A good friend of mine shared a story with me today while eating lunch at a Sushi bar. I found this story extremely interesting because his quick thinking saved him merchant fees on the sale of his most recent online venture. Here is how the story goes.
This friend, we’ll call him Mike, he established a website a little over three years ago. He had an idea that he thought would fly well and it did. He was able to build the site, find product suppliers, and finally put it to market and create a success story out of it. While he enjoyed managing the site as a whole, he became somewhat distracted by the many other business opportunities that had approached him on the course of the last year. The other opportunities pulled at his time and began to take more interest in these new areas than in the operation of his website. Because of this, he began thinking of an out that would be beneficial for him, but also allow his website to continue to function. As he considered his options he determined he would see what he could fetch for his site as a business sell.
There are many ways to sell a business, but Mike decided he would try listing it online at buysellwebsite.com (a trusted marketplace for selling websites). On their site you can list start up sites and established site separately. He completed the listing process and posted his site in the established website section, listed at the appropriate amount. It is up to the lister to determine the posted value of the website and let the negotiations go from there. You will find established sites listed for prices ranging from $250 and up; some as high as millions. Soon after posting, Mike was approached by a buyer located over sees. They began the process of negotiating and they settled on what Mike feels was a really good price for both parties. He was proud to tell me that the sell was finalized earlier this week, but the interesting part to me was how Mike arranged for payment.
Mike had done his due diligence and knew that the buyer could easily pay for the site via a credit card transaction. Donâ€™t get me wrong, he didnâ€™t sell it for cheap, but requested payment this way because Mike planned on using Google Checkout for the transaction because until the end of 2007 Google is offering transaction free checkout services. By using Google Checkout Mike would bypass any fees paid to a brokerage firm, credit company, bank, etc. He simply set up a buy now button that he posted on his blog for the buyer to click on and use his CC to pay for the business. Iâ€™m not suggesting that selling a business via CC payment is the proper way, but for Mike it made sense.
By using Google Checkout he was able to save about 6% in fees that he would have had to pay via other methods of payment and delivery was instant via Google, who backed the transaction and personally assisted the buyer through the payment process. Mikeâ€™s quick thinking saved him a lot of money wasted on transaction fees etc.
It simply blows me away; all the tools that exist on the internet to assist us not only in the day to day activities we pursue, but with things as intricate as selling a business or website.
By Andrew Melchior