I think this sounds like a lot of fun. I am a stay-at-home mom, so I do have the time to put into it. Once I feel I have the website ready for sale, do I use flippa to sell it? Or how do I go about selling a website?

    • A lot of people actually think that you need money to start flipping websites. However, it’s not like you need a whole mountain of cache. It’ might help to have at least $100, but selling starter websites on Flippa is a good way to go. They have no traffic at all and are not actually generating any money at all.

      For a good idea you can make $100 to $2,000 just for a starter site on Flippa. Then, once you get better at it you can outsource and increase your income much quicker. A lot of the selling comes with writing good adcopy for your Flippa listing, too. You have to sell your idea and not just write a couple words about your site and expect someone to pay a couple thousand dollars for it.

  5. Thanks for sharing. I hadn’t realized that flipping was this profitable. Are blogspot hosted sites with a custom domain flippable or is it mainly for self-hosted sites?

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