I’ve purchased dozens of websites for myself and clients; some great ones, some good ones, and a couple of turds.
Every time I buy one, I learn something new about how website owners build their sites and expand their presence on the web.
Sometimes, everything is on the up-and-up. The content is real, and the site has grown organically over the course of years. Other times, folks use sneaky tricks to generate fake traffic and up their metrics. I’m getting better at spotting the sneaky ones.
Below are some of the things I look for when I am buying a website.
Is It WordPress?
There are plenty of great sites out there that are not on WordPress, but I leave those for people that have more time.
Then, I look at the SEOMoz metrics. In particular, I look for sites that are a minimum of a Domain Authority (DA) of 20+. 30+ is better, but 20 is the minimum.
I also look at the number of backlinks (100+, preferably from unique domains), as well as the Spam score (no more than 3).
Once I’ve checked the Domain Authority, I look up the domain in SEMRush. There, I see how much traffic it has and how steady it is. At a bare minimum, traffic needs to be 100+, but I really like to see 500+.
The number of keywords it ranks for is good to look at too. There isn’t a minimum here, but I like to see it ranking for at least SOME keywords.
From there, I like to check the blog feed (domain.com/feed/). It’s good to see recent posts, but it isn’t required. Sometimes, the site is decent, but the owner ran out of time to maintain it. Generally, the price is cheaper for these types of sites. 😉
The titles of the posts need to be decent and relevant to the blog niche. If the titles are too similar, they are probably using an auto-posting plugin. This generally means crappier content, which is no good.