Selling a business is not easy. Here’s a look at 5 guaranteed ways you will NOT be successful.

1. It is unclear exactly what is being sold.
Make sure it is clear exactly what is being sold. For example, have a list of all the Fixtures, Furniture and Equipment. If any items are not being sold, make sure this is stated clearly and at the first meeting and why, or preferably remove the items completely from the business. If vehicles are included, make sure they are roadworthy and have smog clearances.

2. Failure to explain to the buyer the real value in the business opportunity and determine if this meets their business search criteria.
If the sale includes real estate, check the Title to make sure it corresponds to what you think are the boundaries. Do any of the buildings need repair? Are the fixtures in good shape and operational? Would painting the building or cleaning things up improve the presentation?

3. Failure to follow through with an interested buyer and keep the process moving forward.
Time kills all transactions. Make sure everything is in order and readily available so the process keeps moving forward.

4. Telling the buyer they are incompetent or don't know what they are doing.
It sounds obvious but I’ve seen it done.

5. Selling when you shouldn't.
Some sellers try to sell a business when they run out of energy, are distracted by personal problems such as a divorce or medical problems, the business is not performing at its best due to the economy, or there has been a shift in the economy that reduces the demand for that service. There are many other reasons but to increase the chances of selling, make sure there is a compelling reason to expect a buyer to buy the business.

If you would like more information about selling your business, visit my website; and order a copy of my book Successfully Sell Your Business: Expert Advice from a Business Broker.

Author's Bio: 

Andrew is a 5-time business owner and his expertise includes helping owners sell and/or buyers purchase a business, new entrepreneurs buy a franchise, certified machinery and equipment appraisals and business valuations. His credentials include the CBI designation from the IBBA and the CBB from the CABB. Andrew is also a published author on four books on buying or selling a business available at