After doing the Reddit IAmA, and a guest post on Flippa, I’ve been receiving quite a few emails asking questions about my business.  A few are excellent questions – clearly the person asking the question has researched the topic, read through the posts on my site and would like to get my opinion on it.  However, most fall into the “stupid questions” category.  Your elementary school teacher might have told you that there are no stupid questions, but I can prove them wrong with some of the emails I get.

Most emails do not get a response.  I simply don’t have time to tell each person why their question is stupid, so I simply don’t respond to their email.  If you didn’t get an email back, here are some possibilities as to why:

You are asking a question that has been already answered in my blog.

This makes up approximately 50% of the emails that I get.  ”How do you make money online?”.  ”How can I start my own online business?”.  If you aren’t going to take the 5 minutes to read through my public writing, why would I spend any of my own time to personally respond to your message?

You are asking for personalized help.

“Hey, I just started the website and I’m trying to get more traffic and revenue, will you look at it and give me feedback?”.  No.  Not to sound like a jerk, but I don’t have the time to give personalized feedback on your website.  Part of becoming a successful entrepreneur is being able to figure things out on your own.  Also, I’m not a consultant, so I’m not interested in taking your money to look at your website.

You are asking me if you can ask me questions.

“Hey, I’m thinking of building a website because I don’t like my job and want to make money online.  Will you be my mentor?”.  No.  Especially because you haven’t even lifted a finger yourself.  I know way too many people who are always saying they want to start a website.  They talk about it for years and years and simply never take action.  I’ve wasted tons of time coaching friends who are like this, and definitely won’t waste time coaching strangers.

Your question is either way too vague, or the answer is simply “It depends”.

“Do you think that I should advertise on Facebook?”.  How am I supposed to know?  Facebook ads obviously work for some industries/website and not at all for others.  I’m not the all-knowing-Zeus of websites.

You want to do business with me, but have nothing to offer.

My business is extremely niche, so odds are that you really have nothing of value to bring to the table, especially if you explicitly state that you are a complete newbie.  If you want to start a website with me, the answer is no.

Blog comments are MUCH more likely to receive a response.

Again, I don’t mean to sound like a jerk, I’m just being efficient.  I do receive plenty of good questions which I use to help shape some of my informative blog posts.  If you read a post and would like further clarification on something, just post a comment!  I’m much more likely to answer a question publicly where it can help hundreds of individuals rather than privately emailing one individual an answer.


The next post in the series of finding and buying aged/neglected sites is still under development!  There is a lot of info in there and it is taking me a while to compile everything I want to say about the strategy.


9 Responses to “Why Didn’t I Respond to your Email/PM?”

  1. Tom says:

    Unbelievable how much negativity some people had on Reddit. A lot of jealous or just very negative people.

  2. motley says:

    Hello Tom,

    Thanks for clarification and for update about the next post in the “Neglected sites” series. Sure, many people are waiting for this post. Hope, you are ready with moving to the new place and can continue writing.


  3. Joe Noonan says:

    Of course Reddit hates your success. They spend hours looking at websites and not making money.

  4. Thoufeeq says:

    Hey Tom, I read the 5-part series of your guide on how to make money finding and selling aged and neglected sites.

    Quite fascinating to observe stuffs like running automated scripts to check millions of domains and then narrowing down to pick the winners and the rest… coool :)

    To be frank, i really wanna know if this method of buying and selling sites still works or not, especially after all these recent algo updates from Google. Why am I asking is because simply adding more pages of outsourced 500 words of content to an adsense-based niche site doesn’t seem to be working for me like before, as google is cleaning up its SERPs by placing only authoritative and branded sites.

    A lot of such articles-based niche sites of mine got tanked with the recent penguin and EMD updates. So do you think your strategy is still valid? OR would you advise to start over?

    What is your take on this? Please reply (and i hope my question doesn’t belong to any of the 6 groups you mentioned above) ;)

    And thanks again for that excellent series. You are right, u could have made an ebook and sold on Warrior Forums ;)

  5. Tommy says:

    This is actually a great question. My answer is that I think the strategy still works. As long as your database of target domains is up-to-date regarding the different algo changes, you should be fine. If the site is still getting traffic, that means the site has survived the algo updates and that’s great. Usually these sites do well with Google because they are NOT sites with hundreds of pages of recycled articles. They are NOT overly SEO’ed. They are aged and have aged links from other aged pages, so usually do well in the SERPs.

    But as always, its going to be different for every site. I think the name of the game is to just make sure the site is sill ranking well before you buy it.

  6. Thoufeeq says:

    Thank you very much for replying in couple of hours… ;)

    So if the site is still getting traffic means they have survived those zoo of updates, makes sense.

    But once you bought such sites, most of the time we need to renovate the sites, like u mentioned in your series. In that case, adding more pages of outsourced content (actually, rehashed content already present in the web) each targeting a longtail keyword per page would be a good strategy to implement?

    In other words, have u ever spent a lot of time renovating the site to come up with some unique content (or application or service) to be added in the site to flip for a good price later?


  7. Tommy says:

    Actually, the only time I’ve really added any content is when I’ve bought a domain on it’s own. Then I’ll throw Wordpress on the site, figure out what top 10 keywords the site was ranking for, and have someone write 10 quick articles targeted to those keywords. I’ve tried to add pages of content to existing sites and found that it never really ranks. Don’t know why…

  8. Thoufeeq says:

    So it seems like the number of pages indexed in the site doesn’t matter when I am looking to buy a neglected site, instead I should make sure about just one thing : the site still ranks, right?

    This is contrary to what most of the gurus say about the success rate of authority sites with several thousands of pages of content. But looking at the recent updates from google against the content farm and text-content based niche sites, I can justify your statement.

    Thanks for sharing your experience. Looking forward for more case studies…


  9. Tommy says:

    Exactly. Indexed pages means nothing if none of them rank.

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