I have been busy looking at existing sites & traffic so taken a break from domain research.
Life Insurance Quotes continues to age and is now taking leads, this site is moving forward to the point it’s probably earning just into 4 figures a month, also picked up a couple of other insurance quotes names like travelinsurancequotes.co.uk as that type of traffic seems to convert better and be more valuable than any other. A lovely little set.
Picked up a few expired domains, one in particular last week came good free-animations.co.uk which cost £40 – I tracked down the old owner and offered him a token amount for the old website – he was happy for me to have it so put it back together and it’s doing 2000 visitors and £10 in Adsense per day with no other work done to it.
The big move recently was buying a site I spotted a couple of years ago – NinePlanets.org which is a guide to the solar system with dedicated pages to the moon, Neptune and even a kids astronomy area.
I approached the owner who built it over the last decade but he didn’t want to give any stats and wanted $100,000, so I left it, but it nagged away at me because I knew it was a monster with potential, the owner had a little adsense at the top and right hand side but I knew it’s CTR would be horrendous, I left it a year and approached him again in March 2010 but again the owner wanted $100,000 and wanted me to buy it for the love of it and not income. This time I managed to get some analytics stats, it did 5.5 million visitors in the previous 12 months, this is a site that bombs in the summer but makes up for it outwith that. Now I knew it averaged around 15,000 visitors per day.
The good thing about having a diverse selection of sites is that I already have some science & study related sites so I could do my own numbers, averaging a 1% CTR on page impressions I worked out the site could earn £17k a year, at 2% CTR on page impressions I guestimated around £32000 a year. That was enough to go ahead in my book, even though it’s the most money I have ever spent on buying a site and I was buying it kind of blind it still seemed too good value when everything was weighed up. A final purchase price of just under the $100,000 was agreed and Escrow completed last week.
It’s been fun watching the numbers rolling in, early indications show the site can do £150 a day in Adsense during the week and even with the summer blip I reckon without improvements it could do £40-£50,000 a year so pay itself back in 12-16 months without getting into affiliate product sales, subs and direct advertiser deals, not bad at all. I have also found out the site used to have twice as much traffic a few years ago so really does have potential to improve.
So two acquisitions that could not be further apart in price but I love the thrill of the chase and working on a great deal, it gives me a buzz at £40 or into tens of thousands, I’m certainly in acquisition mode just now – working on tools to find undervalued or forgotten about sites and buying them, the same as I did with domains for a period of time, both areas still offer huge opportunity for profit every single day.