This page was written on 22nd December 2009 to provide information about BloggingTips. I am currently considering selling BloggingTips in order to provide collateral to finance another project and to free up time to do so. Some money from the sale would also be used for a deposit for a house I am thinking about purchasing.
The site is now listed for sale at Flippa.
Basic Site Information
The site has been online for just under 3 years. In that time the blog has become a respected source for blogging information and has established over 8,000 daily RSS subscribers.
Before we move on to the site stats etc, here is a basic look at what is on the site.
- Established: March 2007
- Page Rank: 5
- Content: Currently around 2,500 unique pages of content on the blog (around 3,700 if you include the forum threads). This includes 2,400 published blog posts and 91 published pages.
- Forum: Members: 1,321 | Posts: 8,586, | Threads: 1,255
- RSS Subscribers: Approximately 8,200 RSS readers
- Twitter Followers: Over 20,000 Twitter Followers
- Newsletter/Email List: Around 1,500 subscribers. Roughly 10-20 new subscribers every day (much more on the release of a new eBook or theme).
|RSS Subscribers||Twitter Followers||Newsletter Subscribers|
In the last year or so I have been releasing free products to those that sign up to the newsletter. Currently I have released 4 unique eBooks and 5 unique WordPress Themes for free.
Users can also download 18 Blogger Themes. All WordPress themes and Blogger templates have a link to BloggingTips in the footer.
The purpose of releasing all of these products for free was to give something back to readers and generate interest in the blog. However, the main reason was to build a user base and email list which are interested in Blogging eBooks and WordPress Themes.
This will allow the owner of BloggingTips to push blogging related eBooks and WordPress Themes to readers in the future, since all newsletter subscribers have signed up to get one of these products.
Last month saw the release of the Personal WordPress Theme. This theme cost over $1,500 to develop and is being sold for $49.95.
Traffic varies between different stat programs. Analytics reports around 2,000+ unique visitors per day, AWstats about 5,000-6,000 and Webalizer around 8,000-9,000.
The site makes between $630 and $650 per month via In Links. It also used to make around $300 a month from banner sales however I have removed all of these to promote BloggingTips products (to tie in with my long term plan on pushing quality products to readers). 2 banners remain currently as they were paid in advance though these expire in a few days and will therefore be removed.
If you chose to sell banner ads again you could probably sell around 8 125×125 positions in the sidebar for between $50 and $75 each, the top banner for around $75 a month and the banner underneath blog posts for around $100 a month. You could do this via an ad network such as BuySellAds but you would earn more by emailing companies and selling to them directly.
Since all ads were removed from the site, I started doing paid reviews more last month. They take about 1 to 2 hours to write on average.
Paid reviews are sold for $200 a time though you would be able to increase this to $250 or $300 per review once the blog exceeds 10,000 subscribers. You may actually be able to sell for a much higher price as I have seen blogs within this niche with around 2,000 subscribers selling paid reviews for $250. However, I wanted to keep prices competitive.
In the last two months I sold reviews through an ad agency. I agreed to sell reviews for $100 if they could guarantee at least a dozen or so reviews a month.
Here is the total money received between November 1st and 22nd December 2009:
- Text Link Ads: $1,262.59 ($644.35 + $618.24)
- LinkXL: $82.50 ($42.50+$40.00)
- BuySellAds: $172.50 ($120+$52.50)
- Banner Sale: $60
- Reviews via agency: $1,000 (10 x $100)
- Reviews sold privately: $600 (2x$100 + 2x$200)
- Premium WordPress Theme: $169.35 (12x$9.95+1x$49.95)
Total Received = $3,346.94
The ad agency who were sending me clients were keen to send much more business. However, I was unhappy that they told an advertiser that the review would definitely be positive as it’s something I don’t do. It also came to my attention that they were selling the reviews for $350; which suggests that I could charge a lot more my usual price of $200.
So I decided to part ways to have more control over the reviews. In total I sold 4 reviews. 2 reviews were at the regular price however the other two reviews were sold for half the price as they only wanted 500 words. I should have brought in more reviews privately but I didn’t spend enough time chasing companies
I am still on good terms with the ad agency so if you were happy to reduce the review price to get business in you could make around $1,500 a month from reviews alone. You would probably be able to arrange a higher price than $100 too (e.g. $150).
With regards to the premium wordpress theme. I initially contacted members a few days before the release with the option to purchase the theme for $9.95 for 3 days only. 12 readers purchased at this price. Since then one person has purchased the theme at it’s full price of $49.95. I am very disappointed with this but I believe it will continue to get the odd sale every month and at the very least, it’s a premium product which can be given out to readers in competitions.
There are currently 8 people updating the site every week. They are paid $50 per calendar month to write one post a week. 3 writers write twice a week so the total bill is $550 a month. This is the sites only expense (other than the domain name and hosting).
It’s up to the buyer to decide whether to keep the writers on (obviously!). Whilst it is an expense, the staff team will free up a lot of your time to work on other things. They are professional and rarely miss their scheduled posting time so I would strongly encourage you to keep them on if time is an issue, or if you are not keen on writing every day.
The site also gets a lot of guest post submissions every week and good writers frequently apply to be a writer on the site too so you could get away with only writing 3 posts good posts yourself per week and filling in the other days with guest posters.
But again, I encourage you to continue to work with the current writing team. They have played a big part in the sites success and have a great relationship with the blogs readers 🙂
The site is very easy to update. I don’t post on the site myself much anymore. This allows me more time to work on other sites and to work with designers on releasing more themes etc through the site.
It’s really up to you though. If you want to start increasing RSS readership then it would be wise to get more involved in the site or at the very least, hire someone to drive the blog forward. However, the blog would continue to grow if you just kept the current writing team or at least added a few new articles every week.
How to make money with BloggingTips
There are two ways I see for a buyer with BloggingTips. One is to add advertising back to the site and make money through banner ads, affiliate sales and text links etc.
The second way is the way that I was driving the site towards. That is, a site which only advertises it’s own products. Of course, you could do both, though I strongly believe that removing banner ads you are putting more focus on your own products and building up more trust with the readers.
In the future you could release such products as:
- WordPress Themes: Premium themes and free themes to encourage people to sign up to the email list.
- eBooks – Books on Tutorials, marketing, blogging etc.
- Premium membership or Content Area: A lot of the sites readers are beginners and struggle with basic issues such as installing their blog and changing the design. A premium membership area with access to tutorials and videos would bring a stable monthly income.
Of course, you could release any product related to blogging. Blogs tend to grow exponentially so I don’t see why the buyer couldn’t reach 15,000-20,000 subscribers within the next year if they work hard on promoting it.
You could also make money through services such as:
- Blogging Job Board
- Writers Directory
- Blog Coaching
Whilst I believe anyone with web development experience could make a success of BloggingTips, I do think that companies with a product to sell directly to readers will get more for their money. For example, hosting companies, design companies, advertising agencies etc.
It’s difficult to price a website sometimes. Though the price I am looking for is reflected by:
- The Domain Name: The BloggingTips domain name was bought 3 years ago for $1,250. I believe that the domain is now worth 10 times that (at least $10,000). The domain has guaranteed the top position for this highly competitive search term and is an easy to remember name which tells readers exactly what the site is about.
- RSS Subscribers: It takes a lot of time, money and energy to get a blog to 8,000+ subscribers. I have read many websites valuing RSS readers at $30 each. Realistically, I think it’s more around $15 each for most blogs.
- Content: The site has 2,500 pages of unique content. This ensures search engine traffic will continue to flow in for a long time.
- Goodwill: The BloggingTips brand name.
The BloggingTips domain is registered at enom therefore moving the domain to the buyers account is free and is processed instantly.
With regards to hosting. I am happy to host the site for a month or so in order to make the site transfer smoothly. I will also help with trasnferring the site if the buyer has no experience in doing so.
An Escrow payment is preferred for payment as it ensures the safety of both buyer and seller.
Lastly, goes without saying that I do not want to deal with time wasters. Please do not make an offer unless you have the cash sitting there to back it up. Sorry if that sounds harsh but this kind of thing can prolong things and waste the time of myself and other interested parties.
If you are interested in purchasing BloggingTips please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I can provide more information and evidence of earnings upon request.