When your business is for sale, you need to be especially careful that everything looks perfect. In fact, this is the time when extra effort to keep things in the best shape can really be worth it. Think about it: just like a house that is for sale, you want your business to look good. So, it has to work well, you must have the the financial records, a good inventory and well-maintained working area. People want to buy a successful business, not one that has obviously been neglected. You will also want to make sure that you have reduced the company’s debts as much as possible, that you have resolved existing lawsuits and that all tax obligations are up to date.
Before giving a tour to potential buyers, prepare your business to look at its best. Here are some tips on how to sell your business by making a good first impression:
- Do a general cleaning. Look around to see if there are any areas or equipment that need to be cleaned, repaired or replaced. It will be worth the effort, because any buyer will appreciate a clean and fully functional business environment.
- Get rid of obsolete equipment. In this way, the business will appear more active and the sales process will be easier, because it will not include technologically outdated equipment.
- Prepare your workforce. Potential buyers will appreciate the employees who will remain in the fray during the transition process and after the sale.
- Renew commercial leases in advance and make sure they can be easily transferred to a new owner.
- Be present online. In the digital world we live in, the first thing a potential buyer will do is search for your profile and business online. So, make sure that the company’s website is functional and all the links are active. Also, do a brand audit and make sure that no unprofessional or compromising aspect appears on internet searches that have to do with your business.
- Another important step is to choose the sales team. The complexity of the company and the time allocated to the sale will determine whether you need a lawyer, an accountant, or an entire team (evaluator, consultant, broker) in your sales team. Many business brokers can also do an evaluation, so often a specialized evaluator is not necessary.
By following these steps in preparing a business for sale, you are more likely to find a good buyer and maybe even get a higher selling price.
Last but not least, you will need to identify serious buyers in the process of selling your business. You may be pleased with the large number of people who respond to your sale advertisement, but, surprisingly, most people who seem interested never buy. Therefore, it is important to distinguish between those potential buyers who have a real interest in your business and those who only do window shopping.
People respond to business sales ads for a variety of reasons, from curiosity to market research. In addition, many intend to buy a business, but do not have the necessary experience or funds. In these situations, your instinct can play an important role in the final decision.