I've been reading a bit this week over niche sites with simple concepts that are actually making money. In order to take a look a few of such examples, I decided to use Flippa as a source to find subjects for research. Traded price is often a reliable indicator of value generated from such concepts.
Recently I came across a listing of Fresh Apps on Flippa: The #1 Marketplace for Buying and Selling Websites, Domains and Apps.
FreshApps is a site that lists the apps on that show up on the iTunes App Store. The iTunes app store has an affiliate program that gives the publisher a share of the purchases that get referred to the iTunes App Store.
FreshApps is for most part a directory of the applications listed on the iTunes store. The owner has taken efforts to hire a couple of reviewers of the apps and publish them on his website. The traffic is apparently organic for most part with visitors interested in the apps finding their way to the website. Perhaps, a large part of the traffic can be attributed to the content created by the reviewers.
Fresh Apps aims to better the iTunes app search by building a Digg-style community to vote up and review the best applications for the iPhone, using a 'freshness' rating.
There are few items that I thought was unique about this listing.
- Making Money: Yeah! That's right. FreshApps was actually making money!
- Price Expectation: The seller wants to sell the portal at $10k
- Domain Name: Honestly, the domain name is quite a nice one!
- iPhone and iPad App Reviews (80% of the revenue comes from reviews. They charge 100 for a professional review. The review is written by someone who gets paid $25). The paid per review model works as described here .. Want Your iPhone App Reviewed? | Fresh Apps - iPhone Apps. A person who wants to get his / her app reviewed reaches out via the request form that charges $100. An unbiased reviewer reviews the app. A negative review can be removed on request however no refund is made.
- Advertising through an inbuilt engine (uses OIOpublisher)
- Affiliate links through the iTunes Affiliate Program (5% of the revenue comes from the affiliate program that is powered by LinkShare)
- Content Creator Cost ($25 per review)
- Hosting Cost
All the traffic is through organic searches. No additional marketing expense.
The site went through multiple auction rounds. The previous listing
got activity between the $5,000 - $6,500.
The most recent listing finally cleared the seller's price expectation of $10,000!
The website is powered by Wordpress with some backend database creating module. All simple stuff!
- Google PageRank: 5
- Alexa Rank: 284,310
- SEOmoz mozRank: 3.81
- SEOprofiler Backlinks: 5,585
- Links in Majestic SEO: 404,846
- SEMRush Rank: 1,720,024
Looks like the site is receiving a daily traffic volume of about 200 hits a day. The concerning part is that it is on a downward trend.
Due Diligence should form an important part of the buying process. Apparently, the initial listing failed and the seller had to relist the website at the new listing page for freshapps.com.
Going through the comments point few notable points to be taken care of while listing a website
- Buyer's can walk away too! The previous listing had a winning buyer at $10k. He walked! Too bad!
- Buyers seem to at times seem to engage third party Website Due Diligence services like Centurica. The providers go through a list of status checks as described on Due Diligence Plans and Pricing | Centurica Due Diligence. Centurica Charges $99 for Essentials, $349 for Advanced and $749 for Premium.