I’ve spent a lot of time in the last 12 months browsing through the website listings at Flippa.com. Most of the time was aghast, not at the fact that a quarter of the sites on there seem to be junk, while an even larger percentage are just pure scams. That’s not really why I have been so shocked though.
People are actually buying these things! I’m writing this Flippa.com review to try to highlight what is so wrong with a lot of the listings on there, and to give you some sound advice. There can still be some gems found, but you really have to wade through a lot of trash to find them.
If you’re looking for a guide on the best way to sell a website on Flippa, then you might be better off looking somewhere else, this article purely concerns buying.
My Flippa.com Review – Why I Know My Stuff
For the longest time I had a love affair with Flippa, believing that there could be a real strategy to buying and selling sites, or building sites and selling them, in a kind of virtual real-estate manner. I did buy one or two sites that didn’t turn out so well, and I also built and sold a few sites. I made around $1,500 in my first few sales, so not a bad amount by any means. I also have a 100% positive feedback rating:
My feedback proves that I’m one of the good guys, and also that I know what I’m talking about. I could have been happy there, but in the end the things I started to discover on Flippa while I was an active seller are what drove me away.
Don’t believe the hype.
What I noticed was that people were buying into lies, false promises, guarantees that meant nothing, and sales hype. It was amazing to see some of the junk that was getting an outrageous amount of bids on it. I got pretty sick of Flippa and eventually decided it wasn’t worth my time. Now I just list all sites on here instead.
Take this site, HumanProofDesigns as an example. Initially the sites I built here were going to be offered at Flippa, and the first 10 or so were, but only a small percentage of them received any attention.
In a world of false claims and saturated markets, my little ready-made niche business packs went largely ignored. Not to worry, I attract a better type of customer by doing it my own way anyway (people who don’t want a shortcut).
Essentially Flippa is now just another place like Warrior Forum or Clickbank. It’s filled with people looking to make a quick buck by selling something of little value, and even more people looking to make a quick buck, by falling for these claims and buying something of little value.
It’s a thriving market place where people buy and sell junk.
Where’s Flippa in all of this?
While they’ve done some improvements to help people do their due diligence, there are still some fundamental issues with this whole process (I’ll get to this later). Additionally, most of the security that Flippa offers is through buyer protection and resolving any issues. In other words, if you bid for and win a site, and the seller doesn’t deliver, or vice versa, then there’s a good chance Flippa will sort it out and you’ll get your money back.
If you win a site and that site is junk, then it’s “bought as seen”, Flippa takes its commission, and there’s not a lot you can do about it. It’s not really up to them to determine value either.
Video – A Case Study Of Several Sites
In the video below, I’m going to walk you through a few typical listings at Flippa and explain why the sites are junk. I’ll also highlight a good listing as a comparison.
As you can see, the typical reason most of these sites are junk is because they are duplicate content. This means there are many different versions of them that exist throughout the web. They won’t get ANY search engine rankings, and will only be of use to you if you buy traffic through Google Ads and Facebook etc.
Unless you know what you’re doing, this is just going to waste money for you. The fact that these sites also claim to be automated, require no experience, and be guaranteed profits is a joke. How can they be automated and no experience necessary if you need to pay for traffic to get success with them? How can there be a guarantee if they are currently earning nothing?
Reviewing Listings on Flippa.com – What’s The Due Diligence Like?
You are basically on your own here. Only your own experience can help you. Flippa has created this laughable “due diligence” section for its listings:
I’d like to briefly explain what makes this laughable.
1.) Google PageRank is useful for finding out whether or not a website has any backlink power, but it doesn’t tell you how high it ranks, how much traffic it gets, or whether or not the site is even worth buying. I’ve seen some terrible sites with high PR. Also, PageRank is not basically defunct.
2.) Alexa Rank is even less useful than Google PageRank. It’s weird. Because so many people cite AlexaRank as being useful, it creates this myth that it really is, but it really isn’t. Essentially it only gets data from people who use the Alexa Toolbar. Do you know anyone who does? I don’t either. You can learn more about that here.
3.) Similarly, “links in Google”, SEMRush, and MajesticSEO are all misleading (confusing even) stats. Look at the example above, 0 links in Google, 1 SEMRush link, and 831 MajesticSEO links. Is that good? Is it bad? Does it even matter? No.
As I’ve touched upon already, the real issue with most of these websites is that they are worthless. This is a pretty big issue. Most of them have one or more of the following things wrong with them:
- Duplicate content (Can’t get free traffic)
- Not tested (Can’t offer a “guarantee”)
- Poor design.
- No explanation of how to monetize them (They’ll get earnings! I promise!)
- The fact they cost so little shows that they are worth little.
At the end of the day, ask yourself, if this site is all that it promises to be, why is it being sold so cheaply?
What About The Good Sites? The High Priced Ones?
If you do end up browsing the listings at Flippa, you’ll ultimately come across some of the good sites. Yay! If you can afford them, by all means bid. I’m sure I’ve given you enough guidance to identify the better sites. Generally they are ones that have verified traffic and earnings, have a clear explanation of why they work, and don’t look like they are being sold by someone who sells sites over and over again for low prices.
Many a good site has been sold on Flippa, and if you can find one (you’ll usually have to wade through a LOT of junk), then it could be a good investment, but bear in mind you will have to fend off a lot of competition, and if you can afford to buy one of these good sites, then you probably don’t need one anyway.
Final tip, nothing online that succeeds in the long term is automated.
So you’ve been looking at Flippa because you want a website that’s going to earn you money, but you’ve been put off by my review (and rightly so!). What alternatives do you have?
The way I see it, you need my help, and I’m going to give you two options.
2.) Learn about affiliate marketing, how I succeeded online, and get started doing the same for free. (This will take a lot longer than buying one of our pre-made sites.)
Any questions? Seen a site on Flippa you want me to review? Drop me a line below!