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There are many different reasons why you might choose to work with an experienced and knowledgeable business broker. Business brokers can make the process of selling your online company, e-commerce website or software as a service business, much more effective.

Business brokers can assist with many aspects of the process of selling and buying business, including providing ideas on marketing, the best valuation methods, pricing, assistance with negotiation, documentation for closing and other consulting as obstacles arise.

The four main reasons that someone chooses to partner with a business broker like those working at Website Closers include, confidentiality, saving significant time in the process of selling the business and waiting through prospective buyers, getting access to the network of a large potential buyer pool, and the broker’s objective view and ability to help negotiate if challenges arise. This means that someone selling a business should be prepared to sign a listing agreement.

What is a Listing Agreement?

A listing agreement is usually the first step for the business broker to begin formally searching for a buyer. All of the terms of the relationship are clearly laid out in this agreement, and an exclusive listing enables brokers to use greater resources to identify the right buyer for the business. Furthermore, the fees will also be outlined in the listing agreement.

These are usually based on the sales price and payable only if and when the company is sold. This can give you a lot of peace of mind as the seller of a company and knowing that you are working with experienced and professional business brokers who understand this process and are motivated to not only sell your company but to sell it to the right buyer.

Listing agreements usually have a minimum time period, which could be altered based on your individual circumstances and the business broker’s background. The listing agreement is a legally binding document.

What is a Tail Provision?

It’s a good idea to have your business lawyer review this before you choose to sign the agreement to formally work with the business broker. One of the most confusing aspects for a new business seller of a listing agreement is a tail provision.

A tail-on agreement means that after the agreement has ended, there might still be a clause stating that if you sell to anyone else within up to 24 months that the intermediary business broker introduced you to, you still would be responsible for paying a successor commission fee. You’ll want to read the fine print of any listing agreement to make sure that you thoroughly understand what you are signing on to and so that you have a chance for your attorney to review it in full.

In some cases, your business broker might even share commissions or cooperate with other intermediaries under their pre-arranged terms. The decisions about splitting that success fee is negotiated at the time of the arrangement. It can be hard to figure out what in your best interests when retaining the services of a business broker, but thankfully, hiring the right lawyer and business broker can make it easier for you to approach the process of establishing a sale schedule for your business and getting maximum revenue upon the time you sell.