Selling an eCommerce business isn’t the same as selling a brick-and-mortar store. In many ways, it’s a lot easier to sell an online store. However, that’s not to say it doesn’t come with its difficulties. You may have reached a pivotal moment in your online business and want to sell at a considerable profit. The process of selling your business is fairly easy, and here’s how to do it.
Work with a broker
Finding buyers is a lengthy and challenging process. However, you can use various social media platforms to connect with interested buyers.
For example, if you are using LinkedIn, you should consider the LinkedIn automation software. This type of software offers a variety of features, including the ability to automatically send invitations even if the LinkedIn weekly limit is reached. This will help you grow your professional network and allow you to connect with potential clients and save their contact details.
On the other hand, business owners who don’t have a buyer contact list or the resources to make the sale themselves can hire a brokerage service. You’ll want to work with an experienced broker since they will negotiate the best price and connect you with relevant buyers. Here are the top three brokers:
- DigitalExits: the best broker for high-end eCommerce sites is DigitalExits. They represent online websites that turnover $100k – $20m a year in profits. They are the best option for those who have established businesses.
- Flippa: the online site handles businesses of all sizes. From small blogging sites to huge enterprises. They will connect you with hundreds of interested buyers at great prices. Also, they take a small percentage of the sale.
- FoundersIB: Founders Investment Bank is an ideal choice for those who make over $20m a year in profits. They only specialize in huge deals and do strategic transactions.
Prepare your online store for sale
Before you try to sell an online business, try to put yourself in the shoes of a potential buyer. The very first thing they’ll do is visit your website. So, you need to make sure that the site is visually appealing to new owners. Buyers will avoid visiting a site that is crowded with needless features and information. Much like a house, it’s easier to sell when everything is in perfect condition.
If, for example, you own an Amazon FBA business you have surely looked at how to sell Amazon business and already know that it’s important to get the business organized before selling. Here are some other steps you should take to prepare your online store for sale:
It’s common for online stores to go out of stock. However, you want to prevent this at least a month before selling. This is because you want sales at an all-time high, and going out of stock will impact this dramatically.
Make sure that you stock up on inventory so that none of your products have “out of stock” next to them. This can be unappealing to buyers. Also, having inventory for at least a few months removes pressure on the new owner because they can take time to get comfortable.
Get your finances in order
It’s extremely important that your finances are correct since the main focus will be what the business can generate in income. You may want to hire an accountant if you’re unsure how to do this correctly. Buyers, accountants, appraisers, lawyers, and advisors will be going through the documents, so you must get this 100% correct.
At the minimum, have the last three years of tax returns, income statements, cash flow statements, and balance sheets.
Organize customer data
Another important factor that buyers will look at is customer data. They will want to know how many customers’ contacts you have, traffic generation, and social media analytics. It can be a huge selling point and increase the value of your eCommerce.
Contact a valuation expert
Many owners think they know the value of their eCommerce business, but they’d be surprised after talking with a valuation expert. You can’t guess or estimate the numbers because otherwise your risk overpricing or underpricing your business.
A third-party appraiser will value your business fairly with no biased opinion. The price they give may not be the final number since you’ll have to negotiate with a buyer. The evaluator should tell you in great detail how they landed on a particular number. This report will give credibility when listing your price.
Selling an eCommerce business is a thrilling experience once the paperwork is finished. To ensure that you get the best price, make sure you implement all the tips mentioned. The most important thing that you can do right now is getting the business evaluated to know what needs to be improved.
So, prepare your website and visit a broker while your stock is hot. Not making the necessary adjustments can make you lose out on potential money.
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