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Selling your Website: 10 things to do before putting it up for sale

Once you’ve decided to place your website up for sale, you want to prepare your website so you’re able to get top dollar. After all, you’ve probably put plenty of energy into building your website and it makes sense that you want to be able to get the most possible amount for it. Below are a few suggestions before announcing to the public your established website is for sale.

– Internal Evaluation. The first step is to conduct an internal evaluation of your website. Although it can be challenging, you want to view the site from a buyer’s perspective. By reviewing the previous chapter, there are plenty of valuable tips you may want to consider before placing your website on the marketplace.

– Get your website evaluated by others. One of the greatest benefits of being a part of a forum community is the ability to ask fellow members to evaluate your website. Just don’t expect to drop into a forum and ask. Rightfully so, most forums require you to evaluate other websites for their strengths and weaknesses before asking for an evaluation of your own website. It works both ways; if you want someone to give you a serious evaluation, expect to do the same for others.

– Inventory what you expect to sell. Okay, most may think a domain and the site’s content are obvious but what about other elements which may help increase your asking price? Some of these elements may include an opt-in email list, an affiliate list, a license to a classified ad database, a membership list, and possibly much more. In order to get the maximum, you want to inventory all the assets which you will include in the sale of your website.

– Website metrics. Anytime you place your site up for sale, there will be two obvious questions that a serious bidder or prospect is going to request: (1) your traffic metrics and (2) proof of income. It’s best to have this data prepared, if not already included in your marketplace ad or post.

– WHOIS database. If you use a proxy service to mask your identity, be sure to remove that service so your contact information is displayed in the public database. This also may be a good time to make sure all your contact data is current and up-to-date.

– Anticipate 3rd-party resource scrutiny. If you read the last chapter showing sellers how to use third-party resources as a means to verify a seller’s claims, you may want to do your own investigations to make sure no “surprises” are brought up about you or your website.

– Quick improvements. There’s no doubt every seller wants to get top dollar for their website. In my special report Flipping Established Websites, I discuss 10 different means of improving the value quickly. Some improvements suggested include search engine optimization, upsell opportunities, and improving AdSense click-through rates. I explain these and other ideas in the special report after this portion of the eBook.

– Timing of your sale. They say that in some businesses, timing is important. It’s no different when selling your website. If you live in the northern hemisphere, summer tends to be a slower time because families are taking vacations or enjoying other leisure activities. December is also considered a challenging month due to the holiday shopping season.

The most ideal time to sell your website is at the beginning of the year, in early spring, and in September when kids return back to school.

– Using a broker. Unless your site is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, or perhaps millions, there really is no reason to hire a broker to do what you can do for yourself. Obviously, there is much more involved when you’re talking about those types of figures. In that situation, a broker is (hopefully) far more skilled at developing transactions that are six-figures plus and the negotiating process. Just be sure you get references for other past transactions before signing up with a website broker.

– Post-sale financial plan. It may seem premature but I always recommend that you have a “plan” to use the money you make from the sale in a constructive manner. I cannot tell you how many webmasters I know who go “hog wild” and spend their money foolishly, that is why having a plan and sticking to it will help you avoid any potential problems. Obviously, you’ll need to discuss your sudden income with your tax consultant as well.

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