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Do You Want To Make Money Online? Don’t Buy A Blog!

If you want to make money online and are wondering “how do I start blogging?”, I think the evidence is in: don’t buy a blog! Late last year after the new Google page ranks came out there was  a rash of blogs being put up for sale. I think went for the most of the bunch at $15,000.00 followed by at $8,500.00 and then a handful more at less than that.

Looking at the Alexa charts of three of those sites, you can clearly see where the sales were made and the subsequent drop off in viewers after the sales. Blogs are hard to maintain and no matter how you look at it, they are the personal property of the owner/writer. Every blog has a personality and the readers either like it and stick around or they leave. When a blog sells, that owner is gone and so is everthing he/she brought to the table.

I like certain blogs because I am entertained by the owner of the blog or value what they have to say. If they were to sell, then that person’s humor and style is gone and I no longer have any interest. For all practical purposes, the blog with the new owner becomes a new blog.

You can see by looking at the charts below what I mean. In each case, the numbers of readers for each blog plummeted after the sale and they continued downward until leveling off at a very modest readership. I can only imagine the pain being felt by the new blog owners as they realize what a monumental mistake they have made. The new owner of CashQuests hasn’t posted in a week and a half as of today for a blog he paid $15,000 for! Has he given up already? Whether you have a brand new blog or buy an established one, you are still going to have to figure out how to drive traffic to your blog. It won’t come by magic.

Making money with a blog is hard anyway, whether you start with readers or not. Yes, maybe the top handful of bloggers can make money doing it, but they work hard at it every day. Don’t be fooled by those top bloggers who try to convince you to follow them and they will show you how to become a pro blogger. They know very well the overwhelming odds are that you will fail. Try if you want but there are easier ways to make money from work at home jobs than blogging. sold for $8,500 sold for $15,000 sold for $1,250

  • 1

    That is a great example of why not to buy a blog. You illustrate it exactly how I felt when sites were selling left and right.

    sir jorge on January 6th, 2008
  • 2

    Yep, totally true with blogs. SiteFever was a good example because I have totally forgotten about it already.

    Sucker on January 6th, 2008
  • 3

    I believe the blogs you mention here were purchased by ignorant investors. In any buyout, the investors perform what is known as “due diligence” prior to making an offer. This drill down includes current revenue and profit margin, as well as 3-4-5 year trends or more. The investor will also study the future growth potential of the “niche” as it were. I doubt that in your 3 examples any of this was done. This also assumes that the blogs were run like true businesses in the first place … which I doubt they were. How many bloggers do you think there are who run quarterly P&L true-ups? Answer: zero!
    Finally, most small business buyouts are not publicly announced. Why? Because customers will leave, that’s why. If you sell a small business, you are essentially selling the customer base and doing that without announcing it will help stop the downfall you are bringing to light here.

    Allyn Paul on January 6th, 2008
  • 4

    Some good points of course a lot of this depends on the niche and what the new owner does with it. If they are not ready to jump on the bandwagon and start posting a lot right away then there will definitely be a drop. But if it was done correctly then you could also really grow the blog. Its just like any other web property, you have to work to make this type of thing work out.

    Bruce on January 7th, 2008
  • 5

    Yeah I always wondered why people would pay so much for a blog and then not do anything with it.

    thewild1 on January 7th, 2008
  • 6

    Sitefever went for only $1250. That’s a deal. Most of the blogs I have seen up for sale were too rich for my blood. I just don’t see it. If you are making money why are you selling. If you know how to make money from a site and get traffic, why are you buying instead of starting your own. Thinking you are getting a prebuilt business is stupid.

    Stephan Miller on January 7th, 2008
  • 7

    Couldn’t agree more. Buying a successful blog doesn’t mean you buy what made that blog successful: the owner.

    I’m on your entrecard today! I’ll hope I get a lot of clickthroughs 🙂

    Rhys on January 7th, 2008
  • 8

    Can you tell me where these people sold their websites? Was it on ebay or on some other site?


    Corey B. on January 8th, 2008
  • 9

    As a consultant I do acquisition due dilligence and one of the things I found is that as I evaluate an opportunity, sometimes I see a rash of similar businesses for sale at “great” prices. Usually there is something behind it. For example a couple of years ago, Texas made it illegal for insurance companies to own the body shops they recommend. Accordingly a ton of body shops went on the market at great prices. In that particular case, the target businesses usually had very good margins/stable business because the insurance company favored them. Subsequently their business would drop.

    If something is too good to be true …

    Invest with Dax on January 8th, 2008
  • 10

    They were sold on Although SiteFever might have been sold privately, I’m not sure.

    DayJobNuker on January 8th, 2008
  • 11

    We’re about to launch a blog and these figures are a little depressing ! Were the massive drops in traffic due to the new owners or did this happen before the sale ?

    Cuban Cigars Dave on January 8th, 2008
  • 12

    Dave, in each case the numbers started dropping once the sale was announced.

    Think about it. If you like a radio talk show and the host you like retires and hands the show off to someone else, it is much less likely that you will stick around as the show may change with the new host’s personality. Same with a blog that gets sold.

    DayJobNuker on January 8th, 2008
  • 13

    I would stop reading someone’s blog if it was sold because the reason why I read certain blogs is because of the person who writes for it. If they no longer post on the site, I won’t visit it any more. So I don’t see any benefit of buying a blog unless it’s for a very little amount of cash. Like a few hundred bucks.

    Personal Development on January 8th, 2008
  • 14

    Hi DJN…found your blog through Entrecard and I like the way you write…I found one success buy of a blog though…the name of the blog is which was sold around $10,000…the blog is still very much popular because this blog give away wordpress theme…very excellent wp theme…but if the blog is based on content and writing, it will be dumb to buy it because the style and way of writing is different…will be visiting your blog again…subscribe to your feed…correct me if I’m wrong because I’m a newbie in blogging…:)

    nimrodjo on January 8th, 2008
  • 15

    Well I would not say don’t buy a blog, but rather make sure you know what you are buying. All the alexa stats you just showed is result of the “not knowing what to do” from the new owners.

    I have turned several blogs into successful money making blogs with less work than what actually the previous owner would be working. But in a certain point of view, you are right, don’t buy a blog for making money (unless you know how to actually improve it).

    Learn SEO on January 8th, 2008
  • 16

    It really does depend on the niche and the type of audience you’re looking at ‘entertaining’, but many of these sites are in the make money online niche and ‘teaching’ niche, which means readers are more interested in the bloggers ‘version’ of what’s happening and following them. I followed before, but don’t now simply because the wiritng style changed and it wasn’t something that I wanted to adapt to at the time – I check back now and then, but not all the time.

    I think personality and interaction on the blogs mentioned has deeply affected the reader rate and interactivity.

    Nick - road2blogging on January 8th, 2008
  • 17

    Well i too wondered why people would pay so much for a blog and then not do anything with it. I guess that is what popularity is all about, if you make it popular it will give the fruits in future.

    Tips on January 9th, 2008
  • 18

    Just wanted to weigh in on this subject. As the seller of One Man’s Goal (Bryan Clark – Me), I certainly saw the drop-off after I left.

    The drop-off was so bad, that I was actually able to buy back One Man’s Goal at a significant discount. Pennies on the dollar actually. So it was more of a blog lease. However, I have my work cut out for me, because as you see by the statistics… people just didn’t stick around.

    I’ll get OMG back to where it was, but I definitely want to commend you on this article. As a new blogger (less than 6 months still), I had no idea that these blogs that sold for great amounts had such a drop-off (besides mine), after the owner left. Really great stuff!

    Make Money Online on January 9th, 2008
  • 19

    Hi Bryan,
    I had no idea you bought it back. But then again, I’ve only been back to your blog a couple of times since you sold it. Kinda like everyone else I presume.

    DayJobNuker on January 9th, 2008
  • 20

    If you really really want to buy a blog, you have to keep in mind that you have to follow the quality which the blog comments had before. Most of the time the visitors don’t like bought websites, because they like the freedom in the blogosphere and want do keep it clean from business…

    Wellness Nordsee on January 10th, 2008
  • 21

    My feeling is that many of the newer “how to make money” blogs will die out this year. Buying a blog is a good strategy if you have a solid plan on how you are going to grow it.

    Of course, you should do some homework and check out some of the claims about how much income that blog is bringing in. The best estimate is the amount of recurring income for the blog but you have to dig into the details and get a breakdown of every revenue stream from the blog owner.

    To give an example of a good investment, I would point you to the recent sale of Since BOB already had lots of inbound links from the free WP templates he was giving out, the new owner has a headstart in terms of building up the reputation of the blog. If he keeps up the strategy of offering WP themes, it can prove to be a very profitable acquisition.

    So my advice is to look to the longer term and carefully consider how you are going to develop the property once your purchase it.

    Hock on January 10th, 2008
  • 22

    That have sence. But I know a guy who bought a blog and made a deal with previous owner that he continue writing posts for monthly cellery.

    acca on January 10th, 2008
  • 23

    I believe Career Ramblings went for $20k back in July 07.

    Kenric on January 11th, 2008
  • 24

    It depends on the niche and what the new owner does with it.Writing unique articles is not so easy, and if the new blog owner does not have the same writing skills the blog will quickly lose popularity.

    Web2.0 Tom on January 11th, 2008
  • 25

    If you think about it, the drop in traffic makes sense. It is not the URL that makes the blog successful, it is the person behind the blog. If the content does not maintain the same level of consistency, then the drop in readership should not come as a surprise.

    Larry Goodhue on January 14th, 2008
  • 26

    I don’t also like to buy a new blog too. I like to start from the beginning. Fresh thought with a fresh start.

    credit card processing on January 15th, 2008
  • 27

    if you have a solid business plan then you can buy a blog for its organic traffic and inbound links.

    I think debtconsolidationlowdown sold their site to a debt reduction company. I’m sure it went for a good price.

    Living Off Dividends on January 20th, 2008
  • 28

    I find it hard to put a monetary value on a blog.

    Health and Social Training on August 4th, 2008
  • 29

    Buying a blog is good if you have the in depth knowledge of that subject or niche. Better to strat your own. I agree.

    small business merchant account on January 22nd, 2009