Along with the development of the internet as well as the rise of the eCommerce industry, various online selling sites have been created to make it easier for people to buy and sell products online. Some of them, like Amazon or eBay, target a broad audience, while other eCommerce marketplaces focus on a specific niche.
With that, it shouldn’t be surprising that there are now multiple eCommerce platforms that revolve around buying and selling websites. Some of them allow you to trade those that are already established and generate traffic, while others enable you to buy fresh websites that you can develop and grow.
Whether you’re in for a new blog to add to your portfolio or a ready-made online shop, website marketplaces are a great way to explore and find the right website for you. And below, we’ve listed some of the best online marketplaces to buy and sell online.
When speaking about places where you can buy, sell, invest, and flip websites, Flippa is among the most prominent – and the bold claim on its website saying it is the world’s best marketplace to buy and sell websites may not be an exaggeration.
It’s a fairly easy platform to use. Online shoppers can search for existing websites according to their product category, niche, age, traffic levels, or revenue – marketplace websites, online blogs, and so on. You can also browse the featured listings and popular websites to see what’s trending.
Apart from that, Flippa allows you to buy mobile Android and iOS apps, and it has a section of domains for international markets, so you can find the perfect one for your project.
Pricing and Commissions
Unfortunately, trading on Flippa isn’t free. You need to pay a listing fee, which typically equals $49 for established websites. As for commissions, the final value fee ranges from 10% for businesses below the $50,000 mark down to 5% for businesses above the $100,000 mark.
As mentioned above, using Flippa is quite straightforward. You create an account (you can also sign in with Google), browse, find the project that suits your needs and interests, and then make a bid or contact the seller directly.
However, some functionalities can be hidden from the general public. Some listings are set as confidential, meaning that only verified buyers are allowed to view them. On top of that, certain offers require you to put your money on the table before you get to see more information about them.
As you can expect, this is done to make sure that buyers are serious and not just browsing online selling sites for fun. And once you find a project that you like and the seller agrees to your terms, Flippa will help you with the payment and transfer process.
Videos On How To Buy Websites On Flippa
If Flippa claims to be the best online marketplace for buying and selling online businesses, Empire Flippers is a close second. It’s a marketplace that focuses on established websites, digital businesses, and Amazon FBA stores (Fulfillment by Amazon).
It’s a great choice both if you’re looking to buy an eCommerce business selling custom products with million monthly visits or a small Australian marketplace to sell stuff locally since Empire Flippers vets all the website listings to make sure that they’re legitimate and free from any online fraud.
More precisely, marketplace sellers must provide proof of their website’s monthly profit – with $1,000 being the minimum requirement – and twelve months of documented revenue.
Pricing and Commissions
Unlike Flippa, Empire Flippers is among those online marketplaces that don’t charge listing fees. However, buyers must pay a commission fee of 15% on the total cost of their purchase for sales under $700,000, which then decreases to 8% on online sales above $700,00 and below $5 million, then decreases again to 2.5% on online sales about $5 million.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Empire Flippers requires you to create an account to browse through its product categories and buy or sell online.
In addition, to sell your online store, you have to use its business evaluation tool, which will let you know how much your business is worth, providing you with the data needed for your listing. And once you submit the listing, Empire Flippers will proceed with its verification process.
To buy online businesses, you’ll need proof of available funds and a licence copy. After that, you can browse the listings, make an offer or contact a seller directly to discuss further details.
They also have a podcast and you can check out my interview with Empire Flippers here.
Videos About Empire Flippers
FE International takes a little different approach to online selling sites, SaaS, and content websites than other marketplaces. Instead of listing extensive numbers of online stores, this online selling site focuses on individual deals and provides buyers with detailed analytics about the website for sale.
It’s safe to say that FE International guides its clients through the entire process, from creating a listing to establishing an offer. As for their services, they provide buyers with top online marketplaces and monetized websites, as well as help them find the perfect website for their needs.
Pricing and Commissions
With that being said, FE International takes the individual approach also when it comes to pricing and commissions. As a buyer, you are provided with a detailed walkthrough of the entire process and a breakdown of all costs related to your purchase. But if you only want to look around and browse the available listings, you can do that for free.
As a seller, you’re subject to a 10-15% selling fee, depending on the size of the deal. However, to be listed on FE International, you need to provide proof of ownership and pass their rigorous vetting process – according to their website, FE International turns down about 90% of leads.
As we mentioned earlier, FE International is one of the best online selling sites that provides buyers with detailed analytics about the website, excluding third-party sellers and unprofitable eCommerce platforms. To buy a website, you don’t need any accounts – you simply browse through classified sites and contact the seller directly.
FE International also offers an extensive knowledge base and other resources to help you make an informed decision; case studies, webinars, podcasts and so on.
If you want to start selling online, FE International takes the extra step of carrying on due diligence and verifying your website’s performance and providing comprehensive service to get your listing up and running. The commission fee is only taken once your listing is accepted and a buyer has made an offer.
Motion Invest is a more specialized online selling site, with its primary focus put on content websites – blogs, news portals, subscription services and so on. It’s not as big as other platforms listed here, but it offers some great opportunities for people who are looking to invest in online businesses.
What makes this online marketplace stand out from the crowd is the possibility to buy and sell websites directly from and to Motion Invest without the involvement of third-party brokers. This means that you don’t have to wait for an online marketplace provider to approve your website or wait for buyers to contact you.
At the same time, Motion Invest has some strict vetting requirements specific to the niche. While the site you want to sell doesn’t have to make millions each month (the bottom limit is just $20/month), it must be well-managed and have good ratings. This includes organic traffic, active customers, and a clear monetization strategy.
Commissions and Fees
As this online marketplace revolves around websites with lower revenues, it can be expected that the selling commissions are higher for smaller ones – up to 20% for websites under $20,000. Higher tiers, however, scale similar to the other online marketplaces – down to 5% for websites above $500,000.
Due to high interest, Motion Invest requires a $1,000 non-refundable payment to lock in on the site you want to buy. This is to prevent buyers from bidding on multiple sites at the same time, which can create unnecessary competition and delay the transaction.
If you’re looking to buy or sell websites on online marketplaces, Motion Invest is worth a look. As mentioned above, it’s not as big as its competitors – given it’s focused on content-based websites – but it offers some great opportunities for online sellers and buyers to connect directly and make a deal.
Once you’re logged in, you can start browsing the available listings as well as contacting sellers that have already been verified. There, you’re provided with the website URL, some basic metrics, and a short description. If you want to know more, you can contact the seller for additional information or use your marketing tools to check the publicly available data.
Selling your website is as straightforward as it gets. You start by providing your business information and website URL. After that, you get to choose the valuation range and set a listing price. Then, Motion Invest will perform its due diligence process and review your website before making it available for buyers. Once it’s approved, active buyers can contact you individually or use the direct buy feature.
Videos About Motion Invest
Business Exits is yet another online marketplace that focuses on established businesses and websites. Like FE International, Business Exits aims to cater for the needs of higher-end buyers and sellers, providing them with a detailed overview of the business that is being sold.
It should be mentioned that Business Exits is open to businesses of any kind, serving as an online marketplace for web-based companies, brick-and-mortar shops, construction services, or even shipping sales and transport companies. With that, it may not be your go-to platform if you’re looking to buy an established blog, but it’s a great option for just about any other business.
Commissions and Fees
It is safe to assume that online marketplaces take no fees until a sale is completed, and Business Exits follows the same pattern. The exact numbers depend on the size of the deal and are hidden behind the NDA, so you’ll have to contact the respective seller for more details.
Business Exits makes it easy to browse through their listings and find the right business for you. Although the listing page only allows you to sort offers according to price and revenue, the list is typically short enough for you to go through all of them.
Once you find a suitable business, you sign an NDA – which is the Business Exits’ way of closing the deal. From there on, you’ll be provided with a detailed overview of the business, and the seller will help you through the process.
As an online marketplaces seller, you first have to apply for business validation. During this, the team at Business Exits will evaluate your financials, customer base, and overall products so they can provide potential buyers with an accurate overview of the business. From there, you sign a broker agreement and leave it to Business Exits to handle marketing and deal management.
Acquire.com, formerly known as MicroAcquire, targets the market of tech-related websites and web services. It’s a marketplace dedicated to helping entrepreneurs buy or sell startups, ensuring anonymous, hassle-free transactions.
It’s worth mentioning that the platform is not limited to tech companies only – you can also find plenty of other startups and web projects, ranging from eCommerce sites to food delivery services.
All that comes in a very modern-looking design, offering a smooth and intuitive user experience complemented by accurate data concerning everything from numbers of consumers and lead generation metrics to financial snapshots and audience analyses.
Commissions and Fees
Acquire.com is a free online selling site, meaning that there are no listing fees or commission charges on the buyer’s side. However, this is only true for those that only want to view public listings. The premium assertion, which includes private listings, requires an extra fee of $390/year for the Premium plan or $780/year for unlimited access in the Platinum plan.
The good news is that if you want to sell your online business, Acquire.com does not charge you any commission fees – and you get help with tax and other paperwork related to the transaction in the package.
The process of listing your website on Acquire is fairly straightforward – you provide basic info about the business, such as its business model, revenue, and customer base. Each step is well-documented, making it easy to get started even for less tech-savvy users.
But if you’re looking to buy an online store, for example, this online marketplace gives you many more options than just browsing the listings. You can filter your results according to various categories and metrics. Next, you can find detailed information about each project, including revenue and traffic numbers, customer analysis reports, active buyers, and more.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Website
No matter which leading eCommerce platform you decide to use, buying websites can be a tricky business. You first need to come up with a plan of action and determine the type of website you’re looking for – traffic, tech stack, industry, and so on – before you start browsing the available offers.
Next, make sure to review the popular online marketplaces listed above, as each of them provides unique services and focuses on different online businesses. Then, compare all the offers before making a decision, and finally, do your due diligence to make sure that the website you’re about to purchase will generate the returns you’re expecting.
Possibly the most important question is whether you should buy an existing website or build a new one. The answer depends on your goals and resources, but if done correctly, you can jump on an established website and start from a level playing field.
Other than that, make sure to read all the terms and conditions concerning payment, transfer of ownership, support services, etc. And if you decide to work with a third-party broker or marketplace provider – such as FE International or Acquire.com – remember that they can help simplify the process but come at an extra cost.
What to Do After Buying a Website
Once you buy a website, it’s time to take care of your business. Rarely does it happen that you buy a website that is just a bare-bones structure – most of the time, you get a complex online business that has already been running for some time.
Typically, your agreement with the seller should include some post-sale support, whether in the form of technical help, business advice or anything else. Other than that, you may want to:
- Conduct a security audit – the fact that the website is up and running doesn’t necessarily mean it is secure. Make sure you scan the code for any vulnerabilities and patch them right away.
- Review the audience – analyze the website’s customer data and find out who your target audience is, what their needs are, where they come from, and how to cater to them.
- Analyze the competition – take a look at other websites in your niche and identify their strengths and weaknesses. Use this information to find out how you can differentiate yourself from them.
- Ensure all content is up-to-date – check for copyright violations, broken links, and outdated information. Each page should be optimized for search engines and relevant keywords.
- Plan for future development – identify areas where you would like to improve or expand the website and allocate resources accordingly. Think of ways to monetize content or add new features that will attract more customers and keep them coming back in the future.
To Sum Up
Buying and selling websites can be a great way to make money, regardless of whether you want to pick up an existing online store and sell products on the local market or compete with other companies offering marketing tools and services.
The online marketplaces listed above are all reputable and provide a reliable platform for buying, selling, trading, and investing in websites – from established ones to fresh opportunities that you can develop yourself.