Buying niche sites can be an incredible investment. Whether looking to profit off a good website flip or build up a stable of sites to create a full-time passive income, going the buying route can be faster with a higher upside when you know what you’re doing.
I’m a big fan of finding niche content websites for sale and while my focus is often on flipping for a large one-time payout, buying and building up the revenues of niche sites for passive income is a fully viable strategy.
Let’s jump into the important details for successfully acquiring niche content websites the right way.
Why Buy a Niche Website?
Several excellent reasons exist for buying a pre-existing niche content website.
- Existing niche content sites already have traffic, rankings, and monthly cash flow from day one.
- Some existing niche sites will already have good domain authority, backlinks, or history that you couldn’t get from a site you built from scratch.
- Adding content to an existing site allows me to skip the Google Sandbox and long time frames for indexing and ranking
- Adding content to existing sites means that content will get traffic, rankings, and new revenues much more quickly
- Saves a lot of time because some of the content, SEO, and other work is already done.
- Excllent market to grow and then flip the website.
These are just some of the best reasons why buying websites can be an outstanding strategy.
Pros & Cons of Building vs Buying Niche Sites
If you are building your first one or two sites I recommend building the niche site. The skills I learned from building a profitable niche site and having to overcome common, and not so common, challenges to rank, get traffic, and make that site profitable have been invaluable for every single deal that has followed.
Building niche sites is also ideal when I have more time to invest than money, and is another reason it’s the ideal beginner-friendly option. While it will take more time to rank content, there isn’t a large initial investment to recoup, either.
Pros of Building Niche Sites
- Lower monetary investment
- Learn crucial skills for building and monetizing websites
- Full control over the niche you work in
- Full control over the process from day one
- Can build using mostly time and work
Buying niche sites also has its advantages as long as the deal is good. An obvious benefit is cash flow/revenues from month one. This can be put in a bank account or help pay for outsourced content while reinvesting to build up the site.
Putting content on an existing site means that content ranks faster, bringing in more traffic, and thus more income. Scaling is easier because there is a faster measurable result to adding mass traffic or doing SEO work for an existing site versus a new one.
Buying is a great solution for growing a portfolio or preparing a flip when I have money to invest but not time to roll up a new site from scratch.
Pros of Buying Niche Sites
- Content ranks much more quickly
- Revenue from day one
- Established history with Google makes indexing/ranking much faster
- Can replace time with money for growing a site
- Small improvements in revenue can lead to a huge jump in sales price for a flip
Where To Buy Niche Content Websites?
Several options exist for buying niche sites with potential. Brokers, marketplace platforms, social media, and direct outreach are my favorite options.
Website Brokers & Platforms
The first places I look are the many trustworthy and reliable website brokers and marketplaces that specialize in the buying and selling of sites. These will have a variety of new listings every week, if not every day, and are a great starting point when looking for a new deal.
A shortlist of my favorites include:
- Empire Flippers
- Motion Invest
- Investors Club
- FE International
- Quiet Light
This is where most deals can be found, but there are other options.
Facebook groups can be a great source of potential deals. This not only goes for groups dedicated to buying and selling sites or online marketing, but for hobby groups if there’s a specific niche I’m interested in.
Look at multiple social media platforms because while Facebook groups are my favorite, it’s not the only one where I’ve found good deals in the past.
Sometimes I run into a really good hobby blog where the writer clearly knows all about their niche but also clearly doesn’t know anything about SEO or monetization. This can be a huge opportunity.
Look for contact information and reach out. At worst they say no. Sometimes you get a site full of quality content that’s attracted some really great backlinks and a few Easy Wins can raise profits hundreds of percent in a single month.
7 Tips for Website Due Diligence
Due diligence is a crucial part of the buying process. In website due diligence I’m not only looking to confirm promising numbers, but I’m looking for any red flags that will convince me to move on to another deal.
Here are seven tips for doing quality due diligence.
1. Content Auditing
Look at the quality of content. Is the information trustworthy? Is the writing itself good? How’s the on-page organization? Look at what can be quickly improved, or if the content itself is outstanding and it’s other issues like good monetization that need to be fixed.
2. Niche Research & Competition
I want to know two things when I’m diving into a potential new niche:
- Is the niche profitable and is long-term traffic trending up or down for it?
- What does the competition look like and is there room at the top of page one Google search results for someone new?
These questions are crucial for deciding whether or not the niche is one I want to get into and whether the site I’m looking at has the ability to rank where I want it to or if it will be too much work for unsatisfactory results.
3. Traffic Channel Diversity
Is the majority of the traffic organic? How many different traffic sources are there? Seeing traffic from multiple sources is a good sign. If not, that makes me a bit wary but it could be a sign of a major available opportunity as long as the main traffic source is organic like Google.
4. Backlink Profile
Any signs of major spamming, PBNs, or blackhat link building and I walk away from the site. Excellent backlinks from authority sites in the niche or general authority sites like The New York Times or Business Insider make the site more appealing.
5. Website History
The age of a domain name can make a huge difference when it comes to Google EAT. If the domain name has a 10 or even 20 year history, that is a major selling point.
6. Speed, Performance & Technical SEO
These can be major Easy Wins if the current site isn’t doing well in these categories. If the site is ranking despite problems with these, that could indicate a buying opportunity since I know how to turn these problems around.
7. Monetization Channels
Is the site owner using advanced monetization or is it just a display ad site or an affiliate site? Even if the focus is affiliate sales or display ads, are these diversified or with advanced providers or just basics like Amazon Associates and Google AdSense?
How To Do a Proper Website Valuation
Multiple factors need to be taken to determine how much a website is worth. These are the biggest factors that I consider when contemplating purchasing a new niche site.
Revenue & Costs
This is the single biggest factor in valuation. How much revenue does the site bring in on a monthly basis and what are the costs? What is the profit?
Understanding the revenue and profit numbers gives an immediate ballpark figure of what a reasonable price range for buying the site would be.
Website Growth & Trajectory
I want to see stable or growing traffic. How long has the website been around and what’s the growth rate? If there have been major traffic drops is it because of increased competition, evidence of a Google penalty, or both?
Overall growth is important, the overall trajectory is important, and I’m hunting for red flags. If a site takes a hit every single time Google updates its Algorithm, that’s a warning sign that shouldn’t be ignored.
Even when buying a site for passive income versus a flip, the potential of the website matters. What’s the ceiling for earnings? If the potential has already been tapped out, that doesn’t give a lot of wriggle room for improvement.
This also forces me to hold the website longer just to break even, or to recover funds spent on scaling the site. The potential a site has makes a huge difference in what I’m willing to pay.
Very competitive niches will take much more work, investment, and likely time to grow a site. On the other hand, a profitable niche with weak competition could make me more willing to pay for a site since I know my actions have a higher chance of paying off against the current competition.
How Profitable Are Niche Websites?
Niche websites take a lot of work, but they can be extremely profitable. While only a handful of niche content websites end up making millions, there are thousands of sites that have gone for six figures over the years.
There are tens of thousands of sites that fall in the category of making $200-$4,000 a month. Depending on the monthly income, the niche, and the market, the sites on the high end of this range could sell for six figures in a sale or flip.
The numbers will vary, but there are many niches that offer a potential full-time income whether via flipping or passive income.
When pursuing new niche content sites for a new flip I focus on the following takeaways:
- There are pros to both buying or building your own niche website
- Due diligence is crucial to finding a good deal
- Careful valuation is also an important part of the process
- Don’t just use marketplaces but look at social media and direct outreach for potential deals
- Don’t chase a deal – believe in your valuation/due diligence
Keep these in mind and you’ll tip the scales in your favor so your next deals are great ones.