Ever wondered what is a digital landlord?
Well, you’ve come to the right place. Our handy guide is going to be outlining everything you need to know.
A digital landlord is an individual who manages a portfolio of websites, providing online platforms to companies wishing to showcase their services and products. Their main role? To manage the traffic and enquiries these websites generate.
These platforms are referred to as internet real estate, virtual property or digital assets. When managed precisely, like real estate, these virtual properties are destined to become long term passive income streams.
- 1 What is a digital landlord responsible for?
- 2 Why become a digital landlord?
- 3 Real Estate vs Digital Empire
- 4 So Which is the Better Way to Go?
- 5 Real Estate Investor
- 6 Digital Landlord
- 7 How to Become a Successful Digital Landlord
- 8 Benefits of Being a Digital Landlord
- 9 How to Become a Successful Digital Landlord?
- 10 Who are the Best Digital Landlords?
- 11 Overview
What is a digital landlord responsible for?
A digital landlord is someone who manages a portfolio of virtual real estate properties.
Their main responsibilities include:
The key to being a successful digital landlord is to make sure you own the properties you are working on.
What else a digital landlord is responsible for?
Compared to real estate, there are several skills required to run an online business as a digital landlord. How much income you want to generate is the deciding factor in how much effort you put in.
For example, you could invest in a pretty passive business that warrants an ‘ok’ pay-check month after month. If your ultimate goal is to grow the business, you will need to be prepared to invest both money and time. You will also likely need to learn a few new skill sets along the way.
The behind the scenes work involved in an online business varies dramatically for a digital landlord, depending on what kind of website or online platform they buy. As an example, a content site will differ majorly from an Amazon FBA business.
Before investing in online real estate, it’s important to research the skills necessitated for each platform. This could mean enrolling in a reputable course or buying books on the subject and of course, doing your research.
That being said, until you start doing the work yourself, you’ll never really grasp the skills entirely, irrespective of how many hours you plough into researching the latest marketing methods, tools and software. In this case, implementation is the key to education.
On top of embracing new skill sets, you will likely need to brush up on your digital management principles. This is a must if you plan to grow your websites on a particular scale.
If you have employed outsourcers to administer different jobs on your behalf, you will also need to understand how to manage these people. This is a must for anyone investing in a website portfolio.
Then are several tools you will need to learn inside out.
Some of the most common digital tools, which are applied to various websites, include:
There is a multitude of others, but these three are the most notable and one used daily to improve a variety of online businesses. All are here to help companies and people achieve their goals.
Other avenues a digital landlord must explore to ensure success include:
Social media is fast becoming one of the most momentous digital marketing tools, and one that ensures incredible website benefits.
Platforms including Instagram and Facebook can reach millions of people worldwide, via websites, ads and video, helping you to connect with potential leads, heighten your brand awareness, and boost your online rental income.
Rank and rent
Rank and rent is a popular SEO tool that allows digital real estate owners to optimise a website for a local business through charging rental income.
For example, an electrician, plumber or roofer. By renting the ranked web platform to other local service providers that want to cash in on these leads, they’re able to point customers directly to these services. In a nutshell, Rank and Rent is a tool that sells leads to local businesses for a sum of money.
The benefits of this tool for digital landlords include being able to build new websites that are tailored to a niche market instead of a sole business.
All the conventional methods that go into helping the website rank high in the search engines are still performed – via content creation, backlink profiles and on-page optimisation, as well as various other website tools.
The business that rents from you will be able to take advantage of a pre-built website that already ranks highly on Google, which results in them bringing traffic and leads to the services they offer, whilst the SEO earns income from the websites rental.
Service companies are a big fan of rank and rent as it offers a no-risk investment into an SEO property.
Another method of rank and rent involves the SEO selling warm leads to local businesses instead of renting out the website space.
An affiliate marketer is someone who promotes someone else’s products. The great thing about affiliate marketing is you never have to deal with customer service queries, product development, or any of the conventional issues faced by entrepreneurs.
A digital landlords single responsibility? To sell the product.
With affiliate marketing, there is also the option of creating your product to generate even higher margins. You may choose to create a membership product that results in recurring income every month or an information product that generates awareness.
When investing in digital real estate, compared to general real estate rental properties, the possibilities of different kinds of income creation are endless, and often far more lucrative.
These are identified and read by ‘name-value’ pairs, which send them to the right destination sites and tell them what data to recall and share.
Lead generation is the process of drawing in leads, otherwise known as potential customers. Digital landlords input this data into a marketing software system such as a contact management platform.
The goal? To nurture them through the buying journey, share products and services and persuade them to place a paid order.
Leads are part of the wider lifecycle in the journey from transition to visitor to customer. Not all leads are fashioned in an equal manner and all differ based on their stage of life. There are several important websites leads to consider, these include:
- Market qualified
- Sales qualified
- Product qualified
- Service qualified
Other examples of lead generators used by digital landlords comprise job applications, competitions, blog posts, coupons, live events, and online content for websites.
Pay per call
Pay-per-call is an advertising platform in which the cost paid by the advertiser is factored by the number of telephone calls made by ad viewers.
Pay Per Call providers charge a fee per call, per impression and per conversion.
Why become a digital landlord?
It’s likely your parents encouraged you to get into real estate ownership from a young age, claiming property to be one of the best investments to pursue in terms of making money.
However, now that we are in the digital era, real estate has changed somewhat. A more successful, lucrative route to pursue is digital assets real estate. This is where digital landlords come into play.
Digital landlords with a portfolio of digital assets generate enough income to pay off debts, enjoy regular luxury vacations, work flexible and from home and live in a superior place. On top of this, becoming a Digital landlord gives many the financial freedom they aspire to achieve by retirement, just many years earlier.
Financial freedom is the result of a residual income. Digital landlords receive this income from the lead generation. Passive income is what all successful entrepreneurs refer to as the holy grail, as it requires little or no effort to earn and maintain.
As well as financial freedom, working from any place on the planet is an asset enjoyed by digital landlords across the globe. Unlike real estate properties, websites don’t need to be in any physical location.
This allows small business owners to work on their businesses websites from anywhere they desire, full-time or part-time, with a variety of people in a virtual space.
Real Estate vs Digital Empire
Both real estate investors and online empires present inherent risks and rewards. However, online business risks tend to be much lower than real estate and property rental risks, especially in terms of hard money.
Losing one or two websites is a much more attractive option to losing a house, and having to pay an unprofitable mortgage for up to 30 years or worse still, foreclosing on your property and losing money as well as income streams.
Digital real estate is a lot more versatile, and because of its versatility, it can bounce back from hardships that physical real estate can’t, at least not until the entire mortgage has been paid off. Then there are troublesome tenants and unexpected repairs to worry about.
Digital landlords seldom worry about a Google algorithm update. Having the support of Google is a great feeling and one that makes SEO website specialists feel secure.
Facts and figures
Show Me the Data we hear you ask! When it comes to any digital investment, the ultimate goal is to make money.
Property may result in steady returns of between 9.5% and 11% on average, which is considered a high return for many property investors. To give a comparison, a website investment can generate an ROI of as much as 50-80%. In certain cases, even more.
Although today’s marketplace highlights the profit potential of an online business, some people are scared off because there are fewer studies surrounding websites than there are surrounding real estate.
Websites may look a lot riskier than real estate businesses, however, these risks come with qualitative differences, many of which make investing in the digital sphere an extremely attractive option and something that can make them more money than physical rentals and other conventional investment options.
Pros of both? You get to be your boss. Those with a portfolio of real estate properties and those on first name terms with the best real estate agents could work less than 20 hours per week once their investments have matured.
Add this to insight on how to use the best rental market place to your advantage and how to understand the differences between the right and wrong deal, and this is a lucrative business.
While both offer a similar lifestyle, choosing whether to invest in physical properties, companies real estate or online real estate comes down to one question: Which risk earns the best reward?
Is it more lucrative to be the owner of a digital business empire, overseeing a multitude of businesses websites, traffic and online assets, or to become a rental property investment tycoon?
So Which is the Better Way to Go?
Unless you intend to have all of your properties paid off in full, which can take an incredible amount of time, real estate websites are the way to go if you want to generate a hassle-free, speedy income, that produces a profit at a much quicker rate to that of the physical housing market.
To put it into perspective, the majority of homeowners rarely pay their main property off after 30 years. If they invest in another property in the interim, they’ll often find themselves in a perpetual cycle of mortgage repayments, without ever reaching their end goal.
Digital landlords, on the other hand, can produce some incredibly attractive ROIs via virtual real estate in Avery short amount of time.
Real Estate Investor
As a real estate landlord, there are only two potential ways to earn revenue on your investment, one, renting out the real estate property for a figure that overwrites the total monthly expenses and two, selling the property when it appreciates the price you purchased it for.
Although you could technically work on your real estate portfolio from anywhere in the world, this is only really possible by hiring a real estate management company to look after your properties, which can prove a hassle, especially as you’re putting your trust in another person’s hands.
Things can and will go wrong, which will often result in you having to sort out any major issues in person, even if it means flying to where the property is located.
The downside of physical property investment
Many people will invest in real estate properties with the idea they will be able to sell the property or building for a much higher price than that of what they paid for it. As with all assets the goal is to make money, however, investing in physical property is investing in risk.
You’re in essence gambling with your own money, especially considering the property market is a volatile one. From crashes in the market to unforeseen problems, including anything from damp, to structural issues or planning permission, many factors can affect a sale.
Unlike online real estate, property appreciation is the only method of making a profit and you have few rights to fall back on.
With a property downturn, you could expect to lose thousands. With crashes come inflated prices, which can mean even rental properties fail to generate a profit share.
Your profits can wipe you out overnight
With online real estate, there is certainly less risk than brick and mortar investments. Why? Firstly, as we’ve discussed, you will have invested less from the get-go. Assets related to websites cost a lot less than physical property assets.
Putting down a deposit for a mortgage can empty your bank account, whilst directing traffic to a companies page doesn’t require as much of an investment.
If you go ahead and purchase £100k of websites, you could be earning £5000 per month. With property, the rental income (unless you’ve purchased a mansion) is often a lot lower. And that’s if you can rent the property out! If you’re not in the place where your property is located, you’ll also likely have to pay for the services of a rental agent to oversee general maintenance and rental agreements.
Then there are maintenance costs such as new boilers, roof repairs, plumbing, flood damage, frozen or burst pipes and natural disaster damage from tornados, hurricanes and other storms to consider – many of which your insurance company won’t cover you for, claiming such disasters to be an act of God.
Even a new boiler can cost in the region of £5k to replace and £600 to fix. These costs all add up and the income on the rent you have generated to date will likely have to be used to make these fixes.
Even when you lose out on virtual real estate, you still have the money you have already accumulated in your bank. It’s unlikely you’ll need to build an entirely new website, simply tweak it and the marketing efforts slightly, whereas you may need to buy or build a new house!
All websites promise to draw in paying customers providing the incoming traffic is there. Properties on the other hand can be a gamble and there is often nothing you can do to massively increase your profit. You can’t suddenly increase the rent for no reason or the value of a home, whereby you can easily generate more traffic to your site.
One of the scariest things about real estate is that you’re often one shortfall away from losing a huge sum of money. Of course, that doesn’t mean you can’t generate a profit, you just need to understand the risks involved.
These risks can keep a landlord up all night, worrying about Google algorithm updates is unlikely to have the same effect.
Tenants Can Be a Huge Problem
Tenants are another issue to consider. You’ll either be extremely lucky and have the perfect relationship with tenants who pay their rent on time, or you’ll end up with a tribunal on your hands. But without them, you can’t generate any monthly income.
On the other hand, you may not be able to find a tenant! An empty property is a wasted investment, especially if vacancies hit you at the same time as a huge property repair.
When it comes to overseeing websites, providing you have a generic internet connection and a good laptop, as a digital landlord you can build on your portfolio from anywhere in the world, whether abroad or in the U.K.
With digital real estate, the sky is truly the limit, especially when there are an array of tools in existence designed to help you make money in the digital sphere, including:
- Google Adsense
- Affiliate networks (Such as Clickbank, MaxBounty, etc.)
- Services (SEO, Writing serviceS, etc.)
All in all, there are real risks associated with building an online business for digital landlords, but there are risks in doing most things.
If you compare these to the money risks of building a physical real estate portfolio or any other conventional brick and mortar business for that matter, a digital landlord is subject to a much lower monetary downfall.
Online property investment is a lot less capital intensive
Rental property and property assets can be hugely capital intensive. When it comes to websites, the exact opposite is often true.
In normal scenarios, a website’s initial costs, including the domain name registration and hosting, as well as any additional outsourcing costs for content may cost a little money. But to make money, you need to work hard and invest.
Even the areas of online businesses that appear capital intensive, such as drop shipping and Amazon FBA aren’t unreasonable in comparison to the money ploughed into traditional brick and mortar businesses. The investment is not obstructive by most people’s standards.
To put this into perspective, a restaurant may spend in the region of £30,000 on an industrial pizza oven, with the hope of generating a higher-order turnover, with the intention of growing their business.
Add the rent costs of the commercial property, insurances, team wages, menu design, drivers, ingredients and a whole host of other assets to the mix, running an online business doesn’t seem costly at all.
When it comes to creating profitable online businesses, or even investing in companies that have already generated an income, there aren’t half as many overheads to consider, nor as much of a capital commitment required. Yet, you’ll still generate some serious ROI.
How to Become a Successful Digital Landlord
First things first, to invest in a career as a digital landlord, you need to possess a great understanding of SEO. Why? SEO is your number one tool. It stands for search engine optimisation and on-trend digital marketing strategy that surrounds your website’s presence in search results, on search engines including Google.
When you understand everything there is to know about SEO, you can begin to jump on board different tactics. The end goal for most digital landlords? To increase visibility in search results, which comes down to how high you rank in the search engine. The higher you rank, the more interest you generate, and the more revenue you earn on your account.
Anchoring a website to create an income-source – case study
As we’ve mentioned, when investing in real estate, rental property profits can be snowballed every month to cover additional mortgage payments on one house to bypass the mortgage repayments on another. When it comes to online real estate, digital landlords can do something better.
For example, digital landlords can build a fitness WordPress website, with the main aim to showcase sports equipment. With a domain name in place and one that is already generating an income, digital landlords can magnetise reach via the Amazon affiliate program and with their skillset, they already know how to successfully promote the products featured on a particular site.
Customers are enjoying the content being produced and due to this valued content, an impressive list of email subscribers has been amounted since first launching the businesses website. What’s next? The client wants to create a new physical product to generate even further income. After all, they have the following, a new product in the form of health supplements is guaranteed to do well.
Digital landlords will begin by placing a listing on Amazon. They will then brand the new offering and kick start the product’s promotion, via a number of platforms including social media.
They will often use the existing fitness website to help with the promotion of the new supplement, e-commerce business, as well as the impressive email list, telling all subscribers to check out the latest listing.
Alternatively, digital landlords may be asked to touch base on the information products or digital products space. To do this, they will create a series of learning materials or launch an online course, generating awareness on how working out can increase both body image and self-esteem.
Digital landlords will follow the same principles as above to ensure great product promotion via social media, SEO content and email to create awareness and generate sales.
In just over a week, website owners can facilitate the launch of an entirely new business idea by leveraging previous digital assets and building on existing cash flow, which often amounts to thousands, through several additional income streams.
This is just one example where ROI for digital real estate can prove incredibly high, a great deal higher than physical real estate returns, which require a lot more money to create the same kind of net profit.
Benefits of Being a Digital Landlord
The Return on Investment (ROI) on digital investments is often notably higher than that of physical assets for a digital landlord. The ROI can be insane, especially when compared to normal investments such as stocks, bonds, property, and, yes, you heard it here first, real estate.
Other Digital landlord benefits include:
- High ROI
- Multiple income streams
- Less capital-intensive
How to Become a Successful Digital Landlord?
To become a prosperous digital landlord, you must, and this is imperative, understand the trade SEO.
Search Engine Optimisation gives a digital landlord the power to be able to rank websites higher in Google Search. The higher the website ranks, the more traffic it generates. The more traffic generated, the higher the volume of enquiries, which equates to more leads. With more leads, you can charge a much higher rental to businesses.
Those wishing to become a successful digital landlord must learn the ins and outs SEO, either via enrolling in online SEO courses or employing the services of an SEO expert. More information on SEO can be sourced online via group chats, forums and tech websites.
Who are the Best Digital Landlords?
From our research, the top-rated digital landlord entrepreneurs of today go by the names of:
- Adam O’Hern: Travelling the world as a digital nomad, Adam O’Hern is a highly recommended online entrepreneur.
- Richard Hope: Travels the world and super successful paid ads specialist.
- Craig Campbell: Speaks at all the major events and building a huge online following.
- Matt Woodward: Very well known SEO who has travelled a lot and now lives in Costa Rica.
- James Z Dooley: an extremely successful online digital landlord running a multitude of virtual companies out of the U.K. He specialises in SEO, affiliate marketing, lead generation in the U.K. and digital asset investment.
- Kasra Dash: a Digital landlord from Scotland with a background in coding and development. He has assisted in the generation of over 100,000 leads in the U.K. to date.
- Gary Wilson: Another Scottish entrepreneur and digital landlord renowned for his link building techniques.
If you’ve liked what you’ve read and feel ready to launch your own digital empire, be it something small and niche, or a flourishing online portfolio that generates an income worth talking about, getting in touch with a website broker team is a great place to start.
Even if to find out more information on buyer rights and seller protections in place, how to buy a portfolio of sites, more on SEO, or where to find website inventories boasting a handful of revenue-producing websites. What are you waiting for? Start building your portfolio today!