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The Empire Flippers Referral Program vs. Flippa, FE International, QuietLight, and More

Craig Schoolkate August 24, 2022

The Empire Flippers Referral Program vs. Flippa, FE International, QuietLight, and More

Imagine earning 10-30% on the sale of a seven-figure online business, without having to be involved in the sale process at all.

If you have an audience of digital entrepreneurs, marketers, content creators, digital investors, traditional investors, or even individuals with a high net income that are looking for new investment opportunities, then you’re in a great position to earn extra cash flow from that audience.

As for those just starting out as an aspiring entrepreneur or content creator, this is the best time to take advantage of affiliate opportunities in the online business mergers and acquisitions (M&A) niche.

The industry is still new (only 20 years old, give or take a few years). There isn’t a lot of content out there about online business M&A.

With low competition in a growing, high-ticket niche, you have a chance to earn a healthy life-supporting income by creating and monetizing content through online business M&A referral programs.

How Online Business M&A Referral Programs Work

When you refer someone who owns or buys online businesses, websites, or digital assets to a broker or marketplace, you’ll earn a percentage of the commissions they make on the sale or purchase of that asset.

For example, with the Empire Flippers program you earn 20% of our commissions. Therefore, if we sold a business you referred to us for $1,000,000, you would make $25,800.

The sales cycle in this industry is long. When you refer a business owner, it could take months, even years for their business to be sold because they need to prepare their business for sale and go through the lengthy processes of getting the business sold and transferring it to the buyer.

The same usually goes for a buyer referral as acquiring an online business is a big commitment.

When considering your options for becoming an affiliate in this industry, it’s important to understand the difference between an online business broker and an online business marketplace.

A broker facilitates the sales and acquisitions of online businesses by acting as an intermediary and professional advisor throughout the process; they actively connect business buyers and sellers, moderate negotiations, and help assist in the migrations of businesses to new owners.

A marketplace is a platform where business owners can list their businesses for sale. Depending on the type of marketplace, there might be some customer service or sales support elements to help operate the marketplace, but there usually aren’t any professionals helping facilitate deals.

Some brokers have their own marketplace where they showcase the businesses they have for sale.

The key difference most relevant to you is that with a marketplace you’re likely to be able to refer a large number of leads, but you might not see a very high conversion rate as there are no teams working to get the deal done. Whereas with a broker their acceptance criteria for leads will be more selective, but you’ll likely have a higher conversion rate as they have processes in place to get businesses sold.

Now you know how online business brokerages and marketplaces work, let’s compare some of the best referral programs in this industry.

Flippa’s Referral Program

Flippa is a marketplace for online businesses, websites, and other digital assets.

While it isn’t a broker per se, it does offer broker-like services including escrow, provision of sale contracts, and sales support.

Flippa has the only referral program set up on an affiliate network—Commission Junction.


  • The program is run through Commission Junction, a good affiliate infrastructure
  • 30% success fees
  • It offers earnings per click (EPC) where you’re paid for traffic you drive to its valuation tool page
  • It provides promotional assets. Their design team can even create custom assets for you
  • No earning cap
  • Accepts referrals of buyers and sellers
  • A wide variety of digital assets can be sold on the platform
  • Low-barrier to entry for business and buyer referrals compared to other programs


  • 120-day tracking window (the transaction needs to occur within this time frame.)—not a long time for a business sale
  • Flippa charges business owners less commission compared to other programs
  • Flippa doesn’t usually sell businesses above $2,000,000
  • Low barrier to entry for business and buyer referrals—this can be a negative as continuously referring low-quality businesses and buyers isn’t a sustainable referral strategy
  • Commissions from EPCs are paid monthly


  • Success fee is 30% on any site, store, app, or digital property sale
  • Driving traffic to their valuation tool earns you $1.15 per click with a 7-day EPC window

FE International

FE International is an established online business broker that has been operating for over 20 years. It has strong connections in the industry and regularly sells seven-to-eight figure businesses.

However, their business is built upon in-person networking and direct-contact relationships. Because of this, their referral program isn’t designed for online use so it’ll be difficult for you as a content creator to promote FE International and send leads.


  • Regularly sell seven-to-eight figure businesses
  • Has an experienced team to sell businesses
  • A trusted brand


  • 10% commissions
  • Only accepts business referrals
  • The entire referral program is organized through email—it’ll be difficult to track referrals and earnings
  • 12-month referral window is shorter than some other programs
  • You have to issue an invoice to FE to receive your earnings
  • It could take up to 90 days to receive your payout after you’ve submitted the invoice
  • Limited variety of digital assets that can be sold compared to some other programs


  • 10% on commissions earned by FE within a 12-month window
  • Get paid up to 90 days after FE earns its commissions


QuietLight is another established online business broker that has a good reputation in the industry and has been operating for around 15 years.

Similar to FE International, QuietLight doesn’t have much of an established online presence and foundation, so its referral program is also basic.


  • Accepts referrals for businesses that aren’t ready to be sold yet and QuietLight will help the business owner with advice to prepare their business for sale
  • Strict referral criteria: they will only work with high-quality businesses that meet their criteria, meaning you have a good chance of your referral converting into a sale


  • Strict referral criteria: it might be hard to find businesses they will accept
  • Only accepts business referrals
  • Only accepts businesses $250K and above
  • The entire program is run on email. It’ll be difficult to track referrals and earnings
  • Earnings cap of $100K (according to the referral page on the website)
  • Limited variety of digital assets that can be sold compared to some other programs


  • 10% on fees earned by QuietLight


Websiteproperties is an online business broker that has been operating for around 20 years. Although it isn’t one of the biggest brands in the industry, it is a professional brokerage with an established network of buyers and sellers.

It sells most online business models including ecommerce, Amazon-based businesses, content sites, and SaaS businesses.


  • No earnings cap
  • Online affiliate dashboard


  • Small broker: only $550M in brokered sales, 600+ sites sold, 35K buyers
  • Only accepts business referrals
  • 15% success fee is lower than some other programs
  • Limited variety of digital assets that can be sold compared to some other programs


  • Up to 15% on commissions earned by Websiteproperties

Website Closers

Website Closers is a brokerage firm created by two co-founders who work with business brokers, certified public accountants, banking and financial professionals, evaluation companies, and due diligence professionals to facilitate deals.

It sells ecommerce and Amazon companies, websites and domains, iOT and tech-enabled brands, technology and IP companies, business services-based companies, managed service provider and IT Solutions, and apps.


  • Get paid out on the day the deal closes
  • You can refer more types of businesses and digital assets than with other programs
  • Unlimited earning potential


  • 10% success fee is small compared to some other programs
  • Only accepts business referrals
  • The affiliate infrastructure is more basic than in other programs


  • 10% on commissions earned by Website Closers

Acquisitions Direct

Acquisitions Direct is an online business brokerage firm that facilitates the sales and acquisitions of ecommerce, Amazon FBA, and content-based businesses. It has been operating since 2002.


  • The brokerage has a 92% close rate (though this isn’t necessarily the close rate for businesses referred through the partnership program)
  • 20 years of experience as a brokerage


  • 15% success fee is lower than some other partner programs
  • Minimum $100K business valuation
  • A small brokerage; only sold 350+ businesses and only 15,000+ buyers in its network
  • The affiliate infrastructure is more basic than in other programs
  • Limited variety of digital assets that can be sold compared to some other programs


  • 15% on commissions earned by Acquisitions Direct

Empire Flippers

Empire Flippers is one of the industry-leading online business brokerages with the world’s largest curated online business marketplace. It is made up of a team of 85+ employees and is the only brokerage with in-house teams dedicated to every stage of the business sale/acquisition process.

We sell ecommerce, Amazon-based businesses, content sites, and SaaS businesses. We have also sold service-based businesses that operate with a large online component.


  • 20% commissions is higher than most other programs
  • Accepts business and buyer referrals
  • Earn success fees on all sales or purchases from your referrals for 2 years (the longest cookie tracking in the industry)
  • A custom dashboard for referral tracking
  • A strong referral linking system for easy use and accurate tracking
  • Uncapped earnings
  • You can be paid commissions on earnout deals
  • A business listing criteria that is wider than some other programs ($50K+)
  • A buyer network with over $700,000,000,000 in verified liquidity
  • Teams dedicated to every stage of online business transactions


  • Strict business listing criteria
  • Limited range of digital assets that can be sold compared to other programs


  • 20% on commissions earned by Empire Flippers
  • A percentage of earnout-based commissions

The Biggest Consideration for Choosing the Right Referral Program

How successful you can be with a referral program is determined by the proficiency of the broker you work with or the quality of the marketplace.

If you are referring a high volume of businesses to a broker or marketplace, but the businesses aren’t getting sold, then you won’t receive your rewards for your efforts.

This is why the question of the right referral program is actually a question of the right broker.

How to Earn 20% on Business Sales By Just Sharing a Link

Because Empire Flippers has been operating and growing year on year for over 20 years, our referral program has only been in operation for 8 months and has already helped its partners earn the annual wage of an average paying job in the US; one partner earned this with just one referral.

We thoroughly vet businesses submitted to our marketplace to check the business quality. Our buyer network trusts this process which is why we’re able to achieve a high close rate for getting businesses sold.

You can start referring business owners or buyers to Empire Flippers in just a few easy steps.

First, you complete a short form to apply to be an EF Referral Partner.

We’ll review your application and get you onboarded if we think you could earn from this program.

People who do well with this program tend to be brands with audiences or communities, agencies or service providers for online businesses, influencers and producers of online courses.

Once we get you set up, you just need to grab your custom EF Referral Partner link from your own dashboard and start sharing with your audience. You can link anywhere on our website by adding your referral code at the end of the link. You can also make referrals by sending an email introduction to us.

In your dashboard you’ll be able to track the progress of your referrals in real time.

Whenever a transaction is made with one of your referrals, your success fee will be moved to your Marketplace Wallet in your Empire Flippers account. You can withdraw your funds from your wallet any time via ACH bank wire.

Sign up to become an EF Referral Partner today and start earning 20% of our commissions.

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