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Leasing websites instead of selling web design? [Not related to rank & rent]

Discussion in 'Offline Marketing' started by krzysiekz, Jul 8, 2013.

  1. krzysiekz

    krzysiekz Senior Member

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    Hey BHW Offliners,

    Curious to know if anyone here is leasing out websites to small business owners rather than outright selling a website.

    I am giving thought to cold calling small businesses and selling them websites. Without getting in to too much detail; I have thought of pricing somewhere between $800 - $1,500 for a basic website with on-site SEO as well as decent copy to get conversions up.

    Even if I sell at $800 - $1,500 I'd still be offering monthly hosting for somewhere between $30 - $50/month. An add-on would be weekly/monthly backups as well as including changes to website on a monthly basis and I figure I would price this (which would include the hosting as well) at around $100/month.

    With that said - I have thought about not charging the upfront $800 - $1,500 and simply offering the web design, hosting, backups and website/content update in a monthly recurring fee. I would in such a case be wanting to charge approximately $200/month.

    Has anyone got any experience doing something like this?

    Keen to hear all ideas.

    Kind Regards,
    Chris
     
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  2. m.rvs2141

    m.rvs2141 Power Member

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    I have used similar business model myself, I was building and rank sites by keywords such as "Electronic gates in Moscow" sure keyword was in Russian, when it rank quite well (first 3 spots) I rented it for business owner by 1000$ - 1500$ month, they can cover this amount with 1-2 sells and theт generate some revenue. Important here to find a good niche and keyword with low-medium competition and before charge them think how much he can earn out of website, you even can offer free 2 weeks trial.
     
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  3. krzysiekz

    krzysiekz Senior Member

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    Thanks for your reply. I think you did not see my part about not related to "rank and rent" which is what you are referring to. It doesn't matter though because your reply was still useful and I gave you +rep.

    However, I want to avoid rank + rent model. Because then the income depends on SEO / Google rank. If algo. update comes and knocks the website down (like it did to me previously) then you lose your income. While I really love the idea behind ranking and renting a website out, I do not think it is a smart or long term solution.

    What I would rather do is provide something like web design - but on a monthly recurring basis. Sure, it may not be anywhere near $1,000/month. However, the $200/month would not depend upon SEO or Google rankings at all. This would seem the best option as you would not need to worry about SEO - which for me seems to be too unpredictable lately.
     
  4. m.rvs2141

    m.rvs2141 Power Member

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    Did not read your thread well,
    [Not related to rank & rent] Did not see this part
     
  5. krzysiekz

    krzysiekz Senior Member

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    No problems - I know you meant to help and this is why I gave you rep. Thanks for stopping by :)
     
  6. krzysiekz

    krzysiekz Senior Member

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    Anyone else like to chime in?
     
  7. warjam1945

    warjam1945 Junior Member

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    I rent the sites to local business after i get them no 1 for their search term in my area. The search numbers are small but i charge 60$ a month and 100$ for customizing there site with there logo and info when the rent it. Cost is low and the seo very easy. They add up after awhile to a nice sum and you should try it in the long term. Getting 100+ site is easy and make over 4500$ a month after costs.
     
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  8. krzysiekz

    krzysiekz Senior Member

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    Warjam, which country are you from? I think $60 or $100 a month is a little too low for what you're charging. I guess in a low competition area, it wouldn't be too hard to rank on page one with just on-page SEO. However, depending on your country/location, I do think you could ask for a bit more than what you're charging.

    From what I've read, people who do web design charge $50/month up to $100/month for hosting, updates, backups and website changes per month. Most of that is automated, except for the website changes. I think what you provide is more valuable, but you price it lower than what these guys charge just for purely automatic services (for the most part).

    In either case, good job with what you're doing!

    Can you tell me a bit more about the difficulty of the areas you are ranking? Are these low competition sites where on page SEO itself is enough to get to page 1? +rep added.
     
  9. warjam1945

    warjam1945 Junior Member

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    yeah the searches have zero comp and 30-40 links and a few likes is enough but the searches reflect that. In one area of 25 sites they average between 20-30 visits a month each with maybe 2-3 hitting the high 100's but i charge more for them. I bought all the domains emd so it like hairdresserxxxxx.co.uk and pizzaxxxx.co.uk and so on. cost about 150$ for the domains and have them on a unlimited reseller hosting package at about 60$ and works so far.
     
  10. Stellar

    Stellar Junior Member

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    You can do so and only charge for maintenance.

    Eg: Script maintenance, Minor tweaking, and monthly hosting
     
  11. krzysiekz

    krzysiekz Senior Member

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    Still thinking of doing this. Anyone able to chime in with some thoughts?

    Again, this is not a rank and rent model! :)
     
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  12. hateandbreak

    hateandbreak Supreme Member

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    Hey this is interesting! I really like the idea.

    I was thinking I can try this as well however I would like to create a single website showcasing different niches (lawyers, accountants, the whole nine) and just have a deal where they can get their own website designed with logo, branding accounts, and content for a cheap price of $75/m. Basically you lease them a site that normally they would 'think' they'd be paying xxxx for. So this allows them to feel as they are getting a great deal, which is exactly how you'd want them to feel.

    After you notice it works and they are happy, scale up and get 100+ customer as warjam states on this same 'lease deal'. I really like the idea and would like to talk more about it!

    Do you have skype?
     
  13. theseodude

    theseodude Regular Member

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    I am not understanding you. If your website is not ranking for anything, why would anyone pay you a monthly fee for it?
     
  14. hateandbreak

    hateandbreak Supreme Member

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    Most people (business owners) want a website built for them,and know nothing of SEO, so if they ever want to rank and attract customers, that's an upsell.
     
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  15. krzysiekz

    krzysiekz Senior Member

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    If I was selling leads or lead generation, then the site would be expected to rank. However, that is not what I am targeting here.

    The idea is to provide businesses that want a website with an affordable solution. Instead of coughing up over a thousand dollars, they get their website for less than a hundred a month. This is purely website design, with a twist. No SEO or ranking dependency involved.
     
  16. krzysiekz

    krzysiekz Senior Member

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    Glad to hear you like the idea. I am sure it has been done before, as there are some discussions here on the forums and also on Warrior Forum. The only problem with those previous discussions is that people are giving away free websites for like $20-$25/month hosting. That is simply not worth it. I would not do this for any less than $100/month.

    I do have Skype, but I prefer to get the thoughts flowing here in this discussion. Maybe others will chime in and we can talk about how to make this work. You can PM me if you do want to chat via Skype, I am happy to do that - but I would like to keep this thread active, too.

    ------

    The reason why this business model is appealing, is because it offers on going income. Work today, get paid for the next year or two (depending on how you time your contract length).

    But the main reason why this is interesting for me is because I think it can be much more profitable than selling websites upfront. I spent last week cold calling a few businesses and made a sale for $1,500 + Tax and have received 50%. I also have another 2 hot leads which may or may not turn in to an equivalent sale. For several days worth of cold calling (around 4 days, about 250-300 calls all up) the result is good.

    However, I hate having to deal with clients who want to change every thing on the website. I'd love to do web design where the client was happy with that I put together and did not want to change every last detail. Even though I have only sold one website before (a few years ago to a lawyer) for $399, I do not want a repeat of that client. He wants everything done to his website, and kept calling long after the work was done.

    I trust that by increasing my prices to $1,500 + Tax I am getting rid of that type of client - but maybe I am not. And this is why the free website but pay for hosting model seems great to me.

    If I give away the website for free, I am thinking I can get away with making a template based website. Basically, make a great looking website for a niche, say plumbers. Make all the content sound and real well. Then for each plumber who signs up, you only need to put in their logo, phone number, address and the rest stays the same. Since the website is free, I believe I should be able to justify not being able to provide customisations. This would speed the process up very much, as I'd be using the same template/theme/design for all clients, except for swapping out their logos, etc.

    If this proved to be true (that I didn't need to do a whole lot of customisation and that they understood it was free so they don't bother asking for custom work) then it would be very easy to scale. Tell them it's $100/m over 12 months minimum (or 24) and that's $1,200/$2,400 for a website that you didn't even have to do any custom work on - just copy and paste with a few small edits, and you can justify it because it is "free".



     
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  17. Tarka

    Tarka Newbie

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    Very true, I like your thinking. I have been thinking on how to implement the rent a website idea after I attempted the free website and charged the hosting model. I also had a very painful customer who wanted to change every little thing on the website and I had to google how to make those changes as I am not a web designer. I did make good money though