Selling Your Online BusinessMany entrepreneurs dream of the day they sell online business ventures at six or seven-figure valuations and walk away having reaped the financial benefits of all the time and energy that they’ve put into their online businesses. They focus on the payoff from the sale and don’t think too much about the sales process itself. As a result, they end up quickly overwhelmed with all that needs to be completed when it comes time to sell online business companies.

This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t plan to one day sell your online business or to sell it in the immediate future. On the contrary, selling an Internet business can be profitable, financially beneficial and a smart move. It’s important, though, that you think the matter through carefully before you make any move to sell your online business. By taking the time to reflect, you can be certain that you’re making the right move and be in the best position to obtain a high valuation and make the most money possible from the sale.

Before contacting Internet business brokers or taking other steps to begin to sell your online business, ask yourself these five questions:

Why am I selling my online business?

When you start to tell people that you plan to sell your online business, the first question you’re going to receive is “Why?!!?” Everyone from prospective buyers to your employees to your family members will be wanting to know exactly why you’re making the move. Formulating the answer will also help you determine your best way forward. Are you hoping to retire with the money you make? Are you simply burned out or bored and in need of a change? Do you have a new idea for a business? Did you start your business with the intent of one day selling it? Come up with a short answer to satisfy you and those who inquire.

What am I hoping to get from the sale?

In an ideal world, what would you end up with after you sell your online business? Do you need a certain amount of money to fund a new venture or retire comfortably? Are you looking to get back a certain profit on top of what you personally invested? Is it just the freedom to have more time that you’re hoping to gain? Knowing what you want to gain from the sale will help you know what you need to do in order to get your business ready to give you what you desire.

How healthy is my business?

You can be sure that prospective buyers are going to scrutinize the financials of your company, so be sure that you do the job first. Get reports from your entire management team and study the financials with your accountant. Is your business trending upwards or downwards at the present time? Is there still room for growth or scaling your online business? To get the best possible valuation, you need cash flow, and your Internet-based company needs to show signs of remaining profitable and continue to grow to be attractive to prospective buyers. This is the case with any business, but it’s even more essential with Internet businesses, which are less likely to have assets like equipment and real estate.

What will you do after you sell?

Knowing what your plans are for the future will help you plan ahead for the next step. Are you hoping to stay on with the company as an employee or in an advisory role or do you want to walk away on the day of the sale and be finished with your online business entirely? You’ll need to set the right expectations for yourself and for your prospective buyers.

Is the timing right?

As previously mentioned, you want to time the sale of your online business right from a financial prospective, but there are other things to consider when asking yourself if it’s the right time. The sales process can be long and stressful at times. Make sure that your business can afford for you to be focused on the sale and that your personal life will allow you to give the sales process the attention that it requires.

Once you’ve considered the answers to these five important questions, if you’re still ready to sell your online business, you can move ahead with confidence. One of the best ways to proceed is by enlisting the help of online business brokers early on. Internet business brokers can help you get your company in good shape for the sale and give you the best chances of a high valuation. Then, online business brokers will help you find qualified buyers and facilitate the sale, so that you can focus on keeping your Internet business running strong until the transaction is finished.

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