Most owners can benefits immensely from working with a broker to help them sell their small to medium-sized business. While you can sell your business on your own, the process will be more stressful, and may result in a lower sale price with less favorable terms. The right sales team leverages the expertise of brokers who have helped sell hundreds of businesses.
The Benefits of Hiring a Business Broker
Business brokers bring great value to a business sale. They are experts on valuation, marketing, prospecting, negotiation, and other key components of a sale. Most also bring extensive business experience that offers key insights into the sale process.
Brokers are professional negotiators, and they know how to surmount numerous obstacles that can thwart closing. They don’t lean on their emotions, but they do rely on their experience. They protect confidentiality while still marketing your business. They’re like quarterbacks who run plays and manage your sales team.
Tips for Finding the Right Broker
So where do you find this elusive all-purpose expert and advisor? Hiring a broker is important, but hiring the right broker is key. This is a lot like any good relationship. You have to do some digging, and make sure you have chemistry and shared values. Here are five simple tips for ensuring the broker you’ve found is a good match:
- Ensure you’re hiring a broker who wants to represent you—not the buyer. The broker should help you do everything they can to get the highest possible price. If the broker does not bolster your confidence and have a clear plan in your first meeting, move on.
- The success of your sale may hinge on your relationship with your broker. You must have a good relationship with this person that allows you to speak honestly. Encourage them to be similarly honest with you.
- Trust but verify. It’s not enough for the broker to just talk a good game and get you jazzed up for the sale. They need to have a demonstrated track record of successful sales and satisfied customers. Ask for references, and ensure that the broker has experience supporting sales of businesses substantially similar to your own. Your broker must also be someone who is trusted and respected in the wider business community. So ask your lawyer or accountant about the broker’s reputation.
- Ask about the advertising plan and budget, as well as specific details on how the broker intends to drum up interest in your business. One of the most important functions of a broker is to find, recruit, and screen qualified buyers.
- The broker should give specific details outlining how they intend to screen buyers. What questions will they ask? How will they verify the answers to these questions? The broker’s assessment of what constitutes a qualified buyer, what factors matter in screening the buyer, and how that screening should take place all provide important details about their understanding of what you need—and what will be most effective for selling your business.
About Sunbelt Atlanta
Our team is composed of seasoned professionals who have deep expertise working with both Middle Market and Main Street businesses. We leverage our 75+ years of collective experience to maximize the value of your transaction.
With offices in 9 countries, Sunbelt is the largest business brokerage network in the world. We encourage you to view some of the resources our expansive network has to offer. Whether you are selling a business or buying a business, our experienced team of business brokers can help.