An Interesting Way to Value A Website

I was looking at BBC Radio Lincolnshire presenter William Wright’s website/blog the other day, and I came across this article about confusion over 2 websites with very similar domain names.

It was a piece of audio posted on August 11 this year. Basically, takes you to a website about Norfolk; whilst takes you to a Lincolnshire tourist board.

William spoke to James Clabburn, the owner of the site and asked how this is possible. The site was registered in 2000 along with a number of other domain names for the East of England to take people to information about Norfolk; the .com site was registered in 2002.

The interesting thing though, was about 3:30″ in, when the topic changed to the debate going on over whether the site should really be owned by the real Visit Lincolnshire. James said that he would be happy to discuss it with the company if they were to make a sensible offer.

BUT [this is the real reason I wrote this post]… what is a sensible offer for buying a website from another company? Presenter William starts by offering £10. James then comes back with:

It costs anything between £5 to £80 to purchase a domain name.

William then offered £100 if he could have the site. To that, James says:

We’ve had that name for 10 years and we’ve had to renew it every year/2 years for that 10 years, its a somewhat bigger substantial bill, than the amount you’ve just described.

James would actually be looking for somewhere in the region £1000 before he would seriously consider selling the webste; and the only people he’d really sell it to are Visit Lincolnshire – owner of the .com site.

Anyway, the point of this post is that James Clabburn has valued his site by looking at how much he’s spent on the site over the years. Its quite an interesting way of doing things, and it got me thinking about how much this website would be worth, if I were to value it in the same way.

How much its actually worth is something I’ve never really thought of. But its actually quite surprising when you realise how much has been spent on maintaining a website.

Looking at all the invoices paid to the hosting company, and typing the information into an Excel spreadsheet, I managed to work out that currently, this website is worth roughly £150. It may not seem much – my computer’s worth more – but its a sum many would be very happy with if it were to turn up on their doorsteps!

Of course, I have no plans to sell this website – but its quite interesting to see how costs build up over time and how some business people might value their websites when they sell them.

And there are other ways to value a site. 😉 – If you work it out in terms of how many sales have come through the website, this site is worth £0!

Fred Hart

Stock Controller and Radio Presenter/Producer

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