Is Site Build It A Scam? A Site Build It Review…

SiteSell is a company that claims that their “proprietary” system called Site Build It will help anyone, even a person with no technical knowledge, build a thriving, income-generating, “life-changing” website if you follow their step-by-step instructional Action Guide. I’ve evaluated their claims in this review.

New!  Are you an ex-SBI customer, or a soon-to-be-ex-SBI customer, or a wannabe-ex-SBI customer?
Click here to join our new forum and share your experience, your observations, and your opinions of SBI!

Is Site Build It a scam? I certainly call it a scam.  And in this thorough and detailed Site Build It review will, I will strive to prove that claim to you as well.  I have used claims made by Ken Evoy, the owner of Site Build It (also known as Site Sell and SBI!), as well as a detailed evaluation of customer results from the data provided on the Site Sell marketing pages, and data gathered on the Site Sell Facebook page in order to cut through all of the sales hype, the misleading marketing claims, and the hundreds of “positive review” websites that have been set up by sales affiliates.

If you are a regular reader, please bear with me.  I know this is a deviation from the usual topics around here, but this is a topic that I feel is very important.  I absolutely despise any company that tries to weasel their way into people’s pocketbooks by making promises they can’t keep and using misleading marketing strategies and outright lies to pawn their inferior product off on unsuspecting people.

What qualifies me to write this review?

  1. I was a Site Sell customer for three years and have a working knowledge of the product;
  2. I have used four different platforms for building/hosting online sites:
    • I have uploaded my own HTML to my Yahoo Small Business site,
    • I have uploaded my own HTML to my Site Sell site,
    • I have blogged on Blogger,
    • I currently blog on WordPress.
  3. As the owner of a monetized site, I know first hand what kind of traffic (and therefore, what kind of Alexa rank) it takes to make decent money from a monetized website.

Now before I jump into this topic, let me address one thing.  It seems that anytime someone attempts to review Site Sell in an honest way where Site Sell doesn’t come out smelling like roses, the owner, Ken Evoy, as well as the hoards of SBI! affiliates swarm and attack.  Their website says:

Most negative SBI! “scam reviews” are made-on-demand. These so-called “reviews” are fabricated by thousands of followers of “Make Money Online” (“MMO”) gurus who promote dishonest and spammy schemes and products. They perceive the integrity and value of SBI! as a threat.

So if your name is Ken Evoy, or you are an affiliate who wants to try to put me into this category, I urge you to first stop, take a few deep breaths to clear your head, and take a look around.  Here’s what you will find:

  • You will see that you are on an interior decorating blog, not an online marketing blog, or a make money online blog.
  • You will see that in this review, I am not selling ANYTHING that would compete with Site Sell.
  • In fact, within this review, I am selling nothing at all.  You will not find one single affiliate link within this post, or any of the supplemental posts that accompany this post.

I have no ulterior motive for writing this other than a genuine desire to share the truth and shed some light on the claims made by Site Sell on the marketing pages of their website. To claim otherwise–to say that I have different motives–will only make you look like a fool.

As a side note, according to one SiteSell site that was set up by the company to counter The Great Negative Review Debacle of 2009, there are over 80,000 affiliates (people who sell this product for a profit), and yet there are only 40,000 customers. Here is a screenshot from that site…

In other words, at least half of the affiliates don’t even use the product! They’re just selling it to make money. Doesn’t that seem a little backwards? (Which leads me to my absolute funniest and most telling discovery yet.)  And an FYI, when you Google the terms “Site Build It Scam” or “Site Build It Review”, you find loads and loads of glowing reviews.  These glowing reviews were written by affiliates who stand to gain financially if you purchase the product using one of their links.

So let’s get to the question at hand:

Is Site Build It (Site Sell) a scam?

In order to answer that question in a way that is rational, clear, and free of emotion or hype, we first need to start with a base line. We need a definition of the word “scam”. For that, I went to Consumer Fraud Reporting and found this simple definition:

scam, slang n.

A fraudulent business scheme; a swindle. By “fraudulent”, we include misleading, misdirected or exaggerated claims in advertising.

So does Site Sell (Site Build It) fall into this category? Well, they do use misleading, misdirected, AND exaggerated claims, as well as outright lies, in their advertising.  And you know what they say.  If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck…

In this case, if they use misleading advertising, use exaggerated claims, and use outright lies (all of which SBI does in the marketing pages of their website), then is it a stretch to call SBI a scam?  I hardly think so.

There is so much information to cover here, and so many of their misleading marketing pages to evaluate, so as I stated above, this review will be very lengthy, and will include many supplemental pages. Most of you won’t care about all of these details, but it needs to be “out there” so that potential customers dreaming of financial freedom with an online business with Site Sell can know exactly what they’re getting into, and what to reasonably expect from that company’s product.

I’ll start with my own personal story:

I started out as a blogger in 2007 with a free blog set up on Blogger. It was called Addicted 2 Decor, and had a .blogspot.com address. At the time, I really didn’t know much about blogging at all, but I knew I had a topic that I loved and wanted to share with people.

I didn’t really take it seriously the first year. I would blog for a while, then disappear. Then I would return for a while, and disappear again.

After about a year, I was told about Site Sell, and was given a free site as a gift. That’s when Addicted 2 Decorating was born, and I finally had my own domain. I read through all of the marketing pages, with the impressive sounding numbers about Alexa ranks.  And even though at the time I had no clue how to decipher those ranks, all of the stuff about Site Sell websites being in the top 1% of all websites in the world sounded seriously impressive to me.  I was excited about beginning my journey to financial freedom with my new online business.

As I went through the Action Guide (a several-part, step-by-step guide telling you how to build a successful online business), some of it interested me…other parts didn’t. In fact, I never even finished going through the whole thing.

Right from the beginning, I veered off on my own path by choosing to write about a very broad topic–a huge niche with tons of competition. That’s completely contrary to the Site Sell way of doing things. I didn’t care.

Then I veered off completely when I decided to ignore the most foundational part of the Site Build It program. The tool they seem to be the proudest of is a key word generator called Brainstorm It.  This tool searches for key words (terms that people use to search in Google and other search engines) in your niche that have lots of people searching for them, but few websites providing that information. Then the idea is that you provide the information they’re looking for by writing articles that are specifically geared towards these specific key words, and voila! Traffic! And traffic equals money!

Well, I didn’t do that at all.

Sure, I ran my key word search on at least two occasions, and it always resulted in pages and pages of key words that I found overwhelming and uninteresting. So I decided that wasn’t the vision I had for my site, and those pages filled with key words would always wind up in the trash can.

I simply have never written for key words (i.e., for search engines like Google). I write about stuff that is interesting to me, because I figure that if it’s interesting to me, then there are others who will find it interesting as well. And I figured that if I did it well, with lots of interesting pictures, great tutorials, etc., then the quality of my site would be what draws people, would make people want to tell their friends and family, and would (hopefully) impress Google.

Another tool that they’re incredibly proud of, and which I never used, was the Analyze It tool.  This tool analyzes each page as you upload it, checking to see if it’s perfectly search engine optimized. (Many current and ex-SBIers suspect that this, along with Ken Evoy’s personal war with Google, are what has caused Google’s latest Panda algorithm updates to totally decimate so many SiteSell websites. So-called “perfectly” optimized pages are used to manipulate search results, and Google doesn’t exactly like being manipulated.)

I didn’t use this tool ONE.SINGLE.TIME.  Not once in three years.  Never.  Ever.  All of these tools seemed like ways to manipulate search engines, and if you take a look at the pages of most SBI sites, you’ll see that they aren’t impressive to actual HUMANS at all.

I wasn’t interested in manipulating search engines.  I just wanted to write about stuff I love, and I wanted to do it well.

My hunch has paid off, especially when compared to the average Site Build It website.

In a nutshell, Addicted 2 Decorating was built without the help of one single SBI tool that they claim is so valuable and makes their system superior to any other.

So essentially, Site Build It wound up being nothing more than a website host for me, and a host with a lot of irritating, cumbersome hoops I had to jump through just to get a single page uploaded.

I should also mention that the entire time I had my Site Sell website, I also kept blogging on Blogger. My blog was set up as a subdomain on my addicted2decorating.com site using Site Sell’s Infin It! tool so that it all “read” as one website.

By the beginning of 2011, I began to grow tired of the limitations of my Site Sell site that were causing me to have to waste several hours each week doing manual work (stuff that WordPress does automatically), so I began to contemplate a move to WordPress.

The thought scared me. I mean, really scared me. I was afraid WordPress would be too difficult to learn. I was afraid that I would lose all of my URLs, and in turn, all of my traffic. I was afraid that it would take forever for Google to find me again. On and on and on…

My frustration with SBI’s limitations reached a tipping point…

By the end of 2011, I had finally reached my limit with the time I was wasting just to get my Site Build It site to function like I wanted, and I finally decided that even if the absolute worst scenario came true, and I lost all of my URLs, all of my traffic, and Google completely lost track of me for a while (in other words, if I had to start from scratch), it would still be worth it in the long run. I knew the functionality of WordPress would FAR, FAR, FAR, FAR surpass the functionality of Site Build It and Blogger, and would give me a website that would actually function just like I wanted…not to mention the fact that a WordPress blog LOOKS far better than anything I could ever produce on SiteSell or Blogger.

So at the end of December 2011, I paid someone to make the switch for me. Even at the cost of $950, I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that it would be worth it in the end. (Keep in mind that if I had done it right from the beginning, and started on WordPress, I could have saved myself the huge headache and stress of moving my site, AND the additional $950 to move. Starting out on a self-hosted WordPress site costs $15 to register the domain, and less than $10/month for hosting.)

Let me interject that in December 2011, according to Alexa, my SBI website was receiving about 40% of my traffic, while my blog was receiving about 60% of my traffic. And again, my blog was just a free blog set up on Blogger.

Again, my hunch paid off. Here is a screen shot of my traffic stats from December 2011 (my last month on Site Build It and Blogger) and January 2012 (my first month on WordPress).


Just take a look at the massive increase in pageviews that resulted JUST from my move to WordPress!  And why do you think that is?

Well, if you’ve seen many SBI! websites, you probably know why that is.  SBI! sites look outdated (especially those built with SBI!’s block builder tool), disorganized, and difficult to navigate.  By contrast, WordPress sites are generally much easier to navigate, look current and updated, and much better organized.

 

So where do I stand today?

As of this writing, Addicted 2 Decorating has an Alexa rank of 104,373. I average about 6,200 visitors per day, with 15,800 page views per day.

*Update 12/22/2012:  I’ve now been on WordPress for one year.  My current Alexa rank is 82,148.  Last month (November 2012), I averaged 11,473 visitors per day, and 24,095 page views per day.  Needless to say, my income has drastically increased since the beginning of 2012.

Also, about three months ago, I started having other bloggers come to me for WordPress help.  I now take on WordPress work (mostly helping bloggers move from Blogger to WordPress, and also creating custom WordPress blog designs for people).  That has turned into quite a thriving side business.

Of course, Ken Evoy would use that against me, saying, “See?  She’s just part of the machine that is made up of millions of affiliates pushing many thousands of [WordPress] products, from e-books to templates to plug-ins.“  (The underlined part is an actual quote from Ken Evoy in a recent forum post where he once again tried to scare people away from WordPress and convince people that SBI! is a superior product….an incredibly laughable and ridiculous claim.  His stated goal in the forum post was to push SBI! customers to become affiliates so that they can sell more products and reach Ken’s goal of 100,000 SBI! customers.)

The hypocrisy of Ken Evoy really astounds me.  Of course he, along with his 80,000+ affiliates, will push his inferior product on you for $300 per year (per website), and then try to make you feel like he’s doing you a favor because of it.  In addition, they offer personalized coaching that you can purchase…as in, pay money for…for a fee…in addition to the $300 per year for your site and all of those “special products” that come with it…from SBI!  This coaching ranges from $69 to $99 per hour.  And then there’s the custom site design services that you can purchase from SBI!, with a basic design starting at $297.

Did I also mention that if you need immediate technical support for your site, you have to pay an additional fee for that?!  Ha! It’s true!  If you want immediate email support, you have to pay per incident.  If you want technical support by phone, you have to pay per incident.  And at a cost of $19.95 per incident, that could certainly add up very quickly in a year.  But wait!  There’s more!  You can’t just pick up the phone and call.  You have to jump through their hoops, be connected to a third-party company that will take your payment, and then hope to goodness that someone from SBI! will be available to take your call.  They’re very often “away”, even during business hours, and in that case, you have to fill out a form and wait for them to arrange a phone call for you at some time during their office hours.

My WordPress site is hosted by HostGator, where I get FREE customer service (by VERY knowledgeable people) 24 hours a day, 7 days per week, 365 days per year.  And again, the technical support I get from them is absolutely FREE and always just a phone call away.  No filling out a form, no waiting in a queue, no waiting for “business hours” the next day, and no additional fees.  And my average wait on hold with HostGator is usually less than two minutes.

Selling products and services (and making enough to live in a beachfront mansion in Anguilla) is perfectly fine for Ken Evoy.  But anyone else who tries to do that must be scamming you, right?  The SBI! cult leader would certainly have you think that.

Do yourself a favor.  Tell Ken Evoy where to stick his inflated ego and inferior product, jump from the SBI! ship before it sinks completely, and move your site to WordPress where you’ll have an ACTUAL chance at real success.

So how do those numbers translate into dollars and cents?

Keep reading, because I’m spilling details. These are details that few bloggers and website owners feel comfortable revealing, but when it comes to answering the question of whether or not Site Build It delivers what it promises, I want to leave no room for mystery.

If I had to do it all over again, with the knowledge I have now, I would have started out on WordPress. Period. Sadly, at the time, I had never heard of WordPress, or if I did, I had absolutely clue what it was so the info went in one ear and out the other.

I truly believe that Blogger and Site Build It held me back, and limited the growth of Addicted 2 Decorating in its first four years.

WordPress has given it the wings necessary to enable it soar.

Let me wrap up this main post by saying this:

Site Build It sites have been hit hard by Google’s Panda algorithm updates. (Ken Evoy vehemently denies this, but the comments from users tell a different story. These people are frustrated and frightened at seeing their traffic, and therefore their income, drop like lead weights.)Bottom line…Google doesn’t seem to like SBI! sites anymore, while it does seem to love WordPress sites. Here is a quote from an SBI! customer in the Site Sell forums:

I have a number of a very small WordPress sites, which are probably ‘overoptimized’ in Google’s definition. They have adsense on them and shortened links to Amazon or clickbank products.

They have pages on them with fewer than 50 words, just pictures and H1/H2 headings. They are not content rich in anyway. They all have around 20 pages of content.

My WordPress sites were not affected by the Penguin update – they’re all still on page 1 for the keywords I’ve optimized them for.

My SBI site has suffered a 50% drop in traffic.

My SBI site has Google analytics on it. My WordPress sites do not.

If the Penguin update truly did what it was supposed to do, then logic tells me that my SBI site – not overoptimized and using backlinks from all the legit places suggested by SBI like Ezine, guest posts on other blogs, social bookmarking, Facebook and Twitter – should have been unaffected and my WordPress sites should have been nuked. I smell a rat.

All I can say is…get out while you still can!  I (and many others) firmly believe that SBI! is a sinking ship.  Don’t let them take your website down with them!

Here’s a comment from the SiteSell Facebook page:

My site is high quality and I lost all my rankings. How irritating! Now, I won’t make the money I predicted.

This customer went on to mention the key word “make money online”, so I Googled it, and what did I find?

Of the top ten search results on the first page of Google for that term, seven of them were WordPress sites!

I left a comment mentioning this simple fact (which of course was deleted), but a SiteSell admin responded to my (deleted) comment with:

Kirsti at Addicted 2 Decorating: To me that confirms what I said earlier… that people use WordPress because they want to make money online…

-Margit

Hahahahaha!!  I couldn’t have said it better myself, Margit.  People use WordPress because they want to make money online (ummm…isn’t that what you claim your product does?).  And those Google search results show that WordPress users who are serious about it, have a very good chance of doing just that with WordPress.

Now let’s get on to evaluating the marketing claims of SiteSell.

Click on the links below to see the truth of the claims made by Site Build It on their Site Sell marketing pages:

I’ve put many hours into this research, and I hope it helps to clear up any confusion regarding Site Sell, and helps you see through the loads of absolute bull on their marketing pages.

So, according to the actual facts, does Site Build It use “misleading, misdirected or exaggerated claims in advertising”?  Oh, you better believe they do!  So therefore…

Is Site Build It a scam?  I would say absolutely Yes.

SBI! customers are welcome to comment here as long as you give the URL of your website, and the date it was created (keep in mind that this info is easily verifiable) so that we can gauge your online success via your Alexa rank.

Gushing about how much you love Ken, how thankful you are for SBI!, and how much this product has changed your life, without showing VERIFIABLE PROOF will only reinforce the very common belief (that is talked about a great deal on many websites) that SBI! operates more like a cult than a business, and that many members develop a “cult mentality”, vehemently defending a product that doesn’t work, and defending a person who has made promises that he can’t keep.

And if your name is Ken Evoy, your contributions are not welcome here.


UPDATE:

On May 2, 2012, a SiteSell customer groupie (see sidenote below) named Abdul posted this on the SiteSell Facebook page:

The blogger you talked about also has been removing the comments not agreeing with her. Is this an honest behaviour?

To which Margit, the SiteSell Facebook admin responded;

Thank you, Abdul. We did not know that our “critic” is now also deleting dissenting opinion….

This is now a third indicator of a lack of trustworthiness…

Thank you, Abdul, for your support and adding yet another piece to the puzzle of Kristi’s underlying behavior and sense of ethics.

That is a bold-faced, outright lie, and this behavior…making these types of unsubstantiated claims…is the type of thing that SiteSell resorts to time and again in their pathetic attempts to discredit anyone who dares to publish the truth about their product or their devious marketing schemes.

I have absolutely not deleted any comments from supporters of SBI. In fact, I just checked my spam folder, and I did have one comment on this post that got caught in the spam folder. It was from someone thanking me.

Simply put, to date, I have not had ONE.SINGLE.COMMENT from a supporter of this product. LOL That’s just a plain and simple fact!! But as I’ve already said, any supporter will be required to leave the URL of their SBI! website so that we can all check the Alexa rank and the date that the site was started. Perhaps that’s why they’re afraid to comment. 

Or perhaps it’s because, as Margit said, they “ask [SBI!] folks NOT to reply” to my review.  My gosh.  If that isn’t evidence of the cult mentality of this company, I don’t know what is.  Their leader essentially says, “Don’t worry about the outside world.  Don’t worry about trying to read and understand all of that complicated stuff.  We know you’re too stupid to understand it, so we’ll read it for you, and then tell you want to believe.  You can trust us.  In the meantime, come over here and have some of this refreshing Kool-Aid we’ve prepared for you!

SBI! has a very low tolerance for truth.

Sidenote: I checked Abdul’s Facebook page, and the only website that he has listed as his own is a WORDPRESS site. :-D So what exactly is his relationship with SBI? Perhaps he’s one of those 40,000 affiliates who sells the product but doesn’t actually use the product!

So no.  I haven’t had one single comment in support of SBI!  What I HAVE received are several emails from current SBI customers asking me how to move their sites to WordPress. Would happy SBI customers do that? Obviously not.

Margit also said:

Again, we remain proud to have been part of her initial success. Regardless of what she says now, the process and tools, well done and used by her, laid the foundation for her success. And strong execution of subsequent parts of the process certainly played a part in that success. Now that she has greater/specialized needs and can afford ***$220/month for hosting*** and ***other expenses*** for tools and developers, it’s a shame that she has felt the need for such an over-reaction to what had been a friendly debate on SiteSell Facebook (until she entered it.)

As stated in my own personal journey, I didn’t utilize any of the SiteSell tools, other than their server to host my website. For Margit to claim that she has knowledge of my using the tools is just flat out RIDICULOUS. Was she in my house, sitting by my side as I built my site? Seriously. This woman has a few screws loose.

If anything, SiteSell held me back.

And yes…I do pay $220/month for my server now, because that’s what I require for my traffic AND my peace of mind. If I based my server needs just on my traffic, I’d be paying FAR less than that.  But peace of mind is valuable to me, and definitely worth the extra cost. Plus, I have several websites on that server — not just Addicted 2 Decorating — and I also have plenty of room for future growth. I can add as many sites as I want on my server. How much would five SBI! websites cost me? $150 per month. So an additional $70 per month is nothing when you consider that I’m using a far superior product to build my sites, my sites look and function a million times better than anything I could ever build with SBI’s archaic blockbuilder, and my traffic and income have tripled since moving from SBI! Even with the additional cost, I’m coming out way ahead!!

Any person starting up a new online business using WordPress can do so for less than $10/month.

So Ken, Margit, Aaron, and the rest of you SiteSell talking heads…stick that in your pipe and smoke it!

SUBSCRIBE HERE!
Enter your name and email below to receive:

New posts delivered to your inbox * Giveaways exclusive to subscribers
Exclusive behind-the-scenes videos * Additional DIY tips
The occasional DIY project, just for subscribers
A plate of warm, freshly baked cookies

(Okay, probably not that last one.)  :)

Comments

    • Mary says

      Kristi,

      I know this post is far and away from the last here, but I was led here when I typed in SBI reviews and I’m glad I did. Since you obviously have a lot of knowledge and terms are flying over my head, what would be your advice to someone considering starting a website, but doesn’t have any clue how to? Web hosting for dummies? =) Thank you for any and all advice and if this never gets answered thank you anyway for steering me clear of the cliff that is SBI.

      Mary R.

    • says

      Hi Kristi

      I was referred to SBI! by the Renegade Marketing System(RMS) back system to be an affiliate. I recently joined RMS because I felt that Ann paints a clearer picture about network marketing which I really appreciate as I grow my business. I choose to be affiliated to good and honest companies which will benefit all my downline members and I’m glad to have found your honest review here. :) I have a few blogger blogs and I’m now toying with the idea of moving my sites to wordpress. It seems so complicated! Wishing you continued success!
      http://www.networkmarketingonlinecourse.com

  1. says

    Kristi,

    I have been a subscriber for over a year; I can’t believe THIS is my first comment! Anyway, I also used Site Build It! to “make money online” and love your candid review (and supporting entries) of the product. I agree that there is a lot of “cultish” repetition of keywords and phrases scattered throughout their training guide. For someone who is unfamiliar with SEO, I found the data educational but agree with you that SBI is mostly hype – spend $200 on your website for a year and all of our widgets do the work! The thing is, you spend all your time writing around one keyword and worrying about optimization vice just writing and connecting with people!

    Your review is spot on, in my opinion, and I hope that others find it of equal … or greater, in that they avoid the pitfall altogether… value.

    Felicia

    • KJ says

      Ugh there’s no way I’m scrolling ALL THE WAY DOWN to find the comment form to say this but; this “knowledge” should have automatically been common sense whereas, if any site requires any money from you in exchange for guaranteed profits, it should be marked as a red flag, left alone, or to be researched further. Greed and/or ignorance very well should be the main culprit here but the more vigilance we possess against these pieces of shit, then the less room they’ll have and eventually they have no one to sell their shit to except themselves. It won’t be pretty, so basically people need to stop being afraid because in the end, they need us and not the other way around. That is a piece of real knowledge, one thing they are terrified of us knowing.

  2. says

    Thanks Kristi for having some courage to be frank as no doubt you are counting the minutes before the SBI “rapide response navy seals” crew descend on your blog to make weird threats and post their cut’n'paste rhetoric about SBI to rid the internet of anything opposing them.

    I’m an ex-SBIer and was fairly sickened by the attitude of people in their forums and just the whole experience.

    The 3 sites I build with SBI still have huge traffic problems and I suspect this is because I based too much around making them SEO perfect.

    Sites I’ve built since that using wordpress just keep on rolling and making me a living thank God.

    Unfortunately my 3 SBI sites have just given me nothing but problems.

    The final straw was Evoy’s manner of dealing with the Panda problems those poor folk on the forums were having. He issued a rehashed version of the action guide to “deal” with Panda then claimed there was “proof” that it works. Sad that people believed it.

    Threatening people who don’t agree, deleting their threads, not using logical reason…I could go on but your post sums it up better than I could.

    The bottom line is simply that SBI just doesn’t deliver for most people, end of story.

    Any readers have it from the horse’s mouth.

    Thanks again Kristi for your great blog entry.

  3. says

    I used SBI too and I specifically remember some absurd forum post about how SBI is so superior to wordpress.

    Some of the usual oddbods (Erwin or whatever) were smugly trying to poke fun at wordpress.

    The problem is that Evoy didn’t actually compare a single thing. He compared the traffic stats of the free wordpress.com blogs to SBI stats and based his conclusions on that.

    It’s like comparing SBI to users of free services Blogger.com and claiming superiority!

    He ignored the real users of WP who actually register their own domain names. This rendered his comparison as useless and ridiculous.

    When I raised that point, I got attacked in the forums by some moderator who didn’t use a single bit of reasoning, and couldn’t even answer that question.

  4. says

    I used SBI too and I specifically remember some absurd forum post about how SBI is so superior to wordpress.

    Some of the usual oddbods (Erwin or whatever) were smugly trying to poke fun at wordpress.

    The problem is that Evoy didn’t actually compare a single thing. He compared the traffic stats of the free wordpress.com blogs to SBI stats and based his conclusions on that.

    It’s like comparing SBI to users of free services Blogger.com and claiming superiority!

    He ignored the real users of WP who actually register their own domain names. This rendered his comparison as useless and ridiculous.

    When I raised that point, I got attacked in the forums by some moderator who didn’t use a single bit of reasoning, and couldn’t even answer that question.

    Oh and by the way, this super moderator called Brianca I believe, actually runs HER main blog with…guess what? WordPress. Yep.

    • says

      Thanks so much for your comment, Audrey!

      Did you see this supplemental page? I cover the whole WordPress.com vs. Site Build It scam in great detail: http://www.addicted2decorating.com/sitesells-bogus-site-build-it-vs-wordpress-com-comparison

      I’ve pointed the invalid and irrelevant comparison to WordPress.com to them TWICE now, and both times Slick Ken makes excuses as to why it’s a valid comparison. IT’S NOT VALID. Period.

      But he benefits from that comparison, because the bogus numbers generated from the comparison make his product look soooooo good to someone who doesn’t understand the difference between WordPress (the software) and WordPress.com (the free hosting service).

      Evoy’s a slime ball.

  5. says

    Wow… I had no idea of this world existing. I have toyed with the idea of monetizing my blog, but I get hardly any hits as it is. With what you describe here I’d make about 10 cents a month, if that. Lol! I just do it for fun. But I have been very annoyed with Blogger lately, it takes for. ev. er to load pictures and I hate the new interface. Maybe I’ll switch to WordPress.

  6. says

    Yes I did see it Kristi after posting my comment I think it’s awesome that you made the effort to write this post and the others and you clearly have no financial gain from it. Kudos to you.

    I had the same feelings as you when I moved my sites away from that disturbing place and judging by comments both here and on Hospitalera’s blog, there are many of us who share these same feelings.

    Evoy and his chronies have shut my comments down a number of times, both on the forum and on their fb page.

    Your site looks awesome by the way and was well worth paying someone to transfer.

  7. says

    I sometimes feel like I’m terribly naive about all of this stuff….I just type and ‘publish’ my little blog. I’ve often thought it would be nice to monetize my blog, but posts like yours confirm my fears. I just don’t have the time or energy it would take to do the amount of hard work and research that people like you do.

    They’ve clearly taken on the WRONG WOMAN when they decided to mess with YOU! You go, girl!

  8. Page says

    I thoroughly enjoyed your detailed post. You really put a lot of effort and time into it and I thank you for that. I now know what all my bloggy friends have to deal with ~ I have no clue about behind the scene bloggy stuff. But I do know that I so enjoy reading and following your creative decorating ideas. Keep up the good work!! Cheers.

  9. says

    Kristi,

    Well done, girl! I don’t knowing anything other than wordpress. Love them. I’ve been doing my own website for over a year. My alexa is currently #400,363. Of course, my website is just for my non-profit org so it’s not the same… I just wanted to say that WordPress can take some time to learn but it’s worth it.

    Christine

  10. says

    Fabulous informative post. Thanks for sharing all you research with us poor unsuspecting bloggers. I have been considering a switch to WordPress, but I had no idea of the expense…now I know it will take a while before I can afford it. As always you have been a great help, Lori

    • says

      Lori, the expense will depend on the traffic you have on your blog. I overbought on server space just because of the peace of mind it gives me (my site hasn’t gone down even one single time since I upgraded). However, for most people with small blogs, or those who are just getting started, the cost will be somewhere around $15/year to register the domain name, and less than $10/month for hosting. Don’t let the cost scare you away!!

    • says

      Sure, Missi!

      A visitor is a person who visits a website.

      However, let’s say that today, you visited Addicted 2 Decorating (which you obviously did, because you left a comment :) ). And then let’s say that after you read this blog post, you clicked over to the DIY Projects Gallery, and then from there, you clicked over to a specific DIY project.

      That means that you’ve just visited three pages (three page views). So you would count as one visitor with three page views.

      Many bloggers/website owners interchange the words “page views” and “hits”. In stead of saying they have 10,000 page views each day, they say that they have 10,000 hits per day. However, in reality, a hit is not a page view. A “hit” is something completely different…but that’s probably a lesson for another time. :)

  11. Kim says

    Girl, we’re gonna have to cherish your blog while we can! With a brain like that and the tenacity to research and analyze this while SBI thing, someone’s gonna scoop you up fast! You are some kinda fantastic!

  12. Darlene says

    I am just a follower of your blog. I must say that I enjoy what you post. I have never tried to blog, but I really appreciate that you are standing up to something that is a SCAM.
    This post makes me want to take a few minutes and click on a bunch of your projects! :)

  13. says

    That is a serious amount of research and work that you did to write this post. I agree with Kim…you are some kinda smart, girl!!

  14. nancy says

    Kristi – You are ferocious – I am afraid I am completely ignorant about everything that is being spoken about here. You might say I am ‘TECH CHALLENGED” to put it mildly. I am afraid that I don’t even understand what you are asking me to do – blush blush! However, I do have a tremendous amount of admiration for that brain the Lord gave you! Keep up the good work!

  15. Isabel says

    Well, I have been following you for a few months ever since I discovered your site while researching for a tufted headboard tutorial. I think you’re amazing talented, I absolutely love your ideas and style. You have now earned my respect. Word!

  16. Bonnie says

    Hi Kristi, I am so glad I found your website. I tried SBI about a year ago. I about went nuts trying to figure it out.
    I finally gave up and figured I guess I’m not smart enough.I have been so frustrated having some good information and wanting to share it (and maybe down the road make a few dollars). Thank you, Thank You, Thank you !!!!! for your information. Oh, and being a DIY ER I will be visiting your site often.

  17. says

    Kudos to you for not bowing to the considerable pressure that SBI seems to put on those that dare to leave the cult and, *shock horror* CRITICIZE the great Ken Evoy and Site Build it!

    At the end of the day it seems to be now, even more than in 2009, is an outdated, clunky sitebuilder, with some pretty dubious tools and support. On-line stuff evolves fast, my outlook and my sites have evolved hugely since 2009, Dr Evoy’s – not so much

  18. Cat says

    Very interesting piece. I’m a WP user & have never used SBI myself, but have watched the goings-on with interest ever since Lissie’s review a few years back. I can see the appeal of an ‘all in one’ package for tech-challenged newbies, but it’s a shame that SBI preys on their ignorance in this way.

    My only quibble is regarding Alexa rank. While this can give a rough indication of a site’s traffic and possibly income too, it shouldn’t be taken too seriously, since (as I understand it) Alexa relies in large part on data from their own toolbar, which most people don’t use (and those that do use it are probably more likely to be in tech or IM-related niches, possibly skewing the results in favour of sites in these areas). I have a small niche site that averages around $300/month on less than 50 uniques a day (thanks to an affiliate program that both converts and pays well), and its Alexa rank is around 3.5 million. Now $300 isn’t a lot, but by your reasoning that site should hardly be making anything at all :D

    But that aside, I enjoyed your review. I love your site too, especially since I’m currently redecorating!

  19. Andrea says

    I am a current (sort of) Sitesell user who is now at her tipping point. I built a site last year and realized very little traffic until I veered away from Brainstormer and used my brain. After that, my traffic numbers began to improve. In the end though, I decided to let the site go b/c it just wasn’t my thing.

    I too ended up with a gifted site (thank goodness it was free) and began work on it (off site) in November. I decided to wait for the new block builder to be released. This was supposed to happen before Christmas. Well, it’s now May, and guess what, no new block builder. The goal post kept getting moved to next month, next week, a few days. I’m over it!!! I’ve lost 5 months now! My subscription expires in August, but I’ll be long gone before then.

    I learned so much, yes. But there are way too many limitations. It’s just too much work for me to get a site to look and function the way I want.

    I’m definitely intimidated by WordPress, but I know it’s what is best. Thank you for your posts! They’ve really helped me find peace in my decision. After years of hearing how being successful using WordPress is nearly impossible, it’s been such a difficult decision!

  20. Stan W. says

    Andrea
    Ken Evoy hates WordPress.
    There is a good reason for that. WordPress to SBI is like Porsche to the Flintstones’ vehicle!
    He will go to great lengths to manipulate the unsuspecting noobs.
    He makes them believe that certain death is awaiting their online presence the minute they leave the archaic SBI.
    Their entire platform, support, “proprietary technology” is nothing more than BS on a toast.
    Congratulations on your decision. Throw the “blinkers” away, there is a real, vibrant, modern world out there.
    Stan

  21. says

    You did say SBIers were welcome to post here, so that’s what Im doing. You also mentioned needing to supply my website URL. I don’t see a need for that, anyone who knows me (AJ, with the Fiji travel site) will either know what my site is, or can easily find out. Besides, my SBI site is not my primary means of earning a living online. That is also something people who know who I am will be aware of. But I put it in anyway ;-)

    OK, so Im not anti sbi, nor am I pro sbi, I hope that I am impartial. If something pisses me off about sbi, I’m quite happy to mention that in the forums. Same as when I think they have done something well. Nor am I scared to put my name to a post like this one, unlike those people posting in the blog where I found the link to this review.

    So, first thing I would like to mention is your facts on the number of SBI customers. You quoted 40,000. I would like to set the record straight and say that there are publicly available figures that show the exact numbers. And as of today, that stands at 36,138 domain names. Note – that is domain names, not websites or customers. Remember that many people have multiple domains parked, so the actual customer base could be somewhere around 20-30,000? That is just a guess, I have no insider knowledge, just what is publicly available. http://www.dailychanges.com

    You mentioned some of SBIs tools, including the analyze it. I have to confess, like you, I have never used it (apart from the first few pages to see how it worked, but that was many years ago). My reasons for that were simple: I don’t want a piece of software telling me how to write a page for human readers. It always seemed to me to going directly against the spirit of “keeping it real”. I think far too many people blindly follow that, without looking to see how it can turn their writing into dry content that is obviously written for search engines ahead of people.

    I will point out that I have been involved with websites before I joined SBI, so perhaps it is just less useful to someone that is used to writing web content. For those that have no idea of what search engines look for on a page, it can make a huge difference.

    There are some things I really like about SBI, and some things I really don’t like. Same as any company. My dislikes include…..
    *over moderation in the forums. I am a moderator myself, and its very rare for me to edit a post. But some of them like to go overboard and edit anything that even looks like being slightly controversial.
    *I don’t like to see customers “fired” or threatened with that. It creates a sense of unease, so that you feel you have to be very careful with what you say. I would like to see less “rules” in the forums, which would encourage more open discussion. That includes feeling like you can talk about things such as WP without getting jumped on (I have built WP sites, BTW)
    *I get frustrated with how sbi releases are never ever on time, or even close. Long timers will remember C2 for example, that was a good year behind schedule. And the BB2 change was even worse. Plus the amount of bugs and the initial response to those was NOT good.
    *I don’t like the cotton wool attitude of “we have everything you need, forget the outside noise” I think that can isolate people…so that is where the “cult” thing comes in, that many people mention. I would be happier with more tolerance of people discussing outside or 3rd party solutions. For example, I have been OK to tell people in the past that what they want to do is NOT suited to SBI, but then some others will suggest work arounds instead (like having a membership site). I don’t believe in forcing a round peg into a square hole. Find a round hole instead.

    But there are also a lot of things I do like about SBI. And strangely enough, some of those are also things I don’t like about them. I know that sounds weird. For example, I said about the “cotton wool” attitude. OK, so that doesn’t work for me or you. But we know what we are doing. Put yourself in the place of someone just starting with SBI who doesn’t know anything more about computers than how to check email. And plenty of people are like that.

    For those people, it’s a good thing to cut out the GRQ schemes, the sales pages that promise you the world and only deliver a hole in your wallet. You don’t know what you don’t know, and if you are in an environment where people are giving you good advice, want you to succeed and do well, you have a much better chance of making a decent go of it. However, for you or me, or someone that knows their way around website building, it can feel restrictive. So its good or bad, depending on your level, and where you’re at.

    Another thing I like is some of the automation tools. Sure, I know how to write an xml feed and submit it to GWT etc. But I like the fact that I don’t have to (I do that on my non sbi sites, it’s a PITA). I also like the new BB2 despite the teething problems. Once it is up and running as it’s meant to, and people are used to it, I think it’s going to be great. The ugly look of SBI sites was always something that I felt strongly about…I nagged for years on the forums to get with the times ;-)

    Another dislike is unquestioning “sbi and Ken love”. I think that is something else that encourages the cult comparison. You can say what you like about SBI, love it or hate it, the fact is, they (and I mean Ken) really do have SBIers best interests at heart. It’s beneficial for them if every sbier succeeded. That’s never going to happen of course… you can lead a horse to water but you cant make it drink. And some sbiers have no right to even think about creating a website, they would be better off finding a “real” job. But SBI does its best to support, encourage and help those people. Unfortunately, some of them will never make it, regardless of what platform they choose.

    I think this latest Penguin has really knocked a lot of people back (I’m pleased to report, I’m not one of them). Not just SBIers, but webmasters everywhere. Combine that with the previous Panda (which also didn’t touch me) and the BB2 bugs, a lot of people are feeling disillusioned and let down. I think quite a few people have been leaving lately. It’s sad, because I would like to see everyone do well with their online businesses, sbier or not.

    OK enough rambling. Back to the title of your post, which was saying SBI is a scam. I don’t believe that it is, just that for some people, it isn’t the right choice. They should go with WP or hostgator or whatever. And for some types of website, then traditional hosting is best. Think anything that needs to store member profiles, do any sort of server side processing. I have non sbi websites for that very reason.

    And some people simply don’t need the level of hand holding that is given. They know how to write pages correctly, find good keywords, setup auto responders, do xml feeds and rss, etc. But one thing I’m pretty sure of. If SBI closed down tomorrow, and everyone had their site moved to a traditional webhost, then a huge percentage of people that now make at least a bit of money with SBI, would go down the tubes. They simply don’t have the knowledge to go it alone.

    Think about it. To cover the costs with an SBI site, you only need to earn in excess of $30 a month. Anyone who follows instructions should be able to do that quite quickly. In fact with my latest site, I started it at the end of last year, and it is already well above that amount. It was profitable within 3 months actually. And to be honest, the site is hardly ever touched, I just don’t have the time. I f someone has been going for a year and still isn’t making a decent profit, it’s not the site building process that is at fault, its the person building the site.

    So yes, I have seen plenty of people complaining that after a year or whatever they aren’t making any money. And without fail, I can look at their site and see how they have ignored so many of the basics. It’s a shame, I would love for those people to be earning a good income. But if they are given a good guide to site building (the AG) and choose to ignore it….well, that’s not SBIs fault.

    OK, I will wrap this up. I’m sure that as I have been open about who I am, someone will have made a note of me posting here ;-) That’s OK, I just say things as I see them, and I prefer not to hide behind a fake name.
    Cheers, AJ

    • Mike Rael says

      Hi AJ:) I really appreciate your looking at what might be good or not good with SBI. I’m one of those folks who need a lot of hand-holding at this time. So I’ll probably try out SBI to begin learning. On the other hand, part of me feels I should at least *look* at WordPress as well, since it costs less than SBI, I understand.
      Are there any books you could honestly recommend about learning to create a serious business web site?
      Mike R

  22. Chantel says

    Kristi,

    Thank you sharing a compelling argument on the cons Site Build It/Site Sell.

    I have been considering paying for the service, because it appears to offer a comprehensive solution to learning the business of creating successful websites.

    Do you have any advice for novices who would like to learn the business of building a website, while also earning enough to cover operating expenses (at least)? I have dallied with WordPress; however, it doesn’t offer the education and support that Site Build It/Site Sell offers.

    Regards,

    Chantel

    • says

      Hi Chantel~
      My advice would be to find a blog written by someone who blogs about blogging. (Wow…that was a mouthful.) :) In other words, a blogging “guru”. Maybe even find two or three. Subscribe to their blogs, read their most popular posts, etc. In the meantime, just get your WordPress site set up, and start blogging…consistently! Find others in your niche, and comment, interact, get to know them. Set up a Facebook page for your blog, and find pages for other blogs in your niche. Be social.

      In other words, to really be successful with a blog, you have to get out there. It’s really much more than just writing blog posts and hoping that people come to you.

      And in my opinion, the “education” that SBI offers is sadly outdated. So while their “educating” their members, the education that they’re receiving is of little value. Don’t get caught in that trap. Find people (as mentioned above) who can help you get a great WordPress site going, rather than falling for the “education” of SBI that may have been helpful a decade or five years ago, but has little value today.

  23. says

    Thank you very much for this post. I was seriously considering Site Build It since my own blog is so new and I’m getting almost zero traffic. Now, I’m not so sure. Don’t think I can afford WordPress at this time. Maybe I’ll just stick with Blogger for now and make the jump in a year or so. Thanks again, very informative.
    Reginald (Thinking you may have saved me from making a big mistake).

    • says

      Reginald, if you could afford SBI, you can afford WordPress. Simply go to GoDaddy and register your domain name, then go to HostGator and set up hosting. The domain will cost you about $15/year, and the hosting will cost you less than $10/month. HostGator has a one-click WordPress install. They would probably even help you do it if you get stuck. Then that’s it! Once it’s set up, you’re ready to blog. So the total cost will be about $135 per year to start out with a WordPress blog. That’s less than SBI.

      • says

        Thank you so much for your help. Just a quick question: You mentioned earlier that about 60% of your income came from Blogger. If you had stuck with Blogger, do you think that you’d have success today? thanks again
        Reginald (Thinking he’s worried about losing Google ad sense, and not sure how to monetize with WordPress) (I’m a newbie, you see).

        • says

          I personally know of several bloggers who use Blogger and have very successful blogs. So the short answer is “yes”.

          However, Blogger has so many limitations compared to WordPress, and that’s what I became tired of. With WordPress, I feel like I can get my blog to do just about anything I can dream or imagine because there are so many thousands of plugins available. If you anticipate that you will ever want to switch over to WordPress in the future, I suggest you do it now rather than later. The longer you wait, the more likely it is that you’ll lose posts and comments in the transfer, and the more info you have, the more it’ll cost if you pay someone else to do it for you.

  24. New To It All says

    Kristi,

    Thanks so much for for the skinny on SBI. I had a feeling something was not quite right about it. I truly do appreciate the time you put into explaining the situation and guiding the clueless (like me) to affordable alternatives.

    Now, you have me interested in decorating as well!

    For all the other newbies see this:
    http://howtostartbloggingtips.com/

    This blogger is a wealth of info. Best step-by-step I’ve seen thus far.

    [ Kristi, I hope this link takes some pressure off you to answer questions re: Word Press. ]

  25. says

    Great article but I beg to differ and I may be the only one here.

    Yes, I too used to be an SBIer until March this year when I sold website for a lot of money. The site is still making money for the new owner.

    In this life, some will make it and some will not. I have no business ties with the SBI owner or any other SBI owner. I don’t even know anyone there except the person that bought my SBI site. My second site remains on WordPress not because I hated SBI but because I did not have the time to maintain two websites. I have a demanding day job so I decided to stick to the one that has the least value.

    My point is that everything I read on this article does not show me that Ken Evoy deliberately go out to deceive people. A lot of people has made it and will continue to make it on SBI. I am sure others have tried what you do and fail. I do not believe an inch that SBI deliberately tried to scam. It’s a business and he has to sell and make money. If you read what he has to sell and you don’t like it, move on but be civil in your exit. If we have to evaluate every big business with the same measure, no one will enjoy life. Look around and see what’s happening in the corporate world.

    Again, I disagree that SBI is a scam.

    • says

      You didn’t mention the name of the site. I’m curious to take a look at it. I did notice, however, that the site you linked your name to is a WordPress site. :) Just an observation.

      If you had success with SBI, that’s fantastic. However, I stand by my assertion (which is backed by the numbers taken from their site) that that experience is not the norm for most SBIers.

      And if you don’t think they’re trying to intentionally deceive people, then you evidently missed the supplemental posts that are linked at the bottom of this one. Their marketing materials are filled with deliberately misleading and false information that is used to trick people into thinking that SBI is far better than anything else and can change their lives where nothing else can. Misleading marketing and flat out lies make SBI a scam. I didn’t make up that definition.

    • says

      Dare you may or may not think it’s a scam and that’s fine, but every single fact reported about Evoy here is true.

      They guy is a real strange case. Oppressive, threatening and manipulating. This appears to come naturally to him.

      Read the above link (from Kristi’s review) to Hospitalera’s blog and go through the comments. Those are all from real people, sick and tired of SBI.

      And we know there are good and bad things about anything but for me it was Evoy’s behaviour that makes it into a weird place to be.

      • says

        Kristi,
        I actually enjoyed reading your article on this issue. Yes, I have a WordPress website now but I mentioned in my comment that I sold the SBI site. I have no financial or any emotional investment in SBI but I just think we should appreciate innovation. It may not be exactly the way we expect it to be but it should not be demonized. Ken Evoy wants to make money and he try to help others make money.

        In fact, why should I defend SBI while I am using WordPress? It doesn’t make sense. I just feel that his success should not be categorized as a scam. Unless he is caught cheating, I will not subscribe to the “scam” label.
        :)

    • says

      The “WordPress banners” that I see on this post are (1) the one for the Blogger to WordPress ebook that I finished last week (about six months after this Site Build It article was written), and is of no use at all to people using Site Build It, and (2) my own Blogger to WordPress services (again no use to Site Build It users) and custom WordPress design services, the button for which I added about four weeks ago (five months after this Site Build It article was written).

      If you have some actual useful information to add to this conversation, I welcome it.

  26. cc rider says

    I tried Site Build It a couple years ago, although I thought I had put togeather a pretty informative website, I didn’t make a cent. I went online before I bought into SBI, and couldn’t find hardly any negative reviews, I again went online after I got out of SBI…still almost no negative reviews, but tons of “glowing testimonials” of how people are making all kinds of money with their SBI websites, and how much they love SBI.

    Even on blogs where someone did write something negative about SBI, the SBI cheer-leaders would storm in with their “success stories”. Finding this blog was like a breath of fresh air…thanks

  27. says

    Great articles Kristi…..i have been an SBIer for nearly 4 years and currently run 22 SBI sites. I have been trying to negotiate lower hosting fees with “Support” having failed for Ken Evoy to answer my enquiries…..the grand sum they offered me was for a single 12 month subscription for any one of my sites…….interestingly i got the “sad to see you go” email last week, and they are offering two months free subs for a single site owner to re-consider, so yet again as a multisite owner Ken & Sitesell really do not see the value of my business.

    I was already considering leaving SBI as BB2 is a complete botch-up, and my options to develop my non-Adsense driven sites within SBI are now completely limited. I have so far got 7 of my sites moved over onto WP, they look great and have completely removed the heavily templated look that ALL Sitesell sites have, which i am 100% sure is why so many have been decimated by Panda & Penguin!.

    Hope you do another update shortly as it is now several months since you main article was published, and nothing stands still at Sitesell!.

    All the best
    Kevin

    • Sharon says

      Hi Kevin,

      I couldn’t believe it when I clicked on your RV Renting for a 2 week long trip that it took me to Fulltime-RVing which I am the original creator and owner of that site. I sold it to Marc and I knew he was trying to sell it again a few months back.

      I started many sbi sites and worked my tail off on all of them. I did profit, but sadly never more than a few hundred dollars a month.

      • says

        Hi Sharon
        I did see your name mention throughout the site, great to meet you, strangely i was contacted a couple of months after buying the site from Marc by another SBIer who missed out on it, he offered me a great deal and so i sold it on to him as i had no real interest in RVing, it was just another business opportunity to me….lovely to meet the original site owner though….all the best. Kevin

  28. Teresa says

    Oh my god. You know the feeling when you were writing a big comment and suddenly you push the back button and you have to start over again? hahah frustrating. Ok here we go again.

    Thanks Kristi for your research!!! Having this info out there is SO important, you already know it :) This will help a lot of people to be aware on the future.

    Now, my opinioin, In a nutshell: I don’t know if SBI classifies as “scam”. The do have a product that does (good or bad) what it says. The marketing is exaggerated, but what marketing isn’t? I think its ok that their product helps people with ABSOLUTELY NO Internet marketing Knowledge to build their money making site, what I think is dishonest and UN-ethical is not to point out the limitations of their product, at least, when the member asks questions about them or support them with information when they are ready to move to a different level with their business. They Do act like a cult on this. I think they are taking advantage from their target audience to have no knoweldge on internet and possible needing a supporting community to belong to (it’s a psychological need, and it’s totally normal) but it is totally un-ethical from the site owners to take advantage of this to keep the users blinded to other options that will make their site grow even more.

    I found “she seo blog” very interesting (OH MY GOD THE COMMENTS!!!) and I would encouage Everyone who has an interest in this subject to READ THEM!! Here is the link: http://sheseo.com/sbi-ken-evoy-are-on-the-google-war-path/
    I’m sending an email to the owner to ask her to keep that post alive because is so important to have that info out there, just like you did.

    By the way, a turning point for me, who read your article first, was AJ comment, surprisingly nobody said anything about it!! I still was on doubt but his comment is so honest and objective that really helps understanding all this. I congratulate him for posting. I would have some things to say about his post but not right now.

    One last thing, I would advice SBI users to report a CLAIM about this case… not only about the panda / penguin disaster that probably ruined many people’s business but also for the psychological weirdness that’s going on there. That’s not sane, as any cult/sect is. I found this site, I think anyone interested can email them to see how they can make a claim for this case: http://www.stopfraud.gov/report.html

    I think that’s all for now at least… thanks again for your effort :)
    Teresa.

  29. says

    Hey there…
    Nicely done. I had a site with SBI and had great rankings according to Alexa. My site was below the 900K mark.
    I used “analyze it” on every page and it was supposed to actually work. Why then, when panda hit… my site went from below the 900K mark to 22million!!!!
    SBI say they “over deliver”…. apparently it’s more like “over promise”.

  30. Older and wiser says

    Thanks for the review. Also, congrats on the success of this site.

    I was with SBI back not too long ago. For about a year. I had a kicking (content laden) site. I’m a nurse and did a health care-related niche.

    Unlike you, I followed pretty much all the advice and used all the tools. I did all the keyword research and obsessed over it. I did not write a page that was not keyword optimized for. If the numbers weren’t right, I would not write a page. If the numbers were “good,” I would write a page. I thought that if I did not do everything “by the book,” I would not get traffic. Ergo, I would not make money.

    From an SEO standpoint, my site was impeccable. Unlike what you did. But I wished I had been like you. I would have learned the lesson sooner. What lesson was that? To be yourself. Not obsess over SEO perfection. Not “flying by instruments” when common sense told me differently.

    The site had over a hundred pages. Pure content. Good content. I write well and I teach for a living. And, like I said, the numbers were all there, and I should have been slaying it. I’m the one who got slayed. At the height of my SBI success, I had a spanking 36 daily unique visitors. Max. Usually I got 20 to 25 visitors a day. wow. Forum folks kept saying “slow and steady wins the race!” If I went any slower, I’d be backing up. The only race I was winning was to see who could go backwards the fastest. The number of daily visitors did not vary hardly at all no matter how much content I put up. Paragraph after paragraph, page after page, month after month.

    After about a year I cut out. I did not make a dime, even after beginning THREE sites with them. The health care site was the largest of the three. I had to put my sites down, as it was the only humane thing to do. They were already DOA. All I was doing was performing CPR on a daily basis. I just didn’t know it at the time. There was absolutely no reason for me to believe, no matter what they kept telling me, that if I kept on “keeping on” that I would finally get the snowball rolling. The only snowball I ever saw was the snow job I was fed on a daily basis.

    Without knowing the numbers, I would bet that for every site that is a monetary success (at least recouping the yearly cost) there are probably 500 sites that don’t do jack. But, we’re told, be patient, plug along, because “slow steady wins the race!” I just wanted to get that freaking snowball to at least begin to roll. It just melted.

    I often wondered where I would have been had I done the right things from the start. Now, I am back at the very beginning and nothing to show for it. Except that I know of one way that doesn’t work. SBI is a one trick pony that doesn’t even do that one trick well enough to be remotely considered as a hosting/web building site. Unless you are looking for some archaic way to build a business that went out with the dodo bird.

    Sayonora, sbi!

    • says

      Hey Older and Wiser,

      I’ve been reading through the comments here and had to stop at yours because I could feel your frustration and sadness at the wasted time and energy you spent building your SBI site. I have to say that my first SBI site WAS successful, but NOT because it was hosted by SBI.

      It was 12 years ago and I didn’t know any better, so I found SBI and build a site in the Stock Trading niche. It took me about 6 months to get 40 or 50 pages up, but there was never any traffic to speak of. Then quite by accident one of the members of a stock trading forum I used to visit every day mentioned I had a website (I was a bit of a ‘guru’ in the forum community because I was always helping people there) and it took off.

      I went from 20 visitors a day (probably just SE bots) to a couple of hundred passionate traders, and my income went from nothing to about $800 a month and was on an exponential growth curve at the end of 12 months.

      Sadly, just as things started to look their brightest, it was looking like I was going to run foul of some newly minted regulations about ‘giving financial advice’ without a license (which I wasn’t) and a competitor threatened to sue me (I had actually been selling his product as an affiliate for him and had made him quite a few sales – go figure) so in a panic I shut the site down and walked away from 12 months of hard work – spending hours every day after work and on weekends passionately writing content from the heart that people LOVED and wanted more of.

      When I picked myself up again 6 months later (after getting over the depression I had developed because of that loss), I built a site to help local business owners get online. Unfortunately i was about a decade early LOL and nobody wanted to know about that at the time. I still have that site, but it still makes no money to speak of even though it’s 12 years old and has over 500 pages of unique, hand written content.

      Since then I’ve built 4 more SBI sites and spent YEARS trying to make them work. NONE of them have ever made much more than the monthly cost of hosting them, regardless of what I did.

      One site has over 800 pages of unique content – all written by me by hand – and has hardly ever made more than it’s monthly cost. Another year wasted. OMG…

      That’s time I could/should have spent with my daughter or my wife instead of working all night trying to ‘make money online’.

      Sitesell has taken two of the SBI sites back on their ‘Partner with Sitesell’ program now and has Adsense on them trying to make a few dollars (since ‘their’ hosting is free). They have told me they will let me ‘buy’ them back at any time once they are more profitable.

      Good luck with that.

      Oh and I’m certain that Panda has killed any traffic they ever had so they are probably worth less now than they were a few months ago.

      I now have 63 WordPress sites hosted on 4 different Hostgator plans. I LOVE WordPress, and here’s why…

      In early April I purchased a brand new domain and spent roughly 5 weeks building a WordPress site with 15 posts on it. Within 6 weeks I had made a total of $14,000 in cash and cash alternatives from that site in NET profit with no paid traffic – all through SEO done myself. Total time invested – no more than 30 hours.

      On June 12th this year I registered another domain, and built a basic WordPress site with the default 2012 theme, and in the last 15 days I’ve earned over $6,000 from that site assuming all of the commissions are paid from the products sold (there’s probably going to be a 10% refund rate, which I’ve accounted for in the number above).

      These are just 2 examples. Do all of my WordPress sites sites succeed like this? No they don’t and I’ve got a few duds too. But then again I only spend a few hours on each of them to see if they look like they are going to be profitable. Only when they show some promise do I roll things out. I certainly do NOT spend a year (or years) any longer for zero results.

      Looking back, I think that using SBI was the one of the greatest mistakes I have ever made in my life. It cost me at least 6 YEARS (and probably more) of my life chasing something that simply didn’t work the way it was promoted.

      Worse still, not knowing any better, I sold dozens of SBI sites to other people as an affiliate because at the time I truly believed in the system and didn’t know any better.

      To all of those people, I apologise.

      I still have a SBI review on one of my sites, but I steer people away from SBI if I possibly can. Having said that, Kristi has gone above and beyond with this expose’ to really kick the guts out of the SBI mantra and the Kool-aid they spread everywhere.

      Everything she says is totally true – I was vilified in the SBI forum several times for my ‘negativity’ when all I was doing was telling it like it was. I haven’t been to the forum for over 5 years – won’t be going back.

      I could go on, but Kristi has pretty much said it all.

      So I say great job Kirsti, keep it real girl.

      Warm Regards,

      Rocky

  31. says

    Thank you Kristi.

    I too moved my SBI site, I just wish I had done it sooner. For any SBI owners thinking about moving, I posted the steps I took on my blog.

    As a recovering former SBI owner, I couldn’t agree more with everything you’ve posted. More and more of their long term customers are leaving because their platform is so far behind the times. Not to mention all the bs propagated by the spin dr, which you’ve done a nice job of exposing.

    Excellent work.

  32. Ted says

    The number of SBI! websites is now 34,100 which is 5.5% less than six months ago. Clients are leaving despite holiday offers and other discounts. I’m about to move 1 of my 3 sites and kill the other 2 and I do this after having been with SBI! for 10 years. When I started SBI! was a terrific way to learn building and marketing websites but my love has gone. I never understood why I had to pay $299 for every site. Who needs 5 copies of the same keyword tool, 5 copies of the same forum, 5 copies of the same site builder, 5 copies of the same Action Guide etc. I also never liked the forums and the mannerism of Evoy in particularly. There’s now a chat session with Evoy on YouTube and the guy even looks like an angel, all white. It’s like seeing Jesus! I’m convinced they made him look like this this on purpose. Disgusting. I appreciate internet marketers who care for their customers, but I don’t like internet marketers who behave like God. What puts me off too are his endless forum posts and the utterly boring ezines that link to these posts. I stopped reading them a long time ago. I could go on and on and give more reasons to quit but I stop here as much has been mentioned by others. The only reason why I stayed for 10 years was that I didn’t have the time to migrate my websites until now. 2 of my 3 sites are dead anyway since Panda and Penguin. These 2 were built strictly according to the Action Guide. For the 1 that I will transfer and that still makes some money I followed my gut and ignored all this excessive optimization promoted by Evoy. In the end my gut delivers better results than SBI!

    • Ted says

      I forgot to tell you something. Like most new tools the new block builder took way too long to develop and I think I know why. I once spoke someone who used to work for Sitesell and he told me that the company does not to have any or only very few employees. Most people that work for Evoy are freelancers who own an SBI site and are desperate to make some extra money. He’s just outsourcing to them whenever he needs something. It’s a surefire way to get delays and bugs if you ask me and for Evoy it’s a surefire way to make huge profits on the back of his customers. Any serious company would rely on its own inhouse pros with a decent monthly wage.

      • Ted says

        As I write this, SiteSell runs 29,600 sites on their servers. In June last year the number was 36,000. They lost almost 20 percent of their sites in about 16 months. This is not the same as clients since many have more than one site.

        It should also be noted that they now have a system in place called Move It which keeps domains that people have stopped paying for on their servers for some time (officially to make it easy to restore a site after a while).

        So, the number of domains they currently run is (probably far) less than 29,600. It’s fair to assume they have lost more than 20 percent of their business/revenue in little more than a year. This alone confirms SBI is a sinking ship — which proves their system does not work (any more), otherwise people would gladly spend their $299.

  33. says

    Hi Everyone, my name is Ken (not Dr. Ken) and I wish to be a recovering SBIer too.

    I started with SBI! back in 2004 and at that time it was a great way to get my site off the ground. Those first years I had great success. Back then SBI was a good alternative to writing code yourself, which I eventually had to do anyway to overcome many SBI limitations. In internet terms 2004 is light years away from where advancements to products like Word Press and CMS technology are today. The archaic framework of SBI makes me feel like my site is sitting in the dark ages. For the past few years I have left my articles site in place and simply paid the renewal rather than endure the pain of migrating all of my pages. I’m not a blogger so I don’t have posts to migrate, rather I have lots of unique content that I poured literally thousands of hours into researching and producing. I make a modest amount on Adsense though that is beginning to decline since I have not updated content in quite some time… mostly due to the difficulty in adding new content without having a page that looks like crap. I’ve also since set up another site specifically for my business selling motorcycle parts I manufacture and another forum for Harley enthusiasts, which takes much of my time away from moving my SBI site.

    I’m ready to move and I’m swaying toward WP as a good platform to accomplish this. I think WordPress would handle my article while giving me greater flexibility to engage with my readers. I’ve had hosting for years (Hostmonster) where I also run my related motorcycle forum (using vBulletin) and would prefer to keep everything together there. If anyone can point me toward a good method or service to migrate all of my articles and content without damaging the current url structure I would greatly appreciate it. I can be reached at Ken [at] cv-performance.com

    Thanks for this great article. It really sums up what I’ve known for a long time but have been too busy to do anything about.

  34. Mike says

    Kristi,

    Thank you for this information. I was thinking about moving from SBI and this, plus all of the comments, have convinced me to finally do it. Thanks to Joe for his link to how to move step by step. I have to tell you, I’ve had SBI for about three years with one site, and 1 and a half years for two other sites. It started off great and I was earning decent money and looking forward to more. I also knew nothing about building a website and SBI helped a lot with that. If you no nothing and want to learn, I think they are a great way to get started. There comes a point, as someone mentioned, when you don’t need all of their tools and if you want to start another site, you shouldn’t have to pay the same price.

    What’s had me looking for something different is what happened after Panda and Penguin hit. My traffic has gone way down and so has my income. I cannot justify paying SBI for the results I am getting. Also, I know from visitors that have come to my site that they really enjoy it and keep coming back. I have great content and much more information than any other site on the topic (I’m not going to mention my site now because I don’t want any issues on the “other side” in case somebody there sees this. Isn’t that terrible to have to feel that you can’t speak freely for fear of retribution to your site?). Anyway, I look at the sites that are ranking ahead of my and can only think it has to do with the templates, the way the navigation links are set up, etc. I’ve even seen sites that have blatantly copied my content ranking higher, so I feel I need to make a change.

    Which also brings me to BB2. I was happily going along with SBI’s blockbuilder (BB1) when they changed to BB2, which I have to admit is easier to work with. However, they said I could still work in BB1 for as long as I like, but since they have come out with BB2, working in BB1 is now a nightmare. It doesn’t seem to be supported anymore. If I make a change and hit preview, then close the preview, I have to go back and find where I made the change because the page has either scrolled up or down.

    So, that means I should move all of my pages to BB2, right? Well, here I am paying for SBI, they come up with a new platform, and I’m the one that has to move all of my pages? I have a couple of hundred pages between my three sites, but there are people with many more hundreds of pages on their sites. I started moving some pages to BB2 recently and it takes me about a half an hour to move each page. I know if I was in the forum people would be telling me “well once you start doing it more it gets easier and it will be faster”. Listen, I’ve done several pages and I know how long it is taking me. You have to have three windows open to do it, one for the old BB1, one for the new BB2, and one for your site online. Try keeping track of which window is which and not clicking on the wrong one by mistake.

    So, I’m moving these pages and I’m thinking “what kind of suckers must we be”? We’re doing all the work changing to the new platform and we’re paying for the privilege to do it. That’s when I thought, if I’m going to have to cut and paste my pages to a new platform, I might as well do it in something that I hear has a lot more flexibility and will be a lot cheaper, WordPress.

    My only question with WordPress is, I have a lot of documents stored in the “special file manager” with SBI. These are pdf’s that I have downloaded for people to access with links from my site. Will I be able to store and access documents with WordPress? Also, can I add as many pages as I like?

    I also have a suggestion that I thought might be funny if someone with clout ( a lot of followers with a lot of high rankings) could pull off. What if someone put up a site called anguilla-beaches-scam, or something like that went against Anguilla? Maybe putting up posts questioning it’s actual existence and it eventually ranked higher and higher to compete with the actual site that SBI promotes. I think that would make Kens head explode.

    • says

      Stan, I appreciate this. I found this post because I noticed some traffic coming from here to my tutorial. Moving is not that hard that’s true. You just need to be very attentive at every stage, but overall it’s very doable. Then you can continue working in HTML or use WordPress. WordPress is EASY and super flexible, not what you were lead to believe! In fact, in SBI! you had to do a lot more additional work to simply put page online.

      I hope moving will be even easier as I am adding tutorials to demonstrate parts of the process, for example how to copy your website with HTTrack, how to use Filezilla and WordPress videos. I hope people will find them useful.

      Recently I added a new section to our forum where you can share your experiences with SBI – good or bad. If anyone is interested it’s here (you need to remove spaces, I don’t want to linkdrop)

      http:// webmasterdiary.org/ forums/forum/your-experience-with-sbi/

      Kristi, thanks for sharing your experiences. You have an amazing blog and it’s your hard work, dedication and ethics that pay off. Tools like WordPress make things easier and more pleasant. I wish you success!

      Elena

  35. says

    Wow! I am still laughing. You tell it lady. No doubt this is legit. I stumbled on it and saw the 200 facebook videos and said something is wrong here. After going through them saw that many of them are multiple accounts with same editor which didn’t smell right but I still decided to read through all of the pages and pages of power selling and was kind of convinced after seeing free – legal – document zott con and then searched “review” and enjoyed your FIRE I must say.

    Thank you,

    -m-

  36. jay says

    I bought SBI in may of 2012. I read about it on a website by a woman who is a successful website owner and web entrepreneur. She has great information on her website, and says she bought SBI to prove that it works. However, I think she already had marketing experience that she learned when promoting her main website, and that’s how her SBI website became successful, becuase she already knew what she was doing. Anyway, after 3 months of having SBI, I started emailing SBI so they could convince me as to why their product is worth $299 per year for each website. Other web hosting companies offer 3 year hosting for less plus free hosting of additional websites all you do is buy a domain name for each additional website. They weren’t able to convince me that it WASN’T a waste of my money, so I got a refund and am now with blue host. I just launched my website and am still working on it, but so far, I think it’s better than SBI.

  37. Mike says

    If this isn’t telling, I don’t know what is. SBI always pushed coolest-birthday-cakes.com as a huge success story, which it was.
    Now, it appears they have left SBI. I don’t know if it is WordPress but the template is definitely different, and when I checked the whois, the nameserver was not sitesell.

    • says

      Very telling, indeed! And it is most definitely a WordPress site. I looked at the source code, and found this:

      media.coolest-birthday-cakes.com/wp-content/themes/cakes/style.css

      wp-content is WordPress.

      Ha! :-D

      The number of domains registered with SiteSell has decreased almost 10% since I wrote this article. I think Ken’s probably sweating bullets right about now, as each and every day his goal of reaching 100,000 customers gets further and further out of reach.

      • Mike says

        Kristi,

        Thanks for confirming that. He actually has eight sites altogether with six on WordPress and two on SBI. I’m sure he will be moving those over as well, I wouldn’t see why not.

        He probably did ask for a break on having multiple sites and didn’t get it. So, why pay
        $2400/year when you don’t have to?

        I’m sure someone at SBI must have noticed and mentioned it in the forums, but I’m also sure that you won’t find those posts anywhere.

        • AJ says

          Maybe get facts correct rather than speculating. First fact, he has NOT left SBI. Yes, the site is now on wordpress, but still using SBI with something they call “infin it”.

          That is because he gets 10s of thousands of submissions, it is physically impossible for him to deal with even a fraction of them, let alone all of them. And that is a result of his success with SBI. So a CMS that automates that sort of thing is the only possible way to continue.

          • Oven Key says

            AJ, I know you are not normally cultish, but that response most certainly is.

            SBI claims to be an all-in-one ebusiness development service. The fortunate few who do actually make the transition from hobby-site to genuine ebusiness (often in spite of, rather than because of SBI) complain time and time again that SBI won’t/can’t provide the features or reliability they need to support their business.

            When they leave, Ken (and now yourself, it seems) paint a picture of a bird outgrowing its nest. Nonsense. They are paying expensive hosting precisely because SBI claims they are all about building and supporting successful online businesses.

            The truth is, SBI can’t handle genuinely successful businesses. That’s why the people who get there (most of whom have the sort of make-up to succeed just about anywhere) have to undertake a massive and expensive migration effort to get the support they thought they were already paying for!

            Indeed, several people complained over the years that it is almost as if SBI prefers successful sites to leave, as they can’t afford the time and/or resources to support them (nto mention their outright incompetence in this arena).

            I’m sorry AJ, as I know you’re an honest guy, but trying pull that little blanket over our eyes on this issue (the very line Ken will take no doubt) is offensive and an insult to the intelligence of the kinds of people Kristi is attracting to this mini-community.

          • says

            Okay, I used Infin It!, so I know that the purpose of it is to allow add-ons to your main SBI site, like adding on a Blogger blog as a subdomain of your main SBI site, or adding on an online store hosted on a third-party site as a subdomain of your main SBI site. But you’re telling me he’s using it for HIS ENTIRE SITE so that his ENTIRE SITE can be on WordPress?

            I’m not really sure that’s helping your case any, AJ. In other words, “SBI is great for small sites that don’t get any traffic, but once you actually become successful (if you’re one of the lucky few), then SBI won’t be able to handle your site anymore, and you’ll need something powerful like WordPress.”

            My suggestion? Save yourself the future hassle of having to migrate a site over to WordPress (which could be very time-consuming and/or very costly) if and when you have online success, and just start out with the best. (That’s WordPress, in case anyone reading this is wondering.)

            Oh, and one more thing…

            Coolest Kid Birthday Parties, which has always been paraded around SBI as THE epitome of success, has an Alexa rank of almost 185,000. While that’s certainly not bad (heck, most SBI users would probably give their right arm for that kind of traffic), it’s not anywhere near what that site used to be, which means that he, too, has lost a considerable amount of traffic. His Alexa rank used to be well below 100,000. I’m thinking at one time, it was around 60,000. You know…where MINE is now.

  38. steve haworth says

    hiya, i have serious question …

    how much is hosting for your site now ?

    I just ask as i have my main site on WordPress (because i need custom php). I did well with SBI, and still have a few sites. But because i need a dedicated VPS for my wordpress site i’m paying 130 dollars a month. One good thing about SBI was there hosting (i had very high traffic sites back on SBI in the day)

    So really curious how much your hosting is for this high traffic blog and what you would recommend ?

    many thanks :)

    steve

    • says

      WHY do you love Site Build It? Please tell us about the successful online website you’ve built using the product.

      Or do you just like it because you’re an affiliate and can make money pawning that piece of crap product off on unsuspecting people? I noticed that you linked your name to an AFFILIATE WEBSITE rather than to an actual successful information website that you created using Site Build It.

      Again, tell me about the SUCCESSFUL, LIFE-CHANGING WEBSITE that you’ve built using the Site Build It product. Please provide the URL to your successful SBI website.

        • says

          So you only promote the product, but you don’t actually USE the product.

          Typical.

          Since the topic here is the QUALITY of the product being sold, and since you have NO EXPERIENCE with the actual product, and only sell it to other people to make a commission, your comments here are pretty useless.

          Thanks for playing.

  39. says

    Looks like you’re one of those people who thought that purchasing SBI! would automatically turn your site into a cash cow. And now that you’ve been proven wrong, you feel like you have to write a ‘review’ in such an aggressive manner.

    SBI! is not a scam. SiteSell does not make the claim that using SBI! automatically guarantees success, nor should they. Because it’s not true. To build any site, one needs to put in hard work, and SBI! sites are no different.

    If you chose to veer off the path SBI! recommends and found success that way, then congratulations. But it doesn’t mean that SBI! is a scam. No one is trying to say that if you don’t use SBI!, you have zero chance at success. SBI! is merely a guide, you can succeed with it and you can succeed without it.

    SBI! sites may have been hit by Google updates. But that, whether you like it or not, is the fault of the customers, not of SBI!. As I said, SBI! is merely a guide. The websites themselves are just like any other sites – in fact, Google has no way of determining whether a site is built with SBI! or not. If a site was hit, that’s not automatically because the owner bought SBI!.

    I agree that SBI! sites are often hard to navigate and often have old-fashioned designs. But that is a product weakness, it is most certainly not proof that SBI! is a scam. SiteSell does not claim to have modern designs, in fact they admit that they neglect design. Weakness yes, scam no.

    As for mentioning the difference in the number of affiliates vs. the number of customers, that is probably the most ridiculous point in the whole article Kristi. This doesn’t prove anything at all, and it has zero relevance to your argument. The fact you included that ‘point’, and as your First one no less, crushes the possibility of any credibility this article might have.

    It’s a real shame this web page ranks so highly. It’s not a review, it’s a flawed, angry rant.

    • says

      Charles, might I suggest that you take a reading comprehension course? When I left SBI, my Alexa rank was somewhere around 124,000. That’s waaaay far better than the average SBI site, and even much better than the overwhelming majority of the sites they tout as “proof of SBI success”, and I did it WITHOUT USING ANY OF THEIR SPECIAL TOOLS. And that, in a nutshell, is why my site wasn’t even touched (and in fact, from the evidence, was actually helped) by Google’s panda and penguin updates, while those who followed the Action Guide to a “t” were left with their sites completely decimated by Google’s updates. So your entire first paragraph is moot.

      But to your main point…

      SiteSell absolutely DOES use misleading information and outright lies to sell their interior product, which I prove conclusively on the supplemental pages of this review. (Perhaps you didn’t bother to read those pages.)

      Consumer Fraud Reporting defines a scam as a company that uses “misleading, misdirected or exaggerated claims in advertising.”

      Since SiteSell does that, it falls under the definition of “scam”. Period. End of story. 1 + 2 = 3. And you can argue until you’re blue in the face that it equals 4, but you’d still be wrong.

      But have you every heard the saying “actions speak louder than words”?

      Let me just point out that while you come here vehemently defending SiteSell and insulting me….

      THE WEBSITE THAT YOU LINKED YOUR NAME TO IS A WORDPRESS SITE!!!!!!!

      HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!

      Thanks for the laugh….and for proving my point for me, Charles. SiteSell stinks, and WordPress is the absolute BEST choice for building an online business, which is why it is THE most popular CMS in the world, it is the top choice of SEO professionals, and it is the top choice of the most successful SEO bloggers who make tens of thousands of dollars each month on their sites.

      Sitesell stinks. WordPress rocks. The end.

      Thanks for playing.

      • says

        Once again, your logic is flawed. You have totally misunderstood the nature of WordPress and SBI!.

        The fact is, WordPress and SBI! are apples and oranges.

        WordPress is CMS software. SBI! is not a CMS.

        SBI! is a web host, a guide and a system. WordPress is none of those things.

        Due to the technical nature of SBI!, it’s not currently possible to run a site on both WordPress and SBI! at the same time. But they are not competitors.

        By using WordPress, you sacrifice the guidance and business tools that SBI! provides. By using SBI!, you sacrifice the superior site structure and navigation that WordPress provides.

        As I said, you can’t use both. So you have to choose which one you want to give up. But if someone chooses WordPress, that doesn’t mean that they don’t still think that SBI! is a good product.

        The truth is, I wish I could use both. They’d complement each other. The fact that I choose to go with WordPress does not mean that I ‘prefer’ it to SBI! – it means that I would rather have website structure automated and do the setup myself. That’s my choice, and it’s a valid one.

        Those who choose SBI! would rather have the website setup automated and choose to create the structure manually. That’s their choice, and it’s a valid one. Again, it doesn’t mean they think SBI! is superior to WordPress – because the truth is…

        SBI! and WordPress are different products solving different problems.

        And one more thing Kristi, have you any idea how hysterical you sound? The fact that you can’t stay calm only makes you look insecure and a lot less credible.

        • says

          Perhaps you missed the point that Ken Evoy has dedicated at least TWO pages on his marketing website to comparing SBI to WordPress (again, pages that are filled with misleading claims and outright lies), and using made up numbers to “prove” that SBI is superior to WordPress. And perhaps you also missed the fact that the whole thing that started my war with SBI in the first place was a post on their Facebook page in which THEY compared WordPress to SBI, again making up complete lies about WordPress, in an effort to make their crappy product appear better than WordPress. Why do they continually do this? Because THEY see WordPress as their biggest competitor.

          Heck, it’s like you’ve never even seen their website or their Facebook page! What exactly IS your relationship with SBI? Let me guess…you SELL it?

          Your further remarks aren’t welcome here.

          • Oven Key says

            Actually, we can forget all about the fact that SBI and WP are different beasts. Ken claims over and over that BB2 (the ‘site builder’ component of SBI) is a quantum leap ahead of WordPress!

            That’s right. Ken has claimed many times over that his apple (BB2) is better than the WordPress apple.

            Nobody agrees with him. Or at least, nobody who has used both systems agrees with him. To agree with him on that claim would make you a lunatic.

            WordPress is to SBI as an iPhone is to a LandLine.

  40. Stan W. says

    Kristi, you’re absolutely right. Evoy hates WordPress and oftentimes makes idiotic comparisons of “apples and oranges” (as per Charles) to “prove” WordPress is useless.
    Charles must be an affiliate, a salesman and so he does not welcome your remarks.
    And his writing style??? Well, I hope I’m wrong but he sounds like THE Charles from SBI forums, one of Evoy’s “attack dogs”. Pathetic.

    • says

      No, what’s pathetic is that you make assumptions like that without any evidence.

      I do not sell SBI and I take offense at you calling me a ‘salesman’ and ‘attack dog’. I have no idea who ‘THE Charles’ is, and I have never been on the SBI forums.

      If you don’t believe me, search my site. No mention of SBI.

      What’s really pathetic is that that you and Kristi think that I must have some relationship to SBI, some incentive, or I wouldn’t have defended it like I did.

      Well, I don’t. I am simply someone who knows that there are people who have found success with SBI. Lisa Irby and Rebecca Turner to name just a few.

      I have no reason to defend SBI other than the fact that I believe people deserve to know that this article is heavily biased and simply not an accurate representation of what is a legitimate product.

      Is that too hard for you to understand?

      • Mike says

        ” The fact that you can’t stay calm only makes you look insecure and a lot less credible.”

        Now that is funny! Have you ever read Kens long-winded posts when he is “attacked” in a forum. I am waiting for the day that he says “I’m taking my ball and going home”.

        Also, Lisa Irby used SBI to start her business, but I think if she had a choice today, she would go with WordPress.

      • Adil says

        Charles, please explain why Sitesell’s official reply to the Sitesell Scam search appears lower in Google search results than Kristi’s SBI review (i.e., this page)?

        I mean, if as you claim, people who opt for WordPress are losing out on SBI education, how come Sitesell’s owner can’t top this uneducated WordPress user in the search engines?

        Maybe the education is no longer relevant to today’s version of ‘keep it real’ on the web.

  41. says

    I don’t know all Lisa’s sites, but at least her 2createawebsite appears to be under private name servers, which is impossible in SBI! I believe it was a SBI! website before, unless I am mistaken.

    I don’t particularly hate SBI!, but there are many parts to it I find annoying – constant technical problems, limitations, strategic stretching of truth – the list goes on. It’s no surprise to me that some people have such strong feelings about them, like Kristi has. And Kristi is not the only one. The smart thing to do would be to ask themselves why this scenario repeats over and over again? There should be an issue we have missed and need to find and fix it. It’s not just one hysterical client. They have a history of disagreements like this. So there must be something wrong about them.

    It’s kind of funny how they conditioned some of their customers to believe that anyone outside is a loser. They sincerely believe that. They think it’s $300 per year issue. It’s not. $300 per year is not an issue for someone like Kristi or even someone like me. It’s not an issue for many or even most of us as we manage to earn much more than this amount per year. The issue is why limit yourself (technically speaking)? Why do all extra work that SBI requires you to do (while claiming it’s so much easier than anywhere else)? Our time is valuable.

    I don’t find their teaching particularly valuable. You can find this information in much better format for free. Even AG was available to everyone for free just a few years back. Their TNT and MHQ are nothing more than work of their own customers. Most of articles there are written by their customers. I don’t see any reason to believe that most of these articles are more valuable than any random post on the subject you can find via Google.

    Besides that, when you start realizing that you were at least somewhat manipulated initially into believing you were getting a great deal (which isn’t the case) you don’t want to waste your time with this company anymore. That’s all. It’s about integrity.

    It’s not only SBI! who do this by the way. Teaching newbies is one of the most profitable things to do. If you are attentive, you’ve already realized that. Marketing to marketers (newbie marketers), teaching newbie web designers how to get paying customers (at $50 per month), teaching how to blog newbie bloggers (profitable even when done for free, because they will need that hosting plan!) are just a few examples that come to mind.

    There is no problem with it of course, however some people go too far in attempt to make more money. In my opinion SBI is like that. I never called it a scam, but I do feel bothered by many things they do and say, like stuff they say about WordPress, behaving as if they know what Google wants and pretending their tools are the solution for that etc. Once this realization became very clear I simply left.

    So Charles, don’t underestimate our intelligence. We do have a great perspective and we know what we are saying. If you like SBI, good for you, but don’t try to censor us here when we are expressing our genuine opinions.

  42. Ted says

    33,369 SBI sites now. That’s almost 1,000 less than 2 months ago despite the 2-sites-for-1 special they do at the end of each year. They’re losing customers with the speed of light.

  43. says

    Everyone is right but one man’s junk is another man’s treasure. You may think it doesn’t apply but it’s how you look at it. I wrote here in the past that SBI should not be considered a scam as much as most Wall Street businesses should not be labeled so. Ken Evoy is a business man and if you don’t like his business don’t patronize. Enough of this scam labeling.

  44. FormerSBIMama says

    Kristi, I’ve been following these threads of comments on and off since you first published your article. I agree with a lot of it and haven’t posted in the past because everything that I would have posted about has been covered by others very eloquently.

    However, something popped up on SiteSell’s facebook wall that I believe is necessary to shine a light on. This is the best place I can think of to do it where it will be seen and hopefully passed on. I am not the only person that knows about this, but yet, it is not something that was widely known about at the time I’m sure.

    Ken recently posted about an “I love SBI Too” video contest. He wants people to submit videos of themselves explaining why they love sbi. The best video gets a prize.

    “I Love SBI” video submissions where done once before several years ago with much success according to SiteSell. The end result was a large collection of videos that would be used as SBI affiliate marketing tools.

    As an SBI affiliate you could log into the Affiliate side of SBI; and go grab the code for whichever “I Love SBI” videos you wanted to embed on your SBI sales pages.

    Over the years those videos have been posted on all kinds of affiliate SBI sites to market SBI.

    The problem was, and may still be, that there were no policies in place to control which affiliates were using the videos and what kinds of sites they were embedding them on.

    Subsequently, an “I Love SBI” video with the image of an SBIers very young child was embedded on a site which contained graphic adult content. It was immediately, and glaringly inappropriate.

    It may surprise some to even read that there are SBI sites with graphic adult content. I started at SBI some 5-6 years ago, and back then the assumption I was under, and dare I say many others were under, was that SBI was family oriented and that sexually explicit content was not allowed. That turned out NOT to be the case at all.

    The graphic site was reported but it took SiteSell more than 12 days to actually remove the video from the site.

    It was later brought to light that this was not the only, or even the last time that images of SBIers with their families, submitted during that “I love SBI” video campaign ended up on “Adult” themed websites.

    Anyone considering submitting a video to SBI needs to understand that in the past those videos have been turned into marketing materials of which you relinquish control.

    Unless there are NOW policies and safeguards in place to PREVENT inappropriate use of those videos, SiteSell does not take steps to know where those videos are embedded.

    If you intend to turn over any image of yourself, your children or your grandchildren to SiteSell please reconsider.

    If you’re convinced it’s safe and you don’t believe this comment I would ask why risk it? At the very least read the fine print before you submit images of your loved ones to SiteSell.

    Do not blindly trust that the content you turn over will be used in an ethical, family-friendly manner.

    • Oven Key says

      “The graphic site was reported but it took SiteSell more than 12 days to actually remove the video from the site.”

      Given how long it takes SiteSell to do anything at all, the 12 day delay, as pathetic as it is, was not the worst of it. The most horrifying part was that the delay was due to Ken Evoy refusing to take it down, despite understanding exactly what was going on, and despite the poor mum’s desperate pleas.

      Ken was actually willing to put a family through this disgusting experience rather than take down an affiliate ad.

      It is a desperate company. And Ken is a very desperate man. And if you think he was desperate when that last competition took place, we can only imagine what he is capable of now that his customer base is in mass exodus.

      • says

        Regarding the “mass exodus” of customers, you’re absolutely correct. I spent about two hours yesterday looking through SiteSell’s stats on http://www.dailychanges.com. The numbers corroborate what I’ve stated in my article. SBI is a scam that promises things it does not and cannot deliver for the overwhelming majority of people who use it. Period.

        SBI started out 2012 with 37,229 domains registered on their servers. Over the course of the year, 34% of those domains were either deleted or transferred away from SiteSell.

        Sure, they picked up a few thousand new customers along the way. There will always be new people who are wow’ed by Ken’s misleading marketing pages, but the key is that they can’t seem to HOLD ON to their customers, and overall in 2012, they had a net loss of almost 10%. 2013 has started out just as bad for them.

        Out of the 366 days on the calendar in 2012, SiteSell had a net loss of domains registered on their servers on 297 of those days. That’s a net loss during 81% of the year!! And even during December 2012, during the time of year when they have their annual “buy one get one free” sale, they only had a net gain of domains on 4 of the 31 days. Heck, they can’t even get ahead anymore by giving the product away!

        It’s all even more laughable considering that in a recent forum post, in one of Ken’s long multi-page rants, he stated that his goal was to reach 100,000 SBI customers, because with that number of customers, they would have the budget to make SBI everything he had hoped and dreamed (and probably buy himself a new, bigger beachfront mansion along the way).

        Hey Ken, you’re gong the wrong way!!

    • says

      I do completely believe this story because I’ve heard it from several other sources as well. I think it’s disgusting that videos were allowed to be used in such a way, and that Ken and co. were so slow in doing anything about the problem. Money and marketing come first for Ken, no matter what unethical choices have to be made to get there.

  45. Ted says

    Kristi, thanks for your post about the “mass exodus”. I’m one of those who transferred a domain from SBI to a new host and the support guy who unlocked the domain for me did not even try to keep me on board. I still have a site with SiteSell which is difficult to transfer but I will do it shortly. One of SBI’s problems which hasn’t been discussed very much is that there software is getting more unreliable all the time. Nowadays it often takes hours to brainstorm a few words which is something that could be done in only a couple of minutes two years back. A lot of people complain on the forums but I get the impression that many don’t seem to care anymore.

  46. Oven Key says

    Kristi, I hope you’re going to submit an entry into Ken’s latest “I LOVE SBI!” video contest. He could do with your support. There doesn’t seem to be a lot of Ken Love in the air right now :-)

  47. says

    I wrote a long article here last week and I see it has not been published. To suggest SBI is a scam should be actionable as defamation. Any such claims are total nonsense. The blogger may not have used all its facilities and they have several things that may need updating and/or are annoying but they are the most honest professional organization you will ever find.

    Nothing has shown here that SBI, in all these postings, is a scam. People may not be satisfied with it, but that does not mean it is a scam.

    If I were acting as Ken Evoy’s lawyer I would suggest he take out defamation actions against anyone who places these blogs, because not even the blogger thinks they are a scam, they were merely not happy with it, but Ken Evoy is wiser than me. He has issued a rebuttal against all these claims and treated them with the disdain they deserve.

    SBI is a marvellous investment, but if you do not want to do it, or want to leave then do so. They offer you a ninety day money back guarantee when you start, no questions asked. That is the mark of an honest and reputable organization which is exactly what they are.

    Not everyone will be suited to SBI and/or be prepared to do the necessary level of work the SBI way to build a successful business online and/or feel they can do it elsewhere. If so then nothing is stopping them doing just that.

    I would say that welathy affiliate offer a keyword analyser for around £40.00 per month extra on top of their subscription. With SBI you get it for free. Spare your time besmirching the reputation of a good company.

    • says

      I won’t even bother responding to Peter directly. He, just like everyone else who defends SBI, just wants to threaten me, but has absolutely no inclination to actually address THE FACTS that (1) SBI uses false, misleading claims, as well as outright lies, in their marketing materials, and (2) the overwhelming majority of people who use SBI have absolutely no online success.

      And to anyone reading Peter’s comment, I encourage you to click over to his website. In fact, I’ll make it easy for you: http://www.music-stardom.com/

      THAT is what you get with SBI. An outdated, ugly, bare bones, stripped down website that looks like it was built in the early 1990s.

      And for the record, Peter’s site is over one year old (started February 6, 2012, according to betterwhois.com), and doesn’t even get enough traffic to register an Alexa rank. No rank AT ALL. I’ve seen websites registered at 15 million and even 20 million. His doesn’t even have that.

      So you can be persuaded by his moaning and threatening, or you can look at the facts. SBI is crap.

      As a side note, it’s because of the hundreds of people like Peter (who vehemently defend the product, as well as Ken, even though they’ve seen no personal success) that SBI has a reputation of being cult-like.

      • says

        I am very grateful for your views but if SBI is a scam then it is a scam on them because to offer all that they do for just under £20.00 per month, I do not know how they make it pay. Every conceivable question you could ask is covered in the action guide, the forums, and the SBI tips and techniques.

        Having started with SBI I notice that you used few if any of their facilities rigfht from the start which begs the question why on earth did you join them if you were not going to do it the SBI way? Why not have stayed with wordpress in the first place?

        As to my own site, I thought I had explained but may be not, that I left it alone for a whole year having only done eight pages, so I am only beginning to start again now.

        The stark design, as you say, was my choice. I have chosen so far not to have images on it as I felt that this would detract from the information supplied.Of course it has no alexa ranking and only a few visitors. I have left it alone for a year.

        As to design and images SBI lets you use their own pre-made templates which you can customize to your satisfaction or you can upload any template and images from wherever you want, so I am afraid that this is a complete mistruth what you are saying.

        If anyone is unsure, then instead of listening to all this, I suggest they try it for three months with an unconditional money back guarantee. You are certainly not offered this with Wealthy Affiliate. I believe that if you try SBI you will be very happy with it.

        Not everyone has succeeded with SBI and most of the complaints come from people not using the facilities properly or at all and/or who do not have the proper mindset to work at it and build a successful ebusiness online. If you just want a website up, blogging, and are in a hurry then SBI is not for you and it tells you that in the action guide.

        The more I read of this blogger on this subject the more I am convinced that this is just to give the blogger high rankings in the search engines. She has shown why she felt herself unsuited to SBI but she has given no evidence that it is a scam. If they are losing custom, I am sorry, but overall people could be leaving for a variety of reasons, such as a successful website which they are having hosted elsewhere while they start on their next, thus saving them money.

        I know several SBIers who are on to their fourth website with SBI and doubtless are among the statistics of those leaving to save money having their sites hosted elsewhere as they have learnt what to do as a result of being a member of SBI. Leave them alone. This whole concept of doing them is itself a massive phoney.

    • says

      You can analyse your keywords for free using the Google Adwords tool.

      And you’re paying $30 per month Peter.

      This is just one of a long list of problems with SBI, the biggest one of all being the owner.

      • says

        What you mean this guy doesn’t realise you can use Google Adwords to keyword storm?

        Oh dear, that makes me sad. It means that he’s been taken in by the lies of Dearest Leader Ken and ripped off. I hope this chap realises one day that he’s been taken for a ride.

        Google Adwords is actually better at finding keywords than SBI’s weird and creepy internal tool, that evoy claims you should be paying much more for.

        • says

          My traffic almost doubled after moving away from weird SBI.

          I think it’s because the SBI host servers have been flagged by Google as having a farm of similar, bizarre sites on them.

          I also have reason to believe Google detest SBI sites, because of all those strange affiliate sites set up, only to promote SBI.

          We all know those Google updates were designed to rid the world of lying affiliates who promote products they never use.

          The plummeting traffic of SBI sites is proof of it.

          And they don’t even let you have private registration of your domain name either!

          Cheap, strange and forum attack dogs.

          • says

            Yes good point and I heard that was true.

            Of course, when looking for an honest review I’d MUCH prefer to stumble upon this one, by a former customer, rather than some LIAR promoting sbi and pretending it’s amazing.

            SBI is basically a pyramid scheme.

            I just feel sorry for all those folk on a trip thinking they’ll make money one day when they only money to be made is by people who lie about SBI to promote it.

            Still judging by Ken Evoy’s personality, nothing surprises me.

            The only question is how long does SBI last for?

            Losing 1,000 customers per month gives it max 18 months before they panic.

            What happens to all those poor customers then?

  48. Oven Key says

    SiteSell have finally publicly addressed the issue that Elad is now using WordPress as his main platform. If you feel like a chuckle, you’ll find their embarrassing cover up at

    http:// www. warriorforum .com/internet-marketing-product-reviews-ratings/665937-has-anyone-used-sitesells-sbi-2.html#post7780593

    Just delete the spaces in that url

  49. Oven Key says

    Kristi,

    Congratulations! This fun little sbi-mini-blog of yours is now #4 on Google for the keyword “site build it”. That is incredible stuff!

    You must have quietly kept an SBI subscription active to access their keyword stuffing tools to perform this miraculous feat in such a short time. You sneaky thing you :-)

    • says

      Oh yeah! I’m patting myself on the back right now. :) And every day when I get emails from people thanking me from steering them away from SBI, I do a little happy dance.

      And yes, of course I needed SBI’s keyword tool in order to make it to the front page of Google. So thankful for Brainstorm It! And it’s too bad there’s not another tool anywhere on the internet, such as a free tool offered by the biggest search engine in the world, that will do the very same thing. :-D

  50. says

    I guess you’ll list me as a SBI! cult member Kristi even though I have 11 websites and 3 blogs and love WordPress.

    Though does protest too much and am curious as to why you would list anyone who comes to the defense of SBI! as some kind of “cult member” or “pro-Ken” or even “pro SBI”.

    Like AJ, I only have 2 SBI! sites. I have sites with Go Daddy, Hostgator and as I say 3 WordPress blogs. So I guess I have to ask this question?

    If you ever go inside the forums and look up my posts (and I do a lot of complaining inside the forums), please tell me how many forums on the web that allow discussion to the point of critique of their own company policies and tools? I’ve made some statements inside the forums that are so anti-SBI!’s policies that I would have kicked me out of their forums, yet Dr. Ken has no problem with discussion in a respectful manner or any free expression of views that are anti-SBI!.

    That speaks volumes to me so I don’t need to defend Dr. Ken or SBI!.

    Having said all of this, I happen to believe that WordPress allows me to do things that SBI! can not. I have a membership site that requires database access and php scripting for password recovery. SBI! does not have that. Inside the SBI! forums you’ll find threads that are labeled “3rd party solutions”. In those forum threads they talk about using GoDaddy for domain forwarding, WordPress for membership websites and blogs to attach to your SBI! website as well as hundreds of different software programs to use with your SBI! website.

    Again, my question is this? Who else on the web allows freedom of discussion about 3rd party solutions that has nothing to do with SBI! and who allows the posting of links to those solutions inside their own forums?

    Am I a SBI! cultist? I guess if 2 out of 11 websites with SBI! is your definition of a cult member, count me in. If your definition of someone who disagrees openly inside SBI!’s forums and calls a “spade a spade” and gets away with it some kind of cult.. I’m a cult member.

    So for those of you who are on some type of “tipping trip” and don’t know which way to go, I highly recommend using GoDaddy, Hostgator or WordPress as your platform. Stay away from SBI!. I don’t need the competition and frankly which about 5,000 of their 40,000 customers would go somewhere else too. I’m tired of competing with these people!

    All the best,
    Paul

    • says

      Actually, you’ve said everything that needs saying. You go into the SBI forums and post anti-SBI rants, and you believe that WordPress is more powerful than SBI. Perfect.

      One thing though…

      SBI has far from 40,000 customers (I’d estimate somewhere closer to 15,000), and they’re steadily losing customers each and every day, and have been for well over a year now. It’s a sinking ship, and anyone who looks at their customer numbers over the last 14 months or so can see that. If you want your site going down with that ship, that’s completely your decision.

    • Oven Key says

      As far as I can tell from your post Paul, the only argument you have given for using SBI is that the owner lets you complain about its deficiencies and discuss 3rd party add-ons and alternatives. LOL

      Guess what Paul. Outside the confines of SBIsland, you can do all those things for FREE!

  51. says

    So Kristi, look into your magical ball and tell me what it says about your total of 61 posts inside the forums.

    I haven’t read them all but your last post was asking for help inside the SBI! forums on how to add a “blogger blog” to your website and I see your reply to other SBI!’ers as being very thankful for their help. Shall I post your post here with all the replies or should I post your post that talks about your SBI! site was a gift and you didn’t even start on it for 6 months or care to use the tools inside SBI!.

    I mean do you really want to act as an authority about SBI! when you didn’t even use the product or are you afraid for me to post copies of your SBI! forum posts. I mean do you really want to go there?

    How can you claim to have used SBI! for 3 years when you didn’t. You admitted in your first post that you didn’t even get around to SBI! for 6 months and chose to upload your own html.

    Stay tuned. I still haven’t read your other 50+ posts (which by the way I see no one banning your thoughts or questions or barring you from expressing your views so far).

    But Kristi, I’m more than happy to research this some more if you like.

    All the best,
    Paul

    • says

      Paul, I have no idea what you think you “have” on me. I stated in the article above (that you clearly didn’t bother to read) that I had a Blogger blog added to my SBI site using Infin It!, and that I didn’t use any of SBI’s tools because they seemed foolish to me — just another way to game the search engines — and I didn’t want to do that…

      AND…

      I also stated that my site, without the use of SBI’s tools, did MUCH better than the average SBI site and had absolutely no issues with Panda or Penguin (like so may “by the book” SBI sites did). And I also mentioned how my site has soared since my move to WordPress.

      Seriously. You look like a jackass.

      • says

        You need to do a little better job of reading there Ken. I think I mentioned that I complain openly inside the forums about a lot of SBI’s tools and strategies. My point was “I’m still inside the forums and not banned” for being anti-kool aid. One of my biggest complaints was using the Adsense income model or content driven websites to go along with lack of ability to do php scripting for membership models… etc… etc..

        So Ken if that’s not clear enough for you, I’ll be happy to point out more examples because I’m not afraid of posting here and I have Kristi’s assurance that she won’t censor me.

        • says

          Actually, what I said is:

          “SBI! customers are welcome to comment here as long as you give the URL of your website, and the date it was created (keep in mind that this info is easily verifiable) so that we can gauge your online success via your Alexa rank.”

          Seeing that you have not given that information to us yet, I feel no obligation to allow you to continue posting your nonsense on my blog.

      • says

        Kristi,

        I don’t feel I have anything “on you”. I don’t know you. I’m just trying to figure out how you claim authority of “3 years with SBI!” on you piece when it’s clear from the your post I’ve read so far that you did not use “brainstormer”, keyword tracker, Content 2.0 and did not even purchase SBI! for yourself to begin with and did not even start using your gift for 6 months and preferred to upload your own html and still got help inside the forums using 3rd party non SBI! stuff without objections or banning.

        You have no problem with truth or facts do you Kristi. My question to you is do you have a problem with me posting your SBI! forums posts here to get at the truth? Yes or No?

        Paul

        • Oven Key says

          Paul, just as a reference point for subsequent discussion, can you please reveal whether or not you earn income, in any shape or form, through recommending SBI?

  52. says

    I’m sorry Kristi. You asked for my url on my SBI! website. I’ll be happy to furnish that. I’m happy to get as much traffic as I can anyway that I can. My website is: http://www.fyipromo.com/ and if you do a “who is”, you’ll find the truth about how long it’s be around.

    Now. Please answer my question. Do you have any problem with my posting your posts inside the SBI! forums to get at the truth here? Yes or No?

      • says

        I remember this Paul guy from the forums at SBI.

        He would post some pretty furious stuff, quite aggressive.

        It all came to a head when forum members there realised that some of the posts were SBI employees masquerading as normal customers.

        Paul is one of those people, PAID by Evoy to patrol the forums, originally as a ‘real customer’ who vehemently defends the SBI cause.

        He did come clean and admit he was being paid by SBI to do this, to be fair to him.

        An incident I recall in fine detail.

        • says

          I remember this event too, over at the peculiar SBI forum world.

          Indeed, what happened was that Alicia, an SBI customer of several years and several sites, was viciously attacked and shut down and made to feel like an outcast.

          You see, Alicia, who I respect for her integrity and courage, actually expressed her opinion.

          This is frowned upon at SBI, where unless a forum posts is an opinion supporting Ken Evoy and his curious SBI world and its members, there is a very strong chance it will be removed very quickly.

          I worked out that Alicia had spent 4 years at SBI, and for 2 of those years owned 3 different sites.

          This means that the $2000 she had handed over to help pay for Ken’s island villa’s new swimming pool didn’t mean anything.

          And her crime?

          She expressed her opinion, after discovering that the SBI CEO Daniel (or whatever his name is) was in the forums posting and pretending to be a regular customer, with a regular website.

          For that she was hunted down by the SBI pack of dogs, mercilessly chased out and threatened with a ban, and subsequent removal of her websites.

          And from what I recall, Paul here, was a very vocal supporter for the anti-Alicia brigade. Kind of like one of the bigger, more angy canines heading the pack.

    • says

      My posts in the SBI forums are irrelevant, and I’d rather not have my comment thread mucked up with you posting my 61 comments from the SBI forums. I seriously have no idea what you would hope to prove or gain from that.

      Anything that I posted two to five years ago in the SBI forum has absolutely no relevance to the topic of this article, which is (1) SBI’s misleading, outright-lie-filled marketing pages, and (2) the complete failure of the overwhelming majority of SBI sites to live up to the hyped promises of Ken Evoy and Co.

  53. says

    Kristi,

    You said I could post here, then you said I could not because I did not give you my url. I gave it to you, would you like the URL’s of my non-SBI! sites? I don’t want to hold anything back here or give the impression of hiding something. I’ll be more than happy to give you my URl’s of my membership website http://mad-u.com or my blog http://themadwebmaster.com or any of my other 10 websites. But I have a deep deep feeling that won’t serve your purpose because the truth usually rises to the top eventually. I love WordPress, Hostgator and SBI! and I’ve been doing this stuff just a wee bit longer than you and know that each platform has its strengths and weakness. I have no axe to grind. What about you?

    • Oven Key says

      Paul, just as a reference point for subsequent discussion, can you please reveal whether or not you earn income, in any shape or form, through recommending SBI?

      • says

        Hi Ken,

        I’ll be happy to answer your question.

        I am a Site Sell sales advisor. Even though I’m not an employee and had to give up my affiliate status, I am a contractor who earns income helping people make a decision on purchasing SBI!.
        I get paid whether you purchase SBI! or not.

        So not only do I own my own SBI! websites, I get to help answer questions for those who email or call into SBI! to learn more about making a decision on getting involved with SBI! or not.

        This is why I laugh when I see garbage like this online. People argue about WordPress vrs. SBI!. There’s no comparison. Each has its own strengths and weaknesses. Drupal, SiteXPro, WordPress and SBI! all have advantages and dis-advantages. I happen to love them all and use most of the platforms.

        For example, my http://mad-u.com site is not a SBI! website, my http://themadwebmaster.com blog is not a SBI! website so I know that different applications work better than others.

        But here’s a question I have for you. Why would a company like SBI! allow me to recommend other platforms to people inquiring about SBI!? (hum… I need to think about that one)

        Why would SBI! allow me to recommend WordPress to some inquires when its the best solution for their application? or Wild Apriocot for memberships sites or 1shoppingcart.com for ecommerce stores. Wow! I guess I’m fired now.

        Note to newbies: I apologize for saying this was funny. It’s not. SBI! is not for everyone nor does it contain every application but in my 12 years online, I simply can not find anyone who does a better job helping you build your first website online… and they do it with Integrity.

        • Oven Key says

          Thanks Paul, I read you loud and clear.

          So if you were to go 12 months, or perhaps even 6 months, without recommending SBI, or or without closing any SBI sales, you’d lose your job. And if negative reviews like this one resulted in SiteSell closing down, again you’d be down a salary.

          Cool. I just wanted to set the scene for the discussion you are trying to generate.

          • says

            You can spin this anyway you like Ken. I made it very clear that if I owned SBI! I would have banned me from the forums a long time ago and truthfully if I had a sales advisor telling other people that WordPress would fit their income/website model better, I would have to say in all honesty that I might replace that person.

            But that’s not what you really wanted to hear anyway and I’m sure you’ll spin it the way you want, but I invite you to write me with a fake name and a fake email and send it into SBI!’s sales team and if you get me and tell me you’re interested in a membership type website, I promise you that I’ll be recommending Wild Apricot or the Wish List membership plugin on a WordPress site as a 3rd party solution and using SBI! as your traffic magnet. That way you’ve got the best of both worlds.

            I wish you nothing but the best.
            Paul

          • says

            I remember Paul from the forums. He is an aggressive and quite one-sided defender of SBI, hardly the renegade he makes himself out to be.

            Paul is perhaps on the top ranking of SBI defenders inside their unusual closed forum world.

            This shouldn’t be surprising as Paul finally admitted (after many years of masquerading as a normal site-owning customer) that he was being paid by SBI and not in fact, a regular customer.

            That explains the pugnacious tone of many of his forum posts. Ken was paying him to behave in this manner.

            Paul deserves some respect for finally coming out and admitting this.

            Paul appears to be going to great lengths to present himself as someone very different to his SBI persona here.

    • says

      Actually, it did serve my purpose, Paul.

      Your seven-year-old SBI site has an Alexa rank of over 1.6 million. In other words, it’s a typical SBI site. (To clarify, that’s not a compliment.) So thanks for sharing.

      And YES!!!!!!, I have an axe to grind. I have absolutely no idea how I could make that any clearer, or why it would even be questioned.

      I hate SBI, want to see them driven out of business, and when that day comes (and it will), I will dance on the grave of SBI. Clear enough for you?

      • says

        Thank you Kristi. Understood.

        You seem to be a nice person and I think I get it now and I wish you nothing but the best. I would have hoped that before you sat yourself up as an expert on SBI! that you would have least gave the tools inside the package a chance or at least used it for the 3 years that you claimed.

        So I guess my question to you if it was ok to print your forum posts in your own words is a No Go?

        Silence…

        • says

          Paul, it doesn’t take an expert on SBI to look at their marketing claims, compare those with the actual, real-world results of SBI sites, and see that SBI absolutely does NOT live up to the hyped promises of Ken & Co, and that the overwhelming majority of SBI customers do not, and never will, have enough traffic to make more than a couple of hundred dollars a month, which is far from the “life-changing” online business that Evoy claims every customer can have.

          And just because I didn’t use Brainstorm It, Analyze It, and whatever else, doesn’t mean I’m not familiar with them. But I am fully confident that my steering clear of those tools, which are used to manipulate search engines, is precisely why my site was not only spared by Panda and Penguin, but actually had an increase in traffic after those Google algorithm changes, while a large percentage of SBI customers who HAD followed the system precisely had their sites completely decimated by Panda and Penguin.

          And look where I am now. My Alexa rank as of today is 61,480, averaging 750,000 pageviews a month, and making a very comfortable full-time income. All on one WordPress site, still without using any fancy tools to try to game the search engines.

          I actually laughed out loud when I read your description of SBI sites as “traffic magnets”. Seriously absurd, especially when you take a look at the actual Alexa ranks of the average SBI sites, and also consider the mass exodus of SBI customers over the last 14+ months.

          • says

            Kristi, if you were familiar with “brainstormer” you would have not made the statement that it’s a tool that manipulates the search engines.

            Does Google want you to manipulate their search results?
            Nope.

            How does a tool like brainstormer that gives you insight to keyword competition or number of searches manipulating the search engines?

            Google provides information like this in their free keyword tool that also will show you how much competition you have for PPC adwords.

            I would think it makes great business sense to build your foundational core of pages around keywords where you have less competition. Google must feel that way to because they provide the number of searches and competition on their free keyword tool.

            When I think of search engine manipulation I think of keyword stuffing, duplicate content, un-related back links that have nothing to do with your niche… and so forth. In other words, not keeping it real.

            Gaining insight on number of searches and your competition is not search engine manipulation.
            This is another example of my concern that you don’t really understand the tools inside SBI! or the strategy for using them.

            As to your comments about Alexa. Alexa is not an indicator of success, neither is page rank, neither is traffic. I could care less about Free search engine traffic. To me it’s like icing on the cake… I’ll take it when I can get it. If your income model is not build on content or free search engine traffic (ie: affiliate marketing or your own products and services), you don’t need to focus on pleasing the search engines. I could care less that my Alexa rating is 1 million or 2 million or that my page rank is a 2 and yours a 4. I care about one thing. Am I building a list? AmI selling a product (my conversions) and am I building a clientele.

            Now hold on to your britches there because this is very anti-SBI!. You ready?

            I refuse to do any Google dance or be at the mercy of any algorithm changes. I don’t have an Adsense income model on my websites. I don’t rely on thousands of site visitors. So touting your Alexa ranking just doesn’t do it for me… I even laugh at people inside the forums who tout 1,000 site visitors per day. But what’s in their bank account? 0. nadda… zilch…

            I’m shocked at you Kristi for using the same stuff that SBI! uses. Alexa… rankings… traffic from the free search engines… none of it means anything without income. That’s the true measure of success. (no offense to my SBI! or non-SBI! friends) I’m sorry but you’ll just have to flap your traffic talking jaws somewhere else.

            Now if you want to talk about a responsive opt in list of 5,000 (keyword is responsive) or more and a 4-7% conversion rate on your products… you’ve got my attention and respect now.

            I want to thank you for not censoring me. You honored your word and that’s a big deal in my view.

        • says

          Paul, quite frankly, this conversation is becoming circular, and it’s boring me.

          Yes, I understand the tools and the system. I understand that right from the start, rather than encouraging people to find a niche that they’re passionate about, they’re encouraged to find a micro-niche based on competition (or lack thereof) — one that has people searching for it, but doesn’t have anyone providing that information. (In my opinion, and based on my own personal experience, this is the absolute worst thing about SBI’s process. People wanting to start content sites should only, ever start a website about a topic that they’re absolutely passionate about, no matter how much competition there is!!!)

          I understand that the Brainstorm It! tool helps you find key words that people are searching for in your micro niche, and helps you whittle them down into a select group of keywords that don’t have much competition. And then Ken’s AG instructs you to take those key words, structure them into Tier 2 and Tier 3 pages, and write articles around them. (In my opinion, and again, based on my own personal experience, this is another big mistake, and there’s no way you can convince me that this whole system isn’t about gaming search engines.)

          I understand that the Analyze It! tool looks over the page before it’s uploaded to be sure that it fits a cookie-cutter format, e.g., key word in the title, key word in the first 90 (or however many) words, link back to that page at the bottom of the page, plus a whole slew of other checklist items that are to be included in every single page.

          Yes, I READ THE ACTION GUIDE. I didn’t do it, but I read it. It’s all about how to create pages with so-called “perfect SEO”….pages that Google now calls “over-optimized”…pages that no longer rank high in Google searches.

          You say you don’t care about content sites, or Alexa, or free Google traffic, etc.

          Fine. Good for you. If you’re making money another way, bravo. I really, honestly, couldn’t care less. (I simply cannot stress that enough. I. DO. NOT. CARE.)

          My beef is with SBI! And what do they teach? They claim that they will teach any person how to create a content website that relies on free traffic from search engines, and that will bring in so much traffic that the income will be “life-changing”. They use Alexa ranks as THE gauge of how successful their sites are. And (are you listening?), they repeatedly compare their product to WordPress in their marketing pages in an effort to try to make their product look good by making up completely ridiculous statistics and outright lies about WordPress so that uneducated, ignorant people will be scared into believing that their only option for creating an online business is SBI.

          That, in a nutshell, is why I hate SBI, and why I think it’s a nothing but a scam…because that system DOES NOT WORK. Period!

          And there is absolutely NO WAY that SBI is better at creating content sites than WordPress. No way, absolutely not, never, ever, EVER.

          So again, if you’ve chosen a different direction than that taught by SBI, and you’ve found success with it, that’s great for you. But really, since you’ve clearly chosen a different path (i.e., internet marketing), your argument doesn’t add anything to this thread. It doesn’t take away from the fact that SBI is crap and that most people who use it according to the Action Guide won’t have online success because the whole idea of creating content sites that thrive just off of free search engine traffic is basically dead. It doesn’t change the fact that SBI is a sinking ship that is losing traffic on a daily basis, and has been for well over a year now.

          And let me end by saying, once again, that my WordPress blog DOES bring in a full-time income for me. (I actually wrote in detail how I make money blogging, and an average of how much I make with each method. That was actually written seven months ago, when my traffic was about 6000 pageviews less per day than what it is now, and before I started my WordPress business, so my affiliate income was awful then.) I don’t focus on internet marketing, or selling products, or list building, or “conversions”. I make that income with a site that provides quality content…what SBI claims it teaches, but fails at miserably.

          Now if you want to add my income from the WordPress work I do each month, that income that I mentioned previously more than doubles (and that’s not even counting the $1200 or so that I make from HostGator referrals). But seeing that the whole idea behind this article (and the whole idea behind SBI) is making money from content sites, we’ll just stick to the full-time income that I make directly from this blog and leave it at that.

          And I would encourage you to keep all future comments on topic. I don’t care about your internet marketing venture. I don’t care about your products, your list building, your conversions, your membership sites, or any other non-SBI-related thing.

          I care about whether or not SBI, as it is sold and taught in the Action Guide, works for the average customer. And the answer is a resounding NO.

          • says

            “Like”

            “I care about whether or not SBI, as it is sold and taught in the Action Guide, works for the average customer. And the answer is a resounding NO.”

            I have to agree. I’m your typical average person who put years into building an online business with SBI’s tools and action guide. Life changing was not my result. Thousands of hours of my life wasted. That was the result I achieved.

          • says

            Paul says:

            “you’ve got my attention and respect now.”

            I think he’s been watching Django Unchained, and thinks that particular line by the character Calvin Candie packs some punch, and makes him look cool, so is using it for himself on a regular basis now.

    • says

      I too notice that Paul is presenting himself very differently to his real online persona in the SBI forums.

      The lengths he is going to to defend SBI and its rather bizarre world are, although in the guise of a respectful and diplomatic fellow, just as persistent and aggressive as they always are.

      With any SBI review that does not sing its praise from the rafters of the Dearest One Evoy’s temple, come the attack dogs of the rapid response team.

      This rapid response attack dog team have changed their tone somewhat, but are still as persistent and stubbornly aggressive as they ever were.

  54. says

    Well it’s a pity that this otherwise excellent blog has now descended into the same kind of attack dog response to every pro SBI poster that the log’s originator accuses SBI of carrying out :-/

    I must admit I’m becoming increasingly frustrated by SBI. The lack of certain basic functionality in their block builder (for example, inability to set default font, that type of thing) is irritating. But what really kills it for me is things like lack of 301 redirection, a pitiful selection of default templates that are extremely difficult to change, the lack of a one column template which has been promised for months now but never seems to appear, the continued failure to deliver on the promise of mobile functionality etc. And don’t get me started on the backend Site Designer!

    I’m going to investigate WordPress over the coming months as my subscription expires in July. I will probably move, although I’m not exactly looking forward to the prospect.

    Erron

    • says

      Erron, I didn’t find moving my site to WP hard – but it did involve a fair bit of work.

      I already had the domain name which I’d been using as a blog (but NOT via that silly infinite thing). However, I always uploaded my own HTML, which made things a lot easier. I had Daniel Papecke (who’s awesome!) do the actual downloading and re-uploading of the posts. I did all the CSS re-design of the site mid last year.

      The biggest part of the work was going through and undo the harm caused to our site by using Analyse it, and changing the way pages were laid out as we’d gone from one of those awful 3 column narrow templates to a nice big 1280px layout. It was an absolute JOY to be finally able to use photos larger than 100kb – after all I have a travel site that’s based on one of the most scenic places in the world!

      I’ve been using WP years longer than I’d used SBI, so I found the whole system archaic when I went there from WP in 2010. In fact, I couldn’t believe how unfriendly the backend was compared with WP – which is so sleek and intuitive. I also found the lies in the forum about how ‘hard’ WP was to learn and that it’s only meant for personal blogs infuriating. Umm… there are thousands of beautiful tutorials and walk-thrus on how to use WP.

      When we finally shut down the SBI site about 8 weeks ago, I had to undertake a bit of a process due to their ridiculous 301 policy:

      -set up hosting elsewhere (normal hosting with a cpanel and FTP)
      -Recreate the HTML SBI site on the new host
      -change the nameservers from SBI to my new host
      -Within Cpanel, manually redirect several hundred pages to their corresponding page on dashless URL (Except for the Index page and the sitemap which are still the same)
      -Upload new xml sitemaps in Google analytics – one with only two pages on it for the old URL, and a brand new one for the new URL to make the Google bots come running

      After all this, I am happy to say that it only took 48 hours and our traffic was back, and has increased since leaving SBI. I am now ready to work on a 2013 redesign of our site.

      • says

        Thanks Amanda. Problem as I see it for myself is that I don’t have the technical experience with websites that you do. Redesigning my site CSS stuff is at this stage quite beyond me, as is the rest of the technical stuff you refer to above. That was the reason I went with SBI in the first place: to have a point-and-click block building solution so that I could concentrate on creating content. Now it seems I haven’t escaped the rather odious chore of coming up to speed with the techo stuff after all.

        Fortunately my site is comparatively small, only around 130 pages. And I have negligible content 2 stuff to worry about at this stage, and quite happy to ditch that in any move. Plus I am already beginning to work through my pages in my spare time and strip all the keyword stuffing crap out of them, not to mention the fact that I haven’t written a page in this manner for the last 30 pages or so.

        So would I be able to just pay some expert to do the transfer, or is it cost prohibitive? I’m on a fairly tight budget.

        As to SBI’s 301 policy, it almost seems as if they deliberately try to make it hard for people, and perhaps that’s why 301 redirection is still on the wish list after so long a time?

        I have used CPanel in the past when I ran a forum, so I guess I can go back and learn all that stuff again but it was several years ago now. And I really do like the idea of just being able to concentrate on writing, since that’s what I believe I do best and certainly what I enjoy most.

      • says

        Yes Paul from the forums.

        He is paid to defend SBI at all costs and has certainly dished out his fair share of posts in there, some quite domineering.

        Paul finally came clean about it at least.

        Erron, there is no attack on Paul here, just people saying what actually happens. Think about it.

  55. FormerSBIMama says

    The worse the numbers get for SBI the more aggressive the sales pitch and the push back will become. I’m not surprised to see Paul here at all. I’m actually surprised it took this long.

    The tools at SBI were good in their day, (about a decade ago) but they were never maintained to stay relevant with the changing internet. It’s really that simple. The Mailout Manager is a horrible tool compared to Aweber. Mailout manager has you blindly sending emails to dead addresses that you pay extra for if your list goes beyond a certain threshold.

    The last few times I used Brainstormer it would just spin, and spin, and spin and the results had no consistency….so what’s the point?

    BB2 has been broken and seems has broken a bunch of other stuff since the day it finally launched. And MobilizeIt!…..Is that still going to be just a one page version of your site that’s mobile friendly? That was the plan last I knew about it. WP has themes that just “know” when your visitor is on a mobile device and adjust accordingly. You don’t have to do a thing. Just pick a “responsive” theme.

    Value Exchange is a bust now. It’s backlink manipulation that Google has exposed. It’s foolish to use it now.

    By now it is pointless to behave as though SBI is great and that there aren’t serious problems. People like Paul get paid no matter what…so, they’re going to tow the line to the end. Others are afraid because SBI really is all they know. And Ken has skill at coming across as a kindly paternal figure when you’re new and have no clue what you’re doing….until you say something or ask a question that rubs him the wrong way.

    The forums convince you you’re more tech savvy than you actually are and that you’re getting more accomplished each day than you actually do. It can be hard to pull away from that, but if that’s how you feel then just stick to it until you can’t anymore, because the constant defense of SBI and denial of everything that’s been so wrong for so long chases rational people away even faster.

    The desperation has become glaringly obvious.

    Ken would do himself and his staff a huge favor if he would just be quiet, and fix what’s wrong. Stop talking about how great SBI is, because clearly it’s not helping. Stop marketing products that don’t exist. He “sold” BB2 for years before it launched, and now he’s been talking about Mobilizeit! for almost as long. It does not exist. It may never, so Ken needs to stop talking about that and every other SBI thing that doesn’t work the way it should and simply fix it, or let it just go quietly into the night.

    Stop trying to trick people into thinking that Elads sites are all humming along on SiteSell’s servers. They are not. His content is elsewhere on WP via Infinit! Stop talking about BB2 as if it’s everything that was promised. Far from it. And for goodness sakes stop trying to use the same tactics you use in the forums to control the conversations out here.

    Telling people they didn’t try hard enough, or they must not have followed the Action Guide, or used the tools, or they’re just simply troublemakers with some kind of vendetta against Ken Evoy because he’s worth that kind of time is just insulting, and silly. I cringe for those of you embarrassing yourselves with continued, futile attempts at saving Ken’s business.

    The customer base is shrinking. It has been for over a year. With each passing week customers drop off a little faster. That’s not because a little rogue band of “naysayers” have decided to join up with Kristi and topple the company. Get real. It’s because the product doesn’t work. Whether or not it ever did is irrelevant at this point. It doesn’t do what Ken over-promises it will do and those unsatisfied customers want to make their opinions heard.

    There are just too many intelligent, rational exSBIers posting real reviews for you guys that are pushing back on behalf of the company to continue trying to undermine these people using watered down Ken bully tactics without looking ridiculous, and confirming the notion that SBI is some kind of creepy cult freak show.

    If you want to hang with a company that’s on a consistent downward trend then go right ahead, but don’t insult the rest of us by pretending that little tidbit is irrelevant. Because THAT verifiable fact, is both literally and figuratively SBI’s bottom line.

  56. sandi says

    I was with SBI a while back.

    The purpose of my post is to make a couple of comments and ask a couple of questions about wordpress, since I’m no longer using sbi for building a site. As far as wordpress, are there any plugins that would keep your blog from going down.

    I must admit that I had never heard of SBI servers going down in a huge way and that was one of the things that attracted me to them in the past. I want to try wordpress now but I’ve known some bloggers who lost everything. Is this normal or were they missing something?

    As far as the templates, I do like the flexibility with blogging systems.. I’ve used blogger and I was able to make more changes easily than when I was using the block builder templates.

    Do you think one can have a nice blog with one of the easier templates in wordpress?

    The issue I had with the sbi forums was that although many were friendly, many times I felt that as a newbie my comments and thoughts were not responded to by some of the more popular folks.

    I was intimidated at times having my website url displayed in the forums when I did not wish to do so.

    I heard that some have requested more privacy for their url in the forums because at some point some people felt that there website information was being copied.

    Thus far, I understand that at least one of your urls must show in your profile.

    In sum, I think I’d feel comfortable using wordpress over the CMS system if I could just feel more confident about my blog not being under attack or taken down so much.

    Also, interested in what you use for your keyword research other than google keywords.

    And, when you need support or someone for counsel do you have some favorite forum(s) to go to.

    Thank you for your post concerning SBI.

    • says

      Sandi, your WordPress site’s downtime has less to do with WordPress, and more to do with the host, as well as the hosting package that you choose. For example, if you have a highly trafficked site, but you’re on a shared hosting plan and your blog uses up too many of the server’s resources, your blog could go down.

      There are plugins that can help speed up your site, and help it run more efficiently, such as WP Super Cache, and W3 Total Cache. I personally use the first one.

      It’s most definitely not normal for a blog to go down and for the person to lose everything. I’ve personally never heard of that happening, but again, that would be a host issue. Just be sure that you’re using a good, reputable host, and also be sure to back up your site every so often (perhaps weekly). There are plugins available for that, and also some hosting companies include weekly backups as part of their services.

      You can definitely have a nice blog with a simple theme. However, keep in mind that themes are more than just how the site looks. The way that the theme is coded can have a big effect on how efficient your site runs, how secure it is, and it can also affect things like SEO. So it’s better just to bit the bullet and buy a premium theme. I use Genesis themes exclusively for that reason.

      I personally only use Google Adwords for keyword research. But if you want something that gives more detailed info, I’d recommend something like Market Samurai.

      I don’t go to any WordPress forums, other than WordPress.org. When I have a question, I just Google, and I always find the answer. There are thousands upon thousands of YouTube videos and blogs that are all dedicated to the topic of WordPress, how to use WordPress, specific WordPress plugins, how to design your WordPress blog, and so much more.

      • sandi says

        Thank you so much for answering. I really appreciate it. Your comments were helpful. Looking forward to visiting your other parts of your website. I’m going to go for it.

  57. Adil says

    I really can’t believe how this mini-series has become such a big nuisance to Sitesell! And to think it all started with one pointless post on Facebook by Sitesell’s Aaron! You go girl!

  58. says

    My experience with SBI was shockingly bad in the end..

    I worked like a man possessed to get my sites off the ground and I was taken in by the whole idea of building 10 different sites and earning nice passive ad commissions from them.

    One of my sites started to do reasonably well until it got hit by SE updates of course, just like 80% of SBI sites did.

    Of course, the SBI backlink method and over-optimizing of pages saw to it that my sites were downgraded to page 20 of the search results last year, on 2 occasions.

    Every company can have problems but I genuinely despised the way Evoy dealt with them.

    Here are a few examples:

    - calling out individuals on the forum for daring to say what that they were not happy with something (in one case it was a lady who questioned why SBI employees were disguised as customers on the forums) and threatening to wipe out their websites they had been working on for 3 or 4 years

    - shouting down people aggressively when they did not agree with him and dared to say so

    - locking and deleting threads where there were posts that did not conform to his ideals

    - employing a team of very weird moderators to oppress opinions that did not agree with SBI (think Debs, Brankika and other odd bods)

    - lying about everything to do with WordPress and bitterly making constant post after post about how SBI was better, without even comparing it properly

    - providing some fake report about the Panda and Penguin updates that was the same as the strange Action Guide and did not help anyone, despite saying it did

    - taking credit for any successful site yet distancing himself from any site that had problems and blaming it on the owner

    - blaming a combination of Lissie Sowerbutts and Google for one negative review that appeared high in the search results about SBI

    - threatening and bullying Lissie S on her site with legal action, which failed

    - sending strange attack teams to forums to paste countless messages about the benefits of SBI and refusing to acknowledge any weaknesses

    - lying on their site about those who provide negative reviews about SBI, saying they are evil people who are trying to bring SBI down when they are clearly just ex SBI customers like Kristi

    - getting big forum hitters to gang up on people in the forum who did not agree with them (see above, Paul was an active part of that)

    - doing everything possible to stop SBI people from looking outside of their forums. You see, if you look outside the forums, you may actually realize that what you are doing is completely flawed.
    - encouraging affiliates to lie about their success with SBI when their only success was with promoting the SBI program itself

    - lying about the age of his daughter who probably did not even build that showcase website anyway

    I do not like a single thing about Evoy and I was very much against his attitude in the forums. A thoroughly repugnant man who tries to blame others, control and repress without accepting any responsibility.

    I am not on any personal mission, I just saw this review and thought I would add my own opinion.

    I am just an ex SBI customer who worked hard and was misled. The very day I looked outside SBI was the first day my new web business started to turn around.

    The only positive point I have to make is that SBI taught me exactly how NOT EVER to run a business.

    Thank you for reading this.

    • says

      are you a mind reader Roger, if i had started with a blank piece of paper and wanted to build a list of the REALITIES of SBI it would have been a carbon copy of your comments!.

  59. says

    Well well well, what a fascinating read.

    As an ex-SBI site owner, I must admit that much of what is said about Ken and Sitesell here is more or less accurate, apart from some of Paul’s claims, which he is apparently being paid to write on behalf of Sitesell (now I understand a few things).

    I recall a particularly prolific SBI defender called Brankica too. I would always compare her to Paul and others being paid to promote SBI. She would come up with some very bizarre comparisons and praised SBI at any cost.

    However her main blog which she earns all of her income is made with WordPress. Hmm.

  60. Oven Key says

    Damn! We only managed to squeeze in about 350 complaints against SiteSell before the Warrior Forum locked our thread.

    Oh well. I’m pretty sure its future readers will get the gist ;-)

    • says

      I just notice that! I clicked over to catch up on the latest, and it said the thread wasn’t found. For a second there, I thought the whole thing had been deleted! I was about to get quite upset! Then I realized it was just the last page. At least we had the last word, rather than Stacy or Curtis. :) So I’m okay with that.

      • merpmerp says

        I hope it wasn’t my fault. I noticed my answer to Oven Key’s post regarding how Ken would have answered his question was deleted, as well as the original question. Maybe Stacy was upset and reported it?
        I never did get to see page 9.

        • Oven Key says

          Don’t worry merpmerp. If it was about that game, then the blame is on me. Sorry all!

          On a positive note, that thread is #8 on Google now for ‘SBI Review’. Kristi and Sowerbutts trade blows for #2 and #3. At #1 is a strange Squidoo page with a boringly transparent affiliate review. Funny thing is though, the comments on that page are mostly just like the ones here and those at Warrior Forum. Scathing!

          I can’t see how anybody doing even the slightest bit of research on this company could avoid our helpful feedback. Well done to all :-)

    • says

      very disappointing end to the thread, i would suspect either Ken sent in the “storm troopers” to complain on mass ….or he had a hissy fit & threatened legal action on everyone!.

      I was really hoping that we could at least have completed indepth reviews of ALL the main components of the SBI system before getting shutdown…..

      We must all reconvene again on another thread real soon….

  61. says

    Hi Kristi

    Shameless bit of promotion here, but having just got 25 sites moved out of SBI in the last 6 months, if there are current SBIer’s who are only held back from moving by the fear of it, please get in contact. The person who did all my moves is very good & at $1.25/page + $25 for new site design they are the best value in the market!.

    Kind Regards
    Kevin

  62. says

    I guess I’m one of the few who made some money with an SBI site following the AG. I was getting about 3.5k visitors a day (lower on weekends) and making almost $3,000/month in Adsense and affiliate income when Panda annihilated me October 2011. At first I lost 80% of my traffic/income but it finally dwindled down to just 10% of its previous levels.

    I followed the Action Guide and I used SBI’s tools like crazy. Well, except for BlockBuilder. I already knew HTML/CSS before I moved to SBI and after using BB1 for 5 pages I couldn’t stand it anymore, so I created my own CSS template and did UYOH. But I used just about everything else. And I got hammered. (By the way, the site I’m referring to is word-tips.com just in case anyone here doesn’t know who I am.) It may take me a few years, but I will eventually rewrite that whole site and hopefully it will recover.

    The SBI way did work for a time but it does not work anymore. Writing to keywords at a certain density is no longer ignored by Google, and if that is how you get your traffic, you are going to get clobbered sooner or later. I can’t see Google EVER going back to the old way so AnalyzeIt-based sites are doomed. Of course, if you don’t depend on Google organic for traffic (smart!), you aren’t in the same mess as most SBIers.

    I am contacted regularly by people moving sites from SBI and needing help, which I find sad because before I used SBI, I moved my sites between hosts all the time. I never had to set aside weeks of my life to do it. By using FTP it only took a few minutes to upload the site once I got the new hosting set up. But depending on the size of a site, it can take days, weeks, or even months to move a site from SBI. (Well, unless you scrape it and upload the HTML as is with no code repair). Most people just don’t have the time or technical knowledge to do it.

    When I move sites as HTML/CSS I have to go into the code and clean up the unbelievable mess from BB1. If anyone thinks that Google would ignore the kind of code disasters I’ve seen, you are naive! Here it is 2013 and SBI was still using tags that were deprecated eons ago. BB2 isn’t as bad code-wise but now there are blocks of SBI code all mixed in that have to be removed so it actually takes me just as long.

    Sadly, there are some people I’ve helped move that I don’t think can’t make it outside of SBI because they don’t want to learn HTML or WordPress and they can’t afford to pay someone to do everything.

    I think it is a disservice, no, dishonest, to tell people they can have a successful online business without EVER having to learn anything technical. It just doesn’t make good business sense to not learn some HTML if you are a running a website. Web publishing is no different than any other occupation… there is a core of knowledge that you need to acquire to be successful.

    After leaving, I actually moved one site back to SBI after BB2 came out because I wanted to get my hands on it after waiting years to see it. I think it is a lot better than BB1 by miles and you can do a lot more with it, but you can’t do everything you want without writing some custom CSS. So again, that is an advanced skill and if you are using SBI because you don’t want to write code, then you have to pay someone to do that for you or go without. By the way, that site was over there just a few months and is now on WordPress. I just couldn’t stand it any longer.

    Here are a few of my other beefs:

    1) Ken can access your account including your stats, email, FormBuildIt data and anything else he wants to look at any time he wants. After I realized that, I quit using SBI mail. It is not secure from prying eyes. If you don’t believe me, look through the forums and see how many times Ken posts people’s stats in the forums without their permission. I can’t ever imagine the CEO of HostGator accessing my webhosting account and snooping around much less posting my stats on the support forum! It would never happen. And if Ken is snooping around your stats, what’s to stop him from looking at how much action you get on your contact form to see if you are lying about your success or failure?

    2) No 301 redirects. I have never run into another host that does not allow redirects. And I’ve owned websites since 1997 and have used lots of web hosts. It is one of the basics of running a web site! Not offering redirects is like running a canoe rental service and not offering paddles.

    3) Complaining about the product/service puts your business at risk of retribution. I see people complain on product support forums which usually results in a friendly customer service rep coming to their aid to help solve the problem and make them a happy customer. I’ve never seen anything like the flaming and hatred spewed out at people just because they are incredibly frustrated with a product that doesn’t work half the time, ESPECIALLY by company reps. I even had an SBIer tell me he wouldn’t pray for me when my health went down the toilet unless I kept a site at SBI! (I still pray for him, though. I care more about people than a company.)

    4) I still have clients on SBI and I work on their UYOH sites. I have had to start charging MORE for SBI sites because it takes so incredibly long to upload. This was about 2 months ago… it took me two hours to upload a page to look at a couple of changes I made. Unfortunately, the redone include took an extra day to update so I had to wait until the next day to see if the page was okay. It is a disgrace how much time is wasted using SBI. I can upload an entire website in less than a minute with FTP, or publish a page to WordPress in seconds. So my SBI clients are paying an hourly fee for me to get the “Sorry!” message over and over and over again or sit here watching the twirly-gig spin endlessly.

    5) Some of the people in SBI support do not have a clue how to use the tools. At one time I had a problem with a C2 form. I went round and round with the support guy for 5 days before he admitted to me that he didn’t know anything about C2. This was a person SBI hired to help us with our sites and he didn’t know how to use C2, a major component!!! Another support person finally solved the problem. But it took a week! Why in the heck didn’t the first guy pass the ticket to someone else from minute one? And it was an easy-peasy fix. Actually, it was something that should have been outlined in the help files which I brought to their attention. Hopefully, it has been added by now.

    6) SBIers are asked to volunteer to contribute marketing tips and new business ideas for Ken, test products, create content (TnT), fight Google, and more. All of these activities take time away from that person’s business. In other words, it costs them money while Ken is saving a bundle on marketers, consultants, copywriters, and product testers. Those who decide not to participate are sometimes demonized. The despicable “Nazi sympathizers” remark comes to mind. (That still makes me mad.)

    7) This irritates me to no end…marketing junk in the help files. I’ve already bought the product, I just want to know how to use it. Don’t waste my time marketing me constantly. What is the purpose of that? (Yes, I know the answer…)

    8) I suspect SBI is compressing photos because I have seen first hand how much better the same photos look after moving them from SBI. The only change was the webhost.

    Someone mentioned the wish list asking SiteSell to give us some protection in the forums by allowing us to hide our URLs. Well, I started it! That wish didn’t come true and never will. The clincher for me was an SBIer asking for help on his site (same industry as my husband) and I found our own content on his site! The nerve! I gave him a refund and blocked his IP. Fortunately, we had moved that site to HostGator by then so we were able to easily block his IP address. You can’t do that with SBI.

    Anyway, I don’t harbor hatred toward SBI but there are things that I see going on that I have never seen with any vendor I’ve ever used. I always said that SBI was a business tool and nothing more, and when that tool was no longer profitable for me, I would find something else. And that’s what I did.

    Sue

    P.S. I used to have 3 websites and about a dozen or so parked domains at SBI, so I was about 15 of their customers.

    • Damian says

      Dear Sue!

      OMG! All you’ve said the truth, only the truth, and nothing but the truth!

      THAT’S IT! You have helped me make my final decision: no more SBI. That’s it.
      I moving away from SBI NOW.
      With that they will be losing 9 customers (1 website + 8 parked domains) out of their 40K or whatever the real number is.
      THANK YOU!

  63. MarcusFBN says

    Hi Kristi,

    Could you let us know over here if another Sitesell SBI Sitebuildit review thread starts in the Warrior Forum?
    Perhaps post the link.

    Also, Oven Key has the last post, in the Warrior Forum so perhaps (when there’s a new warrior forum thread) he could also edit his post and add the link at the end of it to ensure continuity?

    I think it will be a good idea to keep the warrior forum review threads open…
    The more people that can find an avenue to express their opinions the better.
    What do you think?
    Cheers

    • Oven Key says

      Hi Marcus. You cannot edit posts in closed threads in the Warrior Forum it seems.

      And on that subject, you might want to take a local copy of any posts in that thread that you’d like to refer to in future. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if Ken is threatening the forum with legal action. That’s how he works when he can’t win a debate.

      Not that he has a legal case of course. His lies are thoroughly documented here on Kristi’s site and elsewhere on the Web, and are in any case very easy to substantiate.

  64. Oven Key says

    Well folks, looks like Ken is an even cleverer Spin Doctor than we gave him credit for. Here’s what he’s doing…

    As we all know, Ken has been the biggest promoter of hyphenated domains on the Web. Even he has had to admit now that Google penalizes hyphenated domains. Naturally, he describes the practice of using hyphenated domains as going against the Action Guide, even though somehow magically virtually all sbiers use them.

    But anyway, here’s his plan (as per a recent forum post). He’s promising 301 redirects to come soon. (They won’t of course, but that’s his promise). He’s now telling everyone to rush out and Name Park an UNhyphenated domain in preparation for when he allows 301 directs some time after May.

    Now I didn’t appreciate the full sliminess of this underhanded ploy until Princess Leia pointed it out, but do you know what that means? It means that he will improve his figures at DailyChanges.com by getting everyone to go out and nab themselves nice clean unhyphenated domains. Even though there’s nothing you can do with it until he delivers on his promise (which could quite possibly never happen).

    Is he the sneakiest, slimiest, snake-oil salesman on the planet? He has avoided scaring people off hyphenated domains because it made him look bad, UNTIL he hatched this plan to get people to buy more domains to plump up his very publicly plummeting DailyChanges figures! What an A-hole!

    The things this man will do to avoid just creating a decent f*&^king service and apologizing to customers for his mistakes.

    Naturally, it will at best delay his inevitable demise, because nobody will actually be buying and building new websites, but still I find this man more and more repugnant every day!

    • Oven Key says

      P.S. Just to be clear, the 301 redirect functionality will ONLY be available via Name Park It domains. In other words, you will only be able to use it if you promise to help him fudge his DailyChanges stats. And there is no guarantee that you will get the functionality after you buy your domain anyway.

      I was going to have a break from posting complaints against that disgusting man, but now I’m ready for round 2.

      • Jeremy Beadle says

        I take it not a single domain on name park was even offered the option of privacy?
        Stop. Spammer time.

    • says

      Hi Oven Key

      Yes i just read his latest “spin”…..it might help create a smokescreen to enhance the illusion that the SS Sitesell is not sinking……but $10 “Name Park It” domains will not stop his ship from sinking!!.

      • Humphrey Harrington-Joverley says

        No privacy for your domain!
        SBI people apparently aren’t aware of it.

        This Evoy chap seems like a real piece a work. I do hope all of these SBI website owners wise up and read this excellent review.

  65. FormerSBIMama says

    I’m not sure that Ken’s latest ploy will make any noticeable difference at DailyChanges.com. I purchased variations of my domain back when I first started. I certainly wasn’t savvy so there was something that prompted me to do that back then or it’s just kind of a no brainer. I think, the latter. I think a lot of people already do that, as can be seen by the domains and variations that fall out each day.

    Yeah, Ken may get a few people to rush in and buy those unhyphenated names, but I don’t see it changing the direction of the company.

    It’s shows there is no plan. He’s making desperate, off the cuff moves to try and change how things look but it seems there is no plan to really fix what’s broken.

    It seems like he’s just grasping at straws.

    • says

      Hi All

      This one raised a smile today, proudly showing on “Daily Changes” as a 5 year old SBI site deleted this very day may i present……TIMEFORSBI.COM you couldn’t make it up heh!.

  66. Washer Bletherington-Humberley Scott Davidson-Smythe says

    I was in the process of searching for SBI reviews and stumbled upon this rather fascinating gem of a review.

    I say ‘gem’ because it does appear to be unbiased and based on real experience.

    Having read all the comments I can quite clearly see that there are some very genuine opinions here and the Paul chap appears to be attempting a clever trick to defend SBI at all costs. When somebody said that he actually works for SBI and is not a customer, I understood that his was not a balanced opinion at all.

    One month ago, I was researching SBI and found almost only very positive reviews, including on youtube. But now when I perform the same search, I have finally found reviews by real chaps such as yourselves.

    The honest and genunine feedback on here has convinced me to steer well clear of this unusual organisation and it’s rather unpleasant owner.

    As a business owner myself with plenty of experience I can confirm that an organisation reflects the owner. I would give this company 3 or 4 more years before there are very serious problems.

  67. Oven Key says

    SITESELL SITES ARE NEVER DOWN!

    Ummm… except for yesterday. And a few weeks ago. And that other time last year. And a couple of times prior to that…

    Prepare for more Spin Doctor entertainment folks :-)

    • says

      Oh No!, not another distributed denial of service(DDOS) attack orchestrated by those evil “SBI haters” or is Ken not paying his bills now?.

      • Oven Key says

        LAST MONTH: “we have worked to correct the situation doing everything possible to make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

        THIS MONTH: “I’m now confident that this type of human-error issue will not reoccur.”

        ====SIDEBAR==============
        No really. This time we are mega-extra-super-duper-totally-really-and-truly positive.

        You know… like we were when we promised you that dealing with Panda was the LAST time you would ever need to redo your site for Google. And remember all those times we promised you that you would NEVER EVER be penalized for inbound links? And how about the way we predicted that using lots of hyphens in your domain name will NOT hurt you in the search engines. EVER. Not to mention our endless reassurances that the look-and-feel of your site would never matter, because Google only cares about the content.

        But you get the idea right?
        ===============SIDEBAR================

        TLDR: Trust us. Our promises and assurances are as ROCK-SOLID as our customer base. (But don’t trust DailyChanges.com. They are lying stinking SBI-haters)

  68. says

    Hi All

    Just checking Daily Changes today……Elad is on the move!. The following sites are now showing as being transferred OUT OF Sitesell and into “stabletransit.com”:

    coolest-baby-showers.com
    coolest-holiday-parties.com
    coolest-kid-birthday-parties.com

    Wonder what smokescreen Ken will come up for this one?.

    Regards
    Kevin

    • says

      When I check the “whois” for these sites, it states “sitesell” is registration service provider. Doesn’t this mean he is still with sitesell? Am I missing something?

      • says

        I just looked them up on whois.com, and it shows the nameservers for those sites as:
        Name Server: DNS1.STABLETRANSIT.COM
        Name Server: DNS2.STABLETRANSIT.COM

        That’s not SiteSell.

  69. says

    Thank you so much for posting this! I only recently started blogging on wordpress and was looking into SBI! as a way to learn about generating income with my writing. This article definitely made me reconsider. I know I don’t want to go with SBI! but do you have any suggestions for good resources? There are so many sites and books out there and I’m having a hard time finding good comprehensive introduction to monetized blogging. Did you read any good books on the subject, or how did you get your start? Thanks again!

  70. James says

    As an SBI owner of 2 years my biggest gripe still stands.

    The SBI traffic stats are totally misleading \ exaggerated by 100-500 % or more.

    I was at pains to point this out as were many others. No one, I mean NO ONE from SBI support or customer service is prepared to discuss this. You will get referred to forum stickies that provide confusing answers and serve no purpose but to frustrate you, as the customer, even more! The most common response was “don’t worry about the numbers, just keep building content using the AG” Huh?

    The point still stands: Allowing people to believe that 100 vistors per day means just that – 100 people visited your page, is misleading and building false hope. An SBI owner may spend hours or more monetizing their business at that stage, only to receive zero income because the reality is that they are getting a fraction of that traffic in HUMAN visitors.

    It may not be blatant lies that are being told, but the issue is that the facts are not being covered the way they should be. Period.

  71. Washer Bletherington-Humberley Scott Davidson-Smythe says

    The answers people give you will all depend on what you intend to create a business with.

    As someone mentioned before, working out how to monetize your content before doing anything makes more sense.

  72. says

    Hi James

    Having moved all my sites out of SBI over the last 6 months, and only ever used their traffic stats….imagine the SHOCK i had when i found that many of my sites were getting less than 100 daily uniques, yet SBI was telling me 600-1000 daily uniques!.

    The SBI traffic stats are complete junk and zero value, along with many of the other SBI products they are broken, and nobody really cares……but you have to understand why the SBI Forums are there…..they are purely as a shop window for SBI to sell “additional services” at inflated prices by PAID mods and forum members!.

  73. says

    Well that is interesting Kevin.

    What caught my eye was of course this:
    “Elad still promotes SiteSell on their website.”

    Yes of course he does. This is how he earns half of his income.

  74. says

    Hi James,

    Yes, I too fell for that when I was first in Sitesell. However, as I also had a number of WP sites, I installed Google Analytics on my site and got the real numbers. SBI counts robots and page views in their stats, which is why you see inflated numbers.

  75. Jezebel says

    What was a first for me was seeing the SBI rapid response team descend onto the warrior forum post (to find it just search for ‘SBI review’ to read this whole thread) and see them get OWNED!

    I’m talking about seeing the likes of the rapid response team contractors such as Curtis and Stacey get sounded out and exposed.

    For years they’ve bullied, harangued and beaten down any negative comments anywhere on the internet with their threats, lies and tricks to deceive the naive.

    At last a fair posting was given a go and the SBI response team actually made themselves look worse than ever.

    Not that I’m a sadist at all, but I’m very glad that this happened so that newbies and hopeful entrepreneurs never get duped by that crock of company and its owner.

  76. says

    Hi Amanda

    I requested on the “Have You Heard” section where SBI websites are bought and sold so traffic data is important on a thread 23rd January this year:

    “can you add into the sales template that traffic stats should be provided by Google, StatCounter or AwStats rather than Sitesell, as Sitesell traffic stats bear no resemblance to the actual health & traffic of a site”

    and got this typically brisk answer back from Debs

    “no, if you compare like stats to like stats; regardless of the stats program, you can get basic traffic information. And not all SBIers use an outside stats program so would not be able to provide stats otherwise”

    complete and utter rubbish particularly if you bought a site that showed “like stats to like stats” of 1,000 daily unique visitors and when you install Google Analytics it shows 250 daily uniques or less……to me that is fraudulent & irresponsible behaviour on behalf of Sitesell, they know their traffic stats are worthless yet they do nothing to change it or even add a disclaimer that they are inaccurate!.

  77. Damian says

    Hi Damian, great posts here (and there…)
    I was on the Semrush thread today and wondered if (when) they are going to “fire” you…
    Just saying.

  78. says

    Hi Damian

    I am no longer hosting any of my sites with Sitesell, I am just running down the clock until my SBI subs expire……the vast majority of the members of the SBI forum are either completely spineless or are so in love with Ken that all commonsense appears to have left their bodies!.

    Today, Carla clearly stated ALL the things that many SBIers elude to, yet they don’t have the balls to say it…….

    Sitesell has been extremely careful to not “expose” the real truth about Panda & Penguin and their effect on SBI sites…..they have CLEARLY lied about the statistics of sites affected as Daily Changes & Alexa Rank prove……and as Bill from Gulf Shores stated, he checked random 21 SBI sites and EVERYONE shows clear signs of Panda & Penguin strikes….how can you trust a company that is not honest with it’s customers.

    This is a quote I found from another thread all about why you should not use SBI:

    “Ken Evoy has successfully identified and understands exactly how to manipulate his target audience/demographic – i.e. unsophisticated, conflict-averse, e-commerce hobbyists/retirees who desire a sense of family first, business success second”.

    I just wish i had thought of it first!.

    All the best
    Kevin

  79. says

    Regarding SBI’s traffic, if you have cPanel right now, you can see Webalizer stats and Awstats and the numbers will be pretty much same as SBI’s. I think they used a customized version of Webalizer, because it looks exactly as SBI’s stats used to. I don’t think they manipulated the stats for individual sites, but the true number is always between Google Analytics and SBI. SBI gives exaggerated number (because Webalizer does), but Analytics number is incomplete either.

    I made an Adwords campaign while tracking the clicks in both Analytics and Adwords interface, and the number of clicks I paid for was significantly bigger than what my Google Analytics show.

    I am not trying to defend SBI (obviously, I helped so many people to leave SBI), but just to add to the conversation :)

  80. James says

    Hey Amanda,

    I use Statcounter which is a great tool. It too separates out spider and robot figures so you can easily see the breakdown between human and non human visitors. This always accounts for no more than 5% of traffic. That’s a far cry from a 100% or more variance. There are other factors, many of which I understand, no issue.

    The real point is, why not come out and state the issue with your customers so that at least they know and can account for the discrepancies by using more appropriate and business-relevant tools to know where they stand at any given time. (For some people, these figures affect their livelyhoods.) I’d have NO issue with this approach. But of course this is not what SBI typically do.

    There will be no clear answers from support and you will get the runaround in the forums. I’ve worked in IT for 15 years on the customer side and the managed service provider end – which is effectively what SBI are – and this is clearly a customer service problem, irrespective of the ins and outs of the technology (tools) in question.

  81. Oven Key says

    The defensive tenor of that page is palpable. Desperate even. As we’re seeing big time in the current SBI ‘SEMRush’ thread, more and more people are noticing that SiteSell’s approach to its current woes is to defend its mistakes by blaming customers and inventing increasingly ridiculous ‘alibis’ like Elad’s.

    They are just looking absolutely silly now. I mean what kind of customer in their right mind would read Elad’s page and come to the conclusion that SBI is the way to go rather than WordPress? Why even bother? It’s worse for SiteSell to have that page than to not have it.

    The good thing is, there seem to be fewer and fewer gullible customers in the forums and more and more voices of dissent from people who couldn’t care less if Ken fires them because they don’t want to be there anyway. He’s desperate to protect his forum right now, because he realizes he’s now lost the battle in the ‘SBI Review’ stakes (as well as losing support from his affiliates). Frankly though, I think by the end of this year he’ll have lost control of the forums too. Unless he fires a dozen people. And that would be suicide. Well, a more efficient suicide than the method he’s using anyway ;-)

  82. Oven Key says

    Each time I read that page of Elad’s I see something else ridiculous in it. Take this paragraph for example:

    “Today (and for the past ten years) I pay $299 a year to SBI! per site. Now, after the integration, I pay an additional hosting service nearly $800 a month (!!) just for the bandwidth we consume. To my astonishment, only after we started the process, I discovered that SBI! had us covered over the years and never once did anyone from SBI! ask us to pay more because of our very high bandwidth consumption. With SBI!, it doesn’t matter how big your site grows and how much bandwidth your site consumes, you’re completely covered.”

    Completely covered?? But isn’t he moving to WordPress because he ISN’T completely covered? SBI can’t give him the sort of coverage he needs so he has to move to a more expensive host, and that is supposed to be a good argument for the LESS expensive host?

  83. says

    Hi All

    Following my comments on the SBI ‘SEMRush’ thread whereby i questioned the validity of the SBI Panda 252 Audit and Penguin Reports and my statements about if SBI actually works any more I have been banned from the SBI Forums!.

    Below is what faced me this morning when i went to check.

    “Information – You have been permanently banned from this board.
    Please contact support for more information. A ban has been issued on your username.”

    All i can say is thank you SBI, as it proves i was on the right track, as a “dissenter” i have questions that Ken prefers NOT to answer….it is easier just to remove me and try and get the “remaining children” disciplined and back into shape with their blinders back on and heads down trying to salvage what Ken’s black hat sitebuilding system has destroyed!.

    Regards
    Kevin

  84. Oven Key says

    Apparently Ken has banned TWO people. My guess is that Erron is the other one.

    Remember how Ken urged people to use their real names in these outside forums and he would not penalize you inside? Yeah right Ken. My guess is that Erron is the other one, because he also is using his real name out here.

  85. says

    Spot on Oven Key! I got the same message this morning.

    You know, I’m angry – justifiably so, I feel – but my overriding sense is one of relief and validation. I’m glad to be identified as one of the people willing to call Ken on his lies. And of course the latest lie is the one about using your name in outside forums not leading to problems. The guy just can’t be trusted. At any rate, I use my real name because I want it to be known that I feel this way, not because paranoid Ken told me it wouldn’t lead to repercussions.

    Moving my site in the next few days and can’t wait. I’ll be back with more later: I can’t seem to see a way to enable notifications for replies to this blog, so didn’t realise so much had gone on in my absence. I have some catch up reading to do :-)

    Cheers,

    Erron

  86. Termite says

    Well, Ken has locked that thread and written one of his lo-o-o-n-g and senseless replies which basically says haters are out to destroy SBI, and ramped up their actions since they published their ‘side-by-side’ comparison challenge in the Warrior Forum thread. You know the completely ridiculous side-by-side challenge that compares some expensive WP.com biz package with SBI. More lies and slight-of-hand from Ken to his OWN PEOPLE in SBI…. but of course, no one here would be surprised. By it.

  87. says

    I’m sure he’ll start banning Aussies from the forums, Erron. There were a few of us on that thread. I guess it’s our nature not to hero worship or put up with ingenious BS delivered by snake oil salesmen. I’m sure I’ll be banned soon, too.

  88. merpmerp says

    That’s too bad. That thread actually seemed to be leading to something constuctive, even a moderator was questioning some things. That is until Ken came along. He mentioned that there was a group that stated they want to destroy Sitesell. As far as I know only Kristi has stated that has her goal.

    I guess you can join Michael from pictures of cats. He has some interesting posts and information on a google group.

    Did you hear what Ken wrote before he closed the thread? I read it to my wife and emphasized the sidebars and bolded text. She thought he sounded insane.

    I think he is only going to make things worse for himself. There were several people questioning the defense of SBI at all costs. People that you normally don’t see saying anything were commenting. People obviously want to speak out but are afraid to. They are only going to look elsewhere to voice their opinion.

    By the way, the moderator did say “Ken wouldn’t lie” . Really? He has a business built around one main tool. What would happen if he came out and said it didn’t work anymore?

    • says

      You are correct. I am the only person who has stated that my goal is to see SiteSell crash and burn, and yet Ken and Stacy (I’m convinced they’re one in the same) have stated repeatedly that there is some group working together to carry out this mission.

      He sounds like a paranoid lunatic who should be locked away from the general public and force-fed anti-psychotic medication. Seriously.

      And while I don’t have access to the forums, and therefore can’t read the threads, I was able to read his response in that thread.

      Ken Evoy is probably the only person I know of who can ramble on for 1411 words, and yet say absolutely nothing at all except, “They’re out to get me!!!”

      How is it that so many people can’t see through his nonsense? I pity them.

  89. Maria says

    Straight from the horse’s mouth:
    “I am locking this thread, Doug, because some SBIers who are
    part of the “Destroy SBI!” group, are using this to bring
    issues from the same debates on non-SBI! Forums (that we are
    now refusing to partake in other than to send folks to our
    SIDE-BY-SIDE test so that readers may make their own minds up.”

    K.Evoy (Founder, President, Guru)

  90. Termite says

    Can’t wait to see how he explains away the SEM Rush figures, Merp. That was how I cottoned on to the fact that over 70% of SBI sites had been hit by Penguin last year. I looked at SBI’s top 0.03% page and put all those URLs through SEM Rush. I should have posted in the SBI forum back then – like David from Cornhole Game has just this week.

    Too bad so many SBIers will be too scared to go think through things for themselves.

  91. Maria says

    Ohh, Kevin… LOL – here’s some excerpts that I find very interesting:

    - Cults, wonderful on the outside but on the inside are very manipulating.
    - Cult leaders are desperate to trick you into joining. They are after your obedience, your time and your money.
    - Cults that use a belief system as their base are very common. /…they may have invented their own belief system. (example: Large authority sites made for Adsense, evergreen, never fail etc.)
    - Cults that use commercial gain as their base are called “cults of greed”. Often they will hold up their leader (or leader’s teenage daughter) as an example and explain that if you do what he or she says then you will be successful too.
    - NO LEGITIMATE GROUP NEEDS TO LIE OR MISLEAD YOU ABOUT WHAT THEY PRACTICE OR BELIEVE
    - …cult leaders will tell you can only be “saved” (or can only be successful) in their organization alone. No other organization (such as WP) has the truth, all others miss the mark. So it is not the belief system that decides your future, but it the belief system AND your membership with that particular group.
    - ANY GROUP THAT SAYS YOU MUST BELONG TO THEIR ORGANIZATION TO BE SAVED IS ALMOST CERTAINLY A CULT.
    - you will obey the cult leaders even when you disagree with them instead of risking being kicked out of the group. Exclusivity is used as a threat, it controls your behavior through fear (we’ll fire you…)
    - Be very suspicious of any group that claims to be better than all the others.
    - Cult leadership is feared.
    - It could never be that the programme isn’t working, or those new recruits have valid reasons for not joining. It’s always your fault, you are always wrong, and so you must try harder! You will also be made to feel very guilty for disobeying any of the cult’s written or unwritten rules.
    - Character Assassination is used to help create the guilt in you. Character Assassination is a type of false reasoning used by people and groups who have no real arguments.
    - CHARACTER ASSASSINATION IS A SURE SIGN OF A CULT.
    - Breaking sessions are when one, two or more cult members and leaders attack the character of another person, sometimes for hours on end (Forums, anyone?)
    - Cult members are usually very fearful of disobeying or disagreeing in any way with their leadership; healthy organizations are not threatened by openly debating issues.
    - BLINDERS, ANYONE? Cults also try to cut you off from your friends and family because they hate others being able to influence you. A mind control cult will seek to manoeuvre your life so as to maximize your contact with cult members and minimize your contact with people outside the group, especially those who oppose your involvement.
    - In a mind control cult any information from outside the cult is considered evil, especially if it is opposing the cult. Members are told not to read it or believe it. Only information supplied by the cult is true.
    - LEGITIMATE GROUPS HAVE NOTHING TO FEAR FROM THEIR MEMBERS READING CRITICAL INFORMATION ABOUT THEM.
    - RESEARCH THE GROUP INDEPENDENTLY OF THE GROUP

    Some Key warning Signs:

    Single charismatic leader.
    * People always seeming constantly happy and enthusiastic. Especially if you discover that they have been told to act that way for the potential new recruits.
    * Instant friends.
    * If you are told who you can or cannot talk to or associate with.
    * They hide what they teach.
    * Say they are the only true group, or the best so why go anywhere else.

    BE ESPECIALLY EAGER TO SURF THE NET IF YOUR LEADERS HAVE TOLD YOU NOT TO.

    Many of the larger cults hate the net since it allows their members access to information they deem subversive or evil. *******Blinders, anyone?
    Also go to the search engines and type in keywords associated with the group, like the name of the group, the leaders or founders name, the titles of books they use and any peculiar words that the group uses.

    SBI a cult, or not a cult? It’s your call, folks.

  92. Oven Key says

    Can you believe this? Ken is continuing to post his defenses to that SEMrush thread and LOCKING it each time to prevent anyone else getting a word in!

    The thread has done him so much damage that he refuses to let anyone enter it, yet keeps it live so he can keep on having his say until he reaches the inevitable conclusion: SEMrush is wrong, SBI is doing fantastically compared to everyone else, and all the original posts were nonsense.

    I keep saying that I can’t believe the man’s desperation, and then he goes a step further. A live forum thread that ONLY KEN CAN POST TO until he has covered all the earlier points with his BS spin!!

    As infuriating as it is, there is a silver lining. How close to gone is a company that must resort to such outlandish paranoid accusations and activities?

    P.S. Does he seriously think anyone of us gives a toss about his side-by-side nonsense?

  93. Oven Key says

    I’ve been wanting to write a comprehensive review of my years with SBI for many months now, but I just haven’t been able to gather the energy to do it when there are already several excellent tell-alls out there now (especially this one of Kristi’s).

    But with angry customers now being banned from forums and no doubt soon to be axed altogether, another blog on the subject might be the best way to be heard. Does anyone here think the world would benefit from another extensive SBIer diary?

  94. Agent007 says

    Oven Key!! Banned? No worries!

    I am a secret agent, trained in covert espionage, surveillance and intelligence activities.
    I have not (yet) been Pandalized, Penguinized or anything like that, BUT: I have been mislead, deceived and lied to. I have witnessed numerous individuals suffer for exact same reasons.
    Secret agents – the key word here being secret – can’t reveal their identity, therefore I am going to remain anonymous (secret) until my job is done.

    What job?
    Well, until the SBI is completely and thoroughly exposed to the outside world.

    SO: part of what I do is spy in the forums in bring you the latest and greatest, now that you have been banned, fired and what not.

    I am Secret Agent 007 – Hey Ken, catch me if you can !!!

  95. Sasha says

    Ken’s second reply is mainly incomprehensible nonsense. Here’s a sample:

    —–SIDEBAR—–
    Part of the issue seems to be whether a domain is merely a
    directory or is a separate site configured to be a subdomain
    (i.e., the Infin It! model). Google does not care, one way
    or another, although it, too has trouble dealing with it (in
    GWT, I think) for reporting purposes. So there is some sort
    of reporting issue with subdomains. It’s not just SEMrush.
    —–SIDEBAR—–

    And some more obfuscation:

    Meanwhile, we find another reporting error in May. The actual SBI! stats show an April-May drop of 79%, but that is WITHOUT the intervening 65% drop from Jan to Feb that SEMrush reports.

    Your Panda drop, according to SEMrush is much smaller in absolute numbers, but still comes out to 80%. That can only happen if it under-estimates the May numbers.

    One error corrects the other. We can’t always count on that.

    Overall, anyone studying your site, or you studying any site for that matter, could end up thoroughly confused as to what is happening, what is causing what. We see..

    1) an SEMrush-imaginary January drop

    2) the same Penguin conclusion where 2 wrongs made a right, but the absolute number change is much lower than the reality would dictate.

    We can (fairly) safely surmise that the April-May drop was due to Penguin, especially for the (real) large-absolute drop (larger numbers are more likely to be statistically significant). Is the ground as solid for much lower absolute numbers suggested by SEMrush?

    Qualitatively, though it usually gives a reasonable enough big picture to work with. But DO cross-check with other sources.”

    _____

    I am not making this stuff up. This is the kind of nonsense that Ken is in there feeding to SBIers right now. It does not add up, no matter how he tries to play games with English and stats.

    I’d say it’s a Ken FAIL.

  96. Oven Key says

    Hi Agent007,

    Actually I haven’t been banned. Not yet anyway. He’s first going after those using their real names (after he pledged not to do anything vindictive to them if they did so).

    But it looks as though Ken is going to ban everyone who so much as looks like they might be one of the naughty angry customers making loud noises. In which case, it might be time to create another avenue for angry customers who want to be heard.

  97. says

    Hi Oven Key

    Couple of trains of thought on this one:

    1/ create a series of dedicated “SBI The REAL Truth” sections attached to our sites and hope that by using all the tactics Ken taught us we can rank highly collectively for them.

    2/ with Kirsti’s permission, really ramp up this area of her site as she is already ranking highly for it, and has covered a lot of ground already with high quality well researched content.

    Thoughts?

  98. Agent007 says

    Found somewhere on www

    “Getting over the hump – Yes, I’m over the humping Ken Evoy gave me for many years.
    Nothing else makes online success so DO-able. Only SBI! can
    deliver (and prove) results like these…- This is simply bullshit, there are lots of successful websites that have luckily never heard of Sitesell or SBI.
    If your site isn’t getting 500 visitors a day by the end of year 1, you’re beating a dead horse. Encouraging you to keep working on it, is not in your best interest, but it does keep Ken in cash. ”

    More: http://www.joetrent.com/sitesell-promises-success-im-giving-up-on-them-at-the-7-year-mark/

  99. says

    I tried to be reasonable and fair Amanda, but there’s only so much bullshit I can take. When some idiot came on and said of course you can do anything in block builder using CSS for about the thousandth time, I’m afraid I ran out of patience.

    Even so I don’t see why I was banned, particularly given the fact I have made the mistake of actually defending Evoy and SBI in this and other external threads. Not any more…

    Try to keep your cool. I’m sure the snivelling little coward in him gets great delight in banning people he fails to shame or frighten into silence (AJ, are you listening ;-))
    …don’t give him the satisfaction

    Erron

  100. Oven Key says

    The more people Ken bans, the more feeble his forum becomes, and the more active outside voices become.

    It’s win-win.

  101. Dianne says

    I couldn’t read more than a few lines of Ken’s twisted rant.
    I’m absolutely disgusted with Ken & Sitesell.
    I held them in good regard for a while but during the last 2 years too much has been said and done that I couldn’t ignore it anymore.

    I lived in Africa for more than 2 decades, in the 80s and 90s, and much of what is written in Ken’s recent posts is remarkably similar to the tactics used by Africa’s most infamous despot leaders – see Mugabe and Gaddafi…

    Using scaremongering to silence different opinions or calls for free speach,
    calling people ‘Haters’ or ‘part of a group that want to destroy you’,
    threatening punishment or ‘firing’ from the ‘country’ Sitesell…

    Ken has sunk to a new low.
    And how naive I must be that I am surprised by it all.

  102. Oven Key says

    From Kenny Boy: “I should be spending time on product development rather than fighting a VERY REAL THREAT from malcontents.” (emphasis mine)

    Well Kristi, you had to spell it out for him about a dozen times over a couple of months, but it seems HE FINALLY GETS IT!

  103. Sasha says

    Here’s Ken’s final post on the thread in full:

    “The final 2 posts are written. But I’m tired, so I’ll review them in the morning and then post.

    I should be spending time on product development rather than fighting a very real threat from malcontents.

    I’ll ask a moderator to move this set of posts into a new thread and re-open it for discussion after I post the more serious post to start a new thread about the threat to SiteSell by a small but very determined group of people who are collaborating to destroy SBI! (this is not conjecture, it is their words).

    When a group hates you that much, nothing they say can be trusted. That is why we refuse to debate them anymore. The incredible volume of the “same old” or “find something new-and-minor and twist and sensationalize” is not meant to debate. It is meant to destroy.

    We have banned 2 SBIers for bringing that non-debate into these forums, now that we won’t play their “game” which is what THEY call this. Well, it’s not a game to me. And we will not be pushed into giving them free rein to rot the forums from within.

    Our only reply to folks who read their vehement twists of stuff that we have been answering for over a year now is to take the SIDE-BY-SIDE test. Let folks see for themselves the difference.

    That way, they can’t go wrong.

    We’ve built a wonderful product that is unique and that gives the individual the best chance to build a successful online business. They ignore all the good in SBI! and use every trick in the book to destroy our reputation.

    They may not bring that here. It is that simple.

    I’m sure they will scream censorship, they are the voice of right and honesty, etc. So be it. Everyone knows that they can speak their minds here. What they cannot do has already been stated here…

    http://forums.sitesell.com/viewtopic.php?p=1210770#1210770

    They ignore that at their peril. See you in the morning. I’m not looking forward to what needs to be done.”

  104. Soon to be Ex-Sbi-er says

    Holy smokes! The man is nuts. What kind of person runs a business this way? He keeps threatening his customers and distracting himself from FIXING his ailing business. Sheesh.

    That ridiculously confusing Mobile thing isn’t even out yet. It’s been AGES. Not to mention his promises for Monetize It and subordinate logins. Now, he’s saying he’ll do 301 redirects (after all this time pretending like it’s NOT necessary), and he’s wasting his time banning customers from his forums and staying up all night writing scolding posts to detractors.

    He actually tells his customers I’M DOING THIS USELESS STUFF INSTEAD OF IMPROVING THE PRODUCT I SELL YOU. What the hell?! It’s like when he told us a few weeks ago that SBI had taken a backseat to fighting crime in Anguilla. Customers pages couldn’t update, and even right now people are having trouble accessing their pages in the new Internet Explorer browser and THIS is what he spends his time doing?

  105. merpmerp says

    This man is absolutely bonkers! Even the moderators have to see this. It’s incredible to watch.

    In response to Oven Key’s question, I know he hasn’t been banned, but I think anyone that has been banned should put up something regarding it. I know I would. bannedbysbi.com or something like that, and guess what, it would only cost the price of the domain name if you were hosted by someone other than SBI.

  106. merpmerp says

    Oh, one more thing. Couldn’t someone that was banned sign up for a free trial under a different name or their spouse, brother, sister etc. and have access to the forum again?
    Then you could say “I did the side by side test and I’m going with WordPress”. It might force him to stop offering a free trial if people started doing that. Just a thought.

  107. princessleia says

    The thing about his “free trial” is that it isn’t a free trial. it’s only a money back guarantee, and if you don’t choose SBI, you just get your money for SBI back. You don’t get money for WordPress hosting back. If you choose SBI, you get your WordPress hosting fee back. Big deal. He’ll give you $6 when you’re spending $30 for his product.

    The thing I love about his side by side baloney is that no one in their right mind would pick SBI over WordPress. His only hope is that they go to the wordpress.com (NOT WordPress the platform) and get confused and think that’s what everybody is referring to when they say wordpress.

    Hang on campers. Any hour now, Ken Evoy, marketing genius will let us all know how he’s going to handle us. I can only assume we’re the people he’s referring to in his ridiculous rants as the people “out to get him.” I can’t be sure. I don’t speak paranoid despot.

  108. says

    Hey everyone…

    I’ve decided to set up a forum using bbPress so that we can move the discussion there. (Not that I don’t love all the comments here, but I think y’all are skewing my Alexa rank for A2D. ;) )

    Plus, a forum is a better format for a discussion like this, don’t you think?

    So help me come up with a domain name, and I’ll get it registered and set up today. I’d rather not use the words SBI or SiteSell or Site Build It in the actual domain name, because I don’t want to give Ken any reason to cry foul over a trademark violation or something like that.

    Any ideas?

  109. Oven Key says

    And BTW Ken Evoy, if you’re reading this (and what self-aggrandizing paranoid control freak wouldn’t be) the term for what you’re seeing unfold here is NOT ‘conspiracy’. Not even close. The correct phrase is CRITICAL MASS.

    It’s what happens when you attempt to fool, bully, manipulate, and control a group of long-suffering people for just A BIT TOO LONG.

  110. Lorna says

    ” LEGITIMATE GROUPS HAVE NOTHING TO FEAR FROM THEIR MEMBERS READING CRITICAL INFORMATION ABOUT THEM.”

    Get that Mr. Evoy?

    Dear Mr. Evoy, why on Earth are going nuts (and showing that publicly) about “small group” of “haters”.
    Is it worth your time, money and sleep?

    Have you ever seen a President of, say, WordPress, doing a St. Vitus dance in a public place, just because they got a negative review somewhere?

    (St. Vitus Dance, this is a medical condition, if you don’t remember please check you medical textbooks)

    Pooping your pants in public could also be medical condition, possibly a form of exhibitionism.

    Dear Mr. Evoy, you have been doing an irreparable damage to yourself and your company by displaying such an irresponsible attitude.

    Best or regards
    Lorna

  111. says

    I had intended to set it up this morning, but ran into a glitch on the QuickInstall on my CPanel. HostGator has been working on it, and I just got an email saying it’s fixed. I’ll work on it as soon as I finish up with the blog design I’m working on. :)

  112. Awesome SBIer says

    A glitch?

    With SBI! you would NEVER have a glitch.

    SBI vs WordPress 700:1

    SBIers have 700 times more traffic folks! If you want a REAL business plan, you can start for yourself, first month FREE.

  113. says

    Hi Kristi

    SBI actually is the short form for “State Bank of India”….which appears to have just about as many happy campers as Dear Ken. So, as long as you don’t use SBI! within the title, as he has trademarked that you will be fine. I will be adding my own SBI “fan” site shortly at My-SBI-Reviews.com just as soon as my designer can catch breath from the DELUGE of requests to move sites out of Sitesell!

  114. says

    haha….i am just having my breakfast and enjoying Ken’s lengthy analysis of SEMRush data sets. What is this man on?. All he is doing in reality is running around like the proverbial headless chicken applying sticking plasters to wherever he finds a new “leak of the truth”.

    Providing information to people that you then do not allow to question your views or opinions is hardly a forum now is it Dear Ken?.

    The other point of ALL of this bluster, is that Ken is shifting the REAL issues of Sitesell back into the murky shadows and out of the focus……Ken, wake up this is 2013.

    Google has rumbled your SEO methods, you got caught with your hand in the Google cookie jar as a result of which thousands of dedicated SBIers both present and past have seen their website investments not just financially but also in time investment devastated…..why not just be honest for a change, put up your hands and say sorry I screwed up and set about mending your broken system rather than trying to save Anguilla from crime and continue to point the finger at everyone other than yourself?.

  115. James says

    Does anyone know whether refunds are given if you paid in full for a year but want to move on 6 months in?

  116. Oven Key says

    Excellent post Kevin!

    But Ken is in a trance right now. He sees the Wet Paint sign, but he can’t control the urge…

  117. says

    Hi James

    “Does anyone know whether refunds are given if you paid in full for a year but want to move on 6 months in?”

    In theory yes you are entitled to a partial refund, but i would suggest that it is on a case by case basis, it is certainly worth a try, just keep personal feelings out of your request to Support otherwise in the current situation they might turn you down.

  118. Sasha says

    That latest SEM rant of Ken’s is complete nonsense. He manages to spin ‘Penguin slammed us big time’ into “it’s all good” and via one of the worst misrepresentations of statistics I’ve ever seen. The man is pulling figures out of his arse now:

    “The Math of Studies

    It’s real simple…

    Suppose the odds that you don’t get hit by any particular Panda or Penguin release is 80%. Some detractors have posted that they think that half of all SBIers are hit by any particular Panda or Penguin release, even more.

    But let’s start with something that challenges this math test more severely (and the odds are actually better than 80% of not “being hit”).

    Let’s say you have an 80% chance of missing each Panda or Penguin release.

    To miss the first 2, your chances of NOT being hit by either is 0.80 x 0.80 = 0.64.

    Straightforward. And we can continue with that in the same way until you miss all 24 Panda release and 3 Penguin “releases/updates”

    It’s just conjecture. Eighty percent? Why choose that figure? Why not use the figures that have been published by Google or one of the large SEO firms who’ve done real analysis on this?

    But no… Chairman Ken will just make something up to suit his spin instead of using pre-existing data.

    In the same vein, he continues, actually stating (with figures he just pulled out of think air) that MOST SBI SITES WOULD BE HIT BY AT LEAST ONE GOOGLE ALGORITHM CHANGE:

    “—–SIDEBAR—–
    The opinion on the difference between data refresh and
    update is debatable. But since the large SEO sites number
    them as if they are all the same, we’ll go with that.
    —–SIDEBAR—–

    To miss all of them would mean 0.80 to the power of 27 = 0.24%. In other words, it is VIRTUALLY CERTAIN (99.76% sure) that you WILL be hit by at least 1 release.

    But what are the odds that all 20 SBIers would be hit?

    Same type of math. That would be 99.76% to the power of 20 = 95.3%. In other words, it’s almost a sure thing, too, that all 20 WOULD be hit.”

    And then, just to confuse the hell out of anyone who’s still reading (this rant is 6 pages long in Word):

    “Let’s take it in the opposite direction. If your odds of NOT being hit are the more realistic 90% (i.e., you have a 90% chance of missing each Panda or Penguin release), the odds of all 20 being hit are 30.2%.”

    Are YOU confused yet? What planet is this guy from? They sure don’t do stats the way i was taught at university.

    I pity the poor SBIers who read this post and come away thinking Ken has it all under control. He doesn’t. He’s manipulating and lying through his teeth – and using the scientific method to attempt to defend himself. I loathe to think what lies and deceits his ‘more important’ post about the ‘haters who want to destroy SBI’ will contain.

  119. Oven Key says

    Thanks very much for setting this up Kristi!

    I noticed when I made my first post that I couldn’t preview it. It’s not very important, but if there is a checkbox for that somewhere it would be handy.

    Thanks again. And please don’t fire me for making a wish. I really do love SuckersBuyIt! And it really has changed my life! :-)

  120. says

    Kirsti – how will you ever gain cult status if you tolerate fools, sorry members asking benign questions about improvements. Just tell them they are FIRED and to bugger off to WordPress…. NOW blinders back on and build more content!

  121. merpmerp says

    Kristi,
    Can you just check this username on the forum? I tried registering and I cannot logon for the life of me. I tried a new of, but it said email already exists.
    Thank youi

  122. says

    I just emailed you a new password to the email on your forum account. If you don’t get it, then the email might have a typo in it. If the email doesn’t arrive soon (check your junk mail too), then send me the email address that you want your forum account attached to. You can email me at: [email protected]

    Thanks!

  123. says

    Hi all~
    The forum is down right now. Looks like I should have done a little more research before jumping in with both feet. :)

    I had installed the standalone version of bbPress, which evidently is an old version and really isn’t supported anymore.

    What I should have done is install WordPress, and then install the bbPress plugin. That will give us a much more visually-pleasing forum with a WYSIWYG editor and other options in the way of plugins that can be installed.

    Sorry for the inconvenience! The good news is that I believe all of our posts so far can be salvaged. I’ll do what I can. :)

    I’ll let you know here when it’s all ready.

  124. says

    Hello again, y’all!

    The new (and very much improved) forum is up and running. I’m so very sorry, but the “import” function didn’t work to import our threads or user info from the original forum. I had my hopes up, but for some reason, it won’t pull any of the info.

    So sorry for the inconvenience!! But I think overall, we’ll be much more pleased with this new forum. It has a standard WYSIWYG editor options, a quote option, the ability to add code, and also to upload attachments and imbed videos.

    So let’s consider the first one “practice”, and this one is the real one. :)

    http://www.suckersbuyit.com

    Please let me know if you see any glitches, or if there are any functions that you’d like, and I’ll see if there’s a plugin available for it.

  125. says

    Oh, and at this moment, I’m trying to find a way for non-admin users to access and edit their user information, such as the password. Still haven’t found that info, but I’m looking! :)

  126. says

    Hi Kristi
    I have tried to add contact details for a service to move SBI sites to WP 4 times on Sucker Buy It and it is not publishing….is there a problem?.

    • says

      The only thing I can think of is that I had Askimet installed for spam, and perhaps it got caught in the spam filter. Unfortunately, unlike comments on a blog, there’s doesn’t seem to be a holding area for forum comments that are marked as spam where I can go and mark them as safe. But it does say that it’s caught 4 spam comments so far. :) My guess is that those are yours.

      I’ve turned the spam filter off for now. Try again and see if that was the problem.

  127. FormerSBIMama says

    Hi Kristi,
    I didn’t see any contact info on Suckersbuyit so sorry to but in here with this but when I tried to register for that forum I got bumped to a WP login page.

    I tried clearing cache and cookies, and using a different browser but I still can’t register.

    Thanks

    • says

      So sorry I’m just seeing this! I got a notice in my inbox that you had registered, so it should have sent you a password to your email. If it’s not in your inbox, check your junk mail. It’s okay if it sends you to a WP login page. You can sign in there. You’ll just be registered as a “forum participant”.

  128. Donald says

    And what has ANY of this to do with decorating. You may know a lot about SBI and WordPress but do you know anything about decorating? Maybe not!

  129. Stan W. says

    Ok, gotta post this here as SuckersBuyIt! won’t let me set up a new account or reset my password on the existing one. “Sheeeesh…”

    PEARLS FORM THE FORUMS
    (removed the names of the posters)

    09 Apr 2013, servers down around 13.30 (1:30 PM)
    Holy cow, the BEST host in the world, huh? Read on…

    15:26
    Hi All -

    SInce about noon today, I’ve been unable to log in to Site Central. I keep getting the message “Sorry. We must be having a temporary glitch …”

    I notified Support about 1 p.m. Haven’t heard back yet.

    Of course, this stuff always happens when I take a day off from my real job to work on my site. Ugh!! :roll:

    15:29
    Yes Dee, it is down. When I can’t get on I check Facebook to see if they’ve posted a note. There is a note that says “2 hrs ago” and says the programmers are aware and working on it. ;-)

    16:14
    Me too! I was just able to get to the forum now.

    Site central is still down for me going on 4 hours now. Glad support knows about it and is working on it.

    16:25
    Site Central is still not working in Atlantic Canada

    18:25
    Erwin (moderator) »
    Glad that all is up again.

    but… oooops:
    He spoke too soon…

    23:21
    Access is still very intermittent for me. I can log into Site Central but I can’t edit pages.

    (Well, you can write your pages in notepad and copy and paste them later…if we find a fix any time soon that is…)

    Yup, your sites never go down, just can’t edit/build pages…big deal.

    Holy cow, the BEST host in the world, huh?

    And… this morning bunch of people still experiencing various issues with the “platform”.
    Ken won’t address this personally… although he’s been posting all over the place, elsewhere.

    One of the moderators advised to “contact support” and “some gremlins are out lately”
    Sheesh…

    • says

      You must be one of those “SBI haters”, because this would never happen to SBI sites! You’ve clearly made it all up. ;)

      By the way, I just sent you an email with a new forum password. Let me know if you still have trouble!

    • says

      Thanks, Kevin! I’ve already talked to HostGator about the issue. They’re supposed to be fixing it. :)

      I have all of my domains on a dedicated server, and they offer server-wide protection against brute-force attacks that’s based on IP address. Basically, my IP address is the only “whitelisted” IP address that can access a login page for all of the websites on my server.

      It didn’t even dawn on me until about an hour after I got off the phone with them that that would affect the forum!! It wasn’t exactly my smartest moment. :)

      Hopefully they’ll have it fixed soon. I have no idea why it took them five minutes to put that measure in place, but they had to write up a ticket to remove it…but they did, so I’m waiting.

      • Nesika says

        Hi,

        I used to be a successful SBI-er till Panda killed my sites for over-optimization
        suggested by “Analize-it”

        I moved my sites and I am more successful now with my WP sites.

        No need to waste your time trying to explain to other people that SBI is NOT what Ken
        and other paid “SBI lovers” preach.

        It USED to be. NOT any more!

        It will eventually fade out and die …

        Make a better use of your time!

  130. says

    This debate is fun to follow. As I have mentioned here, I will not shy of defending SBI. I am ex-SBIer but now uses WordPress. I left just as a matter of preference and convenience, not because I saw Ken Evoy as scamming people. In fact, I came to know WordPress through SBI when he recommended it as part of increasing your visitors. I probably wouldn’t have known for a very long time had he not mentioned it. Ken runs a business not a political party looking for a consensus. So, it’s unfair to denigrate the business he runs or call it a scam.

    Kristin, I look forward to your forum. Please include me in your contacts when it becomes live.

  131. says

    Thanks for writing this. I saw today that my rank was over 9,000,000 and I scratched my head because only a few months ago, it was under 900,000. I think I have a better idea now about what happened. I’m at a point where I’m a little irritated at the lack of what I can do with the site. I don’t want to loose what I’ve done, but I have all the content and pictures saved on a flash drive so building another site wouldn’t be too hard. Considering my traffic (SBI says 32 per day so far for May), is $10 per month with WordPress enough or is there additional cost? I’m concerned I’m wasting my money now paying $30 per month.

  132. Michael Russell says

    How this website can be called a decorating site, I actually question that! truth be known, it’s in actual fact a review site on SBI, but with a bias against SBI, and no I am not a SBI member or site owner…but having been thinking of buying into SBI, I am now reluctant too..
    Thanks for the info and review.

    • says

      “How this website can be called a decorating site, I actually question that!”

      Seriously? Perhaps it’s because I have 1,433 posts on the topic of decorating, and one post on the topic of SBI. This is most certainly NOT a “review site on SBI”. That’s a patently absurd claim.

      • Michael Russell says

        Fair enough Kristi, though I do find it strange that you have a business site on decorating with over 1000 posts on the subject, yet would review another business, and in not a good light either, though I can appreciate why…though I would have thought it more productive posting elsewhere, say on a SBI review site itself..

        Just my thoughts, though your review on SBI has made my decision on purchasing a nogo.

        thanks
        Mikaedi

        • Elena says

          If you look at SBI affiliates they have no problem singing praises to SBI on all kids of sites in hopes to earn an extra buck.

  133. venus says

    hi Kristi, I came across your article when I was doing some research on SBI! for my prospective online business. I really appreciate the time and effort you went through to create this article to let the world know what SBI! was up to…I was on the fence about them because like you, I found their websites to be aesthetically…how do I put it nicely? I can’t – the truth is, considering the hefty charges one is paying for what is posing as a “total package”, they didn’t seem too bothered about their ugly sites that show how little effort was put in to gain traffic (I believe that am aesthetically appealing site will attract more viewers than an ugly one…and even more so if the former is packed with quality content, like yours). That was one of my main concerns. After all, if they don’t have the skills or if they lack the desire to provide nice-looking websites to their customers (at least make them look post-Windows 95…), then I probably can’t trust them to make effort (or have the skills) to provide quality service in other areas which I’m paying a hefty price for.

    Sorry for going on – please keep up the good work! Your article probably saved me tons of money, effort and energy that could potentially have been sapped by SBI! and their ridiculousness business “strategies”. :) Have a great day Kristi!

  134. says

    I’m so thankful I found your review. I was recommended site buildit from a friend of a friend for a side business I’m starting. Their website looked a bit suspect and I decided to look online for some reviews. Thank you! I’m sticking with WordPress

    • says

      Relying on ad clicks is a bit risky Nikki.

      Of course no one will say HOW because there are so many different ways.

      How about make a product, put it on sale, use your own traffic to promote it, find affiliates…repeat and repeat.

  135. says

    Sitesell.inc owes me over $600 in commissions. They are not paying me my commissions until a make a completely new sale to a distinct new sucker. This is how immoral and unethical Ken Evoy’s company is and will continue to be as long as they insist on this policy of screwing their affiliates. There is no other affiliate company that I know of that has such a restrictive policy on paying commissions to affiliates. It just exemplifies how dishonest SBI! really is and all the white washing by the SBI! cult cannot hide the fact that they are not only dishonest but morally corrupt and clinically unethical. I would rather give up the $600+ they owe me than recommend sitesell.inc to anyone who has hopes of building a website and monetizing it. I couldn’t sleep at night if I recommended this SBI! cult to anyone. I don’t know how Ken Evoy sleeps at night knowing that he is screwing honest people out of what is owed them. He is lower than whale poop.

  136. Tina says

    A thousand times “thank you” for spending your time to write such an important review. You just saved me and so many others time and money with your generosity. Good Karma coming your way!

  137. says

    Hi there, just became aware of your blog through Google, and found that it is really informative.
    I am going to watch out for brussels. I will be grateful if you
    continue this in future. Lots of people will be benefited from your writing.
    Cheers!

  138. says

    Please recommend something comparable I am at my wits end..:(
    Hi thanks for you insight alot makes sense. I had a SBI back in 2010 but the main reason i signed on was the step by step videos. I felt like they gave me a PLAN. Do you know of another site/program who does that sort of thing. An actual plan one can follow?

    WordPress is great i have learning how to use it BUT you really cant compare the whole SBI site to WordPress. (probably only the sitebuild it part which you are soooo right about even the new version is still stuck in the stone age)

    I have been researching online business for years and just get so frustrated with the do this no do that, Everyone pulling you in a different direction. I get major information overload and give up but always go back to researching it because it is sooooooo interesting to me. Something i know i can do with the right tools and PLAN!
    I have learned so much but i don’t know how to put it all together.
    Please help! Give me an alternative!

  139. dbundy says

    Kristi I really want to start my own site but have no knowledge of doing so… what’s out their to help me on this journey? Thanks

  140. says

    I used to be a SBI website owner back in 2007. My lack of success with it was not SBI’s fault. I didn’t follow up. I agree with what you said that the work building a site through the action guide was tedious, but I think it was also necessary.

    Since then I have put up a wordpress blog and a blog through bloggers. I did not find wordpress all that user friendly. I don’t have a clue how to add an autoresponder or shopping cart; for example. I have had NO success with either of my blogs, in regards to people signing on as customers or members.

    Over the summer I purchased business cards from Vistaprint. I thought “What a neat idea to have matching templates for both the business cards and website.” I liked some of the features like shopping cart, and SEO optimization. Adding content on the website was at times time consuming. I had to find an interactive calendar to add to the website; for example. What was really frustrating was their traffic analysis. I wasn’t getting an accurate count of local traffic, and even international hits. My business is a local business. Another really frustrating thing about Vistaprint is you cannot add HTML links, such as Google Analytics. Their forums were not helpful. There was no staff there to answer your questions most of the time. Only customers to add to your complaints. I cancelled my membership, losing both money and a lot more in time. Now I have to start all over again.

    I am thinking about returning to SBI because I think their action guide has value. Since my business is local, I could skip a lot of the steps. I also know a few people who have had great success.

    • says

      Please share details (i.e., website URLs) about the “few people who have had great success” with SBI. I’d like to see their sites, look up the age of their sites, and gauge their “success” for myself. I’ll report my findings back here. Thanks.

      • says

        I actually cannot post any links of my FB friend’s websites because then their names would be associated with the word “scam” via this site, even though they are not part of any scam, just SBI website owners.

        Success is dependent on many factors. What works for one person may not work for another. The level of skill, how attractive your website looks, the title of your website has to be the right length and catchy. In the interior decorating field it may be easier to come up with a cool name, but with yoga it is much more difficult to stand out. This is where SBI comes in. I will be changing my domain name, but after some serious research.

        • says

          You don’t have to post direct links to these sites.

          You said, “I also know a few people who have had great success [with SBI].”

          Please provide the names (no links) of the sites belonging to these “few people” who have had such “great success” so that I and others can Google the names of these sites and easily find them on our own.

  141. says

    I usually do not read posts that are so long as yours, but I`m glad I did. Those SBI sites look like they have been built 30 years back. Was not aware about their affiliate programmes. Thank you. Keep writing.

  142. says

    Awesome post! Thank you for the honesty! These are rare to find because of exactly what you said – affiliates. They put up so called “honest reviews”, but in the end, you learn they are just ways to get you to the affiliate link. There is nothing wrong with affiliate marketing, IF, IF done ethically and right. Unfortunately, being deceiving and dishonest is commonplace. And WordPress is DEFINITELY the way to go. I was on the IM roller coaster for about two years before I realized 80% of the products are crap with empty, inflated promises. Refreshing to find your honesty here. Now I would just like to stick with writing and honest marketing. Thanks!

  143. says

    Hi Kristi, thanks for the info. I’m a current SBI client, and my site has been live for about 4 years. I have never ever made money from it but for reasons unknown even to me, I keep working at it. My Alexa ranking was under 100,000 for awhile but has been steadily climbing — I just checked and it is 4,150,154. Not too hot. I have adsense ads there but never made more than $20/month, and often it’s less.

    You probably can’t give advice, but I don’t have even a clue how to change my site to another platform, wordpress or something else. I could copy the pages as they are today, save them to a file and then re-build them page by page transferring them to the new platform. This is AFTER not renewing with SBI.

    Questions: how long does SBI keep my site name? Does wordpress have t3 pages or is a wordpress site entirely on the t2 level?

    Your post has given me MUCH to think about. It would be thrilling to actually make money online — what a concept! LOL. I also have a cooking blog that I am considering monetizing but I don’t get much traffic and that concept continues to be my main stumbling point. How do I build traffic? I’m kind of “clueless” to that skill.

    Congrats on your online success! Maybe you could write a post for those of us who seem to be clueless regarding how to do that, too. Thanks so much!

  144. Natasha says

    Hi I have been an SBIer since around 2009 and I am trying to move my site ASAP (renewal is coming up shortly)!

    Everything that Kristi and others have said in this post and elsewhere is true! I really liked SBI in the beginning but things have rapidly changed in the last couple of years. It’s glaringly obvious that the majority of sbi sites have been hit by panda and penguin and very few are profitable now!

    The forums have changed from being friendly and having successful people giving advice to weirdos praising ken and sbi constantly and criticising anyone who complains about it. On top of that there’s loads of people complaining about their loss of traffic/struggle to get traffic in the first place (and it’s almost everyone!)

    I want OUT! My main reasons are (although there are lots more!) 1) the most successful SBIer’s have left – some people have been forced out by Ken desire being his best success stories just for having legitimate complaints 2) ken has an endless amount of time to spout crap rather than making his business better 3) it’s obvious a lot of people who claim to be doing well are associated with sitesell in some way (even in private Facebook groups, if I ask for advice for moving my site I get a whole load of people criticising me for wanting to get out 4) but the BIGGEST reason of all is the crappy BB2 update. I waited over a year for this, it caused a whole load of bugs and issues with my site, the templates are the same as before and the killer is – they are telling us to move each page over manually ourselves!!!!

    I work long hours in my normal job or would have been out ages ago! But I need help to do it, I am a writer not a techie!! I have tried to join SuckersBuyIt but Kristi I don’t know if you have received my email to join or are u not taking new members? Sorry if u have a backlog of requests and haven’t seen my request yet! And sorry for the lengthy evoy style post!!

  145. Natasha says

    Hi Mark, yeah I think that’s pushed a lot of people away who previously were ok with SBI, but it lead to other discoveries too. Where have you moved and are you finding it ok? Thanks for the link, I have seen it before but I don’t think it will be something I’m able to do myself, there’s quite a lot I don’t understand and wouldn’t know where to start lol! My husband would have to do it, I think he would be able to. Kristi has emailed me so hopefully I can get onto the forums soon for more advice. I’m hoping to have it moved in the next few weeks if possible…..

    • Mark says

      Natasha,
      I moved to WordPress, hosted by Hostgator. I use the Genesis Prose Childtheme. It is very easy to use. It doesn’t take long to get used to everything.

  146. Natasha says

    Hi Mark, thank you for all your advice so far. I have definitely decided wordpress is where I want the site to be, I’ve had a blog with them before and I didn’t need to know too much HTML to upload new pages. But I want my site to remain a whole website and I don’t want it to become a blog. I don’t have any experience of that side of WordPress and I don’t know how different it is to use. I’ve still not been added to the suckers buy it forum unless I’ve missed an email so I’ll probably have to ask on the warrior forum, do u know any of other forums that could help?

    It’s getting close to the deadline now and I might have to pay sbi for an extra month while I try and get the site moved (life has just been too busy recently). I’m probably just going to pay someone to do it if no one I know can manage it. The other thing I’m considering is just closing the site and then making the exact same site (minus analyze it stuff) on WordPress, or renaming the domain. Have u or has anyone tried this and is it realistic? Thanks again and sorry to have so many questions!!

    • Mark says

      Natasha,
      I’m not sure why you haven’t gotten into the suckers forum. I think the owner is in the middle of moving, that may have something to do with it.
      Did you check out http://webmasterdiary.org ? That is very helpful.

      I took my SBI site and turned it into two different domain names. I used httracker to save my sbi site onto my hard drive and I used filezilla to upload it to the new host.

      It’s very easy to use WordPress as a static site, not a blog. I use a combination of pages and posts. The pages are static and do not allow for comments. Where I want comments, I use posts. I use the Genesis Prose theme and it is very easy to use.

    • says

      Natasha, I set up your user on the forum on October 1st, and it sent you an email with your password. The username is the one you asked me to set up. You might check your junk mail.

  147. says

    dear kristi,
    thank you for the in depth review of sbi!!!!!! i was considering using their service but your review made me decide otherwise. I clicked on some of the ads on your site, even though i really do not care about the topics they represent to show my gratitude. I hope you make some money from that.

  148. Natasha says

    Mark – thanks so much again for all your help and advice, I did check out that website, it’s a lot for me to do with my limited skills I think so I am getting someone to help me thanks for that.

    Hi kristi, apologies if you have sent a password, I looked but didn’t see an email from you. I’ll check my junk, thanks for that

    John – good decision, don’t do it!!

  149. Natasha says

    Hi Kristi really sorry but I can’t see that email in my junk, it’s not letting me go back that far. Is. It possible to send me another password? Thanks again

  150. Natasha says

    Hi Mark, sorry to keep bothering you but can I ask u how much roughly it is to run a static site that allows you to have ads/shops/affiliates etc? I can’t seem to find this info anywhere! Is it free? And will I have to learn any HTML or can I mostly just copy and paste, I remember I was able to do a lot of that with my WP blog but just wondering if the static sites are the same. I have decided to just close the SBI site and start fresh on WP because a) I’m thinking I need a new domain that doesn’t have hyphens in it (more bad advice from SBI) and I think it will also be easier to just upload the different pages while editing them and changing them. What do you think? Kristi – not sure if you resent the password but can’t find it anywhere!

  151. Natasha says

    Mark please ignore that question about the HTML as I have just read that the genesis prose theme doesn’t need it! Perfect!! :)

  152. deb says

    thank you for sharing your experience with SBI. I started several sites with SBI, paid money, spent many, many months working on them. I got distracted with work and life over a year now and was going to start the program up again until I ran into your site. Thank you for saving me, but I am now at a loss and don’t know where to start! I am not a blogger and just want to create an income producing website. I will check out wordpress and hope they have instruction. If you have any pointers, that would be much appreciated! Thank you, Deb

  153. Charles Webb says

    Thanks for your article.You literally saved me 299.00. I was looking intently at signing up for SBI! but before forking over cash i wanted to research their claims.First i noticed they are not even ranked on the top 25 best sites. Yet they market themselves as being highly visible and successful at helping people. Also their site seemed to have that “scammy” approach with pages of explanations of why they are so great. I left questions on yahoo answers asking about SBI,no one responded,another flag.
    Thanks for the research and factual stats you provided. your one of the good guys!
    I think the only people SBI! is helping are themselves.

  154. Paula says

    Hi Kristi,

    Thanks for the candid and informative (and well resourced) review. I found it helpful & valuable.

    I’m currently taking a course on setting up a Money Making Website and we were given several names of potential platforms we could look into, to get started building. While I have already had a personal blog at WordPress, I was vacillating back & forth about whether to just stick with building my different type of site on WP or trying out SBI. NOW, I feel I have the honest info I need to make a more informed choice. Thanks!

  155. Johnny says

    I am a current (although not for very much longer) SBi owner. To get an idea of how people are ‘jumping ship’ just look in the forums (only if you own an SBi site btw). A couple of years ago there was at least 30-40 sites all active at any one time, however, a quick check every now and then, you will be pushed to get 5 sites (tops) on the forums. I think that says it all.

  156. Dom says

    Great post
    Wow 6,200 visitors a day. Now if you were to sell physical products to this traffic you would be extremely rich!!
    I have an online store and 300 visitors per day, average 3-4 sales at £10 net profit = £1000 plus GBpounds.

    I was with SBI in past and learnt a lot as a complete newbie but after 6 months should have got out and focussed on selling products that is were the real money is.

    • says

      Actually, that number is a bit outdated now for me :) I now average about 22,000 visitors per day. Today I had over 81,000. :)

      I do need to figure out how to better monetize my blog. Right now, it’s all ad networks. I do quite well with those, but I’m not quite where I want to be.

  157. Christo says

    I have no site, but am looking at various things. Heard about Sitesell so thought I’d look at the negative side first. At first it looked like you have a balanced view of it, but I am afraid you made one mistake in your unemotional review.

    You forgot to read the book before doing the critical review on it. I would have taken you seriously if you did ALL they said in their marketing/training material, then criticized it. You, by own admission, did not. I was shocked at the disdainful way in which you decided to first go half then full off their ideas.

    Rightfully that was your decision to not follow their idea, whether for making money or not. The fact that you failed to do thorough research into the product as they punted it, removes your right to criticize it entirely. Your disdain is the clincher.

    How do you recognize a scam? The page bar is a quarter of an inch long on a scroll bar of ten inches. Something like forty pages of bumff before you get to the discounted price of one dollar! It also starts with a googol of caveats and “before I go any furthers”.

    Read this blog of yours again if you are willing to take a close look at being balanced.

    And no, I do not have any website at all. And yes I have lost a lot of money already on sites and offers of internet work. One thing I have learned is to be totally dispassionate about anything I see on the web.

    I am disappointed in you.

    • says

      Well I used all of SBI’s tools just as did many others who have commented here and I totally validate what she says, every single word of it. SBI doesn’t work and its owner will shut you up at any cost and blame it on you if you even hint at the truth about it.

      You can see that clearly from all of these comments yet you chose to ignore it. Seems very much like yet another Ken Evoy plant to put negative comments here.

      I guess you are one of Evoy’s rapid response team on the (low) payroll?

      Fair play to you, we’ll tell him you are doing your job properly.

  158. Cesar says

    I’ve just spent over 1 hour trying to find an “unsubscribe” page in SBI sites… couldn’t find one, just a couple for renewals.

    If they have one, I guess they do not pay too much effort on making it easy to find, so I had to send an email to Ken for support. For me another sign of untransparency from them.

    Thanks for this review.

  159. says

    Thanks for this post & saving me from making a bad decision. I was about to join SBI! when I saw this informative information on your site.

    I have a wordpress blog since April 2014 & when I check the alexa rankings, I see my blog ranks at 220,438 in the United States, which is pretty impressive.

    I am very grateful that you took the time to research this information.

  160. says

    Kristi!
    Great info on Site Build, I have pondered the thought of having them set up my website, but after reading your blog post, I have gained the confidence to go out and do it myself!

    Thank you!

  161. says

    Wow! What a lively debate.

    I used SBI for about a year or two, maybe 8 years ago. (I can’t really remember but it was a long time ago) I went with them because I felt they had a comprehensive plan to make money blogging and I couldn’t find another resource. Sounds crazy today, but this was before there was so much good info online.

    Ir was a love/hate relationship.

    First the negative. They drove me out. of. my. mind. with the clunky system. Putting up a post took forever!! The designs were outdated. Everything took SO LONG to do.. and as someone noted, SBI took a ridiculously long time to roll out new systems.

    Also, even being an inexperienced blogger, I could tell they were well behind the curve with new trends. Like social media for example! I kid you not. That was actually one of the main reasons I started putting my sites on WordPress… so I could use social media plugins for sharing.

    The positives were twofold. One, I did become an SEO ninja and used that knowledge on future WP sites to rank beautifully. I have to credit all that to SBI. (Not that it helps me much today with the constant Google changes.) But I did make a lot of money ranking high in Google.

    Second, I gained confidence during the time I was at SBI. I wasn’t a big participant in the forums but I could go there if I needed questions answered. And there was a ton of information and so many people willing to help, that it was a great opportunity for a beginner.

    One of the main reasons I left was because I wanted to do several sites and didn’t want to pay $300 per year per site at SBI. The other main reason was I noticed all the “heavy weight” bloggers were on WP. One of them being Lisa Irby who y’all have mentioned. BTW, her site that is SBI is flat-stomach-exercises.com/

    As far as successful SBI sites, I don’t follow what they’re up to anymore, but one of my fave home design sites is front-porch-ideas-and-more.com/ and it appears that they do very well.

    Anyhoo.. can’t remember last time I wrote a book for a comment. LOL

    I feel like I’ve been on your site before Kristi, but I’ll bookmark it this time so I can come back more often!

    ~ darlene :-)

  162. Justin says

    I do not see the value of bashing the integrity of a man and his business to this extent in such a public and vigilante manner, especially on the Internet. This is particularly perplexing since this post has nothing whatsoever to do with decorating. Kristi, you sound like a very angry person who unconsciously takes it out on other people. I’ve seen this in more places than just this post. Kristi, let me ask you a question. How would you like it if a person wrote a scathing, long and detailed article about you and A2D and posted it on the Internet? And what if that person would not allow you to defend yourself in a comment like you have done with Ken Evoy? A person with true integrity and courage takes their concerns directly to the source (Site Sell and/or Ken Evoy) and not in this cheap and cowardly way. BTW: I am a former SBI subscriber and current WordPress and StudioPress user. Kristi, when I first found your site I was impressed. But now that I’ve discovered this post and the hateful vehement you are capable of, I am no longer comfortable being here. It would be befitting of you (based on this article) to delete and not post or fully read this comment. Please understand that I hold no malice for you, Kristi, and I wish you well. But publishing an article like this serves no constructive purpose or highest good of all.

    • says

      This post would not have been necessary had Evoy not lied and manipulated in order to sell his crappy product. And Justin, I DID go to the source on two occasions. He publicly bashed me (on the SBI Facebook page) and banned me from the conversations there. In addition, he spent months bashing me in his private forums.

      THAT’S WHAT LED TO ME WRITING THIS ARTICLE.

      So cry me a freaking river, why don’t you? If Evoy had an ounce of integrity in his body, and hadn’t lied and manipulated in the first place, this article may not have ever been necessary.

      “Kristi, when I first found your site I was impressed. But now that I’ve discovered this post and the hateful vehement you are capable of, I am no longer comfortable being here.”

      Give me a break…you honestly expect me to believe that you just happened upon my site? Because you were…what? Looking for decorating advice? You must really think I’m an idiot. LOL…move along.

      • Justin says

        The tone of your reply, which I expected, proves that I was correct about the anger issue. And now you’re bashing me by calling me a liar. I found your site some time ago using the keywords “house interior design” as I recall.

        “This post would not have been necessary…” You are playing both judge and jury. And your article is the permanent and ongoing punishment. If your approach with Ken Evoy and Site Sell representatives was the same as displayed here, it is easy to see why you got such an unfavorable response.

        The negative vibe here is so strong it is repelling.

        • says

          Are you honest to goodness so self-righteous that you think I don’t have a right to MY OWN OPINION on MY OWN WEBSITE?!

          And perhaps you conveniently missed the scores of other comments from people (ex-SBIers) here, as well as the other forums and websites visited by and commented on by people who share my opinion of SBI and Evoy. Of course you conveniently missed those. You’re too busy climbing up on your high horse and wagging your finger in my face.

          “The negative vibe here is so strong it is repelling.”

          Evidently it’s not quite repelling enough, now is it?

          (That’s a rhetorical question. Please don’t feel the need to come back. Because again…this is MY website, and I’ll write whatever I damn well please. If you don’t like it…LEAVE!!!)

          If I had to guess, I’d say that you probably work for SBI in some capacity. Or at the very least, you’re an affiliate.

  163. says

    Thank you, Kristi! You are my heroine. I tried SBI when I first started online, and despite the really ugly templates, I stayed with it. I followed all the directions on their 10 day course. I got traffic after two years, but made one sale for $10 on an affiliate product.

    Finally, I gave up and tried another hosting website. This one by Miguel Alvarez. It was a high-monthly fee, but it gave me a good template. However, this did not do well either.

    Then I tried some other hosting sites, all with similar poor results.

    Finally, I went back to SBI, and wrote content everyday, and developed a very high-content self-help site. I did the keyword thing to the max. Apparently, all those SBI forum users that were supposed to be helpful, part of the SBI club, couldn’t give me a single piece of usable advice on how I could improve my traffic. Again, I jettisoned it out of frustration. All that work, everything so difficult to set up, especially information products, downloads, etc, and I just couldn’t take it anymore.

    Now I am with WordPress, self-hosted. With the large volume of templates available, it can look really sophisticated, and with all the plugins, there is nothing that you can’t do with it.

    Out of curiosity, I decided to look at SBI again, once again tempted by the lure of easy traffic. After stumbling across your website, I realized that I had been scammed by all the SBI hype. I tried it over and over again. I kept on thinking that it was me. Now I realize that I was basing my entire belief system on nothing more than exaggerated claims.

    I use WordPress hosted on Hostgator. Unlike SBI who never offered me a single shred of help when I was stuck, Hostgator has helped me over and over again with their skilled technicians.

    Kristi, thank you for standing up against the SBI cult. You are a truth-teller and I totally respect you and your courage to speak up.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

«
»