Benefits of a Transition Plan When Selling Your Business

For most owners of a privately held company, when the time is right they want to sell their business for the highest price possible in the quickest time possible and live happily ever after. There is nothing too complicated in that and at a basic level, that’s perfectly fine. However, a question to ask is whether the business owner wants to sell the business or is their preference to transition the business?

The difference between selling the business and transitioning the business is as different as night and day. Selling the business simply means looking for the buyer at that moment in time who will pay the highest price possible. Transitioning the business requires the owner to step back, systematically review all the options available to the business then creating a plan to arrive at that outcome.

For example, the business owner may have other options other than selling the business and taking the highest or best price. If the business owner has immediate family working in the business the preference may be to continue the legacy of the current owner by transitioning the business to the immediate family members. If this is the case, this brings into play a number of actions that need to be carefully and fully researched. Answering questions such as tax implications, legal questions such as what liabilities and responsibilities move from the current owner to the new owner, finance questions such as how any current loans need to be handled and indeed, how much and where is any money coming from to pay the current owner for the value they have created in the business that will fund their retirement or next journey in life.
Before spending time working through the above scenario, the question of transitioning the business goes back to a simpler level. And this is the point of this article. It requires the current business owner to look at their own needs and either make decisions or arrive at conclusions that make sense to them. A list of the items to consider can be long and obviously vary with the individual but could include asking questions about what to do with the business and how any decisions impact the owner’s family needs. Other less self evident areas include the owner themselves and what they want from their legacy. It also touches who they are as well as their attainment of goals, self esteem, need for recognition, appreciation and self respect.

Owning and operating a business often provides many emotional and life sustaining needs such as job security, retirement, business colleagues, group affiliations, status, recognition, self respect, success and creative energy to name a few. If owning and operating a business provides these, then selling the business requires the business letting these things go and moving to more or equally rewarding opportunities. If you are a business owner planning on selling your business, recognize these areas so you get answers before you start the process of trying to sell and perhaps end up changing your mind. If you are planning on becoming a business owner, recognize these areas will be part of your decision making process as you look for the right opportunity.

Andrew Rogerson is a 5 time business owner who specializes in business transfer transactions. For business owners that wish to sell their business, Andrew partners with them to value their business, understand tax issues, market the business to potential buyers and handle all parts of the transaction including third-party lending, due diligence and escrow. For entrepreneurs thinking of business ownership, Andrew partners with them to determine their best option – buy an existing business, buy the rights to a franchise or start their business from scratch. He is the author of four books on business ownership called Successfully Start Your Business, Successfully Buy Your Business, Successfully Buy Your Franchise and Successfully Sell Your Business.

Google Business Listing Secrets

Since April 2009 Google has been serving local listings in its search engine results pages. Although the layout has changed a bit and the number of business listings it provides has varied, what has remained consistent is a local Google map and listing of local businesses that are relevant to the keywords entered by the individual searching on Google.

For local small businesses this has been a tremendous boost when it comes to competing with large national franchises since it gives precedent to the small business in local markets. And the price is right, too! Google provides a business listing to small businesses for absolutely no charge. However it is important that the small business know a few key points so that it leverages its business listing to the fullest.

Choosing the right categories for your Google business listing

One of the most important factors to a successful business listing is choosing the right categories for which your business appears in the local search results. To date, Google allows businesses to choose five (5) categories. One of the categories must be a current Google category, and the other four (4) can be categories that you choose for your listing.

The categories typically correspond to keyword phrases that an individual searching for your type of business would enter as a search term. For instance, if you are a plumber, typical keywords that someone searching for your business might use would be “plumber” or “plumbing.” To determine the existing Google category all you need to do is start typing the keyword in the Category section of the Google Business Listing (called Google Places) and Google will automatically suggest keyword terms that are relevant to your business. Just pick the one that suits your business best. That satisfies their requirement for using one of their existing categories. Now the other four (4) are up to you…and it’s important that you get this right as it can mean the difference between receiving multiple leads for your small business…or none at all.

Choose Popular Keywords as Categories

As mentioned before, you want to use keywords and keyword phrases as your categories, but which ones do you choose? You’ll want to choose the ones that people search for the most, of course. Those most popular keywords will put your business in front of the most prospective customers and give your business the most visibility. And, guess what? Good ‘ol Google helps you with that, too. Just go to the Google AdWords Keyword Tool, enter a keyword in the “Word or phrase” box that describes your business, enter the letters displayed by the “captcha” security code and hit the “Search” button to get the list of keywords Google suggests. Pick the keywords with the most monthly searches that are also relevant to your business.

But don’t stop there…

Unfortunately for many (but fortunate for you), many businesses pick the four most popular keywords that are relevant to their business from the Google Keyword Tool, use those as their remaining categories and stop there…but that’s where they make a critical mistake because not all of those keywords result in a local search.

Now this is a very important point so let’s be very clear. The key to identifying optimum categories is to make sure that the keywords that you pick are popular plus they must also produce a local search, too. Let’s look at an example -

Let’s say you are a piano teacher, and you use the Google Keyword Tool to find the most popular keywords associated with your business. Google suggests the following keywords as popular keywords – “piano lessons”, “play piano,” “lessons piano,” and “how to play piano.” That sounds reasonable enough, but it isn’t until you check Google Search that you find some very important information. Only two of the keyword phrases produce a local search – “lessons piano” and “piano lessons.” The other two keyword phrases do not. Interesting!

Keyword Lessons Learned

So the lesson to be learned to get the most visibility for your local business is to choose popular keywords that are relevant to your business but also make sure that those keywords deliver local search results. If they don’t, you are wasting opportunities for your business listing to be shown and not fully utilizing the the visibility that Google wants to give you and your local business.

Florence – Between Art of the Past and Modern Fashion

Florence is the city which gives and gave examples of art and beauty. The masterpieces now attracting millions of tourists are the witnesses of the ideas and the glories of the past, which were materialized in the works that are today unique beauties without time.

Florence is still master of beauty, just like during the Renaissance. This feature is exhibited not only in the art of the past but also in more modern forms of expressions, such as fashion. The most important and appreciated fashion brands established themselves in the Tuscan capital.

The one who was born and still lives in Florence inherits a sense of beauty that comes from the environment around him every day, the presence of places and monuments are characterized by a very high sense of aesthetics and attention: details and proportions represent a kind of ongoing training for the residents in this city. While living in Florence people unknowingly acquire the aesthetic sensibility which is not to be found in almost any other place in the world.

Today as in the past these places have inspired artists of all kinds, an inspiration which is also manifested in the fashion in which Florence has a very important tradition in the modern era.

Since the second half of 1900 the fashion houses of Florence have distinguished themselves nationally and internationally, to consacrate the Tuscan capital city as one of the most important Italian fashion city. Here the first fashion show was held February 12, 1951 by the Italian fashion pioneer Giovanni Battista Giorgini. Villa Torrigiani in Via dei Serragli was the location, the event was held in the presence of many international buyers, who on this occasion admired for the first time the style and elegance of the Made in Italy, which from the beginning poses as an alternative to the Parisian fashion just leading the way to the various current designers who currently continue to provide contributions to the fashion world.

Florence as all the major cities also has a specific area in which it focuses the world’s biggest names in fashion, together with other fashion boutiques Florentine. These activities are concentrated in the streets: Via Tornabuoni and Via della Vigna. These Florentine streets are in the city centre within walking distance from the most important monuments of the city.

Apart from the major fashion boutiques in Florence there are many shops which propose clothing and handmade accessories. According to the traditional tailoring and shoemaking methodology, these products are developed in order to have a own style, a customizable style according to the tastes and needs of the customer. They can be considered real pieces of the highest quality fashion art.