A better listing headline WILL affect whether or not your site sells and for how much. This seems like a no brainer, but it really isn’t. Having a better headline equals more views and more views on a worthwhile site will usually translate to more bids.
Take a look at these two archived listings. Both sites have similar qualities; brand new sites with no traffic or revenue, baby niche content and identical monetisation methods.
Both focus on the same niche, have an almost identical theme and structure, and contain the same format of content, yet one attracted four times as many views as the other despite being listed for approximately half the duration.
There are four main factors that affect the number of views you receive, and any well designed listing has a perfect mix of all four.
- The Heading
- The Starting Price
- The Tags
- Featured / Not Featured
Arguably, the easiest to overlook is your headline but this has the important role of drawing viewers in, when your site is just one listing amongst a list of hundreds of other sites.
Writing a headline that appeals to website buyers
Standard advertising rules apply with listings – Attention, Interest, Desire and Action.
Action is covered by Flippa, in that people will bid should all the other criteria be met. Interest, is created by your ‘hard stats’ everything from price through to number of visitors. Your listing copy should create desire and this leaves you to ensure that the first in the list, attention is covered by your headline.
Starter site buyers are motivated by four things
- Ease of use – the less work and knowledge to operate the site the better
- Potential to earn
- A faster way into internet marketing than the DIY approach
- Multiple options for making revenue
In appealing to a buyer, the most successful headlines seem to appeal to one of the four points above if not two or three, and all in less than 100 characters.
Buyers often care little for the niche (outside of whether it’s a profitable one) and want to know about the site and how it will help them to make money, or ‘solve their problem’.
Take a look at the first listing’s headline, followed a few others that are taken from a list of sites that have received a relatively low number of ‘views’ per day listed on Flippa.
“Wordpress Blog – Baby Care Niche – Cash In With Clickbank, Adsense and Amazon”
“BasicDatingTips.com, Autoblog, Low Reserve”
“Wordpress Blog – Body Building Niche- Cash In With Clickbank, Adsense and Amazon”
“Hot Niche, Gorgeous Unique Design and site ready to start making money TODAY”
“Your own GPT Membership site! Ready to go, earn with CPALead!”
- The first few words are the most important in capturing a reader’s attention and here they’ve been wasted with ‘Wordpress Blog’ – something which buyers come to expect as standard for any starter site, or by repeating the url of the site.
- These headlines lean towards general statements that fail to provide information specific to the site being sold (Hot Niche, Ready to Go, make money today)
- Most of the headlines fail to capture the potential of the site with specific information. “Cash in with Clickbank, Adsense and Amazon” sounds like a general statement and not a description of the site’s current monetisation methods.
- The author has forgotten the audience. Someone purchasing a sub $500 starter site is unlikely to be too experienced in internet marketing, so using terms such as ‘GPT membership site’ or ‘CPA lead’ may leave a number of buyers lost.
Writing a better headline
There are countless examples of good listings currently on Flippa. Using our example, and a few others that attracted a high number of views:
“Automated PREGNANCY Site – Custom Design, Baby Store, Video”
“Low Reserve, Almost No Work Involved, Stunning Site In Hot Photoshop Brush Niche”
“Super Niche iPad Site Premium Domain 1000 Item Store Optimized Custom Designed” [spelling corrected]
“Fully Automated, Hot Home Gardening Niche, 4 Revenue Streams, 2 Days”
We can see some clues to writing a better headline:
- Be specific. Whether it’s about the number of days or the number of revenue streams, the best headlines avoid hype and give specifics.
- Stand out. Most of the listings above offer something in the headline that other listings may have, but don’t initially tell readers, for example a unique niche, an additional store or video content.
- Solve a problem. Most popular headlines solve the two biggest obstacles of lack of time (automated) or lack of knowledge. Try to find a unique angle by demonstrating how your site will solve a problem for the target buyer. For example, lack of creativity (“Pre loaded with 100 articles”), lack of technical skill (“optional support package available”), or lack of knowledge (“Free search marketing guide”)
A good headline will never sell a lousy site, but without attracting viewers even the best site will fail to sell for the price it deserves. Hopefully, by tackling all the small details, you will be able to remove any obstacles that might prevent your site achieving what it’s truly worth.