Selling your business isn’t the end of your journey, but merely a beginning to a new chapter. There are several reasons why a business owner would consider selling their business, but this might not be a simple task. It's a complicated process because you want to make the best of the situation. Keep on reading to learn more about speeding up the process of selling your business.
How to Sell Your Business Successfully
To survive this overwhelming process, you need to understand that it’s perfectly fine to sell your company. You might be interested in doing something different with your life or feel that it’s time to start a new adventure or project. You might be getting ready for retirement or need to spend more time with a loved one.
Entrepreneurs sell their businesses all the time, and if you do this correctly, you will end up with enough money to fund your retirement trip or your next project. Selling your business can be very rewarding if you do it right. There are several steps that you should follow if you want to sell your business fast and guarantee the best results.
1. Prepare a Comprehensive Summary
A business summary will increase the value of your business and help speed up the sale. This summary should be about 10 to 20 pages long and should include the key questions that potential buyers are likely to ask, so they will receive the necessary data regarding your business.
Related. How to Prepare a Sales Memorandum
Interested buyers should sign a non-disclosure agreement to guarantee that they won’t share your business details with other parties. Your sales team or a professional broker can prepare this summary. After preparing a successful summary, all the other steps will follow easily.
2. Find a Professional Broker
The first thing you may want to do is find a business broker to handle the process. A business broker will be able to determine the value of your business and the best strategy to help you sell it fast.
Related: Pitch-to-Brokers Tool
Being a trustworthy third-party, the broker will be more credible and will motivate your buyer to consider the specified price. A broker might use the cost approach, the market approach, or the discounted cash flow approach to determine the value of your business. A broker will consider the industry trends, debts, and similar companies that might be available for sale. He or she might even advise you not to sell your business just yet if you can’t get a fair price.
3. Combine Several Marketing Strategies
A professional broker will help you identify your ideal buyer, but there are several ways to do that. The broker can approach potential buyers aggressively through phone calls, emails, and faxes. In some cases, you might need to advertise your business in industry publications and other media that target similar companies in your industry. This method might result in lower offers for your business but works when the buyer is supposed to have experience in the industry.
In some cases, the broker will choose to advertise the business outside the industry using print and online media. This method usually guarantees a better value for your business but might not work with all industries. Moreover, this method is also the most expensive of all.
Related: Businesses For Sale Near You
4. Meet Qualified Buyers
Some sellers might make a mistake of not screening potential buyers, which means that they might be wasting their time with the wrong people who might never be actually interested in their businesses. The business summary you have prepared would help you screen buyers as it includes most of the common questions that potential buyers might ask if they’re really interested in buying. There will also be an extra section for other specific questions that a buyer might ask.
You also need to screen your buyers for motivation and money to make sure that they have the financial ability to buy your business and pay an adequate price for it. It’s recommended to call the buyers after sending the business summary to follow up with the sale.
Your next step depends on how the potential buyers respond to your email. If they ask a few questions, you can send the answers in an email. If they send too many questions, it’s a better idea to schedule a meeting. If the buyer doesn’t want to meet, you might need to ask for additional information like their financial statement or credit report.
5. Study Offers
It’s up to you and the broker you’ve hired to assess the offers you’ve received for your business. If buyers have been studying your business profile for a while, you should ask them to make an offer.
Before you start negotiating with a buyer, you should make sure that they’re financially qualified. If a buyer is really interested, they won’t hesitate to provide you with proof of funds. If you decide to accept an offer, you have the right to examine the buyer’s situation and background. Ask the buyer about their requirements and be ready to submit any documents they might ask for.
During the appraisal process, the buyer will assess the business’s potential value. You can also offer financing to help the process move forward. Due diligence is crucial as you and the buyer will identify the deal-breakers.
6. Accept the Offer
If you have followed all the previous steps, closing the deal will be straightforward. You and the buyer want to close the deal to guarantee the best outcome. You and your team should always be ready with the necessary documents to estimate when the deal will be closed. Take daily actions until the deal is closed and keep the momentum going. It might take a few weeks, but your effort will be worth it.
Selling your business might be a chance to start a new venture or provide you with enough funds to retire and pursue your passion. You need to be as organized as possible while selling your business to land the best offers. To boost up the process, you need to keep all your documents ready, and don’t be afraid to get a little bit aggressive while negotiating. After all, you know what your business is worth.
Alan Walker is an entrepreneur, digital nomad, writer and educator. Alan runs his own blog and review website dedicated to writing services — Stressays.com. He puts a lot of work into writing cohesive and informative reviews and digging the information. He also manages a subreddit called r/Stressays that is aimed at helping students study more effectively.