Rank and Rent

 Rank & Rent Guide for 2020

For many years I have been building, ranking and then renting out websites to local businesses in the UK & USA.

Over the years I have had many successes and also many lows but with every website, I have learnt something new. What can be done quicker, better and works better for the search engines.

Today, I have decided to share with you all my Rank and Rent (R&R) method and how I am able to get the results and also the clients to rent my assets.

I am open enough to say all of my ranking and renting knowledge is not my own, I did learn from other renowned SEO’ers.

Awesome R&R Tutorials

Each of these SEO guru’s has its own guides for rank and rent. My guide will offer you something more and with that, help get more from your assets.

Who benefits from Rank & Rent websites?

Local business who offer a service or a product is always looking for new customers. These are the businesses who you must build and rank websites with the intention of renting.

These types of businesses are your bread and butter.

Here is an example…

A plumbing company is always looking for new clients. It does not matter if they are already on page 1 of Google with their website (10% of the first-page real estate), they would prefer to have 20% of the websites showing on page 1, two means of customers contacting them!

Throughout this guide, I am going to assume you have some web knowledge including: 

  • Domains
  • Hosting
  • WordPress

If you are not familiar with any of the above, I would suggest heading over to Google and learning about those topics and then coming back to this post. 

FYI: Are you looking for a platform that will allow you to manage all your R&R websites all at the same time? Click here for more information.

What is Rank & Rent Method?

The simplest way to explain R&R:

Rank and Rent method is a tactic that allows you to build a website, rank it in the local search results, and then rent the site out to a local business.

The R&R method is quite simple:

  • Build a website in a Location + Niche that has good traffic numbers on Google.
  • Optimise and rank your website in the search engines for a variety of buying keywords.
  • Rent your website to a business in the same niche + location for a monthly retainer.

Niche & Location

Something I used to do when I first started out with rant and rent is going after industries and locations that were out of my league in terms of SEO.

There is an age-old saying:

The best place to hide a dead body is on page 2 of Google

There is no point trying to build an R&R website if you are not able to get it to the top of Google for your main keywords. It will be money and time wasted.

The best realisation I ever made was to choose niches and locations that were easier to rank and still offered the businesses value for them to keep paying you a monthly figure for your asset.


Choosing the right industry is a massive part of the success of your rank & rent website.

There are two types of niches you should be looking at:

  • Businesses who have a big price tag and want fewer jobs
  • Businesses who have lower price tags and want many jobs

SEO Niches Update 2020

I have put together a long list of possible rank & rent list of local business niches that all would be interested in more leads coming from the internet.

This should be used as a guideline and it would be advised to try a few before you find your web ranking calling.


Choose a town/city with a population of between 100k – 300k.

This will allow you to get your website ranking quicker and at the top of the search results because the competition will be low.

Ranking & Renting Websites

In my opinion, this is one of the most important steps in a successful R&R campaign.

You are tasked with building a website that looks authentic, has quality content that real customers will want to read and answers the questions by potential customers.

Building a real website that is brandable and authentic is much harder than it sounds but here are some tips and tricks to help you out.

Website Domain

The best domain you can get for your website is a TDL for your country:

  • Australia – .com.au
  • United Kingdom – .co.uk
  • South Africa – .co.za

When it comes to the name of your domain, there are 3 options and each offers it’s own benefits etc:

  • EMD: exact match domain
  • PMD: partially match domain
  • Branded: branded domains

I have always favoured a PMD, I feel it gives you a lot more options to play with in terms of finding the right domain for your website.

Building your website

I am a 100% WordPress web designer and that is the reason I only build rank-and-rent website with WordPress.

I personally believe WordPress is the best CMS (Content Management System) out there as it gives you so much control but that is not to say it is the only one you can use:

  • Weebly
  • Wix
  • Joomla
  • Squarespace
  • and many more…

Pretty much all of the above platforms will offer responsive design, this will give your customers great user experience.

It totally comes down to what you are comfortable with and what works best for you.

Website Content

Because I have been building rank & rent websites for a long time, you get used to seeing one when doing local SEO research and the one thing I have noticed is this is the area where the designers let themselves down.

The content on your R&R site needs to be QUALITY and exactly what a real business would put on their website. DO NOT CUT CORNERS!

Always have in the back of your mind that you should be creating an authority website rather than a churn and burn website.

Ranking Pages

For your ranking pages (Your main keywords) you should aim for 1000+ words and within that page, you should be thinking of how to rank for keyword variations.

  • Use different forms of content (Video, Images, PDF’s etc)
  • Page layout should entice users to contact via that page
  • On-Page SEO should be on point

FYI: Are you looking for a platform that will allow you to manage all your R&R websites all at the same time? Get your Free Trial NOW!

R&R Google Maps

Google My Business is by far one of the best ways to generate leads as a local business anywhere in the world and is an integral part of any R&R campaign. 

With a reputable website and an optimised Google Maps listing your R&R campaign will be in full swing and will have no problem renting out your asset to a local business. 

The benefits of a GMB listing:

  • It is 100% free
  • The 3 pack sits above organic websites in the search results
  • They build trust in your business by allowing customers to leave reviews
  • Build local relevancy for searches online.
  • Click to call off mobiles
  • Customers can message directly from their phones
  • and more

A great place to get verified GMB listings is GMB Swarm. I have personally used them and vouch for their service.

You have a beautiful looking website that looks like a real business. 

You have a Google Maps listing that is completed with all your information for the RR website. 

Now it is time to get these elements ranking. 

Rank & Rent SEO

I am going to assume you have added your website to Google Webmaster and submitted it to be crawled.

Your website is scheduled to get indexed by the search engines, now it is time to help Google rank your website. Below are the steps I take to get a RR website in a 300K city ranking.

Press Release

7 days after submitting my website through Google Webmaster, I will order a press release which will go to about 450 news and media websites and the majority will have a link back to your website.

The content on the PR should be around the content of your RR website and should have a link back to your website through branded anchor text. I will always go for branded (Craig Riley) or naked URL (craigriley.org).

Social Signals

Social is important for SEO and if you are a real website, social sharing is important.

Order social signals that will be drip fed over 30 days – generally.

Web 2.0 Sites

The purpose of these Web 2.0 websites is not to pass link juice to your website but to stop over optimising of your main keywords.

When building these Web 2.0’s, always use content around your niche and your location and your anchor text should vary but never use your main keywords!

Here are some examples:

  • http://domain.com
  • Domain.com
  • Company Name
  • Click here
  • More information
  • Visit website
  • and the list goes on…

You can source cheap deals online for these to be built out on your behalf and then the logins supplied back to you.

More Website Content

You should be aiming to publish 2-4 pieces of content on your website blog per week. I know this sounds like a lot but it will help with your authority.

The content should switch between your niche & location.

Niche content: Should add value to your readers and support your main ranking pages.

Location content: Will show Google that you are a leader within your geo-location.

PBN Link Building

A Private Blog Network (PBN) is a network of authoritative websites used to build links to your money website(s) for the purpose of ranking higher in the Google search engine. A money website is the website you intend on ranking i.e. the one that actually makes money. This can also refer to a clients website. Lionzeal

These are the links that are going to power up your website and get it ranking on the first page of the search engines for your main keywords.

When you order links, you can use your main keywords you are trying to rank for eg: “London plumber”.

You must only use your exact keyword once and it must come from a powerful niche related website. This will give you the most power and link juice to rank for those keywords.

Call & Website Tracking

It is 100% advised to setup tracking from the very start of your R&R campaign. This will allow you to rent the asset so much quicker as you will have sats, call numbers and emails being sent from your asset.

What you will need to do is:

  • Trackable phone number
  • Google Analytics
  • Email account
  • Keyword tracking

Your trackable number should have a function to be able to change the receiving number at will. Great feature to have at your disposal.

Rent Websites to Local Businesses

Now you have a complete ranking & renting asset that is now ready to be rented to a local business in your niche.

There are a number of ways to get your asset rented:

  • Cold calling
  • Emailing individual businesses
  • Stick a sign on your website “Available or Rent”

I would advise cold calling and emailing businesses who your asset will ass value.

When speaking/emailing use the stats you have collected through your tracking as this will show evidence that your rank,rent the asset can deliver and increase their ROI.


The rank and rent model is not for everyone. I know some people who have tried and fail for some reason.

I would also say, try to build one RR website and see what happens, you do not have to invest $1000’s of dollars to see if you can rank a website. 

Start off small and then grow your assets into different towns

I really hope you have learned something in this quick guide to the rank and rent model. 

Good luck… CR

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