Why You Should Think Like a Buyer When Selling a Business


At Viking Mergers & Acquisitions, we provide personalized and professional business brokerage services to buyers and sellers. Selling a business takes a great deal of consideration and research to avoid leaving money on the table at closing. That’s why we encourage our business owners to think like a buyer throughout the selling process. When a business owner considers the perspective of a potential buyer, the owner can better recognize the priorities a buyer looks for.

Learn how to think like a buyer, and use this insight to sell your business to the right buyer for top dollar.

How to Think Like a Buyer When Selling a Business

1. Determine Your Ideal Buyer

First, consider the ideal buyer profile that fits your business’s needs. What kind of buyer does your business, and perhaps your leadership and your team as a whole, need in order to thrive? Then, think about what those buyers may be looking for in a business. An experienced business advisor will be extremely helpful in this process, not only in helping you determine the best type of buyer for your business, but also in identifying what these types of buyers are looking for in businesses.

You can also profile buyers in your field or industry. What information do these buyers already know about the industry? What concerns might they have about the business or the industry? Considering these questions can help you meet a buyer where they are in their familiarity (or lack thereof) within the market. 

2. Demonstrate Your Business’s Unique Value

You have to know what makes your business desirable besides the financial value. What makes your business unique? What makes it a valuable asset? The industry, market/customer base, or local community? These features can help you better distinguish your business from the other business opportunities that buyers may consider.

You will also want to understand the current state of your industry, including the current and upcoming challenges your business could face. Find ways to assuage these concerns when demonstrating your business’s value so you can better attract buyers and secure a deal.

Once you know what makes your business unique and the ways it is prepared for industry hurdles, you can then create a selling statement that directly speaks to the needs and wants of your ideal buyer. Again, an experienced business advisor like ours at Viking can help you determine and communicate the value – both the hard numbers and the soft features – of your business.

3. Plan for a Smooth Transfer

One of the most important factors for a buyer is transferability. A buyer needs to know that they can efficiently take over with little to no disruption to business operations. You can make a buyer feel more comfortable and confident in taking over the business when you can provide a thorough transition and exit plan that addresses their concerns.

Develop an exit plan that entails preparing management to handle important tasks alongside the new business owner. A smooth transition is attractive to buyers across all industries, and a business advisor can help you prepare a post-closing transition plan that is desirable and acceptable to both you and a buyer.

4. Invest in Your Current Teams

Buyers want to know they’re acquiring skilled and knowledgeable staff when they buy a business. So, it can help if you invest a little more time and money into making sure your teams have all the skills and resources they need to succeed. 

Consider establishing an employee training program that provides education, skills training, certifications, and more to new and current employees. This program not only helps the business better compete in the market but it also ensures the business can continue to function after your exit. It also sets the buyer up to better attract new talent and retain current employees during the transition. This can make a buyer feel even more confident in the business’s stability and future growth.

While it is impossible to anticipate every possible concern or consideration a potential buyer may have, when a seller thinks with a buyer’s mindset, they position their business to secure the right buyer at the right price.

Are you ready to start developing an exit plan? Contact Viking Mergers & Acquisitions today for a no-cost business valuation to get started.