How To Sell Your Tucson Business As Fast As Possible
Don’t underestimate how much is involved in selling a business in Tucson, unless you want to end up disappointed. You’ve spent a great deal of time, effort and money to get your business to where it is today. Along the way, you should run the business in such a way that if you ever had to sell it — unexpectedly, and quickly — the business would ready to sell. If you do this, chances are you will be running the business more effectively along the way, as well. Here are a number of important items to keep in mind, to have completed and planned for in advance, so that you can sell your Tucson business “fast” if you and when you need to.
1) Plan ahead to prepare the business for sale
There is a lot more to selling a business than simply deciding it is for sale, and beginning to advertise it as such. In order to sell your business, you need to work along the way to ensure that it is actually ready to be sold. If it is, it may sell “fast.” If it is not (and most businesses are not), then that will be the main reason why it will go through an extended selling process that could frustrate you as the seller. If the business does not sell fast, it will be a direct function of the time that you have not invested along the way into preparing it for sale by making sure your accounting, tax returns, financial statements and records are maintained in an accurate, orderly and accessible fashion such that they are ready for review by prospective buyers. In the same way, making sure that you have kept up with necessary maintenance of plant and equipment, and company facilities, will ensure that your business creates the most favorable, presentable, valuable and desireable impression possible. Businesses that appear neglected, untidy or in a state of disrepair will be less valuable to a potential buyer.
2) Be realistic in your valuation of your business
The top reason that business owners find that it takes longer to sell their business than they expected is that they simply do not have a realistic understanding of how the market values their business. Of course you worked hard in your business, and invested into it your blood, sweat and tears, years of your life, and financial resources. This fact is quite likely going to cause you to be emotional about what the business is worth, while a buyer will be looking rationally at the cold hard facts. If you overprice your business at the time you place it for sale, then it will not only not sell fast, it is not likely to sell at all. Ever. On the other hand, if your eagerness to sell causes you to price the business too low, then you could be shortchanging all of your investment by leaving money on the table. Work wih a professionally trained business broker or other specialist to develop a valuation of your business performed in accordance with commonly accepted business valuation methods. By getting it accurately valued, and respecting the “voice of the market” as you price the business for sale, you will increase the chances of a fast sale and avoid unnecessary disappointment.
3) Highlight the strengths of your business
Every industry is unique, and every business within an industry is unique as well. Your business is unique, precisely because it is yours. Before you can effectively prepare yourself to sell your business, you need to be able to understand the strengths and weaknesses of it objectively within the context of the overall industry and with respect to your relevant competition. If you have a clear and fact-based understanding of the niche your business occupies in the market, then you will be far more effective at describing it to a prospective buyer in the most favorable light. This demonstrates to the buyer your ability to step into their shoes and speak their language, since they are clearly comparing your business to others, and that will build trust in the sales process.
4) Retain a qualified business broker
A professional business broker can help you in many ways. A qualified and experienced business broker should be able to perform a business valuation for your of your business using several different widely accepted methods in order to arrive at the right number. (Note: if your broker is not capable of performing a detailed business valuation, that should be a red flag that they may not have the requisite skills or training to adequately represent you in the sale) A broker will also help you package the business for sale, and market it, and can assist you in developing that “objective” sense of how your business stacks up against others like it, as discussed above. Brokers have access to a number of proprietary tools and resources that help them perform research, and identify buyers, and match them to your business. books and you could find that your business is ideally suited to one of their clients. Yes, it will cost a few extra bucks to work with a broker, but you are more likely to sell the business faster and for a price closest to its market-based price.
5) Make effective use of the internet
This should be very obvious: promote the sale of your business on the internet! There is no better way to reach a large audience of potential buyers. This is less obvious and just as important: by working with a professional business broker, you will also gain access to a number of additional online channels for advertising your business that are only available to the professional business brokerage community.
6) Don’t forget print
Even though circulation may have declined, and a good deal of advertising has moved online, local newspapers and specialized industry publications with a classifieds section continue to be a valuable medium for promoting the sale of your business.
7) Be judicious in your use of word of mouth
On the one hand, you want to keep quiet about the fact that your business is for sale. When your customers and employees find out, it can give rise to potentially harmful speculation and a loss of confidence in the business’ future, which immediately translates into lower economic value of the business. That’s not the kind of news you want to generate. On the other hand, there may be a friend of a friend who’s always showed interest in the businessyour business off your hands, a local competitor, or possibly even a customer with close ties or a dependence on the future success of your business. As long as you’re judicious, and your interests are protected by an NDA, a little bit of the right kind of word of mouth can play to your favor when selling a business in Tucson. Discuss your strategy for creating word of mouth with your business broker, who has experience with just this type of situation and can help you walk the fine line.
8) Talk to anyone who expresses interest
How will you know a good buyer from a bad, a great offer from insult, if you don’t sample the waters and get the kind of feedback that can only come from talking to potential buyers. You need to learn to see your business through their eyes. If you’re at a point where interest has been expressed by the market in your business for sale, then you should entertain a conversation with any prospective buyer. Willingness to meet in person is a sign of commitment on the part of a buyer, and coudl either help seal the deal, or at the least prevent you from wasting further time on suitors who will just waste your time. An in-person meeting can also set the stage for beginning the kind of effective relationship that a successful and fast sale of your business depends on. It’s advisable to let your business broker be the first line of contact with interested buyers in order to screen them, set appointments with the qualified buyers, and help guide the conversation in order to protect your interests during the meeting.
9) Sign an NDA at the start of the process
Before talking to buyers and disclosing any proprietary information about your business, make sure that your interests are protected by a legally binding non-disclosure agreeement. Your business broker should provide you with such a form that is uniquely tailored to cover the best interests you and your business.
10) Get a good Lawyer
If you reach an agreement to sell, always make sure to bring in an attorney with legitimate experience in commerncial transactions. They will be able to warn you about the risks inherent in the transaction, and help you craft the terms and conditions of sales that best protect your interest while facilitating the sale.
We hope that these tips will be useful to you as you begin to think about selling a Tucson business. Allen and Young business brokerage is a full-service business brokerage capable of serving you at every stage of the transaction.