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Thread: Hello - Another Website Buyer Here

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    Hello - Another Website Buyer Here

    Hi,
    I'm looking to invest some savings into some online properties and this forum looks like a great place to learn due diligence - in addition to what I know already.

    I'm an ex-designer, working mainly as a copywriter in the online world. I know my way around online marketing, seo etc and have set up and run a bunch of sites to moderate (low level) success, in the past. So my skill and experience are of a decent level, but I've never bought established web properties before and I'm looking for advice and help in establishing a rigorous approach - to keep my money safe!

    I've read lots of great stuff here already, so I look forward to finding more!

    Also interested in meeting any experienced folks here who offer their services as a consultant, or something similar, to help in the finding/assessing/buying process.

    All the best,
    Phil

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  3. #2
    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Hi Phil,

    Welcome to Experienced People. You've come to the right place! Also, looking at your background, you should fit right in on here. There are loads of us who share the same or similar interests, plus it looks as though you'll be able to plug a few gaps for us while we're also able to help you.

    I like your idea to take a cautious approach to buying sites. I'm a bit like you in as much as I've mostly been a build from scratch person but I'm now thinking that acquisition is a much quicker route to business growth. In some ways it's less risky than a start-up too - if only you can get that DD right. And that's quite a big "if". But we have loads here to help you - both free and premium content.

    You might get some replies in response to saying you'd like to find someone to help you through the buying process. Be careful because some people lurk on this forum just to tout for business if they see the opportunity. So, if anyone replies offering their services for a fee then please do have a look at what good advice they've posted and their reputation and activity on this forum, or whether they're just here looking for a new mark. Be especially careful of anyone who doesn't normally contribute but is quick to jump in and suggest you PM them for help. Take it slowly on that front and get to know the community here first.

    Good luck with your plans!

    Kay
    British Expat - helping people to live and work abroad since the year 2000.

    The joy of Internet delivery - the cartoon illustrating this will make you laugh!



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    Quote Originally Posted by Kay View Post
    Hi Phil,

    Welcome to Experienced People. You've come to the right place! Also, looking at your background, you should fit right in on here. There are loads of us who share the same or similar interests, plus it looks as though you'll be able to plug a few gaps for us while we're also able to help you.

    I like your idea to take a cautious approach to buying sites. I'm a bit like you in as much as I've mostly been a build from scratch person but I'm now thinking that acquisition is a much quicker route to business growth. In some ways it's less risky than a start-up too - if only you can get that DD right. And that's quite a big "if". But we have loads here to help you - both free and premium content.

    You might get some replies in response to saying you'd like to find someone to help you through the buying process. Be careful because some people lurk on this forum just to tout for business if they see the opportunity. So, if anyone replies offering their services for a fee then please do have a look at what good advice they've posted and their reputation and activity on this forum, or whether they're just here looking for a new mark. Be especially careful of anyone who doesn't normally contribute but is quick to jump in and suggest you PM them for help. Take it slowly on that front and get to know the community here first.

    Good luck with your plans!

    Kay
    Hi Kay,
    thanks for dropping by with your greetings and words of support. I've read some of your posts here already and I'd add my vote for you to get on and complete that book!

    Thanks too for your advice, if you have any suggestions as to who I might approach I'd be glad to hear from you. And what is in the 'premium membership'? Should I be considering that?

    All the best, and thanks again,
    Phil

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    LOL! I know, I must push on with that book. Thanks for the kick up the bum. I assume you mean the one I'm writing about buying websites. It's getting there. The first parts are complete and at the editing stage. These cover various basics about buying websites - what and why, where to look for one, and how to reduce the risk of being ripped off. There's a chapter about website flipping and Flippa. Then website valuation (that's half finished and that's what I'm working on right now). Then there's DD (done). And finally there's the deal itself... Thanks for an opportunity to talk about it and encouragement to get it finished.

    You asked about Premium Membership. For me it's about the community and supporting it. Unlike many places, we don't make money by recommending "how to get rich" products we're affiliated with. And we don't allow these types of things to be sold on here either. This makes us very unattractive to those seeking fresh prey. And it also means that we're denied the obvious and easy sources of revenue. Therefore, we keep some of the best content and discussions in the private areas for those who support the community. There's a table about the more tangible benefits of Premium Membership here:
    http://experienced-people.net/forums...read.php/11317

    There's no obligation at all to join. You can get loads of information and help free on here. It's entirely up to you.

    I notice you have London in your user name. May I ask if that's geographical? If so, it's on the cards that I might be your neighbour soon.
    British Expat - helping people to live and work abroad since the year 2000.

    The joy of Internet delivery - the cartoon illustrating this will make you laugh!



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    Philondon (15 June 2014)

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    New Member Mentor JimWaller is a Premium Member
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    Hi and welcome Philondon (Phil)!

    Thanks for taking a moment to introduce yourself. Here at EP, introductory posts are important as they help us get to know you and help our other members decide how much value they will place on your views and opinions.

    We try to maintain a high level of quality information, and one way we do that is by following our forum rules (especially rule 3 our so-called "no fluff" rule) Our members put a lot of thought into their posts and I'm sure you'll do the same. We have very helpful members in our community, so feel free to ask questions in the appropriate forums. Who knows, another member might have the same questions you have.

    Out of curiosity, how did you find us? Was it a web search, a referral by a friend, or something else? I originally came here when a friend who was already a member here told me about it.

    You mentioned wanting to learn more about due diligence, a good place for you to start might be our due diligence and gotchas forum as you can learn a bit about what to look for as well as what to lookout for when buying or selling a website. (If you're considering upgrading to Premium Membership, one benefit is access to what is probably the definitive guide to due diligence. It is clear, concise and an easier way to learn about due diligence than just reading the forum posts. Either way, you can find out about due diligence.) We wouldn't want you wasting your hard earned money only to get scammed on a website purchase because you didn't do your due diligence.

    The Premium Lounge may be well worth the investment for you. If our free areas are like a community, the Premium Lounge is like a family, and we try to look out for each other and help each other as much as possible. We'd love to have you join us.

    Though it may seem like it, I'm not trying to push the Premium lounge on you. As Kay said:
    There's no obligation at all to join. You can get loads of information and help free on here. It's entirely up to you.
    I hope you'll become an active member of our community. I look forward to geting to know you better.

    Kind Regards,

    Jim
    Help bring Janice home My mother-in-law was hospitalized while on vacation (holiday) We're trying to bring her home.

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    Administrator Clinton is a Premium Member
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    I add my welcome.

    Also interested in meeting any experienced folks here who offer their services as a consultant, or something similar, to help in the finding/assessing/buying process.
    My recommendations? Finding a site: AFAIK, nobody offers that service, it's too time consuming; clients would want to pay by results rather than per hour and anybody who knows what he's doing isn't going to work on those terms. Assessing: There are so called "due diligence" services you can purchase. Don't rely on those! If you cannot do the DD yourself to your full satisfaction ...don't buy sites. People selling you those services won't tell you the simple truth that you should avoid investing money based on their advice. I don't know of any one such service that's fully independent anyway. If they have a vested interest - via being connected with the seller or the marketplace or having a business relationship with either of those parties - you wouldn't be smart to pay them to advise you.
    Find the right business brokers to maximise the value you extract from your business and improve the chances of selling your business.

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    Chabrenas (17 June 2014), JimWaller (15 June 2014), Philondon (16 June 2014)

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    Thanks, everyone, for your replies. Getting such great responses on an introductiory thread really is a good indicator of the 'quality of life' on a forum.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kay View Post
    LOL! I know, I must push on with that book. Thanks for the kick up the bum. I assume you mean the one I'm writing about buying websites...
    Yes, because while yours is still in production the lesser quality products are getting the sales. Also, it would be good to read a book on this topic whilst having some confidence the author knows what they are writing about!

    Quote Originally Posted by Kay View Post
    You asked about Premium Membership...
    Yes, and I'm seriously considering it. Thanks for the link. I'm in the middle of moving home right now with no home internet connection, so there's a lot 'on hold' in my life at present. But once I'm up and running I'll give that some serious thought.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kay View Post
    I notice you have London in your user name. May I ask if that's geographical? If so, it's on the cards that I might be your neighbour soon.
    You just missed me! I've relocated to Greece (Europe) for the summer (at least). All my work, at present, is conducted online so I don't 'need' to be in London. I have friends in Greece and the quality, and cost, of life here is so much better! But I'm not going to say anything against London, it's been my home most of my life - where are you moving to, and from where?

    Thanks again for dropping by.

    Quote Originally Posted by JimWaller View Post
    Hi and welcome Philondon (Phil)!
    Thanks Jim! And hello to you, too!

    Quote Originally Posted by JimWaller View Post
    Out of curiosity, how did you find us? Was it a web search, a referral by a friend, or something else? I originally came here when a friend who was already a member here told me about it.
    I came here after buying an ebook by the author/marketer Chris Guthrie, called 'Buying Websites: How To Invest In Online Real Estate'.

    As for the book, it's a bit basic and rather too cursory an overview to be very useful. But may, perhaps, be useful to complete beginners - if there is such a thing in this kind of area. Personally, I'd expect that people looking into buying or selling websites would have at least some prior knowledge or experience.

    I don't know the author and haven't bought any of his other products. There were some decent reviews on Amazon and it was only a few $. It was ok, but told me nothing new, and had fairly well-worn information, so I'm not sure of the author's real expertise in the area.

    But it was good for a few links - including one to this site which I hadn't visited before. So, in that respect I probably got my few $ worth: if not from the book itself.

    Quote Originally Posted by JimWaller View Post
    You mentioned wanting to learn more about due diligence, a good place for you to start might be our due diligence and gotchas forum as you can learn a bit about what to look for as well as what to lookout for when buying or selling a website. (If you're considering upgrading to Premium Membership, one benefit is access to what is probably the definitive guide to due diligence. It is clear, concise and an easier way to learn about due diligence than just reading the forum posts. Either way, you can find out about due diligence.) We wouldn't want you wasting your hard earned money only to get scammed on a website purchase because you didn't do your due diligence.
    Thanks Jim: good and sensible words.

    Quote Originally Posted by Clinton View Post
    I add my welcome.

    My recommendations? Finding a site: AFAIK, nobody offers that service, it's too time consuming; clients would want to pay by results rather than per hour and anybody who knows what he's doing isn't going to work on those terms. Assessing: There are so called "due diligence" services you can purchase. Don't rely on those! If you cannot do the DD yourself to your full satisfaction ...don't buy sites. People selling you those services won't tell you the simple truth that you should avoid investing money based on their advice. I don't know of any one such service that's fully independent anyway. If they have a vested interest - via being connected with the seller or the marketplace or having a business relationship with either of those parties - you wouldn't be smart to pay them to advise you.
    Thanks to you too, CLinton. And more good sense!

    I used to spend time on the Warrior Forum, back in the mid 2000's, before I 'graduated' to more sensible places. So I've seen my fair share of snake oil being sold. Which is why I also put a big emphasis on due diligence and add a massive pinch of salt to everything I read online. If anything, I err on the side of caution and will likely miss good opportunities simply because of my 'belt and braces' attitude to research.

    I'm pleased to find so many members here with what seems to be a similar attitude.

    As for websites (and most other stuff online) I agree that however good a site might seem to be, if it has proven income of $$$'s - $$$$'s per month and a BIN price of 1 or 2 thousand $ then there is something wrong - with either the site, the seller or both. Curiosity pushes me to find out what is 'wrong' but my wallet is rarely in any danger!

    For example, on the face of it Wallpaper websites seem to be amazing moneymakers. I've seen a bunch of them on sale on Flippa, only a few months old and already making $100+ per month with traffic in the 5 figures. More established sites seem to do exponentially better. On the face of it, as an investor, I would be tempted to fill my portfolio with Wallpaper sites and put down a deposit on that holiday home with the change.

    On the face of it.

    I haven't yet figured out what the hell is going on with those sites, or how the hell those sellers seem able to prove such great income and traffic yet are, seemingly, prepared to sell off these golden geese for pennies. But I'm not about to buy one!

    I'll keep on looking at these listing, out of curiosity alone. I figure that when I figure out what these guys are doing - what their 'con' is - I'll be able to add another branch to my due diligence routine.

    Thanks again, everyone, for dropping by. And thanks for your helpful thoughts.
    All the best, to you!

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  14. #8
    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Hey Phil, we have even more in common than at first glance! I too am in the process of moving house and country - this is a big part of what's slowing up the book being finished. We're moving to London next month from SE Asia. Moving is easy for those who just pack a suitcase and go but it's a more complex process for those of us who are moving their entire base from one country to another, even temporarily. I'm writing a series about repatriation on my expat website. Whilst it's definitely possible to earn a living online from anywhere in the world as long as you have an Internet connection, I think it'll be useful to be back in London for a while. I miss out on a lot of good stuff by not being in the UK. Good luck in Greece! Watch out for Theo, who's a member here, perhaps he'll have some tips about Greece for you.

    Ah yes, Chris Guthrie's book... BTW Chris is a member here but he rarely visits. I doubt if the EPers are the audience he seeks. Lots of people sing the praises of that book, but I was less impressed. You can read my review of it on my blog.
    kaymcmahon.com/1750.buying-websites-how-to-invest-in-online-real-estate-a-book-review/

    The book was pretty much a sales tool for his Site Finder Pro (SFP) tool. I later took that for a test drive as well, but haven't written a review about it yet. SFP, however, does get a mention in my new book about buying websites. Yes, I really must try to put the distractions aside and get on with the book. I know several people are waiting for it and I don't want to let them down. And with that said, I'd better not spend all day replying on this thread.
    British Expat - helping people to live and work abroad since the year 2000.

    The joy of Internet delivery - the cartoon illustrating this will make you laugh!



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    Administrator Clinton is a Premium Member
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    I haven't yet figured out what the hell is going on with those sites...
    It's not important. If a seller is creating sites just to sell them that's a good enough reason to avoid him. It takes some people a long time - and many thousands - to learn that one lesson.
    Find the right business brokers to maximise the value you extract from your business and improve the chances of selling your business.

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  18. #10
    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clinton
    If a seller is creating sites just to sell them that's a good enough reason to avoid him.
    Gotta have to disagree with you there, Clinton. (And probably kick myself after when I better understand your point.)

    I would agree that in 90+% of cases if the seller is building to sell, then avoid. These are mostly massively over-hyped clones and other rubbish. However, not all sellers do that. There are some rare examples of sellers who genuinely do build a nice little site and sell at a reasonable price without hype or ridiculous claims of potential. These can give the buyer a quicker start than going through the building process himself. The main thing is that the buyer should fully understand what he is buying, ie a website and not a business.
    British Expat - helping people to live and work abroad since the year 2000.

    The joy of Internet delivery - the cartoon illustrating this will make you laugh!



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