established adult website business

Established Adult Website Buyers Guide – Step by Step

What is an Established Adult Website Business?

An established adult website is a website that has been around for at least one or more years and is currently bringing in a consistent stream of both web traffic (visitors) and revenue (profits).

Why Would Somebody Sell An Established Adult Website?

There are many different reasons why somebody would sell an established website that is currently making money. Some of those reasons might be:

  • The lump sum of money that the owner would receive if they sold their established business could be the main driving force behind them selling. The idea of making an entire year or twos worth of profit in one quick transaction could be very tempting for the seller.
  • The owner doesn’t have enough time to devote to the website anymore to help it grow and satisfy the visitors/customers with new material or content.
  • Perhaps the owner no longer has an interest in the niche and would like to start something new.
  • There are a lot of people who build a business from the ground up with the sole purpose of selling that business after a few years for a considerable profit.
  • The website might be losing profits each month, and the owner doesn’t know how to bounce back. Selling the business might be the only way they can see to make some extra profit.

We could keep going on this list, but as you can see, there are many different reasons why somebody would look to sell their already established website.

What To Look For In An Established Adult Website Business

Before buying a website, do your due diligence and make sure to find the answers to the following points.

Web Traffic: Find out how much traffic the website is getting every day, week, month, and year. Is the traffic still going up each month, or has it plateaued? Is the traffic going down now?

Domain Age: Sometimes a domain name that is not very old, could find that it might perform poorly in search engines even if all the other SEO factors are met.

Monetization: Find out how the website is making money and if you will be able to do the same once you take over. Another thing to look for at this time is, any other missed opportunities that the current owner has missed out on to earn extra income. For example, can you place ads on the website, sell an affiliate product to the audience, create an ebook or downloadable audiobook that you can offer, and so on.

Earnings: Take a look at the profits from the website, going all the way back to when the site first launched. Look for trends to see if it makes the most money during certain months. Check to make sure that the earnings are consistent and have been for at least several months. If the profits have been going downhill for the past several months, then why would that be, and can you turn this around?

Google analytics: The owner should be able to give you access to their Google Analytics, or at least provide you with a PDF copy. You want to look at the traffic from the date the website launched to present day. Ideally, you want to see a slow progression of traffic going up over time. Slow progress over time means it’s organic traffic.

Another thing to look for within the Google analytics report is where the traffic is coming from. Such as, which countries, any referrals, organic, etc. When you look at the referrals, you will also be able to see a link to the page that the referrals are coming from. If you visit that link you will be able to see if the website was posted as spam, or if someone is recommending or commenting on the site and providing a link. This is important because Google could penalize the website if the backlinks are spammy.

Also, take a look at the bounce rate to see how long the visitors are sticking around the website. Google Analytics will give you a break down on the gender and age of your traffic which will come in handy down the road when you begin marketing towards your audience.

Content Management System (CMS): One thing that many people forget to look at is the CMS behind the website. The CMS is the software or platform that the site is built on. Some of the most popular Content Management Systems are; WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla.

Having a good CMS is crucial because it’ll give your website the opportunity to grow and stay updated with the latest software versions, plugins and themes. Another added benefit to using a professional CMS is that it’ll make things a lot easier for you to maintain the website with new content from a backend admin section.

Content: What type of content does the website offer it’s visitors and can you continue to produce or add additional content moving forward?

For example, if you are buying a website and the owner was taking photos and videos of themselves and sharing them on the site, then once you take over, you wouldn’t be able to produce the same content. You could post your photos and videos, but perhaps the visitors came to the website for the other content. So, therefore, the sales could begin to stop.

Any Google Penalties: Find out if the site has been hit with any Google penalties. If it has, it could be challenging to get the website off that list. Websites that engage in Black-hat techniques are more at risk of receiving a Google penalty.

Search Results/SEO: Go through the different keywords and see how the website is ranking in the search engines. Make sure that the keywords the site is ranking for, actually targets the appropriate audience.

How Much Would An Established Website Cost?

Generally, when the owner is pricing their website for sale, they will take a look at the monthly profits the website brings in and then multiply that number anywhere between 10 – 24 times.

So, for example, a website that is earning a profit of $1,200 per month, could end up selling between $12,000 to $28,800.

To determine how much the website earns each month, you should go back and look at the previous month’s profits to make sure the earnings are consistent.

Where To Buy An Established Adult Business

When it comes to buying an established adult business, not all website brokers look kindly on adult related websites and businesses. But luckily there are a few places that you can go to find some for sale.

Adult Site Broker – This company has been around for about seven years, as of the time of this writing. Adult Site Broker is a middle man between the seller and the buyer. If they don’t have the type of website you are looking for, you can contact them, and they’ll see what they can do to find you one. They usually deal in higher budgets of around $50,000 USD per website, but they do due diligence on the sites they help sell so you can feel a little safer in that aspect.

GFY – This is where adult website owners can go to find resources, ask questions, and buy content related to the adult industry. It’s also a place where you can look to see who’s selling a website. If you don’t see a site you are interested in, you could start a new thread describing what you are looking for, and if a seller reads it who can meet your requirements, then they’ll reply to you.

Digital Point – This webmasters forum has a dedicated section for members to Buy, Sell or Trade websites and traffic. It’s worth checking out.

Warrior Forum – This forum is worth checking out, and posting a new thread and letting people know what kind of website you are looking for. If anyone reads your post who can help, they will be happy to let you know.

eBay.com – As a last resort you could look at eBay.com to see what websites are listed for sale. Most of the time these websites are not established (although the seller claims they are) but keep your eye open because once and a while a real established adult website is listed. Keep an eye on the seller’s terms as well, because a lot of the sellers will require that you keep the site hosted with them, and you do not want to do this. You want to have complete control.

Another real problem with eBay to watch out for is that most of the adult websites being sold on eBay are all cookie cutter sites and everyone buying one will all have the same design, content, and resources.

Contact Owners – Look around at websites that are in the niche you want to get into and contact the owners. You’d be surprised to find that an owner might not have been thinking about selling the website until you just approached them and planted the seed.

Steps To Buying An Established Adult Website

Here are some steps to follow when looking to buy an established adult website.

#1. Decide what you are interested in:
Buying a new business is a huge decision that will impact your life in many ways. Take a good look around at the different niches available and figure out which one you have the most passion in. You don’t want to buy into a business that doesn’t make you want to get out of bed in the morning.

“If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.”
Marc Anthony

#2. Do some research and introductions:
Once you have figured out which niche you are most interested in, it’s time to do some research to find out what is available. Before you start to Google “Adult Business For Sale”, take a look around at some websites you might have visited within that niche and try reaching out to the owner to see if they might be interested in selling their website business. If they say “No,” then ask if they know anybody within the niche that might consider selling. The worst case they are going to do is say “No,” but now you will know somebody with your target niche that you might be able to engage with who has more knowledge and experience.

#3. Consider working with a broker:
If you have been doing the research on your own and you are unable to find someone who is selling an adult website in the niche you are interested in, then you could try talking to an adult site broker. They will be able to go through their list of clients and see which ones fit your requirements. Adult Site Broker has been around for a while now, and they would be an excellent place to start.

#4. Do your due diligence:
Once you’ve found an adult website that is for sale, and before you jump in head first by making the purchase, you will need to do your homework. At first glance, the website might look perfect, but a more in-depth look could reveal some serious issues that you don’t want to inherit.

You can try using Google to search for the name of the website that you are looking to buy to see what others are saying about it. You can try adding the word “reviews” at the end of the websites name to see what other people are saying about the business. This will help give you an idea about the Good and the Bad customer experiences.

Another thing you can try doing is, go to a website called GTMetrix and run a free website speed and performance check on the website you are looking to purchase.  This will give you an idea of how fast the website loads and if any problems could be causing the website to load slowly.

You can also check the website traffic statistics at Alexa. This will tell you more about the website traffic and where the traffic is coming from. It will also give you an idea of how long the average visitor stays on the website. It’s an excellent, free tool to use.

These days it’s essential to make sure that your website is mobile friendly, and Google offers a free tool to check for this. You can use the Mobile-Friendly Test to check if the website is indeed mobile friendly quickly.

Another type of free check you can make it with a tool called The Hoth which will check backlinks coming into the website.

And of course, gather as much information from the seller as you can. Find out what it is currently earning each month, how long it has been in business, how much web traffic is it getting, how is it monetized, and so on. Gather information going back at least 6 months minimum. The longer back that the information goes, the better.

#5. Acquire the funding:
Buying an established business could be very pricey, so coming up the funding to purchase the business could be challenging if you are not able to fund the purchase yourself.

  • Seller Financing: This is where the seller will allow you to pay off the cost of the website throughout an agreed upon amount of time. Usually, the seller will charge extra as interest.
  • Business Loan: You could take a business loan at your bank if you qualify. Financial institutions are more likely to approve your loan to purchase a business with a track record of success.
  • Angel Investors or Venture Capital: This is when you take on a partner who is willing to be the financial backing for the business, while you will be the hands-on operator of the website/business. In this option, you will have to give up a significant percentage of the profits if the business is a success. However, if the business fails, you won’t worry about paying back a debt.

#6. Begin the purchase:
After you have established where the funds are coming from, you can now begin to draft up a sale agreement between you and the seller. Make sure to have a reputable acquisitions attorney go over the deal so you are fully aware of what is in the writing before you sign anything.

With the agreement signed, you can then begin to send the money and look to take over the ownership. Use a well-distinguished Escrow service to help facilitate the transaction. One that I have used on multiple occasions is Escrow.com.  There is a fee for using their service, but it’s well worth it when you’ll be spending a large sum of money to purchase a business. You can see their fee calculator here.

Watch Out For Scams

Buying a new business could be fun, but that fun will quickly come to an end if you are the victim of a scam.

The most important thing you can do before buying a website is to do your due diligence first. Any seller who is pushing you to make the deal Now probably has something they are hiding or don’t want to know before the deal is closed.

Always listen to your gut. If something doesn’t feel right, it’s okay to walk away. There will be other deals.

Make sure that the information you are receiving about the website you are going to buy, actually goes with the site you are going to buy. If the seller can give you access to their Google Analytics to view the information that would be more ideal.

Don’t host the website on the sellers’ servers. You want to have complete control over the website, and you want to make sure that the site is sitting in your hosting account.

Most of the time you will find that the seller is honest, and there is not too much to worry about. That’s been the experience I’ve had buying and selling websites. I’ve only had a few issues where I got ripped off, but that was because I didn’t listen to my gut and do a lot of homework into the website I was buying. You live and learn.

Established Website VS. Start-up Website

Established Website
  • Less Risk: With an established website there is less risk of the unknown. Let me explain; An established site has already positioned itself within a niche or marketplace, gaining the trust from its customers and building a reputation with them. You’ll be able to know right away if there is a market for what is being sold or offered. With a start-up website, you don’t have that certainty or reputation yet with your customers.
  • Search Results: An established website will rank higher in the search results which will help increase the chances of driving more organic traffic to your site. Organic traffic is significant because those people who are searching for what you have to offer, are more likely to stick around longer and perhaps purchase what you are selling.
  • Existing Business Model: Normally when you purchase an established business, the owner will be able to give you details on what they have found to work and what didn’t work.
Start-up Website
  • The New Guy: Being a new start-up website on the internet today means that you have not had the chance to gain any trust or confidence from customers, which could result in a slow start.
  • Learning Curve: As a new start-up website, you are going to have to learn what your visitors are looking for and how to deliver that to them. You’ll also need to know how to reach new customers and where to find them.
  • Clean Slate: As a new start-up business you will have the opportunity to begin the way you want to, and make sure that having a good relationship with your suppliers and customers are your priority.

Pros and Cons To Buying An Established Adult Business

Let’s go over some of the pros and cons of buying an established adult business.

Pros
  • It’s an excellent way to get into a specific niche instead if you have experience in it or not.
  • You’re buying a business that is already earning a monthly income.
  • Your website will have authority in the eyes of Google and other large search engines.
  • You can save time in the beginning not having to worry about a business plan or model.
  • You might be able to see an opportunity within the business that the current owner has overlooked.
Cons
  • It’s going to cost you a lot more money to get into the business.
  • You could be tricked, and end up buying a website that doesn’t earn as much as the seller claims.
  • The seller could have done black-hat SEO to drive up traffic and sales to sell the website. Once Google catches on to that, the organic traffic coming to the site could stop overnight.
  • You could inherit any bad relations that the previous owner had with poor customer service, negative reviews, and soured relations between the website and any suppliers/affiliate programs.