So, it’s time to swallow my pride a bit and own up to a HUGE mistake I made on a flip that cost me at least $8,000 — maybe a lot more. Believe me, it sucks knowing I left a bunch of money on the table, and I take no pleasure in sharing this story, but if it helps somebody out, it’s worth it.
Back when I sold BetterParenting.com, a lot of people were interested in the auction. Let’s be honest, there’s a lot of crap sold on Flippa, so when a PR4 site with a nice design and good content, built on a premium brandable domain comes up for sale, people take notice.
The site wasn’t earning much — enough to cover any content I paid for (which was fairly minimal, since I was getting a bunch of content for free). In fact, the numbers were so mediocre that I listed the site with no revenue claimed.
Despite that fact, the auction was going great — I had lots of bidders and even more people watching the auction. During the last two days, the private messages started pouring in with higher frequency.
One message was from a guy who had been bidding — he was really interested in the site and he wanted to talk to me about it. The auction still had about a day and a half left when we spoke. Bidding on the site was around $4,200 and he offered me $8,000 to end the auction early. I said I’d need at least $10,000 to do the deal and he quickly replied that he’d take it. What I did next was smart.
I told him that I first wanted to contact the existing bidders to let them know that I had an offer on the table to end the auction early. I proceeded to send out the note to the existing bidders, and when I hadn’t heard anything back from them, we closed the deal.
Seems like I did everything right, doesn’t it? Except I screwed up. Within an hour after we closed the deal with a “Buy It Now” price on Flippa, I got a message from a guy who wanted to know what happened to my auction. He was waiting until the last day to place a bid and he was prepared to spend up to $18,000 on the site. I almost threw up all over myself when I read it. No lie.
Worse still — earlier in the week, I had received a message from a guy who hadn’t placed a bid in the auction but told me to contact him before I sold to anyone else. When I sent out the messages to all the bidders, guess who I forgot about? Yep, that guy. A few months later, I found out that he had real deep pockets and probably would have gone above the other guy’s $18k max.
Moral of the story? If you have an auction that’s generating a lot of interest, the “Buy It Now” option could cost you thousands. Also, be VERY diligent in your note keeping. It was my own disorganization that caused me to not email a bidder who was very interested in the site.
Anyway, I hope you can learn from my mistake.