What is WebsiteInvesting101.com?
Website investing is the process of buying (and eventually selling) websites to generate passive income streams and profits – hopefully greater than those you will get from investing in more typical asset classes such as the stocks and bonds. This website isn’t about “flipping” websites per se…it’s more about the process of using websites to generate income streams that can hopefully one day supplement your full time income and allow you to live life on your own terms – not the terms of your corporate HR policy.
I have been in the online business game for a few years but have been buying and building passive websites for the past year. I don’t make $5,000/month online and I’m not trying to sell you any secrets in a ‘Tai Lopez-esque’ type of way.
What you can learn from reading and watching my videos
This website is my forum for showcasing the things that I do online…with the hopes that maybe you can learn something and start to do it yourself along the way. If you keep up with my site, here are the things you will hopefully see and learn:
- Case studies on the websites I’ve purchased and the techniques I use to make them more profitable
- My purchasing rationale: the types of sites I like and the types I stay away from
- The due-diligence process: how to filter out the crap websites from the gold mines
- Website valuation: how to value an opportunity and understand what drives value
- How you can build your own website investment thesis and buy your first website…or build it
- How to finance the purchase of buying a website
I don’t make a living online, but I do make some pretty good beer money. My journey started in June of 2017 and I’ve come pretty far in just one year. I don’t promise you endless success if you keep up with my posts but maybe you too can make some beer money along the way.
There are a lot of people out there that only make money online by teaching people how to make money online. Sounds kind of backwards right? On WebsiteInvesting101 you can watch me grow my niche ventures and online income streams without me trying to sell you a bag of shit.
Who am I?
My name is Jake. I’m your average 23 year old, except I prefer to spend my free time building online ‘side-hustles’ instead of binge-watching Netflix (although I do have my nights). I have a degree in finance and accounting and work for a Private Equity firm in the Houston area. Website investing has grown into a passion for me and providing value others is something that I have always enjoyed. I believe most people in this world are average. But I also believe everyone is this world has something that they are above average at, and has some sort of value that they can provide to others. I hope I can provide some value to your life whether it’s enjoyment from reading my (mediocre) writing or helping you start your own side-hustle through website investing.
What everyone wants to know: how much money do I make online?
As of June 2018, $700/month. I told you, I don’t make a living online…but not bad beer money. And I got to this point in less than a year. To give you a more specific idea of how I earn income online, you can see below for all my website I own (that I share).
$500 of that comes from a website that I (along with my brother, Zach) built from the ground up in June of 2017. In one year, we are driving 20,000 unique visitors per month and making $500 of profit per month from multiple monetization methods. The other $200/month comes from the $8,950 ($9,209 after buyer fees) that I have spent on purchasing two websites in the past 6-months.
If you put that into percentage returns, the $8,950 returns me 2.2% per month. That’s over 26% per year. If anyone knows where I can get a higher return than that, and get monthly cash dividends into my checking account, please let me know.
My Current Website Investment Portfolio:
The websites I own, how they’re monetized, and how much money they make
What kind of website is this: A nice blog on the WordPress platform
What’s it about: The site is a blog for modifying and tuning BMW’s N54 engine. It’s extremely niche, since the engine was only used from 2007-2010 (with a few exceptions). But this is what has allowed me (& Zach, my brother) to bring the website to over 20,000 unique visitors per month in one year.
Cost to purchase: None, built this site from the ground up with a brand new domain name and blank wordpress site in June 2017
Traffic stats: 20,325 unique visitors, 30,884 pageviews (June 2018)
Moneztization methods: Google AdSense, Amazon Associates, eBay Partner Network, CJ Affiliate (TireRack), Private Advertisements
Cash Flow per month: $511.23 (May 2018)
Expenses per month: $6.67 (hosting) + a few miscellaneous expenses here and there
Your first thoughts are probably: “WOW that thing is ugly. It looks like it’s from the 90’s.” Well, it is. This site has been online since 1997…almost as long as I’ve been born, and almost as long as the internet has been a thing. This is a really cool site and one I’m ecstatic to have recently purchased. I’m going to do a case study on my purchase of this website, so look for the link below to ready about my purchasing rationale and future plans.
What kind of website is this: a niche blog/informational website on a STATIC HTML website (yes, 2018 and its still static html)
What’s it about: You can probably tell….Chevy trucks! But, the site is focused around classic chevy trucks, which makes it more unique and niche, although hopefully one day it will be a larger and more generic chevy truck site.
Traffic stats: 6,547 unique visitors, 9,555 pageviews (June 2018)
Monetization methods: Google Adsense + in the process of integrating Amazon Associates & eBay Partner Network
Cash Flow per month: $70-100 (with an average of $82 over the past 12 months when I purchased it in May 2018)
Expenses per month: $6.67 for hosting
Purchase Price: $6,050 ($6,225 after purchasing fees since I bought it with a credit card)
Purchase Price Multiple: 81x monthly profits!! (most websites sell for 18-36x). I calculated this by taking the $6,050 it cost to purchase (exclude fees since those aren’t part of the websites value) divided by the monthly profits. Which in this case is the $82/month TTM (trailing twelve month) average minus the ~$7/month for hosting = $75/month net profit. $6,050/$75 = ~81x.
Purchasing Rationale: Read Why I paid 81x Monthly Profits for an Outdated, Ugly Website
3. ProductsOfSharkTank.com (EXITED)
Now you’re probably looking at this one and are like “hmm…something looks messed up with the homepage.” Well, once again, you’re correct. I purchased this site in December of 2017 and honestly (I hate to say it) haven’t touched it since and forget I own it most of the time. The website is on WordPress with a custom design which is fay beyond my coding knowledge, so the website homepage has problems on desktops and I don’t really know how to fix them. Fortunately, Google now ranks pages based off of what their mobile website looks like which has had a tremendously positive impact on this website.
What kind of website is this: I’m not really sure…I’ll call it informational, but its really more spammy with all the links it has. It’s built on WordPress and is 3.5 years old.
What’s it about: The website lists all of the products that have ever been on the Shark Tank TV show. It provides a little description for the product, who the investor is (if it got a deal) and what the terms of the deal were. It allows you to buy the episode that the product was featured in and will also link you to the products Amazon sales page, if it sells on Amazon.
Traffic stats: 4,519 unique visitors, 20,036 pageviews (June 2018). This is up 44% over the previous month since Google started ranking pages based off mobile designs.
Monetization methods: Google AdSense + Amazon Associates
Cash flow per month: $35-150. TTM average when I purchased it was $100. For the 6 months I’ve owned it it’s averaged $48/month. Why the earnings dip? For one, I haven’t touched it since I bought it. Two, the website’s earnings are very seasonal depending on when Shark Tank is “in-season” on ABC.
Expenses per month: $6.67 (hosting) + $100 per quarter for updated data from a freelancer
Purchase Price: $2,900 ($2,984 after fees, since I like to buy my websites on my credit card)
Purchase Price Multiple: 31x using a purchase price of $2,900 and a profit per month of $93 ($100 a month in average TTM revenue, less my hosting cost of $7 a month)
My Sale of ProductsofSharkTank.com: I sold this business in August of 2018, after owning it for 8 months. I don’t typically “flip” websites, and I wouldn’t say I flipped this one although I did exit it rather quickly. The person that I had outbid to buy this site reached out to me and offered $3,500 for it. At this time, the profitability was in a dip, about 50% of what it was generating when I purchased it. So I decided to take the $524 gain on what I paid for it vs. what I sold it for, along with the few hundred dollars it generated me and exited. All-in I got a 24.8% return in just 8-months and spent less then 5 total hours to get this return. Not too bad…you can read about it here.
Follow Along as I Build-out my Website Investment Portfolio
I’ve put approximately $10K to work in the past 6-months solely on purchasing websites. And I plan to do a lot more than that over the next 6-months. I’m currently looking for the right opportunity to buy a $20K+ website. Interested in following my progress along the way? Stay up to date by signing up to my email list (I promise you’ll enjoy it) and by subscribing to my YouTube channel.