A Final Challenge for Many Entrepreneurs: Figuring Out How Best to Sell a Business

Just about every small business owner, no matter how successful, will eventually reach a point where it makes sense to think about moving on. Whether for an owner getting ready for retirement or one interested in a career change, being able to sell a business successfully can be one of the most important goals of all.

Few actually understand how to sell a business, however, and that can make things difficult. In practice, the best possible way of moving forward often proves to be seeking out the help of an expert.

Informal, Self-Directed Business Sales Can Be Confusing and Difficult

Many business owners are successful salespeople, in addition to having talents of quite a few other kinds. This can make it seem as if the best way to sell a business would be simply to leverage those skills for a new purpose.

That often proves to be an expensive mistake. Business owners who try to sell their companies themselves frequently run into roadblocks that make things more difficult and drag the final price they receive down. Some of the challenges that most often crop up include:

  • A limited audience. Most businesses that are sold by their owners end up in the hands of either an existing acquaintance or someone once removed. In effect, this means that many business owners are only even marketing to a handful of potential buyers, and that is never a positive thing to contemplate. A professional business broker who is able to reach a much larger audience of possible buyers can deliver a lot of value in the process.
  • Unwanted publicity. In a great many cases, it will be productive to keep awareness of a company being for sale confined to only those with a need for it. Having suppliers and customers learn that a business is on the block can disrupt important relationships and lower the value of the company in the process. While business owners who handle sales themselves can rarely avoid such problems, brokers are capable of maintaining an appropriate amount of secrecy.

The Right Choice When It Comes Time to Sell

For reasons such as these and others, it will often be far more productive to work with a broker when the moment arrives. Selling a business with the help of a broker tends to be much easier and more rewarding than going it alone.