10 Questions to Ask Business Seller in the First Meeting


So, you have come across this promising business you want to buy. You have started the due diligence process and looked at the financial statements. The business shows good potential. You have a pretty good idea of what it will take to get acceptable return on your investment.
What should be your next step? How can you convince yourself that you are not buying a lemon?
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Best Ways to deal with an Irate Customer


Post from Guest Contributor Chris Blanton, editor of Ingenious Business Guide.
Do you remember the last time you were frustrated while making a purchase? Maybe you were talking with an unintelligible company’s customer service rep on the telephone. Or maybe a retail clerk was arguing with you. Perhaps a returns department refused your refund because you had lost the receipt. Regardless why you were upset, you wanted two things: someone to solve the problem, and a sincere apology for being disrespected.
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How to Evaluate Business Before Buying


For many would-be small business entrepreneurs the path to business ownership starts with purchasing an existing business. While you will be paying a premium for the existing business in terms of goodwill, it gives you peace of mind knowing that the business is already established.
While this is true to some extent; we believe that you still have to be extra careful when purchasing an existing business. Just because the business has been operating for several years does not mean that it is running well. There is no guarantee that you will make a good return on your investment. We have come across several situations where the buyers, particularly the first-time buyers, were blindsided by the realities of the business AFTER they had signed closing papers. That is why it is very important to spend extra time in performing due diligence before signing on that dotted line.
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How to Improve Sales with Community Involvement


Many small business owners focus all their marketing effort on advertising and promotions. As we mentioned in this post on 5 Fundamental Rules of Marketing; marketing is much more than just advertising and many times costs very little to do. One of the great marketing opportunities overlooked by small business owners is getting involved with the local community.
Community involvement establishes long-lasting relationship with your customers that will keep your business on top of their mind for a long time. A typical advertising, in contrast, only has a single transaction relationship where the customer will think of your business as a result of advertising flyer or coupon for a short time.
There are several avenues you can explore to get involved with the local community.
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Demonstrate Confidence in Negotiations to Get an Edge


Post from Guest Contributor Chris Blanton, editor of Ingenious Business Guide.
Many business owners leave money on the table by reacting to pricing pressure by haggling or discounting.
Seasoned deal makers assert in a negotiation that the first person to name a figure loses. Information has value, and the one who possesses more of it is better positioned to come out ahead in a transaction. When one party is ignorant of their opponent’s expectations, the best strategy is to get the other party to name a starting price.
When, as in retail sales, the seller publishes the price, buyers are forearmed with the seller’s expectation but the seller is not similarly equipped with the buyers’. Thus a seller who exhibits price flexibility puts herself at a disadvantage because she better arms her buyer.
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How to Ensure the Business Launch Date Stays on Target


If we have to bet on one thing when it comes to opening a business on schedule; we’d say it WILL NOT. No matter how well you plan, it seems things always go wrong somewhere resulting in delays.
Not being able to open the business on-time can hurt you on multiple fronts –you not only lose sales for every day that the business is not open, while your expense clock is already ticking; but also you end up throwing more money on tasks that are running late.
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