As an online entrepreneur, you can start from scratch and build an online business. But it does take time before your new online business will actually start making money and become profitable. The substitute is to buy an existing online business for sale.
Online Business For Sale: What to Look for When Buying?
You’re not just buying a website. You’re buying a complete business with products and customers, proven marketing methods to generate leads and make sales, a social media presence, ongoing ad campaigns, an email list, even employees and/or virtual assistants.
Here are some other things to keep in mind that should influence your decision. You want to make guaranteed the business you want to buy:
- Is growing.
- Has multiple streams of income and doesn’t really on just one product.
- Gets traffic from a variety of sources.
- Has revenues that are consistent from month to month.
- Has systems in place for marketing.
Where to Find an Online Business for Sale?
There are plenty of e-commerce sites for sale out there. And there are plenty of places to buy them too. Just because a site is listed for sale on a reputable platform doesn’t mean it’s completely legit. The seller may have inflated his numbers as far as traffic or sales. Just because something is on the listing doesn’t mean it’s true.
Do your research.
Online marketplaces feature list of online businesses for sale, usually organized by market niche with statistics like revenue and profit, web traffic, email subscribers included. You can quickly scan dozens if not hundreds of sites for sale. If you see one or several you like, first check it out online, then just send a message to the owner through the marketplace’s messaging system.
Here are some online marketplaces to check out:
How to Buy an Online Business at an Auction Site?
You can get a bargain on an online business by going on an auction site. Like a regular online marketplace, you’ll find long lists of ecommerce sites for sale. But instead of paying the list price or contacting the seller and negotiating, you bid using the auction process.
Buying an Online Business Through a Broker
Website brokers assist the buying and selling of ecommerce businesses. Perhaps the seller doesn’t take the time to deal with potential buyers. So he hires a broker to put the site up on the online marketing places or auction sites and handle any inquiries. There is a bit of security here in that because, more often than not, the broker has vetted the site before agreeing to try and sell it. He doesn’t want his reputation ruined if his client scams somebody.
At the same time, they’ll have lots of questions for you to make sure you are a serious buyer with the money to buy the site.
Buying an Online Business Directly From the Website Owner
You might just know them because you are a customer or you’ve seen their ads online. Or you can even check out Facebook pages and forums related to your niche to see what sites pop up in the comments.
Using available tools like Alexa.com, you’ll figure out these sites’ website traffic. Sign up for its email lists and follow its Facebook pages, so you can see its marketing in action. A simple Google search might yield all sorts of information including some hints of how it’s doing financially.
Now you contact the website owner, then you contact them and tell them you are interested in buying their website. Be polite and show you are serious, but no need to make an offer at this point. They might get back in touch with you or maybe not.