Website flipping is the process of buying websites and then selling them to make a profit. It is also quite common for people to create websites from scratch with the sole intention of selling them to make some fast cash, and some people also call this practice flipping too, but it is debatable whether this can really be considered flipping in the true sense of the word.  Website flipping is the online version of real estate flipping. Sharp investors have been flipping property for a long time. If they were buying land and building on it people would consider them developers not flippers. Website flipping can be a lucrative business if the right site is purchased at the right price and sold at the right price. The word ‘right’ appeared three times in the last sentence. If the word ‘wrong’ is used to replace just one of those ‘right’s the whole flipping process can go wrong and money will be lost so— just as in the bricks and mortar world—serious thought is required before any money is invested.

A Real Estate Flipper Might Look at:

  • The area (up and coming or going downhill?)
  • Build quality (are the foundations solid, is it built to last?)
  • The amount of work required (repairs, decorating etc.)
  • Local amenities
  • The possible rental value
  • Possible improvements
  • How much time/money will be required to bring the property up to scratch?
  • The realistic selling price after the work is completed.
  • The potential profit (is it worth it?)
A Website Flipper Should Look at:

  • The niche (how popular and how much competition?).
  • Site quality (does it look good, is it easy to navigate, does it contain quality content?)
  • The amount of work required (backlinks, SEO, etc.)
  • The present amount of traffic
  • The present revenue
  • Future revenue potential
  • How much time/money will be required to bring the site up to scratch?
  • The realistic selling price after the work is completed
  • The potential profit (is it worth it?)

Although an unsuccessful website flipping project is not (usually) as costly as an unsuccessful real estate venture, online business is about making money not losing it, so it pays to be careful when choosing which site(s) to buy. Potential flippers take heart though. The right site can sell for big money and some websites placed on the Flippa website have sold for over USD$ 100,000 and when StockPhoto.com was put up for auction in 2013 bidding began at USD$ 30,000 and, after 12 bids, finally sold for USD$ 250,000. Most website flipping ventures are unlikely to provide returns of that magnitude, but it is interesting to note that all the sites sold for big-money prices share one thing in common—they started small.