In February 2014 I bought the domain GameReviews.com for $7000 (estibot.com appraised value = $63,000). Over and over again I had vowed to stop buying domains but I saw this domain for sale in an email newsletter and felt compelled to buy it, even though I did not have any particular plans for it and was not that into video games.
I figured I would try to setup a game reviews site, and if that did not work I could always sell the domain for what I paid for it. I did not want to pay to have people write game reviews for me, since there are already hundreds of sites that do that, so I decided to setup a big site of existing reviews. I bought review site software for $250 from crowdvox.com, but also bought a video game review script from GameSpotClone.com for $197 and then imported their review database (6,500 reviews, 13,000 videos, 196,000 images) into Crowdvox.com. I did not want to just use GameSpotClone.com because I figured there were too many other sites already using it so Google would not consider the content unique, plus Crowdvox.com had some features that I liked.
I got a working version of the site up and running, but never really put the finishing touches on it or did anything to promote it, and it never got any traffic at all from Google. Since I was experimenting with selling domains on Flippa at the time I decided to post the site for sale on Flippa (Click Here to see that listing). The highest bid was $9000, and my reserve was $20,000, so it did not sell. But, I had a private offer by email for $12,000 and another buyer said they could probably pay more than that, but needed time to come up with the money. Yet another buyer wanted to pay $25,000 but finance it by paying $1000/month.
Just about the time I was getting all of these offers, I had an idea for a new version of the site, and really wanted to give it a try. But, it was probably going to make $0 just like almost all the other sites I have launched in recent years, so I was not sure what to do. I could double my money in less than a year and walk away, or try my new site but lose out on all these great offers.
Because I had so many eager buyers, it made me regret posting the site for sale, and I decided to keep the domain. I want to try launching my new site first, and then I can always sell it later now that I know there is a good market for it. I may even get higher offers in the future. I recently found an old email from September 2012 where a broker was offering the domain for sale for $150,000, and another email in May 2011 to me direct from the owner offering it to me for $200,000. In both of these cases, it was just one domain on a big list of domains, so that is why I did not remember it. The point is that in 2011-2012, people seemed to think it was worth $100,000+ so there is no reason I could not try to get a high amount for it now. If anything, the video game industry has grown substantially since then, so the domain should be worth more than it used to be.
Also, since 2008 when I sold Bored.com, I miss having a big popular site that generates a predictable cash flow for me, and I think GameReviews.com has the potential to be another site like that. I just need to figure the best thing to do with it. You can see my new version I created a few days ago at GameReviews.com (it is still a work in progress). I collect video game reviews from various other sites and put them all on one constantly updated page. I also do the same with video game news, gaming videos, and gaming podcasts. It is still very much under construction (like it has no real site design yet), but at least it is functional.Share: