On the About Us page of their website, Empire Flippers writes, “Hmm, how shall we say it, we run things a bit, different.” Well, Empire Flippers is different – as much a technology company as a broker. Think of the firm as the Carvana of website brokerages. Like the disruptive online used car retailer, their purchase process features curated and vetted inventory, fair pricing, transparent online deal marketing, web-based tools and resources, and automation – removing friction from transactions. Beyond their platform, Empire Flipper’s staff of about eighty is there to support and guide buyers and sellers through each stage of a deal. The tech-enabled approach has been highly successful. Empire Flippers has brokered over $400 million in digital business transactions and has appeared five times on the Inc. 5000 list of America’s fastest growing companies. They have sold over 73% of all businesses listed, with listings often selling in less than 2 months.
Sophisticated Buyer Tools
With over 170 online businesses for sale on their website, and purchase prices ranging from $20k to $20 million, Empire Flippers is one of the largest brokerages in their space, representing a broad range of opportunities. Each deal is classified across a number of parameters, so sophisticated buyers can easily identify matches to exacting search criteria. In order to have access to the full extent of filtering available, buyers are required to sign up for the platform, which is free. Once signed up, buyers can search across 18 “Monetization” categories, from Amazon Associates, FBA, FBM, KDP and Merch, to Display Advertising, eCommerce, and SaaS. In addition, opportunities are classified under one of 58 “Niches” that range from Advertising to Technology. Other search filters include financials, platforms, date created, country, SKU count, monthly unique visitors, and more. Everything is handled within a customizable dashboard. Sellers can manage all communications and see the progress of their business sale in one place. Buyers can create watchlists, get notified about new listings that match their criteria, and schedule calls with sales advisors and business sellers.
Vetting Serious Buyers
Once signed up, buyers can view basic company information, but in order to see the company URL, view detailed traffic and earnings reports, and ask the seller questions, a listing must be “Unlocked”. In order to Unlock listings, buyers are required to become “Verified”, proving identity and availability of funds. The verification process is entirely automated, and while it takes some time upfront, it ensures the team and seller can be focused on real candidates rather than tire kickers. Empire Flipper’s buyer network is a capable group with over $7 billion in liquidity. For smaller deals, the marketplace actually includes a “Buy It Now” feature, enabling a purchase at the click of a button. Empire Flippers also allows buyers to hold funds in an online “Wallet,” enabling them to lock in a deal faster, without the need for wiring funds.
A System Built for Sellers
Empire Flippers seeks websites with a solid track record, earning at least $2k net profit per month over a 12-month average. They typically list businesses for sale at 20x to 60x average monthly net profit, with the multiplier depending on a number of factors. Empire Flippers has developed a sophisticated online valuation tool so sellers can gain a clear sense of potential pricing on their sale. The tool is highly customized, taking a separate approach for each of the 18 Monetization categories, and its algorithm is programmed with data from the sale of over 1,900 businesses. If a business owner decides to list a business, upload of company information is also automated and protected. The Empire Flippers system takes a business owner through a number of steps to gather personal data, site details, screenshots of financial data, and Google Analytics or Clicky data/access. Empire Flippers team members are available to help with the listing process, and once a deal is live, can assist with buyer calls, negotiation, migration, and other elements of the transaction. Fees generally range from 5-15% of the transaction value, depending on the size of the deal. Unlike some marketplaces, Empire Flippers does not include the URL with its public listings, helping sellers maintain confidentiality.
Tools and Resources
The company has put significant effort into developing a library of content and other useful tools and resources for its 250k users. From hundreds of searchable blog entries, 720 episodes of “The Real Money. Real Business Podcast,” the 98,462 downloads of The Opportunity Podcast, to the nearly 100 videos on their YouTube channel, the firm offers a wealth of information from which buyers and sellers can draw. What’s more, their offerings extend beyond users to their industry partners, with an automated referral program and a robust API for easy listing syndication. These partner tools strengthen ties with industry players and place Empire Flippers at the center of deal and buyer activity.
For entrepreneurs and investors seeking a passive-income opportunity, diversification, or just to dip their toe into the water of online business acquisition, Empire Flippers last year launched EF Capital. The platform pairs top web businesses for sale with capable operators, leveraging the power of crowdfunding to allow accredited investors to invest in high-growth internet opportunities. A new EFC round just launched with operators seeking financing for deals that include Amazon FBA, FBM, KDP, Affiliate, Display Ad, and E-commerce businesses. Deal sizes range from $1-$3 million, and the minimum investment is set at $25k.
Shopify Exchange Customers
As many in the online business acquisition community know, after 5 years in business, Shopify closed its Exchange Marketplace on November 1st, 2022. As a result, Shopify users no longer have access to a dedicated marketplace to sell their store. Empire Flippers is offering a 25% discount on their brokerage fee for Shopify stores that list with them prior to December 31, 2022.
On a Personal Note
Not long after our founding in 2019, Empire Flippers founder Joe Magnotti took the time to meet with the Hatchit team to learn about our startup marketplace. We are fortunate that Joe supported our efforts right from the start, advising us, and helping us gain an early foothold. The entire Empire Flippers team has demonstrated a collaborative, professional, and (despite their success) humble approach to business. It has been a pleasure working with them.
Whether it’s a 5-figure deal or an 8-figure deal, Empire Flippers is equipped to facilitate a smooth, efficient transaction. They offer buyers and investors a wide array of vetted opportunities, and sellers a sophisticated platform, capable team, and extensive buyer network. The firm’s tech-enabled approach – from granular filtering and useful tools, to automated vetting, valuation, and sign up – helps streamline the process. If you are a website buyer, investor, or seller, you should definitely check out Empire Flippers.
We hope this information is useful as you consider your options for selling your digital business. We operate The Hatchit Marketplace, a platform for brokered and for-sale-by-owner online businesses with valuations ranging from $25k to over $20 million. Using our extensive industry knowledge, we offer a broker match service to help you find the right assistance for your seller needs.