Flippa vs Investors Club

Flippa vs Investors Club

One of the hardest decisions you’ll face as a website owner is not when to buy and sell, but where.

While buying and selling websites can be a lucrative investment opportunity, high broker fees and hidden costs can quickly eat into your bottom line. 

Buyers and sellers seeking alternatives to Flippa have a range of choices, with Investors Club frequently mentioned as a noteworthy option. This article will compare Investors Club with Flippa, outlining key differences and guiding you on when to choose one over the other

But first, a little background.

Considered the OG broker and the first marketplace for trading websites, Flippa (read Flippa review here) “facilitates the meeting of buyers and sellers”. Founded in 2009 and headquartered in Melbourne, Australia, and Austin, Texas, it boasts more than 300,000+ buyers and has handled over $400 million in sales since its inception. 

Launching in 2020, members-only marketplace Investors Club (IC) is the new kid on the block — but what it lacks in age it more than makes up for with experience.

IC is the brainchild of serial website builder Andrej Ilisin who has successfully grown two businesses to 7-figures respectively and built and flipped many websites in the process. 

Founded to fill the gap in the market for a straight-forward, customer-focused, low-cost online broker, members benefit from a wealth of global experience.

With a fully remote team, the lack of fancy corporate office spaces keeps costs down enabling Investors Club to pass on the savings, offering members the lowest seller’s fees in the industry. 

Here’s how the two compare.  

Listing Category Options

Investors Club lists profit-generating online businesses.

Offering full seller verification and integration with Google Analytics, you can buy with confidence through our members-only marketplace.

Sites are ranked organically on the platform and buyers have the option to filter by monetization type, date listed or asking price for a more tailored experience.

With access to exclusive curated listings, members can find investment opportunities available nowhere else on the internet.

Flippa also offers a wider variety of investment options:

  • Websites
  • Domains
  • Apps
  • Starter sites/templates

Listings are ranked using the platform’s own system which considers the information supplied by the seller alongside the listing’s data integrations.

With the option to pay extra to boost your listing and a lack of seller verification, buyers have to filter through an overwhelming number of sites to find the good ones and avoid the scam sites (more on this later). 

Winner: Tie: Flippa offers a wide variety of options, which can make it challenging for buyers to find good deals and for sellers to stand out.  

Fees 

One of the biggest deciding factors between online website brokers is the fees — hidden or otherwise. 

Flippa operates a fixed listing fee depending on the category and a sliding scale of selling fees (or success fee as they call it) based on the final sale price.

Their fee structure is quite complex compared to most other marketplaces. We have an entire article dedicated to Flippa fees if you want all the details. Here is a short version:

Listing Fees: $29 to $699, depending on the selected package.

Success Fees: 10% for sales up to 50K, 9% for sales $50,000 – $99,999, 8% for sales $100,000 – $249,999. Flippa also has a “brokered listings” that cost $999 for a nine-month term, plus a success fee from 3% to 8%.

Escrow Fees: price varies; from 0.89% to 3.25% of the selling price. Buyers also pay an additional 2.9% fee if using a debit or credit card.

Additional Fees (Optional): price varies from $65 to thousands. A few examples:

  • Confidential listing with NDAs: $199
  • Legal document templates: $199
  • Promotional upgrades: $65 – $295 
  • Due Diligence Report: starting at $1000 

Investors Club on the other hand keeps things simple.

We don’t charge buyer fees, transfer, inspection, or escrow fees, and sellers pay 0% success fee if they sell.

Image showing information about Investors Club service
Information about fees via Investors Club

Winner: Investors Club for the simple, no-cost approach to fees.

Buying 

Buyers can browse safely with the knowledge that every listing on the Investors Club marketplace has been thoroughly vetted.

This means sellers always must provide the following:

  • Proof of identity
  • Verify domain ownership
  • Verify affiliate account ownership
  • Verify the revenue the website is generating before we list it

This information is carefully examined by our team of analysts so you can be confident you’re buying a genuine site with Google Analytics data to back it up.

At the same time, sellers sign an exclusivity agreement so as an Investors Club member you’re gaining access to exclusive listings, giving you a head start on finding your next investment opportunity. 

While sellers are required to upload documentation, there is no verification process on Flippa leaving buyers vulnerable to scams. In fact, scam sites and misreported revenue have been a big problem for users of the platform.

With a lack of due diligence reports, buyers are left to determine the legitimacy of listings themselves, often with negative results. 

Winner: Investors Club for the data-backed verification of listings.

Selling 

Flippa sellers benefit from a buyer pool of $1.2 billion and the flexibility to offer auction or fixed-priced listings.

However, much like the sellers, buyers are also unvetted. Unless they use one of the financing options available, there’s no proof they have the funds to complete the sale, resulting in a massive amount of time being wasted. 

Investors Club accepts only serious buyers in their exclusive Premium Membership program. Only Premium buyers have access to full listings and can acquire a site.

Offering a fixed price selling model and a free, fair (but rewarding) valuation, sellers can be confident that they’ll get a price that accurately reflects the value of their business. 

Winner: Investors Club for its pool of serious buyers.

Valuation Tools 

Sellers can access Investors Club’s free valuation tool before they sign up to the platform and get a commitment-free valuation of their site. Investors Club will also provide a free valuation to any seller reaching out to their support team. Their team of expert analysts will scour website’s data and reports along with an in-depth analysis of the niche, content, SEO health, and growth potential to suggest a fair price. 

the first page of Investors Club's free valuation service
Free valuation tool via Investors Club

Flippa offers a valuation service but it’s limited to a chatbot with a set of predetermined questions. Only taking into account data from the previous month, it’s unlikely to provide a super accurate valuation vs other more detailed tools.

Winner: Investors Club for its free detailed valuation tool. 

Due Diligence 

Flippa currently provides three due diligence packages: the red flag report, standard report, and enhanced report. These are optional and available to buyers for an additional fee (with $1500 for the cheapest report).

Flippa states that it is the buyer’s responsibility to vet claims made by sellers and sets out a recommendation for due diligence methods that should be performed before a sale.

Buyers can take advantage of their report service or use services like Centurica’s for due diligence.

However, for those unwilling or unable to pay these extra costs, there’s a lot of extra work to be done before you can even compare potential investments.

With a bad history of scam sites and fake data, there’s a lot of hay to sort through to find that prized needle. 

Investors Club does automated and manual verification on all businesses listed, and some of verification reports are available to members (either for free or as a part of a Premium membership).

Revenue and expenses example chart via Investors Club

Buyers can get a complete look at each business and access to the information required to set them up for success without having to buy additional reports on each business.

Site information example via Investors Club

Winner: Investors Club for detailed due diligence reports.

Flippa states on its website that “Flippa does not take part in the transfer of ownership or delivery of assets and inclusions within a sale”. Therefore it falls on both the buyer and the seller to ensure they are capable of transferring everything and can do so without disrupting the website.

Similarly, while they offer an integrated offers platform, Flippa only provides Contract of Sale templates and recommends that third-party legal advice is sought before finalizing a sale. 

Investors Club’s does offer complete with done-for-you legal documents and an internal migration service that handles all site transfers, but this is only available on their “full service” model. 

Winner: No winner. 

Customer Service 

Both sites offer detailed FAQ sections and blogs full of useful resources for both buyers and sellers.

However while Investors Club offers a responsive, dedicated customer support service, Flippa offers 24/7 support giving them the edge for night-owl investors. This being said, TrustPilot reviews say that buyers and sellers often had to wait as long as a week to hear back from Flippa’s support team.

Winner: No winner.

Summary

Investors Club offers no fees, curated listings, and expert analysis. Explore the marketplace to see what business opportunities are waiting for you and join the thousands of investors choosing Investors Club today.

Hannah Beazley

Hannah is a content marketing specialist at Investors Club and a freelance copywriter. When she's not busy behind the keyboard, you'll find her baking her signature salted caramel brownies or trying to sink that elusive hole-in-one.

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