Do you guys think this is a good deal? Some Advice Please.
  • I found a site that I think I am going to try and use for my first quick-flip, but I was hoping some of you more experienced flippers could give me your advice before I go ahead and buy.

    The site is here: hxxp://www.cellgang.com/ (replace the xx with tt)

    It gets about 600-750 unique visitors per day and it makes on average $3 per day with Adsense.

    Other revenue sources are the infolinks and the owner is currently running some CPM ads from xtend media. The CPM ads give about $30 a month in revenue.

    I also noticed that people are buying links on high traffic mobile phone sites for like $5 a month so if I sell a few of those I can increase the revenue even more.

    The owner is asking for $700, but I am obviously going to try and talk them down to 5-600. They need the money to pay some school dues so I think the added pressure will help me get the site for cheaper.

    All traffic is said to be natural and from the search engines or referring sites.

    The site is ran from India and most of the traffic comes from India it looks like. the US brings the 2nd most amount of traffic. Will any of the traffic and revenue be affected with the transfer of the site from India to the US where I'm located?

    If some of you are more experienced with the due diligence process, do you see anything that I should be concerned about?

    As I said, this is my first ever site I'm buying to flip so I really want to make sure I do it right and don't lose money.

    Based on the math, I would think I could sell the site for 1k or more on Flippa, but I just wanted to get an expert opinion first.

    Thanks everyone for your help.
    Post edited by Unknown User at 2010-06-05 07:38:35
  • Go for it. As long as you can validate his earnings and traffic (ask for a few keywords he's ranking for) I would buy it. 500 - 550 is what you wanna get it for.

    My only "concerns" would be the Indian traffic & if he has actually been paid out from adsense yet.

    You also failed to mention how long the website has been live. That plays a large role with this type of flip. Has been active for 3 - 6 months?

    Trinity
  • Thanks for the response Trinity.

    Is there any certain reason why she wouldn't have been paid out by Adsense yet or how I could know? If I just asked, I'm sure anyone would say yes.

    The site looks to me like it's been active since June of 2009. There are a good amount of posts on it too.

    The screenshots I saw of traffic looked legit. They were from AW Stats though and not Google Analytics. Since Analytics isn't installed currently, I can't ask for read only access to the account unfortunately.

    Is there another website that I could use to see how much traffic the site really gets?

    Thanks for the help.

    [quote="Trinity"]
    Go for it. As long as you can validate his earnings and traffic (ask for a few keywords he's ranking for) I would buy it. 500 - 550 is what you wanna get it for.

    My only "concerns" would be the Indian traffic & if he has actually been paid out from adsense yet.

    You also failed to mention how long the website has been live. That plays a large role with this type of flip. Has been active for 3 - 6 months?

    Trinity
  • Sorry, I shouldn't have actually said anything about the adsense payout. You don't have to worry about that with this type of site, but I would recommend you check "compete.com" and see if it comes close to the traffic he/she is claiming.

    To answer a question in your original post nothing should go wrong with the revenue or traffic. I would just take precaution and buy a host with a unique IP for the transfer.

    Seems like a good buy. Nice find!

    Trinity
  • Looks awfully busy for an MFA site. And the annoying pop up might turn a lot of Adsense clickers off, IMO. I generally don't want anything on a MFA site but a big block for Adsense above the post. The other stuff is just another way for clickers to leave your site.
  • Revenue of about $120 per month? Would go nicely on Flippa.

    My concern is the Indian traffic - big turn off for buyers. If you can negotiate it below $500 sounds like you've got a good deal. Play it by pointing out the negatives (Indian traffic, and his desperate situation). As he needs to sell, negotiate hard. Cash talks in this game.

    Good luck and let us know how you get on.

    Thomas
  • Hey JJ,

    What have you decided to do?

    Ok I want to start off with saying I don't have any experience with site flipping, but I do know a bit about SEO and adsense.

    I am going to quote a few things from your original post and give you my opinion the best I can.

    "It gets about 600-750 unique visitors per day and it makes on average $3 per day with Adsense."



    Well we can take this in a good way or a bad way.

    The bad way is that the amount of traffic just does not add up to the adsense earned per day. Either they are lying about traffic, used some way to inflate it with untargeted traffic.... or......

    The good way is that their adsense placement is horrible and the adsense ads are not targeted to the niche. I looked at the site and the good news is that their adsense placement IS horrible and the ads are NOT targeted.

    If you changed the placement of the adsense to a large rectangle (360x280 I believe) and put it either under the post title or the picture in the post, it would get a lot more adsense clicks. Also to make the ads more relevant to the site I would use the adsense targeting code to select the text that you want your ads to be about.

    I would also change the theme and make sure the whole adsense rectangle is above the fold. I would make it one post per page and hide all the links on the side (pages, categories, archives). If you want to make the most money with adsense, you have to give your visitor 2 options. Leave by the back button or leave by clicking on an adsense ad.

    "Other revenue sources are the infolinks and the owner is currently running some CPM ads from xtend media. The CPM ads give about $30 a month in revenue."



    I would suggest getting rid of the infolinks, but would keep the CPM ads.

    "I also noticed that people are buying links on high traffic mobile phone sites for like $5 a month so if I sell a few of those I can increase the revenue even more."



    I would do that. Anything to increase your monthly revenue for a quick flip.

    "The owner is asking for $700, but I am obviously going to try and talk them down to 5-600. They need the money to pay some school dues so I think the added pressure will help me get the site for cheaper."



    Like I said I dont have experience with flipping sites, but like the ebook says, use the negatives against them. First of all most of the traffic is from india, the site is hosted in india, and the site doesnt look that great if you ask me. If they are really desperate I would start lower at maybe $400 and have a maximum set on how high I would go.

    "All traffic is said to be natural and from the search engines or referring sites."



    I guess you are going by what the seller says. You should ask for read only access to his google analytics. I am really suspicious of his amount of views per day and low adsense earnings. You should also ask for a screen shot of his adsense earnings and be sure to look at his impressions too.

    "The site is ran from India and most of the traffic comes from India it looks like. the US brings the 2nd most amount of traffic. Will any of the traffic and revenue be affected with the transfer of the site from India to the US where I'm located?"



    I am going to have to say, yes, the traffic will be affected if switch it to a US host. Google relys on the location of a websites host to determine the best place to allow it to show up.

    Hear it from matt cutts http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=keIzr3eWK8I

    In my opinion, with the amount of visitors it is getting per day, you could get it to a 30 to 50 dollar per day site with better adsense placement. And that is conservative. I have a site right now that has less than 300 impressions and earned $42.69. I have a site with over 1000 impressions and has earned 100 dollars.

    If you do buy this site... make it a medium flip. Do the changes I suggested and you will get much more than 3 dollars a day from adsense. Then instead of selling it for 1k you can sell it for 10k+.

    Again this is in my opinion and I can not be held responsible for any money lost. ;p
  • I am in full agreement with Brent here. I'm new at flipping to but not to SEO and Adsense.

    [quote="Brent Jacoby"]
    Hey JJ,

    What have you decided to do?

    Ok I want to start off with saying I don't have any experience with site flipping, but I do know a bit about SEO and adsense.

    I am going to quote a few things from your original post and give you my opinion the best I can.

    "It gets about 600-750 unique visitors per day and it makes on average $3 per day with Adsense."



    Well we can take this in a good way or a bad way.

    The bad way is that the amount of traffic just does not add up to the adsense earned per day. Either they are lying about traffic, used some way to inflate it with untargeted traffic.... or......

    The good way is that their adsense placement is horrible and the adsense ads are not targeted to the niche. I looked at the site and the good news is that their adsense placement IS horrible and the ads are NOT targeted.

    If you changed to placement of the adsense to a large rectangle (360x280 I believe) and put it either under the post title or the picture in the post, it would get a lot more adsense clicks. Also to make the ads more relevant to the site I would use the adsense targeting code to select the text that you want your ads to be about.

    I would also change the theme and make sure the whole adsense rectangle is above the fold. I would make it one post per page and hide all the links on the side (pages, categories, archives). If you want to make the most money with adsense, you have to give your visitor 2 options. Leave by the back button or leave by clicking on an adsense ad.

    "Other revenue sources are the infolinks and the owner is currently running some CPM ads from xtend media. The CPM ads give about $30 a month in revenue."



    I would suggest getting rid of the infolinks, but would keep the CPM ads.

    "I also noticed that people are buying links on high traffic mobile phone sites for like $5 a month so if I sell a few of those I can increase the revenue even more."



    I would do that. Anything to increase your monthly revenue for a quick flip.

    "The owner is asking for $700, but I am obviously going to try and talk them down to 5-600. They need the money to pay some school dues so I think the added pressure will help me get the site for cheaper."



    Like I said I dont have experience with flipping sites, but like the ebook says, use the negatives against them. First of all most of the traffic is from india, the site is hosted in india, and the site doesnt look that great if you ask me. If they are really desperate I would start lower at maybe $400 and have a maximum set on how high I would go.

    "All traffic is said to be natural and from the search engines or referring sites."



    I guess you are going by what the seller says. You should ask for read only access to his google analytics. I am really suspicious of his amount of views per day and low adsense earnings. You should also ask for a screen shot of his adsense earnings and be sure to look at his impressions too.

    "The site is ran from India and most of the traffic comes from India it looks like. the US brings the 2nd most amount of traffic. Will any of the traffic and revenue be affected with the transfer of the site from India to the US where I'm located?"



    I am going to have to say, yes, the traffic will be affected if switch it to a US host. Google relys on the location of a websites host to determine the best place to allow it to show up.

    Hear it from matt cutts http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=keIzr3eWK8I

    In my opinion, with the amount of visitors it is getting per day, you could get it to a 30 to 50 dollar per day site with better adsense placement. And that is conservative. I have a site right now that has less than 300 impressions and earned $42.69. I have a site with over 1000 impressions and has earned 100 dollars.

    If you do buy this site... make it a medium flip. Do the changes I suggested and you will get much more than 3 dollars a day from adsense. Then instead of selling it for 1k you can sell it for 10k+.

    Again this is in my opinion and I can not be held responsible for any money lost. ;p
  • Thanks for the help everyone. I really appreciate it since buying/selling sites is new to me and I don't want to screw up the first deal.

    @ Brent: Your post was a big help. I have a few questions still though and I was wondering if you would by any chance be available over Skype, Gmail chat, or some other messenger service to help me out. I'm sure you're busy but if you have just a few minutes that would be great. I also have a collection of screen shots that the person sent me so maybe you could take a look at them and tell me if you see anything suspicious.

    One thing I did notice that I want to point out real fast is in the Adsense earnings screenshot, it's showing as like 4k impressions per day. How would that be possible on a site that gets a few hundred visitors per day? Unless maybe I'm reading it wrong.

    I also tried using Compete.com and Quantcast.com but no information is coming up for the site. I even tried it with some of my own sites that I know get steady traffic and they aren't pulling information from those either so I'm not sure what's going on with Compete and Quantcast.

    Alexa was able to pull information though and according to that, all the traffic is from India and Pakistan and then about 10% from elsewhere. On the AW Stats screenshot though, it says India has the most traffic followed by the US. Not sure what the discrepancy is between the two...

    Here is the Alexa link if someone wants to take a look: http://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/cellgang.com#

    The last thing I'm worried about is if you look it up here: http://www.spythissite.com/reverse-ip-l ... 90.103.118 there's a few other sites showing up for the same IP and they all look similar. Any reason why someone would make 5 sites that are almost identical?

    Thanks again everyone.
  • Sure we can chat over skype. Just pm me your skype name and I will add you.

    Well regarding the impressions in the adsense earnings. You said the site is receiving 600-750 unique visitors a day. When adsense counts impressions they aren't counting unique visitors. So 1 unique visitor could cause you to have 10 impressions if they went to 10 different pages.

    So if he got 600 visitors in a day with 4k impressions, it would be 6 impressions per visitor.

    I tried compete and quantcast as well. Didn't work for me either and it doesn't work on some of my sites that I know get enough traffic to be on there.

    I took a look at alexa and some stuff just looks weird to me. If you click the clickstream tab you will see that almost 70% of the sites traffic is coming straight from digital point.

    Also I am not sure where you saw the site for sell at, but I found this thread. http://forums.digitalpoint.com/showthre ... st13950725

    The guy selling it just sounds shady and he is now banned from DP.

    Just my advice... but I'd let the site go and find something else.
  • Oh wow, I didn't even see that thread.

    This person got in contact with me from an ad I put up on DP. I just went into the Sites section and made a [WTB] thread saying I'm looking for sites that get steady traffic and adsense earnings.

    Now that I see that though, I am definitely staying away.

    Another thing that's strange is when I was talking to the seller, I told her I needed a few days before I made a decision and she said she would like to get the deal done soon because she has school bills to pay.

    I said "Well if you don't want to wait for me it's fine, just go ahead and make a listing on DP and if someone else buys it then go with them."

    To which she replied: "I don't want to list it on DP because I've heard it messes with search engine rankings".

    At first I thought she just didn't have a clue about SEO, but now that I see she has listed the site already for sale, that's a big red flag right there. Not only that, but not too long after, I saw the site listed in DP under her newest user name and the auction was created BEFORE we even spoke. So everything was just a big lie.

    Thanks for spotting that Brent, it saved me a lot of hassle and possibly wasting my money on the site that's for sure.

    I suppose we don't really need to chat on Skype now since everything was answered and I'm not going to buy the site after all. Thanks for being available though and if I have more questions in the future I'll let you know.

    [quote="Brent Jacoby"]
    Sure we can chat over skype. Just pm me your skype name and I will add you.

    Well regarding the impressions in the adsense earnings. You said the site is receiving 600-750 unique visitors a day. When adsense counts impressions they aren't counting unique visitors. So 1 unique visitor could cause you to have 10 impressions if they went to 10 different pages.

    So if he got 600 visitors in a day with 4k impressions, it would be 6 impressions per visitor.

    I tried compete and quantcast as well. Didn't work for me either and it doesn't work on some of my sites that I know get enough traffic to be on there.

    I took a look at alexa and some stuff just looks weird to me. If you click the clickstream tab you will see that almost 70% of the sites traffic is coming straight from digital point.

    Also I am not sure where you saw the site for sell at, but I found this thread. http://forums.digitalpoint.com/showthre ... st13950725

    The guy selling it just sounds shady and he is now banned from DP.

    Just my advice... but I'd let the site go and find something else.
  • I don't know... I kinda feel like this little forum is family and I wouldn't want to see someone lose money or get scammed. I guess thats why the course talks about doing your due diligence.

    Yup, the whole conversation with the site owner sounds very suspicious.

    By the way, I found the DP thread by just doing a google search for the site name.

    I still haven't flipped a site, so this whole experience helped me as well.

    Anytime you need anything just let me know!
  • Yeah I did as much due diligence as I could, but when sites like Compete and Quantcast weren't pulling the information I needed, I wasn't sure what else to do.

    If I was going to buy, I would have had her agree to use Team Viewer and allow me to watch her log into Adsense and see the earnings as well as her traffic from her tracking system. Looks like I won't be needing to do that now though.

    No big deal, I have a few other sites I'm looking to buy through DP anyway. There does seem to be a lot of good deals on there.

    Maybe you and I could partner on a flipping project if that sounds like something you would be interested in. You sound like you know a lot about Adsense and I think I'm pretty good with SEO so if we combine the two we could probably make a nice profit.

    Just an idea though...

    Let me know if you'd be interested.
  • Classic example of "if it sounds too good to be true..."

    The temptation is to roll with it and try grab a bargain, but in this situation there are too many red flags so it is best to move on and forget it - as you have correctly decided to do.
  • [quote="J1218"]
    Yeah I did as much due diligence as I could, but when sites like Compete and Quantcast weren't pulling the information I needed, I wasn't sure what else to do.

    If I was going to buy, I would have had her agree to use Team Viewer and allow me to watch her log into Adsense and see the earnings as well as her traffic from her tracking system. Looks like I won't be needing to do that now though.

    No big deal, I have a few other sites I'm looking to buy through DP anyway. There does seem to be a lot of good deals on there.

    Maybe you and I could partner on a flipping project if that sounds like something you would be interested in. You sound like you know a lot about Adsense and I think I'm pretty good with SEO so if we combine the two we could probably make a nice profit.

    Just an idea though...

    Let me know if you'd be interested.


    I'd love to partner up on a flipping project and see what happens. PM me your skype details. I'll be off for a few hours be maybe we can chat some tomorrow.
  • I also may be interested in partnering on future flip projects. I am a paid writer, and also have SEO knowledge. Please PM me regarding possible partnership opportunities.