6 Ways to Write a Business-for-Sale Advertisement

When you advertise your business, you can really boost your chances of making a better sale by getting more leads and a bigger selection of buyers, as well as a higher selling price. The problem with advertising your business-for-sale, though, is that you can end up with problems with your staff, with your suppliers, and even inadvertently help your competitors poach your clients. That's why it's important that when you advertise your business you balance an effective marketing strategy with maintaining confidentiality.


The way you write your ad matters a lot because on the one hand it has to appeal to potential buyers by outlining your business strengths and prospective future gains but at the same time you can't embellish or stretch the facts because you'll need to back them up with facts and figures at the purchase time. You also have to share enough so that buyers are interested in learning more, but without revealing too much information that your competitors can find out exactly the private details of your business. Another fine line to balance is to keep ads relatively short but still piquing enough interest and trust in you as a seller so that potential buyers will reach out to you - not just vaguely, but with concrete information to move a purchase along.

You also have to share enough information about the size or your business and its sale price to reach prospective and qualified buyers but also being clear that buyers who don't meet the criteria can move on without wasting your time and theirs. Lastly, and most importantly, it's crucial that you make your business stand out from other similar businesses that are listed with yours, either online in a business for sale marketplace, in the classifieds, or in trade publications.

It's not an easy task, so it's normal to feel anxious about this step. Here are some tips that are very helpful to follow when you're writing your sale advertisement for your business.

1. Description

You need to spend a lot of time writing a brief and to the point description of your business. This section should only be a few sentences long but share an overview of your business and why buyers should be interested in it. Be concise and truthful as well as engaging.

This is what you should be sharing in your description:

  • What type of business and what it does. You need to be very clear and direct. This is not the place for vague terms. Say specifically what kind of manufacturer, what industry, what clients, etc.
  • Location of your business. You need to specify where your business is located. However, if it's located in a small city with not many businesses that match your description, you may not want to give the location as it will reveal your identity and intention to sell. The problem here is that buyers will typically search online by location, so you need to address this issue somehow. Instead of the city and state, give only the state, or the type of city in the state. This should be enough for prospective buyers without revealing too much.

2. Online Tools

It's important to be professional and clear in your business-for-sale advertisement. To do that, make sure you're using online tools to help you write, edit, and proofread your ad. These are some tools for that:

  • Study Demic and My Writing Way are two copywriting guides online to help you write great copy for this extremely important ad.
  • Academized and Paper Fellows are editing tools so you can make sure your ad flows well and is well structured.
  • Academ Advisor and Simple Grad are grammar guides in case you're not sure of the best terms to use in your advertisement.
  • Australian Help and Ox Essays are proofreading tools. You need to make sure there are no mistakes or typos in your final copy.
  • Via Writing will help you put the finishing touches on your formatting.

3. Business Identity

You need to protect the identity of your business and there are two ways you should be doing that.

You can put out blind ads which don't include your address or business name and hide your identity by describing your business in a way that buyers can’t link to your business. Online, those types of ads are called blind listings. For this step it helps to use a broker because they can market your business themselves.

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Another way you can protect your business is by using some identity-protecting features that listing sites have. This means that buyers have to enter certain required information before they can contact the seller, including a form for confidentiality agreement. That means any interested buyers have to sign and submit that before they can start getting down to details. You can also change your settings so that your inquiry response asks buyers to include certain information like investment capability or their sale timeframe. All of these steps help to protect your business.

4. Well-Qualified Buyers

If you provide clear requirements for purchase, you're helping buyers self-qualify and maximizing your time. Include your annual revenues so your prospective buyers can know if your business is the right size for their interests. You should also have a clear asking price so your buyers know if it's in their budget and how to counter with a valid offer. It might seem strange that you're writing an ad with the purpose of making the pool of buyers smaller, but that's exactly what you should be doing. You don't want to share your personal business information with anyone except the buyers that are most interested and able to make the purchase of your business.

5. Prescreen

You can request certain information in inquiry responses from potential buyers so you can prescreen them. If you put something like "contact seller for more information" you're just creating extra work for yourself. Instead, ask and insist on certain details when buyers reach out to you. This includes:

  • Their reason for their interest in buying a business similar to yours
  • The timeframe for their purchase needs
  • Their experience in business
  • Their financial capacity.

Online business-for-sale sites insist for you to include this in your response mechanism, and a broker will do this for you if you're using one.

As per George Denver, a business writer at State of Writing and Elite Assignment Help, "if you're selling your business yourself in classified ads, create a default email response with instructions requesting that information. Although this may discourage some buyers, the serious ones will understand and comply".

6. Track Responses

You need to be able to track which of your ad placements were must successful in getting qualified responses. This will be useful in rewording or changing your ads that aren't performing as well. You should also compare media outlets so you can concentrate on what's most successful. The best way you can save money on your sale and have the most successful ads is to track what's working well and what you should tweak for better results.

There's a lot to think about when selling a business, but by following these steps it becomes easier to write a successful business-for-sale advertisement description.

Ellie Coverdale, a writer for UK Writings, shares her marketing and sales tips with her audience. She is passionate about finding business strategies that work for small and large businesses alike.

Published by ExitAdviser


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