Banner

Follow Along

RSS Feed Join Us on Twitter On Facebook

Get Engaged

Banner

Featured Article

Using Your Site Statistics: Getting a Bird’s Eye ViewUsing  Your Site Statistics: Getting a Bird’s Eye ViewHow well do you understand your website design? Ask yourself....Are the design, usability, and informational factors top...
Read More >>

Latest Comments

Latest Articles

How to Improve Conversions  Through A/B TestingHow to Improve Conversions...
What is A/B testing? A/B testing is a method of testing that allows one...
Read More >>
Dialing in Your Call to ActionDialing in Your Call to...
Throughout the course of any marketing campaign, it is necessary to count conversions as...
Read More >>
Evaluating Digital Marketing ROIEvaluating Digital Marketing ROI
Imagine investing $15,000 on a print-based ad campaign. Your company would want proof the...
Read More >>

Our Sponsors

Banner
Banner
Banner

Latest Search Videos

Join Us

Banner
Banner
Wait, You Want How Much for That Website?
Written by David Iwanow
Sunday, 30 September 2012 14:41

A recent discussion I had with the owner of an Australian domain forum inspired me to begin to write this post, it revolved around processes for domain appraisals but is it more complex to value of an entire website based on aggressive Google algorithm updates so I thought I would start there.

domain appraisal

If you are investing big money in buying a pre-built site you want to ensure you correctly value the site as is also easy to fake signals and overstate revenues and traffic numbers. If I was looking at a website to purchase these are the types of checks I would be running before dipping my toe in the water.

1. Check for Link Signals

There is no reason you should not be using more than one backlink data source as there are several tools available these days and most offer a basic freemium access to get most of the information you will need for this step.

Some of the main ones I’ve recommend to use include LinkResearchTools, OpenSiteExplorer, Hrefs and MajesticSEO. You are looking to judge their authority signals based on inbound links but also understand if their link profile is built like a house of cards due to spam, paid or toxic links.

It’s fairly apparent very quickly looking at their inbound links and anchor text diversity if you should look further.

2. Spam Check with Detox Tools

One big thing is that many of the main SEO backlink tools don’t currently highlight if their website might be somewhat toxic due to their backlinks.

One of the additional tools that I suggest you look at adding to these data set is the Link Detox reports from Cemper.com, do a quick sample of their top 10 competitors and see how their toxicity profile compares. There is no point risking your investment if the website sites far above the competitor’s average toxicity score.

3. Crawl the site for Issues

It’s often a quick and easy process to understand if there are any major technical issues or anything sketchy via javascript going on with a quick crawl. It’s fairly quickly if you use a tool like ScreamingFrog to count the number of pages plus it will highlight if there is any major duplicate content issues that could cause problems later.

4. How Many Pages Indexed?

While there are quick and dirty solutions such as site:searchnewscentral.com to test how many pages are in the index, this figure is often inaccurate. I have found that Sheer SEO presents the best data as it shows both primary and supplementary index. If you need to bulk check a number of websites products like SEOTools for Excel make it scalable to measure hundreds of websites at once. If you’re buying a website consider pushing for access to their Google Webmaster Tools so you can get a snapshot of Index Status that will show any potential hits from Penguin/Panda updates.

5. Is Their Content Spun or Stolen?

If you are looking at purchasing website you want to ensure they are not scummy content thieves and also with Panda algorithm update the sites value will continue to degrade over time. There are several tools I suggest using such as Copyscape, Similar Page Checker and many more as you don’t want to be at the end of a torrent of DCMA requests once you become the new owner. If they have built a churn and burn website you don’t want to be throwing good money away on shit content.

6. Readability Score

website evaluation

If the content is of low quality you will quickly be able to determine its long term value by using one of the many text based or URL based readability score graders.

While these are not perfect they are a good way to get a gauge on how their content compares against competitors, if a majority of industry blogs have a reading age of 5 and you are a 9 you might be missing the mark. This is also important if you are trying to attract quality content partners and high paying advertisers you should have some idea about your content, but just remember that there are several readability indices that you can be measured against.

It’s also worthwhile measuring what is the fine line in readability scores between what you can produce easily and what gets the most comments, shares and eye balls.

7. Number of Pages

Again you want to know the potential size of the site to understands it’s potential value if you are buying and calculate the potential traffic each piece of new content produces.

If you know they get around 10,000 visitors a month off 100 pages you can roughly calculate each new page is worth an extra 100 visitors/month so you can estimated how much content you should be producing to grow.

Evergreen content is great but to grow your audience you need to be planning a range of regular new content pieces once you purchase the website.

8. Frequency of Posts?

It depends on if you are looking to purchase a website that has a constant stream of fresh content/news or one that relies on evergreen content. Frequent post encourage both visitors to return and subscribe to your RSS feed but also ensure Googlebot visits more often.

9. Any Spam Comments on Posts?

One of the updated Google Webmaster Guidelines that has been removed for now addresses if you are being pro-active in removing obvious spam and highlights possible penalties for failure to remove such spam.

Does the site have a history of being hit hard by scrappers and spammers you may want to consider adding in a security layer like CloudFlare to protect your website from a majority of bots and known spammers.

10. Any Social Signals?

One of the coolest new toys to play with is Social Crawlytics and allows you to quickly compare the website against its competitors and measure their social signals. This can also show what types of past content proved popular on social media for future content topics but also what content competitors are producing is proving most popular. If the website has decent traffic and has good content you should have some social signals, if there is nothing then something is suspicious or artificial.

11. Are their social signals authentic?

Now we can see if they have social signals linked to their website but if you are buying their whole business including social media channels you need to understand are those 100,000 followers on Twitter genuine?

There are a number of tools such as Fakers that allow you to review their twitter account attached to their website and estimates what portion is authentic, inactive and fake.

Also a great thing is that you can also do most of these tasks at scale to pre-qualify a list of websites before you even invest the time and effort in negotiation process. When seeking a website to buy you want to weed out of the crap and spam before you waste your time as efficiently as you can.

If there are any other factors you suggest should be included please include them in the comments below.

David Iwanow -

David Iwanow used to run his own agency but can now be found working inside digital marketing agency Amnesia Razorfish. I enjoy a bit of social, love some web analytics data, and try to make sense of affiliate marketing and performance marketing. also hook up via Read More >>

Related Articles:


More articles by this author

The Diminishing Value of KeywordsThe Diminishing Value of Keywords
One concerning factor that has always being nagging in...
Read More >>
Google Hotel Finder Impacts Organic TrafficGoogle Hotel Finder Impacts Organic Traffic
Over the last week Google has managed to scare the...
Read More >>
Last Updated on Monday, 01 October 2012 12:55
 

Comments  

 
0 #1 کرکره برقی 2014-04-14 11:44
very fantastic
Quote
 
 
0 #2 طب سوزنی 2014-05-24 06:11
I totally agree with you that the best and effective reporting approach is an overall approach that looks at all analytic metrics. There are actually changes in different metrics that can deliver different meaning to other metrics. We should really take note of this
Quote
 
 
0 #3 نمای ساختمان 2014-06-25 12:41
I think it's pretty much common sense that the value of PPC (and SEO) will diminish in the coming years as more marketers enter the game (unsophisticate d marketers will accelerate the decline!). PPC and SEO are just like anything else - to maximize your ROI on an ongoing basis, you have to accurately track your results and continually test new (niche) strategies (within PPC and SEO or new forms of marketing). Once the herd catches on, the value/return plummets.
Quote
 
 
0 #4 کرکره برقی 2014-07-28 06:49
He must have spent a lot of time to obtain useful information. Sometimes do not get good information. A method of obtaining information from the Internet. Glad that I met with your site.
Quote
 

Add comment


Security code
Refresh

Getting Around the Site

Home - all the latest on SNC
SEO - our collection of SEO articles
Technical SEO - for the geeks
Latest News - latest news in search
Analytics - measure up and convert
RSS Rack - feeds from around the industry
Search - looking for something specific?
Authors - Author Login
SEO Training - Our sister site
Contact Us - get in touch with SNC

What's New?