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Reverse engineering Flippa auctions

Discussion in 'Making Money' started by meathead1234, Nov 7, 2010.

  1. meathead1234

    meathead1234 Moderator Staff Member Moderator Premium Member

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    Hey guys,

    As most of you know, I spend a lot of time working on Flippa.

    Something I do quite often is "borrow" ideas from sites I have seen on there, especially if they are profitable and I believe I can replicate it. By finding a profitable site, you can take out all the guess work in finding a profitable niche as you know exactly how much it makes, how it is monetized and where the traffic comes from.

    I've never really gotten into PPC so happy to give this "method" away. Now, competitor analysis is obviously essential in any business, but in this case we can find out exactly how much a competitor is making and copy the best bits :)

    Quite often on Flippa, people will sell sites that have profitable PPC campaigns as their main income stream. They would have done all the hard work testing, tweaking keywords and ad copies.

    If you're lazy/busy then you don't have time for all that, so let's "borrow" their hard work.

    First up, find a suitable auction. I'm feeling nice so here's a good one:

    https://flippa.com/auctions/110890/Automated-Coupon-Site---37k-profit-over-past-year

    He's kindly told you what affiliate networks he uses for the offers (yes, you do actually have to apply to some networks if you haven't already). If they don't reveal the networks used or other important details, drop them a PM saying you are interested but would like to know the networks used as you've had problems applying in the past or some bullshit.

    The hard part is replicating the site. Some sites (including this one) will be cleverly coded to be automated. To be honest, you don't really need all that.

    You can usually find someone reliable in the Hire a Freelancer section here to help you replicate the site. Shouldn't cost much more than $200 to copy this site, or free if you do it yourself. Add the affiliate links in manually or if you are clever and can code, get some automated feed.

    You can also use all the content from his/her site for your own if you're running PPC. I'm not an expert, but this should give you the same quality score (which they would already have optimised) to keep your costs the same.

    Now fire up keywordspy.com (you might need premium version to get the best data) and steal all the keywords they are bidding on. You can get a lot more info from there as well (like ad copy) so you can almost exactly replicate their system. Get the campaigns setup in Google/Yahoo/Bing and you're good to go.

    The site I used as an example is making $4.5k a month profit, which is quite a nice extra revenue stream if you can be bothered to get it all set up in the first place. You'll often find people stop running their campaigns when they list on Flippa, and it will take the buyer a few weeks to get running. That means if you're fast you can get in there and be running their profitable campaign while they are not :)

    If you have any questions, most of the concepts I have introduced are discussed elsewhere in the forum. I've just applied them to build a profitable business model.

    Enjoy!
     
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  2. Charles D E

    Charles D E BANNED BANNED

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    Thanks for the share actually... Might come in handy
     
  3. meathead1234

    meathead1234 Moderator Staff Member Moderator Premium Member

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    You don't have to limit it just to PPC campaigns either, it's just something that is quite transparent and expensive to test if you don't have a profitable campaign to copy.

    Other ideas:

    Find sites ranking well -> steal their backlinks

    Find adsense sites with high CTR -> copy their layout

    Find sites earning a lot through aff network X -> sign up to network X

    The list is endless...
     
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  4. Charles D E

    Charles D E BANNED BANNED

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    Yep, seems like quite the place to get the ideas.. I should hang out there more :)
     
  5. MrGrumpy

    MrGrumpy Registered Member

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    Ive been doing this for a while, even though I never sell a thing on flippa.. only thing is you have to watch it cos there are a lot of lying arseholes on there who fake everything and the last thing you want to do is copy something and start a campaign only to find out it does not convert...I never take anything at face value and I use it for other things, but I've found killer traffic methods on there just by reverse engineering sites. This is my opinion and Im sure some people will disagree, but avoid looking at any sites that promise " unique traffic sources" as there is usually one thing unique about them...they don't make any money..
     
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  6. meathead1234

    meathead1234 Moderator Staff Member Moderator Premium Member

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    You can always use teamviewer to verify stats :) All serious sellers will be happy to do that. Check out the rep and feedback as well - unlikely people who use fake stats will have any feedback and/or previous sales.
     
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  7. yagrooza

    yagrooza Junior Member

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    wow this is interesting. I usually go to flippa just for site ideas but this is taking it a step further thank you for the share. One question how do you find out their ad campaign ?
     
  8. meathead1234

    meathead1234 Moderator Staff Member Moderator Premium Member

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    Use a site like keywordspy.com. I'm sure the pros may have other tools, but I've always found the free version to be effective.
     
  9. nicknick

    nicknick Regular Member

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    Really nice post i like it alot. The funny thing is i thought about this only a week ago. I already made a site pumped it with links thanks to the friendly and cheap services here on this forum and i have already gone from page 6 to the top of page 2 hopefully ill smash him in about a month probably less and make the same if not more them him. Im promoting the same clickbank product and my website looks very similar. The website that i made wasnt a PPC site like how your stating, but still can work for any site just like you said.
     
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  10. Sampler

    Sampler Senior Member

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    Can add,

    steal keyword/niche idea
     
  11. Bestbuyfoam

    Bestbuyfoam Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Thanks given...

    Will this work on my competitions sites also?

    Sorry if this is a dumb question...

    Thanks a million,

    And have a blessed one...
     
  12. meathead1234

    meathead1234 Moderator Staff Member Moderator Premium Member

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    As in competitors who don't have sites for sale?

    Not really, as you don't know which are profitable and which are not. The idea of using Flippa is that 90% of the info about their business model is freely available, whereas if you just find a random competitor you have no idea whether they make a profit or loss.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
  13. meathead1234

    meathead1234 Moderator Staff Member Moderator Premium Member

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    Yes, quite a few ways you can twist this.

    PPC is quick and easy to get running so you could be profitable in a couple of days, whereas with SEO you may have to work months.
     
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  14. teeniegenie

    teeniegenie Supreme Member

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    Meathead, you are the Flippa King! Thanks + Rep given!
     
  15. kentabg

    kentabg Registered Member

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    10x for the share very helpfully
     
  16. meathead1234

    meathead1234 Moderator Staff Member Moderator Premium Member

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    We all learn something new everyday - there's still 100s of IM related things I have no idea about. Others happily share what they know about SEO, affiliate marketing etc so I contribute what I know about, which is why this forum is so great. Hopefully people will be able to twist this and build their own successful "method" rather than copying word for word.
     
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  17. Joeblack99

    Joeblack99 Newbie

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    Great idea, but isn't your account history important for quality score? So you're not gonna have the same QS as them, therefore may not be profitable?
     
  18. meathead1234

    meathead1234 Moderator Staff Member Moderator Premium Member

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    Like I said, I'm not a PPC pro, but it's worth a try. The campaign I showed was making like 150% ROI, so even if you're paying slightly more, it's likely you will still be profitable.

    You can always PM the seller to see how old their account is etc to compare ;)
     
  19. hateandbreak

    hateandbreak Supreme Member

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    That's gotta be the best share I've seen since I've been here! That's gold man and you shared it with us. Now that's love. Thanks given and I hope to try this out!
     
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  20. ┼blackrat┼

    ┼blackrat┼ Senior Member

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    Meathead you are an inspiration to me. However gay this might sound.

    Actually I flip minisites for no more than $2xx (low competition, low revenue, good serps achieved by BH means.)

    I seek to expand my business and soon be able to increase the revenue per site, thus increasing the flipping value.

    Mind If I PM you with a few questions? I´ll be quick I promise!

    Thanks!