Update on My Mini Site Revenue and Traffic Performance

I was going through some of my mini site numbers today, and as I’ve done occasionally in the past, I figured I would give you an update on their performance. Prior to building these sites, none of the domain names had much traffic (under 1 visitor per day average), and a few of the domain names were hand registered by me.

These are all domain names I have wanted to sell, and if they weren’t used for mini sites, they would have continued to receive no traffic and virtually no revenue. Please keep in mind that on the sites I didn’t purchase, I did spend my personal time on them, and those costs obviously aren’t reflected in the overall cost.

Ultimately, as you can see, some of the mini sites did better than others and some look better than others.   When the domain names do sell, all of them are indexed in Google, which may not have happened had I parked them. Also, keep in mind that although the numbers are from March of 2009 through today, many of these sites haven’t been up for a full year.

TobagoVacations.com – Purchase Price < $800 on Snapnames

  • Page impressions Since June: 7,901
  • Clicks: 701
  • Revenue: $201.11
  • Monetization: Adsense
  • Mini Site Built by: I used my developer’s template at a cost of $15.00

HockeyGoalieHelmet.com & BullRidingHelmet.com- Purchase Price < $8.00/each hand registrations

  • Page impressions Since April: 5,261
  • Clicks: 407
  • Revenue: $113.77
  • Monetization: Adsense
  • Mini Site Built by: I used a free css template at a cost of under $5.00 for photos
  • I used the same Adsense channel so I can’t break them out

ChainCatshark.com- Purchase Price < $8.00 hand registration

  • Page impressions in last year: 3,506
  • Clicks: 27
  • Revenue: $3.74
  • Monetization: Adsense
  • Mini Site Built by: I used a free css template at a cost of $0
  • This was my first mini site, and it was more for the learning experience

LynnAttorney.com- Purchase Price < $100.00 on Snapnames

  • Page impressions in last year: 289
  • Clicks: 5
  • Revenue: $3.83
  • Monetization: Adsense
  • Mini Site Built by: I used a free css template at a cost of $0

CabCompanies.com- Purchase Price < $100.00 on Snapnames

  • Page impressions since August: 4,933
  • Clicks: 81
  • Revenue: $47.90
  • Monetization: Adsense
  • Mini Site Built by: BigTicketDomains for less than $300

DubrovnikVacations.com and JerusalemVacations.com, – Purchase Price: private

  • Page impressions Since September: 4,186
  • Clicks: 98
  • Revenue: $59.00
  • Monetization: Adsense
  • Mini Site Built by: WannaDevelop for $99/each

UniqueInk.com – Purchase Price < $1,000

  • Page impressions since May: 10,502
  • Clicks: 511
  • Revenue: $39.60
  • Monetization: Adsense & Affiliate
  • Mini Site Built by: I used my developer’s template at a cost of $25.00
  • This domain name has been sold
Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the DomainInvesting.com Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. Looks like your developers template is getting a much higher click through

    It would be interesting if people would post ctr with a link to a mini site.

    here some of my stats
    medicarescooter.com 15%
    montaukrentalhouse.com 12.5%
    wirelessvgaadapter.com 2.86%

    Strokerecovery.com – not quite a full site but bigger then a mini site .69%
    As you can see there is a huge difference in ctr with different designs. I will be changing strokerecovery.com’s design to mirror my other sites. I will let you know how it effects ctr.
    I think this is worth a separate post as seeing different designs and ctr’s would be very beneficial to all domainers

  2. Hi Elliot

    its a numbers game the more development you do the more you earn. once you get it uoto good numbers it starts to make a diffrence.

    been doing it for last 6 years and over 1500 sites later it works. its not easy but it works.

  3. The most interesting thing I learned is that something like BullRidingHelmets.com and HockeyGoalieHelmets.com were easy to build, cheap to buy, and they have moved to the black relatively quickly. The only downside is that they took a couple hours of time to build.

    I don’t really have the time or desire right now to do more testing, but I do have a number of product domain names that I hand registered, and I should test 3-4 others in the same exact way as these two sites to see if I can scale this type of operation.

    At the moment, it’s not worth my time to test.

  4. Elliot,

    What did you learn from the test?

    Keep developing? Focus on core projects?

    Hand reg and develop or buy a drop or in the secondary market and develop?

    What about monetization? Do you think you are penalized by Adsense for using the code on low performing sites?

  5. @ rob

    With sales way up this year for me (back to 07-08 levels), I am determined to stay focused on my primary projects rather than trying to squeeze every penny out of domain names that aren’t performing. I am not sitting on names I bought to flip for as long as I did last year, so there is less of a desire to make them earn revenue while holding them.

    I’ve learned that names with good GAKT but limited SE competition may be good to develop, but I haven’t really done a statistically significant number of sites.

    I have no idea about Adsense penalties to be honest.

    I can’t say it’s worth my time to build out mini sites on a larger scale, but I would say that mini sites do work when they are the exact match terms that are searched by consumers.

  6. Hi Elliot:

    Thanks for the update.

    Any chance you can post an update on your methods and procedures for domain sales? You seem to be having a good year and I am curious if you have changed your sales techniques.

    Would appreciate any new info you could provide.

    By the way, I am not looking for anything specific regarding your sales, just new or improved techniques.

    Thanks mucho.

  7. Hi Elliot,

    Like Mark, i think alot of us have names we would like to sell and dont really know how the heck to do it. You have spoken about this before I know, but an update would be great.

    How do we sell unwanted names?


  8. @ Mark

    I haven’t really been doing much different other than possibly buying better names. I am in the middle of escrow on a name I bought on Snapnames and sold to a publicly trade company for a strong $x,xxx profit within 3 weeks. I plan to post an article with my email and other info once they have the name and I am paid by Escrow.com (hopefully by the end of the week or early next week) The transfer was started yesterday, so hopefully Dotster will have the name sent to Godaddy very soon.

    @ Ron

    I am not really selling “unwanted” domain names. I am selling high value domain names that I am buying specifically for re-sale.

    Most of the names I have been selling haven’t been listed for sale on my blog, in forums, on newsletters…etc. I am buying and then re-selling names in private.

  9. I have a hundred or so names like that parked. No time to optimize except a couple of times a year. But each time I optimize revenue increases a little. If they reach a certain level where I consider it worth my time they get expanded a little and then revenue grows a little more.
    Just a fun little game I play every now and then.

  10. @ Steve

    I haven’t touched any of the sites since I set them live… they’re sort of in “set it and forget it” mode.

  11. @ Elliot

    Why just adsense? Have you tried Affiliate products? My higher payout per lead/sale. Have you tried this route yet?

    Cheers for the insight into your journey tho 😉


  12. Adsense seems to work best for me. For affiliate marketing it is too hard to maintain a product list that will sell. Affiliate link mixed with Adsense doesn’t seem to work either. The ads are very current and folks can easily buy them. They are easy to tweak with content.

    I have my custom template generator built into my custom domain manager. It takes me 5 minutes to build and about 5 min to optimize. I hope to start tweaking them monthly soon. Might even automate it since I already have most of the code in place.

  13. What sort of sites are you building in 5 minutes? And optimising in 5 mins? Or are you referring to your adsense campaign?


  14. Very interesting post Elliot. One, possibly dumb, question though…do you have to ask permission to post links and pictures for the various businesses you are highlighting? (using tobagovacations.com as an example)

    Thanks and keep up the good work

    • @ JD

      I don’t have explicit permission, but I would say it’s fair use, and I don’t see why one of those businesses would want to be taken down. Of course, if one of them asked, I would remove their info asap.

  15. Hi Elliot:

    Just another thought. It seems to me that on a site like JerusalemVacations.com, the CTR should be higher. You have at least a couple of thousand impressions yet under a hundred clicks. Seems off.

  16. @ Mark

    Some of the impressions are from when people visited the site after I blogged about it. Also, you need to figure there are 3-4x the impressions vs visits since there are a few Adsense blocks. If a visitor goes to 4 pages, there could be 12-16 impressions counted, since those #s are from Adsense.

  17. @irishdomainer
    We build or optimize so quickly because we have custom software. With 35 years in software and 12 years domaining I can get to the jist of things pretty quick.
    Elliott’s mini sites look better than ours. Our template is primitive and only a directory style, but it works and is easy to re-optimize.

  18. @steve c
    Dont doubt your skills mate. Im a designer/developer for 10 years and know what goes into site build outs so was curious to what you were putting together in 10 minutes 😉

    All the best.



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