Resources for Buying and Selling Online Businesses

Top 5 Ways for Buyers to Gain Instant Equity

Inspired by a video course that we had to re-record this week, we are going to discuss the top five ways buyers can gain instant equity. Tune in to hear these great tips on how to maximize your business.

Topics:

  • Why an Ecommerce business may be undervalued.
  • What makes it hard to identify gross profit trends.
  • Rewards vs. cash back credit cards.
  • The less-than-obvious ways to gain instant equity.
    • Examples include:
      • Renegotiating costs.
      • Net 90 terms.
    • The China Magic Mastermind’s methods and why they’re so effective.

Transcription:

Mark: So, Joe, recently Chris Moore, our chief marketing officer, came up here to the Twin Cities. He rented an Air B&B and he and I sat down for a day to record or rerecord the course that I recently put together on how to sell a business for six, seven, or eight-figures. I got to tell you, I’m not a fan at all of recording things at least in video format. I know you’re a natural at it. You used to do commercials; direct commercials?

Joe: I wouldn’t say I’m a natural. I’ve seen you and I’ve seen me and I think you do a great job.

Mark: Well, that’s very political of you. But you know something during the course that I wanted to get across because I was going through some of the tips that we’ve talked about for sellers about how to maximize the value of their business and one of the points I wanted to make is that a lot of maximizing the value of your business isn’t so much taking an accounting trick and it becomes magically more valuable. It’s more about not artificially or accidentally discounting your business because you just don’t know what you’re doing, right? Or you don’t know how to run the right financials or you don’t know how to do an add-back calculation. Well, on the buy-side; this is two sides of the same coin. On the sell-side we want to make sure that we aren’t artificially discounting our businesses and that we’re taking advantage of some of the really natural, low hanging fruit that we can do to make sure that that we’re getting full value or capturing full value for the business. But on the buy-side sometimes there are opportunities when somebody doesn’t want to put in the work, for example, to switch from accrual to cash, which we’ve had. Some people say it’s just not worth it for me to take that time. So today, I think you and I, we’re going to talk; I mean I’m going to bug you and pester you with questions and grill you as much as I can about ways that the buyers can add some instant equity, get that instant jump in valuation by buying a business with certain characteristics.

Joe: Yeah, and then for sellers it’s important to listen too because if you ever think you’re going to sell your business either through Quiet Light or on your own; especially on your own, you need to pay attention to this because you don’t want to be taken advantage from by the buyers that are listening to this. If they’re listening now, they’re going to learn some things and potentially buy your side, they’re going to learn some things that if you hang up halfway through you’re not going to understand and make sure you’re maximizing the value your business. And every time I say that I feel a little wonky. Really what you’re doing is you’re not jacking up the seller’s discretionary earnings, you’re actually getting what you deserve. You’re learning to understand the true value of your business, which is your most valuable asset more than likely so pay attention to it and make sure you understand what they are. So it is just Mark and I on this podcast and we’re going to talk about maybe five things that buyers can do to gain instant equity in their business. And the first one that; and this is me thinking if I’m out there buying on my own, which I’m not given the role that I’m in, but if I were, this is what I would do. And the first thing I would do is look for businesses that are presented for sale on a cash basis. Now, it has to be a business that’s growing rapidly, and let’s talk specifics here. This is a physical product e-commerce business that’s growing rapidly and using cash accounting. I don’t love accounting either, folks, but it’s one of the most important things to pay attention to when you are buying a business or when you’re selling your business. If the business is growing rapidly, you’re trying desperately to keep up with inventory needs. And in doing that, if you’re buying it on a cash basis, you are continually taking money out of the business to support the ever-increasing need for inventory volumes. So you may be spending $10,000 this month on inventory but you haven’t sold it yet. That’s going to depress your net income or your seller’s discretionary earnings. It gets to a point where; I sold a business recently, it was Brian and Janine, they were on the podcast three or four weeks ago. They went from something like 270,000 in revenue the first year to 1.5 million the second year to 5 million the third year. And Janine kept writing bigger and bigger checks, they’re actually wiring more and more money to China and kept saying to Brian where’s our money? We keep giving everybody else our money, but we’re not taking any. And it was because rapidly growing businesses like theirs was such a cash requiring machine. So if I’m a buyer, I’m going to look for a business that’s growing rapidly and is presented on a cash basis because discretionary earnings is going to be artificially depressed, it’s not the right way to present a business for sale. On the flip side, if a broker is listing a business for sale with declining revenue on a cash basis you’re overpaying for the business because it’s not requiring as much cash to buy inventory because it’s less and less inventory. It’s just the opposite. So you’ve got to look for businesses if it’s presented properly, is going to be accrual accounting, if it’s not presented properly they’re doing cash. You could gain instant equity by buying the business on a cash basis.

Mark: Yeah, I’ll take on it and say absolutely, a quickly growing business in the e-commerce world on cash basis is typically going to be undervalued for the reasons that you stated. But the two warnings that I would give on this would be one that you already said, and that is if it’s declining and particularly if the seller or the business owner has decided to take their foot off the gas; they’re not looking for more inventory. The inventory that they’re having in stock is either aging out or running out and they’re not reordering. Now, you’re going to have an artificially high gross profit on this business because they’re not buying more inventory. The second thing that I would just caution people against is on a cash basis, you can’t really identify what the gross profit trends are, except by taking some really large timelines and using that. So take a look at unit cos1ts at that point to see what the trends are if you can get that level of detail just to make sure you’re not in a business where gross profit margins are getting squeezed by huge amounts because that’ll be the other risk and the other major downside to cash basis accounting is you just don’t get the same insights into your gross profit margins.

Joe: We’re going at math here. I know it’s nauseating but real quick math folks, I’ve just seen a jump in discretionary earnings flipping from cash to accrual by $70,000, $100,000 in some cases. And so the instant equity here is if you’re buying a business that you find some inexperienced person selling on a cash basis and it’s depressed by even just $20,000 because it’s cash instead of accrual and you’re buying it three times, you’ve just gained $60,000 in instant equity in the business; simple math.

Mark: Yeah, and I think one of the objections to this and I’ve heard this from buyers that are evaluating e-commerce is okay that’s great but why would I want to buy a business with paper profits and really no cash? The cash basis is the amount of cash coming in and out of the business. And you brought it up Joe that you were speaking to somebody recently that said where is my money? I keep giving everybody else my money. But what I think a lot of sellers miss and I would encourage sellers to think about this as they’re growing and evaluating an exit and for buyers as well, as far as what’s a good entry point is that there does seem to be a transition point in the growth of many of these businesses where they stop becoming these cash hungry machines and the growth levels off a little bit and you get to a certain size where even if you are still growing and still investing disproportionately in inventory, you start seeing some of that money accumulate in a bank account. It does happen. There is a pivot point. Have you seen that as well Joe?

Joe: Oh, yeah. There’s no question about it. I’ve said way too many times that when you’re working the hardest in your business, you’re usually making the least amount of money. It’s usually in those early years. At some point; I guess it’s that tipping point, the business starts to generate more cash flow. It’s not as much of a cash sock because the growth has actually slowed, strangely enough. But it’s bigger. It’s larger, and you’re able to take more cash out of it. I definitely see that change. I want to move on to number two here, Mark. The number one thing that I see people miss when selling or buying a business is cashback money from credit cards. And I think the reason they miss it is because they think they’re being sneaky and cheating on their taxes so they don’t want to talk about it. And the reality is that the IRS doesn’t know how to tax cashback from credit cards. It’s actually a discount on your advertising. So you spend a million dollars, you get one and a half back on your cashback credit card. You’ve got $15,000 there that you’re sliding with your personal account that’s not on your P&Ls. That’s $15,000 owner benefit cash in your pocket and you’re thinking I don’t want the IRS to know. The IRS doesn’t know how to tax it, first of all. And I’ve talked to my CPA about this. Most people will miss that. So there’s $15,000 that winds up in your bank account. That’s real money somehow. Mark, is that an add back or an owner benefit and should be on the P&L in your opinion?

Mark: Absolutely.

Joe: Right. Most people don’t put it on a P&L and that’s okay because the IRS don’t know how to tax it anyway. But when you sell your business or buyers when you’re buying a business, look at the advertising spending. I talked to someone the other day. They were spending about two million dollars a year on advertising. They had an agency that was doing it for them. It was all Amazon FBA stuff. And I said, well, what kind of card are you using; how are you paying for that spending? They’re like, what do you mean? I’m like well, how are you paying for advertising? We just let Amazon deduct it from our account every couple of weeks. Once we get to a certain level, they just deduct it from our deposits. I’m like that’s very kind of you to let Amazon do that but what you’re missing out there is two million dollars in ad spend, 1½% cashback, $30,000 cash to your bank account. So you’ve just lost $30,000 a year. Then you sell your business; this was a sizable business with incredible growth, probably I’d call it a simple math three-time multiple or might be four but now you’re at $90,000 to $120,000 lost value on the business. So buyers look for these types of things. If you are buying a business and they’re spending lots of money on advertising, even if it’s a million dollars in advertising, you’re buying it at 1½% percent cashback. That’s $15,000 cash in your pocket times a three-time multiple so it’s $45,000 instant equity. So between number one and number two, there’s about $100,000 in instant equity depending on the size of the business. This one is the one that is absolutely most missed. Mark, you and I just switched company-wide; we just switched to American Express gold cards because we get four times the points of $250,000. We use points and rewards instead of cashback because we go to events and we travel and it’s going to help pay for the team to travel.

Mark: We don’t go to events and travel right now.

Joe: That’s right. We’re recording on June 16th, 2020. We’re absolutely not going to any events. But there’s often the question about, well, what about the rewards? How do I calculate the rewards? I love doing that instead. And I’ve talked to Jeremy from eCommerceFuel, that’s what he does. And he thinks it’s funny that people take the cashback because you can get a lot more value with rewards. But there’s a conversion to the rewards, right? I think with American Express it’s 1%, right?

Mark: Mm-hm.

Joe: So you might lose some if you do the conversion to other rewards. You can still accumulate the rewards on a monthly basis and do the conversion calculator of 1%. What you cannot do is say, well, I upgraded my plane ticket to international first class. The cost of that is $10,000 therefore I want a $10,000 add back. You can’t do that. But you can do the cashback amount conversion. So for buyers, yeah, absolutely if you’re looking for a business to buy and they’re not utilizing the cashback benefit or the reward benefit and converting it, you can find some instant equity in there as well.

Mark: Yeah. I want to speak to my people real quick. My people are the people that don’t like details and don’t like to sit there and calculate your tip down to the penny. That’s my type of person. That’s who I am. I can’t be bothered for that. When I go to dinner with a bunch of friends, I’d rather pick up the tab than sit there for five minutes trying to figure out who owes what down to the exact amount. And so for a long time, this whole discussion of cashback and points and everything was just like, forget it, I don’t want to be bothered with this. I mean, we’re talking 1%, 2%, who really cares? But here’s the thing about this, there are people who delve into this and understand the conversion ratios and they understand how to game this system and maximize it out and they do think of it just as a game. And then there are other people who are going to take advantage of it to some extent. And what I would just say is this, don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good here. If you’re the type of person who has bigger fish to fry and have bigger things to do, this is really low hanging fruit and if you don’t get the absolute perfect optimized setup with cashback, that’s okay. But from a buying standpoint and what we’re talking about here; how can you gain instant equity into a business this is one of those areas that you absolutely can gain instant equity. You can instantly gain extra cash flow for your business as well by just putting something in place, even if it’s not perfect, and then you can optimize later. Or you can hire a consultant and you’ll pay them some money but the long term is that you’ll benefit from it more than you pay them. So if you’re one of those people like me, just do it. Don’t sit there and get all frustrated by it. Just do something and then refine later on.

Joe: Yeah, definitely take advantage of whatever you can there; simple math. I’m with you on the tipping, by the way. I just round it up to 20% and I’d rather pay the bill than figure out who owes what. Let’s jump to; I think we’re up to number three here. We’ve given a couple of good options in terms of how buyers can find instant equity, and it’s important for sellers to understand that as well so they don’t get taken by buyers if they’re selling on their own or having an experienced broker. But why anybody would ever go to Quiet Light, anybody but quite if they’re listening to us right now it would be confusing for me. But here’s one that I’ve seen recently. One question if you’re buying direct or from another firm; if you’re a buyer listening to this podcast and you really want to buy from Quiet Light because we do an amazing job putting packages together, building trust, making sure that you’re making a good investment and our buyer is getting a fair value and our seller is getting a fair value as well. It’s got to be a win for everybody. But in the event that we have not produced enough listings that are going to be a good fit for you, one of the questions you always want to ask is when was the last time you renegotiated cost of goods sold on any of the SKUs, have you done that in the last 12 months in particular? The reason for this is because it’s instant equity if they have but did not do an add back adjustment. I guarantee you if you’re buying direct from somebody and they’re not selling through a broker or a qualified experienced adviser, that there’s not going to be an add-back adjustment for that. And here’s the simple math, they’re selling a thousand units a month on a product that costs $10. They renegotiate that down to $9 but they just did it in the last two months. They’re so excited to; yeah, no, absolutely, definitely we renegotiated two months ago and that’s why you should buy this business, profits are just that much better. And then they put a period at the end of that sentence. What they’re missing is the add-back of the previous 10 months of a thousand units a month or 10,000 units at that dollar savings. So it’s another $10,000 that is instant equity to the business. You’re buying that business. And the reason is because that expense that was there before that’s not; I know this is confusing. There was a dollar expense per unit for 10 months on the P&L times 10,000 units that’s not there anymore. That expense is not going to carry forward to you, the buyer of the business. Therefore, it is an add back. So it’s a $10,000 instant equity if you ask that question and you see it there. And it’s boosting the value of your business when you go to sell. I think it’s really important. I think most people don’t ask that question. They don’t look at it. They focus more on the top line. And what is it that Mike and Dave say from Ecom Crew, revenue is vanity profits are sanity I think. Most people don’t focus on the profits. They just talk about how big their business is and how much revenue they did instead of actually focusing on things like renegotiating cost of goods sold. So that is instant equity and it can be found if you’re buying a business. It’s the work, obviously, that the seller might have done prior but you can always ask about those questions if they’ve ever renegotiated cost of goods sold or even how often they’ve gotten on a plane to go visit their manufacturer wherever they are in the world.

Mark: Well, again this is something that even if you don’t ask, hopefully, shows up in the P&L as well. You should be able to see some of these changes when you get down to some of the granular stuff, assuming that the P&L is good. And the only thing I’ll add to that because I think you made a point well, Joe, the only thing I would add, though, is don’t look at just the vendors providing products. Take a look at all the vendors that are out there. It can be anything from an accountant or bookkeeper or the person providing the cardboard boxes if you’re not using FBA or one of those avenues. There’s a lot of vendors for every type of businesses. It’s not just the people or the products and there’s a lot of places where you can get some of the additional equity, especially if it’s not been worked into the overall financial picture used for the valuation at the end of the day. So that’s a great tip. The next tip, so that’s three, right? We have look for cash-based P&Ls and quickly growing businesses. Two, take a look at companies that either are not using cashback points on credit cards or have not added it into the valuation because that’s money that just simply hasn’t been captured in the valuation picture. Three, renegotiating costs of goods or negotiated vendor services that are ongoing expenses would be another area where once again that’s not captured in the valuation process. The next one would be flying to China if that’s where the vendors are or meeting their vendors. And not every vendor is in China. I just had a great call with somebody yesterday; a UK person who found her vendor in the UK and they had a Canadian sister company as well so pretty cool there. But meeting with the vendors in person and taking that opportunity to discuss potential renegotiations, not necessarily on price but that’s a natural area to go but also on terms to make the cash flow of these businesses somewhat friendlier. I know oftentimes vendors that have good relationships or long history are willing to offer net 30, net 60, net 90 terms, which can really be a huge relief on a quickly growing business.

Joe: You don’t take what Mark just said and send an e-mail off to your vendor saying you want net 90 terms. It’s not going to work. There’s a process to get through that. It’s something that anytime I’m talking to buyers they ask me how flexible is your seller on the price? I’m like you know what? I don’t know. I determine the price. We agree on it together, but they’re never going to tell me their bottom line. Well, do you think they’ll accept X? I don’t know. What you need to do is get on a good conference call with the seller. Get to know them. Have a good relationship with them. Have the call end with them going man, I love that person. I just really want them to be my buyer. And then you can ask for what you want and at the very least, you’ll get a counter. When you ask for something and they don’t know who you are and you don’t have a relationship, the answer’s always going to be no; as simple as that. So that’s why you should if you can at any time get on a plane and go visit your vendor face to face; your manufacturer. I have a client right no; they’re still my client. They’re my friends. I sold their business in January. They bought a business since. I talked to them the other day. They were on their way to Ohio, move driving from Massachusetts to Ohio because they’re going to meet the manufacturer of one of the products that they sell. This is talking about getting a plane to go to China more than anything else. There’s a couple of podcasts that we’ve had recently that focus on this specifically. One was Dan from Titan Network talking about how to work with your Chinese manufacturer and renegotiating terms. The reason you do that is, number one for this cost of goods sold, but also because it improves your cash flow. And when you have more cash flow and you do get the terms that Mark just talked about you can spend more money on advertising. And when you can spend more money on advertising you’re going to get more cashback so these are all tied together and they’re all critically important. One is not more important than the other; all critically important. It’s little details but they all add up to a lot. The other one that we had a podcast recently was Athena Severi from China Magic. She’s also associated with Titan Network. And she talked about the China Magic trips that they do. Of course, again right now no one is going to China, but it will resume again in 2020 we hope; I’m sorry 2021, where you’re able to get on the plane and go and meet with the vendors directly, get to know them, spend some time with them, do the renegotiation that Dan talked about but with China Magic, they’re talking about exactly how to work with your vendors and how to communicate with them. And then they have Masterminded events every single night for everybody that’s there. They bring experts on the trip to talk about how to work with your vendors and get the most out of the trip including the cultural aspect but in terms of building that relationship. So you want to do what you can to build the strongest relationship possible with your vendor, get to know them, have them really understand what a strong entrepreneur you are. As a buyer, this is after you buy the business, of course, what you bring to the table and how important terms are so that it increases your cash flow and you can spend more money and buy more products. It’s all tied together. You can’t do it right now, of course so, Mark, do you think any of this is happening via Zoom and Skype and that a lot more of this is happening that way?

Mark: Well absolutely. And look I mean everybody has the same motivation and that is growth. So I would say obviously you need to make that personal connection and you want to make a personal connection with your vendors. That’s going to help you, in the long run, to know that you can trust them and they can trust you. But you can also pitch growth. I had a client who negotiated these types of terms and was able to explain some of the growth that they had in mind; this expansion to Europe that they were going to be rolling out or other growth plans, new products that we know are going to be a hit and we want to place them with you Mr. Vendor; the vendor that’s been working with us and in manufacturing our product. We want to place this with you and here’s what we need to be able to get there. We really want to invest heavily in this so that we have a good supply going on in this area so it plays in their benefit as well. And right now Zoom or Google Hangouts or whatever you want to use for your video service, it’s there. People know it. So making those connection is absolutely huge.

Joe: Yes, so that’s tip number four for instant equity and it’s more about renegotiating cost of goods sold and the terms on your payments that will increase your cash flow. This business is growing rapidly, cash flow is tight and squeezed and that cash flow will help you spend more money, which ties back to tip number two, which gives you more cashback on your credit cards. Number five is interesting. You touched on something a little earlier, Mark, which was when I talked about renegotiating COGS on number three, you said, go beyond that. Go look at your vendors, look at the services that you’re spending money on, the bookkeeping, the accounting, that SaaS product times 10 that you signed up for that you forgot about but they’re kindly charging your credit card every month. Trimming the fat is really instant equity. We always ask what type of SaaS products are you using, what are you subscribing to, what’s the purpose, and how much is the cost every month? And the reason for that is that a lot of it’s just wasted. And sellers will say to me, well, I don’t use that can I just make that an add back? I’m like yeah when you stop paying for it and prove that you haven’t used it for a period of time. Buyers can use math and logic here and look at the different services that the seller signs up for. We all try new things, right? I signed up for The Monthly Fool and I’m not cutting on The Monthly Fool; this is more me. They offer great services. I paid for it. It’s an annual renewal. I’m going to forget about it. Except that I put a reminder on my Google Calendar next April to cancel it. I signed up for it two months ago. I get the e-mails. I don’t have time to look at them. I’m not going to be that investor that’s going to make decisions on my own. I have an advisor for that. But if I’m not careful, I will add up 10 or 15 of those things. I try every year, often without great success, to go through my SaaS subscriptions on a personal level. We do it occasionally, Mark, on a business level and just sort of trim that fat a little bit. I think that’s a good way to gain instant equity. It’s not a huge instant equity, but it does add up. Every little bit of this adds up. Can you think of any other areas where you trim some fat?

Mark: There’s a lot of these little areas and you kind of have to be creative in looking for them and not discounting any expense category as being too small. So, for example, if you’re selling overseas, internationally, international transfer rates and what are you getting there? What are your merchant processing or transfer rates? And there are a lot of services out there that are designed specifically to maximize that for you and reduce some of those expenses. Secondly, understanding Amazon’s FBA storage fees and the various fees related to that or processing, sometimes you can gain a lot of instant equity by using an Amazon FBA pre-processing center and other 3PLs that will work in that regard. You talked about canceling different SaaS subscriptions. The other element I’d look at would be wasteful ad spend. We all have it. And look, how many times are you going in and checking on this? Now you might say, well I have an agency. I guarantee that agency is not looking after the account as closely as you might want them to do so. So I would say the advertising spend and last I would say would be just taking a look at the fat with SKUs and ASINs on the account. I have worked with several buyers who have looked at larger ASIN companies with a larger library of products and said the first thing we’re going to do to grow this business is get rid of 20% of the products because we know that these products are making very, very marginal gains. If they’re taking up cash flow for adding new inventory, they’re taking up cash flow for advertising that isn’t really paying out. And we can put that effort into either new lower hanging fruit on new products that will have better margins and really focus on those instead. So number five is kind of this grab all and it’s don’t count any category on your P&L as being too small to really look at and optimize. Keep in mind, when we’re talking about adding instant equity, we’re talking about the value of your business so we’re talking about a multiple of this. You add $10,000 in earnings by removing $10,000 in expenses you’re adding $30,000 to $40,000 of valuation to the company itself. And oftentimes with these businesses that are doing one million, five million, 10 million, 20 million in revenue, these small changes, these small percentages that we’re shaving off here and there translate to quite a bit on the bottom line for you. So kind of a catch-all. That’s a cop-out, right Joe? It’s a cop-out on our part.

Joe: It’s not. It’s real dollars. The trimming advertising spending we are really focusing in Mark, that’s really, really hard because you’ve got an expert telling you that you need to spend all this money on long-tail keywords that over the course of 36 months, you’re going to make a profit on that keyword. It’s just going to take 36 months to make a profit and it’s agonizing. We had Rocky Kliburn on the podcast. A tough name like Rocky he bought a jewelry business, right? Low cost, lightweight product, shipping thousands of them every single month. The first thing Rocky did was renegotiated the shipping rates. Actually, he changed shipping companies. I think he switched from FedEx to USPS and got the packaging for free and shipped it off. Essentially, he saved about $2 a unit. It’s Rocky Kliburn he was on the Quiet Light podcast at least a year ago. But Rocky ships, 2,000 or 3,000 units a month times $2 we’re talking about $75,000 a year in savings instant equity. That is simple math, simple logic. I would focus on all of those things first. The advertising thing is critically important but we’ve talked about my story when I got mad at American Express because they back in the last economic downturn; I think we’re going to have a pretty big one here coming up but my average spending went up. I was spending 60,000 a month on PPC and they said, oh, we’re going to freeze your account to pay off your balance because your average is higher than the last three months. Are you kidding me? And so I went in and I slashed advertising because I was mad at America Express. I’m like I’m going to show them. I didn’t do it very wisely. There are wise ways to do stuff like that. So you remove the emotion. And that’s why I always talk about math and logic is because of emotion. Emotion gets us up in the morning, as an entrepreneur, we get excited about our business but with these little details, all these five ways to gain instant equity as a buyer in your business really requires a lot of math and logic. So focus on those and if you’re a seller and you’ve gotten all the way through this and listening don’t let somebody take advantage of you because you didn’t pay attention to these little details. They all weave together. They all are tiny. As Mark talked about in tipping what is it? The details are for the greater good; I forgot exactly what you said, but pay attention to all of it at times. Don’t get so ingrained in it that you get lost completely on it for a thousand dollars a year. But if you can add up those numbers and multiply it times three or four, you will find more value in your business that you do deserve. And buyers, you’re going to get some instant equity that’s going to make a big difference in terms of buying your business.

Mark: And you are like about all five of these tips show? None of them require that you grow the revenues. None of these require that you just magically grow the business. Because we all want to have a better ROI with our acquisitions, that’s the entire reason that we do these things. It’s to get a return on our investment and maximize that return on investment just like with a website and conversion rate optimization services, which is a great way to grow revenues if you have a traditional website, is really focus on CRO. This is just optimizing the financial picture. That’s really all it is. And look for those of you on YouTube, if I were to have my camera go around my office, what you would see is just a lot of little clutter that’s kind of built up over the years that I’ve grown comfortable with. And I think with businesses, you have to do the house cleaning. You said that we do it once in a while with Quiet Light Brokerage in our SaaS subscriptions. There are areas to optimize businesses all the time, but you kind of lose sight of that when you own a business over time. You lose sight of it because you focus on the big picture. Well, as somebody acquiring a business, it’s a great time to clean house, get rid of some of that wasteful spend, optimize some of those terms, and without growing revenues, at all, you can buy a business for 3x and get an effective multiple lower than that by a significant margin at the end of the day. So I love these tips. I love the fact that we’re focusing on this topic as far as how to grow a business without changing the revenue picture at all.

Joe: It’s a great way to sum it up, folks. Obviously, Mark and I didn’t have a guest here, so we’ve responded to some of your requests that Mark and I talk about some of these things in more detail ourselves. If you have any topics that you want us to talk about, please shoot an email to either of us; [email protected], [email protected] or if you have a guest or you think you can contribute to the podcast, either as a seller, a buyer, or talking about some of your experiences or somebody that could help other listeners or the audience reach out to us. We’re happy to help. Thanks for all the feedback on the podcast and the good reviews.

Resources: 

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