Established Online Business For Sale
As a Buyer - What are the Advantages of Buying an Established Online Business For Sale?
- Less Risk Than a Physical Business
- The Startup Work Is Already Done
- Immediate Cash Flow
- Strong Financial History
- A Market Already Exists
- Less Moving Parts Than a Physical Business
We compiled this brief guide for both Buyers and Sellers of Online Digital Real Estate. We designed it to assist those on the Internet Entrepreneur journey. New Buyers to the Digital Real Estate world appreciate the benefits afforded to them when they work anywhere, at anytime!
As an online entrepreneur, you may one day want to sell or buy your first business. It could be because the seller's market is financially strong, and it's just the right time. Maybe it's a Buyer's market? Maybe you're selling because the business grew too big too fast and you're finding it hard to keep up. You could even be selling out of necessity for personal reasons.
Whatever the case is, as a buyer or seller, listing an established online business for sale is a process. It includes several important steps. You can either sell your online business yourself, or you can go through a third-party advisor like a broker. If you choose to do it yourself, you're faced with a number of questions:
Where to go, and what to do?
How much your business is worth?
Who to ask for help with the process?
There isn't a lot of valuable information available when it comes to the topic of putting up an established online business for sale. So that's why we wrote this article!
Before making the decision to sell, ask yourself the following questions:
- Why do I want to sell? (Is it out of necessity, explosive growth, or do you want to make a profit?)
- How can I make my company more attractive to all prospective buyers? (This could involve updating your website, cleaning up inventory, planning campaigns, and updating your bookkeeping and financial documents).
- Will my customers benefit from a sale? If so, how? (Would they benefit from faster shipping times, increased inventory, or more product options?)
- Who will be able to grow my business the way my customers need it? (A manufacturer, a competitor, or a consumer?)
- What is the financial climate like in my industry? (Is it growing, receding, or stagnant?)
- Where am I going to find a buyer? (Maybe it's in your best interests to find a broker to help you? Or are you going to find one through networking, word of mouth, etc?)
3-Simple Steps to Prepping an Established Online Business for Sale!
Step 1: Update Your Theme
Clean the back end of your website. Just as you would do when putting a house on the market, you need to ensure that when buyers take a look there, there's nothing that will make a negative impression. Provide potential buyers with all the charm without any of your personal touches by making sure that the site is uncluttered and clean.
This offers a fresh new palate for a whole new vision without actually seeming cold, uninviting, and sterile. In fact, this is a perfect time to upgrade or revamp your site's design if it is a bit old. Of course, this is something that you can leave for the new business owners, but since you have no idea when you might find a buyer, it's best that you do it.
After all, it can only help you as your site will look great to prospective buyers, and it's also a great way of preparing your customers for the upcoming change.
Step 2: Organize Your Inventory
Your next step is to remove all the products that aren't in stock if you don't want to have to invest in add-on products during your transition period. You don't want your site to be looking empty to your buyers or customers. You may also want to condense your product categories if that applies, as too many could give your site a cluttered look.
So, reorganize everything and streamline the flow. Make it easy for the new owners to pick up where you left off. Whatever business you're in, and whatever products or services that you sell on your website, the people who are buying your website aren't just buying your business, they are inheriting your entire brand and the unique personality behind it. Make sure that you give them enough to be inspired – from your site and products to your customers, reviews, social media, design team, and so on.
Step 3: Get Your Financials in Order
Now that your site is updated, you can start working on making sure that your financials are in order. This is a major determining factor in most favorable valuations. So update your bookkeeping records and you can even create a quick one-page reference sheet to include some of the most important information such as:
Your sales revenue for the past 3 years
The % of growth each year
Top 10 products with their sales amounts
Your active wholesale accounts (if applicable)
The number of customers and orders, as well as the conversion %
The value of the inventory that you have on hand
Your monthly operating costs
And so on.....
It's a great idea to always be prepared with material that you can reference quickly as opposed to presenting your prospective buyers with an overwhelming amount of information. So, be prepared with whatever information that the buyer may need to know for your own particular industry, but don't drown them in paperwork. If they need more details, you can simply provide them later on, but during that initial meeting, they probably don't have the time to dissect your huge reports. Now that everything is ready, where do you find the right buyers for your business?
When you have an established online business for sale, some of the best places that you can look for buyers include:
And niche forums
But remember, you are going to have to know your industry through and through so that you'll be able to sell the industry vision to your buyer. And it's important to keep in mind the reasons why you're selling so that you sell to the person who best meets those needs.