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Zermatt.com is the premier website for Zermatt, Switzerland, the famous ski resort and home of the Matternhorn, crown jewel and singular icon of the Swiss Alps. The website is highly profitable, currently earning over $80,000 USD a year with little effort. Activelifestyle Travel Network has owned and operated zermatt.com since the initial domain name registration in 1996.
The website has three sources of income: (1) direct advertisements, (2) reservations, and (3) Google AdSense. Revenue has averaged $83,600 annually over the last four years.
Revenue is received in three currencies: Swiss Francs, Euros, and U.S. dollars. A breakdown of income according to source is given below. Swiss Franc and Euro sources have been converted to U.S. dollars (USD) at exchange rates current as of 15 July 2011.
Zermatt hotels, resorts, restaurants, tour operators, and rental services advertise directly on the website. Advertisers have annual contracts, many of which have been renewed continuously extending back to 1996 when the website was founded. These agreements yield good results for the advertisers, so it is unlikely that, in the event of a sale, they will decide not to renew. Average annual income of the years 2008-1010 from direct advertisements is approximately $68,000 USD a year. Revenue for 2011 is on track to equal 2010 revenue. Direct advertisement revenue is received in Swiss Francs.
The reservation provider is booking.com. The owner has negotiated special commission rates higher than normal which the buyer will be able to acquire with the website. Annual income from reservations is approximately $14,000 USD a year since October 2009. This revenue is received in Euros.
Google AdSense has earned an average of approximately $1,600 USD a year since January 2006. This revenue is received in U.S. dollars. The average page CTR is 4.9% and page eCPM is $10.41.
Advertiser contracts renew at various times during the year. Revenues from reservations and AdSense are seasonal, peaking in winter months during the high season for skiing.
Full documentation for all these sources of income will be made available to serious potential buyers. Please note that because of the simplified format of Flippa listings, the "Claimed Financials" heading displays the revenue as estimates, but the numbers above are actual figures, not estimates.
The major annual expenses occur during several trips to Zermatt to meet with clients. Although these trips are not strictly necessary, the owner feels a responsibility to meet in person with his clients at least once a year.
The work required, including preparation and meetings, takes all together less than ten days. Total expenses during these trips are less than $10,000 USD, including accommodation, transfers, and round trip airfares from Southeast Asia. It is up to the buyer to decide whether to continue these on-site client meetings. If the buyer chooses to do so, the related expenses obviously will depend on the location and tastes of the buyer.
The website has no special requirements, so other expenses, such as hosting and domain name registration, are negligible.
Traffic is seasonal, peaking in winter months during the high season for skiing. Over the last ten months as reported by AWStats, the average number of monthly unique visitors is 8055, the average number of monthly visits is 10570, and average number of monthly page views is 45,579.
Assets and Ownership Transfer
The sale includes the domain name, website, related software, and existing agreements with clients. It does not include the booking.com account, the Google AdSense account, or the company that currently is the domain registrant.
To ensure a smooth transition, the owner is willing to remain a consultant to the buyer for six months after the sale. If desired, the owner will accompany the buyer on a trip to Zermatt to introduce the buyer personally to longtime advertisers and key contacts.
In 2007 zermatt.com was the subject of WIPO arbitration, case D2007-1318 (http://www.wipo.int/amc/en/domains/decisions/html/2007/d2007-1318.html), wherein the Commune of Zermatt and Zermatt Tourismus (Zermatt tourist office) tried unsuccessfully to acquire the domain name without compensating the owner. The decision in favor of Activelifestyle Travel Network reaffirmed explicitly the legitimacy of the current ownership. Advertising and other revenues were unaffected during and after this proceeding. This decision is strong precedent that the buyer need not be concerned about further such claims, as have been made often against other high value location domain names.
Reason for Selling
The owner is 74 years old, ailing, and ready to retire. He has worked promoting skiing and tourism in Zermatt and other European destinations since 1978, first as publisher of the print magazine EuroSki and later as founder of the Activelifestyle Travel Network websites. Because of health problems, he has been unable in recent years to provide the energy the business deserves, let alone keep up with the latest trends in Internet technology, marketing, promotion, and SEO. Of necessity he has stepped back from work to focus on his health. The time has come to turn the keys over to a buyer able to walk into a lucrative, long-established going concern and serve this important market.
Future prospects for an investment in this domain name and business have significant upside. The domain name alone ensures the website will remain highly profitable for the foreseeable future, even if left to run only at its current, largely passive pace. Although the website can be operated from anywhere (the current owner lives in Southeast Asia) and requires no special knowledge, the opportunity is especially expansive for a European buyer already in the travel industry with local knowledge and contacts.
Search engine rankings remain high because of the perfect domain name, but lack of attention has caused them to decline somewhat in the last year or so. Renewed creativity and energy to modernize the website and take advantage of the latest technologies and marketing methods no doubt would increase ranking, traffic, and profits substantially.
The value of prime location domain names such as zermatt.com is likely to increase significantly with inevitable growth and evolution of the Internet. Domain names that match exactly with sports, tourism, and locations are especially valuable. A long history of high profits proves that this investment does not depend on transient trends, fickle fashion, or secret sauces. With the single best name for one of the prime skiing and tourism destinations in Europe, zermatt.com will grow in value for the long term.
Additional Revenue Details
Averaged $83,600 annually over last four years.
Additional Traffic DetailsTraffic is seasonal, peaking in winter months during the high season for skiing. Over the last ten months as reported by AWStats, the average number of monthly unique visitors is 8055, the average number of monthly visits is 10570, and average number of monthly page views is 45,579.
|Site Established ?||April 1996|
|Built With ?||—|
|Google Analytics Detected ?||No|
|Domain Registered ?||20 April 1996|
|Registrar ?||WILD WEST DOMAINS|
|Content Unique ?||Yes|
|Design Unique ?||Yes|
|Pages In Google ?||434|
|MajesticSEO Inbound Links ?||14,138|
|SEOmoz mozRank ?|
|Alexa Rank ?||9,546,874|