What are you doing with your "failed" sites?

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Hello,

for all websites that I built I set a certain budget that I want to spent on the site. Some of my websites that I built turn out to be a failure. Usually, I "close" a project either if my budget is 0 or no traction, that means I do not see in the financials that the site will give me my invested money anytime soon back (f.ex. in a 1 year) and provide some decent cash-flow afterwards. After this decision, I let it run and hopefully sell it somewhere. (For < $1000 flippa is my go-to marketplace :wink: )
  1. What are you doing with your failed projects?
  2. When is a project a failure to you?
  3. How are you recycling your failed projects?
Appreciate your replies!
 

NetZero

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That's a good idea. I am trying to implement my 2021 strategy of consolidating my hobby sites to only the ones that have sooner rather than later profitability. So, I may end up going to Flippa too soon for my sites that I lost interest in or I just don't have the $$ to spend on it for long-term profitability.

If a site is crushed by an algorithm and it looks unrecoverable then I just let it go expired if the domain name isn't anything special.

Keep us in the loop on Flippa how it went. I am interested.
 
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I haven't built a project site in ages but, the last time I did, it was about ~250 5 websites, which were EMDs on new TLDs, where only the homepage was monetized, which had 5-10 pages in total. There was a sale at a now defunct registrar for $1/year registrations on new domains and the registrar allowed for a new domain to be registered for up to 10 years. Therefore, I paid $2,500 for 250 domains names, which were registered for 10 years each. The project was in 2017. The sites were hosted on a DigitalOcean droplet, which costed $80/month or so. There wasn't any analytics or anything and the sites did receive some link building. They were PR2 or so.

Anyways, I didn't make a return on my investment. I dropped about $40,000 in total on that project. The sites barely made enough money to cover the hosting cost. I thought about selling them as starter sites on Flippa and sold 2 as test sites but, IMO, I'd rather have peace of mind and close out that project. Earlier this month, I just deleted the droplet with all files and databases. The domain names are set to expire in 2027.

It was a cool project but it wasn't feasible. It was unrealistic to run that many sites in a quality way. It was more of a headache than anything else. Looking back, $40,000 into an ETF would have been better. It would have been less headaches, less worries, less work, and less personal investment. I could have had more peace of mind and, for work, focus on my actual career instead of the side project. It was really stupid of me to invest $40,000 into 250 spam sites, just because I could register EMDs for $10 for 10 years now that I think about it. I was estimating that each site would make $10/month, which was $30,000 a year. NOPE! However, it took some real emotional maturity for me to accept the fact that, what I was hoping the sites to be, and how they really are, after 3 years, were two different things, and that I needed to split ways with them. If I didn't humbled myself to this fact, I would have spent even more money on other ways to try to save the sites. Even selling 250 starter sites on Flippa would cost $3,750, not counting the employee's time.

So, yeah, no project sites for me anytime soon! I'd rather invest in businesses where it's totally hands off such as real estate with a good, professional property management company or ETFs or bonds.
Keep us in the loop on Flippa how it went. I am interested.

From my 2 test sales of the 250 sites, if your sites have $0 in revenue, you can sell it as a starter site and it'll fetch about $250 on flippa. This is if your starter site sells at all. The one that had some traffic and analytics and a few dollars a month of AdSense revenue sold just fine. The one that didn't have analytics and AdSense was not purchased. You'd want to make an argument, that the site being offered, could produce a revenue and the best way to do that is to show a current stream of revenue.
 
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When I was first starting out I made a bunch of EMD domains with like 15 posts each. After a few years, they weren't bringing in more than $20/mo each. They weren't worth the accounting headache so I ended up selling all of them on Flippa last year for like $1,000 - $1,200 each. Very easy process. Highly recommend.
 

secretagentdad

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When I was first starting out I made a bunch of EMD domains with like 15 posts each. After a few years, they weren't bringing in more than $20/mo each. They weren't worth the accounting headache so I ended up selling all of them on Flippa last year for like $1,000 - $1,200 each. Very easy process. Highly recommend.
Dis shit pretty much started my strange career track. Pretty sure it applies to a lot of people here.
 

bernard

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I define "failed sites" as sites not making any money from ads and sites that are not possible to sell or sell ads on.

Those I let expire after attempting to pass off to someone else.

If a site makes some money, but isn't worth the investment in building them out, I usually sell them, but I am now planning on just keeping them and using for linkswaps and similar.