How to look for a business owner who is ready to sell his business

One of the most attractive ways of becoming an entrepreneur is to buy an existing business from a retiring owner or someone who is looking to sell. But the challenge lies in finding such business owners who are ready to sell off their businesses to potential buyers. The majority of the opportunities for business acquisition aren’t widely known, as many business owners  don’t advertise they are looking to sell their business in fear of scaring off their customers. Even the investment bankers who play a vital role in facilitating such deals often fail to know about these businesses, as the sellers fear alarming customers and employees. Instead, those looking to sell their businesses often  wait patiently for the right buyer to walk in and ask.

The lawyers and accountants who work with the small business owners may have an idea of that their client is looking to sell off the business but at the same time it pays to focus on one specific industry and to contact the owners directly. So, if you’re desperately looking for businesses for sale in Michigan, you have to take the few steps mentioned below.

#1: Adopt the strategy of call-mail-call

How about adopting the strategy of call-mail-call? You can kickstart this by calling some of the business owners within the industry you are looking into and asking whether or not they know someone who might be interested in selling their business. Don’t ever expect an instant answer, but do request them to follow up with you in case they have ‘selling’ in their mind. After 2 weeks go by, send them an email or a letter along with your business card reminding them about your desire to find such potential sellers and also mention that you’ll call back soon. A few days later, call them to check whether or not they have any thoughts on selling their business. This strategy will show you as a devoted and earnest buyer.

#2: Tradegroup newsletters with classified ads

You may also want to browse through local business publications. Once you start checking these, watch around for the business owners who are pretty old and who have almost reached the age of retiring. There will be possibilities that they would want to sell, but still they don’t know what exactly they’re going to do with their old businesses once they’ve run out of cash. You can also build a close network with the main lending institutions, investment bankers, venture capitalists and brokers and mezzanine lenders.

#3: Direct calling

Although the last point is effective, at the end of the day, direct calling is way more effective than any other method. It might be worth approaching businesses directly if you know what you’re actually looking for. You still want to go for the best channels for research. When reaching out. make sure to have a business plan to display your ability to operate a business, whether directly or through an intermediary. If the business has an online component, you should also check the traffic of the website by checking their backlink and traffic profile through tools like Ahrefs and Alexa. The main thing to remember is to communicate yourself as a serious buyer.

#4: Auction websites

You might be aware of the fact that auction websites are almost similar to business marketplaces with the sole difference being that the future buyers can bid on the websites. The seller’s gain a wider opportunity to lure more interest in the websites, drive up the price of the business and make more money. With the large number of listings, buyers get a wider opportunity to choose from more.

Hence, if you’re looking forward to buying a business, whether it is actively for sale or not, you may take heed of the above mentioned channels and utilize them.

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