Business ownership is a lot of work whether it’s a salon, a contractor or even a manufacturer. Owners, of course, know that going in. However, when you start your dream business and as you work to grow that business, you rarely give thought of what happens when you decide to sell it. When getting your business ready to sell, there are a lot of things you need to do legally and financially but some tasks can help make the business more appealing to buyers – consider these 5 steps to make sure your business is attractive to potential buyers.
Step 1: Organize Your Finances
The easiest way to be more appealing to potential buyers is to have clean and organized financials. During negotiations, buyers will want to see why your business is valued at its listed price. In order to prove that, you are required to share some financial information. By being prepared, you have become significantly more attractive to a buyer who might be interested in investing in your business.
Step 2: Prepare a Proper Story for Your Financials
A buyer is bound to judge your business quickly based on your past performance. The first things they see or read will naturally be their first impression so you need to make sure your financial story is clear. For instance, if you can explain the ebbs and flows of your most profitable and least profitable years then a buyer can be more trusting of the value and potential success of your business. If not, it will just look like you sometimes do not do well financially, and that does not bode well for confidence in future success.
Step 3: Highlight Your Strengths
In order to attract some of the best buyers, you need to understand how to properly highlight your strengths. The right buyer will want to know how the business can continue to be successful without your leadership. A business that relies too heavily on current ownership’s skills could be seen as risky by a buyer. Therefore, you need to present how and why your business profitable beyond personal goodwill. In essence, highlight the strengthens that will continue long into the future.
Step 4: A Little Curb Appeal Comes a Long Way
If your business has a storefront, make sure it looks eye-catching. You can do this in some simple, cost-effective ways. For instance, potted plants near the entrance, along with proper exterior signage. You can also have a window display with your most recent launches – therefore, make sure the windows are clean and the door is freshly painted. And in case there is an upcoming holiday, go ahead and add some decorations!
Step 5: Find the Right Buyers - Don’t Wait for The Buyer to Come to You
When you sell a business, you cannot just place a yard sign in front of the business like you would when selling a house. It is a completely different process. In some cases, you can advertise online and wait for buyers to reach out, but that is risky as many businesses do not sell. However, a proactive sales process is much more likely to make a sale happen. You have a much better chance of getting the right buyer to the table through a broker’s business network.
When in doubt, seek the guidance of your trusted business broker. Transworld Business Advisors has some of the most experienced and professional business advisors in the industry. They have invaluable knowledge of both sides of every deal. Able to place themselves in the shoes of the buyer, they can help you (the seller) properly market and attract the right buyers.