Buy & Sell On Shopify Exchange: A 3500-word, Evergreen Guide (+Updated)

Buy & Sell On Shopify Exchange: A 3500-word, Evergreen Guide (+Updated)

Outline

I. What Is Shopify Exchange?

Exchange by Shopify is the open market for selling or buying the online business established by various Shopify sellers. The exchange app is beneficial for pulling data like traffic and income statistics directly from Shopify, where sellers catalog their Shopify stores for sales. 

What Is Shopify Exchange

Since sellers are unable to make amendments to their store’s data, the curious buyers can feel secure about getting whatever they observe within a store.

II. User Requirements

Since in this exchange marketplace, the principal object is to offer an easy, flawless, and secure purchasing experience, the buyers will continue receiving dedicated support from the Exchange support team. 

Buying a business on exchange is carried out in the following steps:

1.  Finding Shopify stores for sale.

2.  Contacting the seller

3.  Sending an offer with the response of the seller

4.  Seller accepting the offer

5.  Seller initiates the Escrow transaction for the purchaser

6.  Buyer receives notification for accepting terms and conditions along with submitting payment.

7.  Payment approval by Escrow

8.  Seller transfers assets to the purchaser

9.  Marking of received assets in Escrow

10.  Performing the inspection period

11.  Marking of accepted assets in Escrow

12.  The Shopify account will switch you from staff to the store owner within three working business days.

13.  Now the seller will receive the funds from the finalized Escrow transaction with no possibility of a refund.

The aim is to offer a safe and reliable environment for any potential buyers and sellers on the Exchange app. Therefore, it is necessary to follow the following guidelines and user-exchange requirements:

  • You should be at least 18 years old
  • You can’t use Exchange if you are residing in the following countries because of unavailable Escrow support there: Afghanistan, Belarus, Algeria, Cambodia, Angola, Central African Republic, The Democratic Republic of Congo, Cuba, Chad, Azerbaijan,  Burundi, Egypt, Côte d'Ivoire, Haiti,  Eritrea, Iraq,  Ethiopia, Lebanon, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Somalia, Sudan, Guinea, South Sudan, Panama, Pakistan, Myanmar, Uganda, Yemen, Zimbabwe, Tajikistan, Sierra Leone, Russian Federation, Lao, Suriname, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, Venezuela, Uzbekistan, Libya, and Moldova.
  • Never use the Exchange marketplace for the promotion of your product or services.
  • Exchange Marketplace does not support an auction format.
  • Exchange does not assist with research of partnership businesses.
  • Always consult Exchange store for ownership changes
  • The online store templates on Exchange should be unique.
  • Listed businesses on Exchange are not entitled to receiving the commission.
  • Always know your customer’s request by confirming identity.
  • Never ask or accept payments outside the payment stream of your Exchange marketplace.
  • Never ask or include the personal phone number, email address, or any other type of contact information in your listing. All buyers and purchasers should contact through Exchange.
  • The business listing should be unique and not copied from already existing exchange listings.

III. Is It Worth Buying A Shopify Store? (Pros & Cons)

Starting a new professional-looking Shopify store demands a great deal of planning, research, and work. We often come across questions like: Should I just purchase such a store instead of working endlessly? How can I make that successful?

The answer to these questions can be complicated at times; however, buying Shopify stores can be the best or worst decision of your life. There is no guaranteed success in this process. The victory of any business depends upon working and moving different parts together in one direction. It is necessary to know what you are paying for before investing your hard-earned money in the Shopify store. 

We have compiled some Pros and Cons of buying a store with Shopify down below:

01. Pros

Save Energy: Purchasing a Shopify store conserves time and energy that can be spent on marketing your business while creating a new one demands plenty of time and energy. While designing a dropshipping store, you can save time with the help of several useful apps. However, it will necessitate you to modify product images, list product descriptions along with building a brand new store.

Getting a Proven Business: Buying Shopify stores is more like investing in a proven business. It requires time and money to test out the effectiveness of listed products. While buying a store with authentic products, you buy customers with verified record sales generation. 

Pros of Buying A Shopify Store

02. Cons

Well-known brand and good: Buying a successful store with Shopify comes with well-known brands and products, limiting the chances of putting out your brand and products for sale. 

If you end up buying an established store with a bad reputation, then it can take years to restore the trust and confidence of customers. Therefore, buying a well-known established brand can limit your chances to be successful.

Recommended: Shopify Pros and Cons - Why it has over 1,000,000 businesses

Not knowing your business and Customers: Buying a niche or store that you are not familiar with can be a dangerous decision for your business. Knowing your customers and their preferred products is significant for succeeding in the eCommerce business. You can discover the relevant industry; however, you might learn by making mistakes.

Subsequently, knowing your customers is imperative for the sustainable growth of an E-commerce business. When a store is making new products, it needs to find innovative ways for selling products to existing or new customers.

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IV. Things To Consider When Buying A Shopify Store

On the exchange marketplace, people buy and sell stores for a variety of reasons. If you are going to purchase online stores, then it's always a good idea to ask the seller why they are selling their store and whatever is not mentioned in the well-described given listing. 

We have compiled and listed some important things down below to consider before purchasing a Shopify store.

01. Financial Goals and Resources

It has never been easier to buy or sell already established businesses for making an instant profit. However, the most challenging part is to understand what you are buying and what makes it effective for you. Investing $50 or $60 in a well-established store might not put you in trouble, but spending thousands of dollars can cause financial distress for you.

The first and foremost step is recognizing your financial goals and resources. It's a good idea to have a financial plan in place. You can download the template for DTC Financial Template HERE

Financial Template

You need to determine what final results you are expecting with this purchase. It is significant to know and list your financial resources and objectives before starting searching for a Shopify store. There are higher chances of getting distracted with all sorts of shiny and tempting deals at the Exchange marketplace. Ask yourself: 

  • What are financial goals? 
  • How much are you willing to invest on the first purchase? 
  • Are you looking for a similar website with the existing Shopify business? 
  • Do you want to buy or sell a website with already revenue generation? Or you will like a built website with little or no customers? 
  • How much are you looking forward to earning from this store?
  • What is your financial goal for the next ten years?
  • Are you willing to invest time along with time?

These questions will help to stay focused and determined to identify potential financial goals and resources before buying a Shopify store. We need to invest time and money in a website. Remember, you will need to have an extra budget for the improvement of the website, advertisement, catalog investments, and whatever is required to improve the business in the future.

02. Comparison Between Buying & Starting Your Own Store on Shopify 

The biggest and most important difference between buying a Shopify store and starting your own comes from the initial purpose. Shopify is an effective solution, designed to assist sellers in establishing successful online stores. Currently, more than one million businesses built from this platform are successfully working.

Buying an already established ecommerce business on Shopify will save time and energy, which can be helpful in the promotion of your business. On the other hand, starting your own store on this ecommerce platform can be time-consuming and requires plenty of effort to build a brand-new dropshipping store.

You can buy a store resembling your brand. The already established store will have better brand value than the newly started store.

While buying a Shopify store, buyers don’t need to worry about the domain or hosting for the website. However, you need to figure everything out when starting your own store. From web developer, buying the domain, and website hosting, starting a new store requires consistent dedication and step-by-step guidelines to improve functionality over time.

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03. Does the Store Operate in a Growing/Profitable Niche?

Being the fundamental step in beginning a Shopify store, niche selection helps in targeting an audience to your store. You need to make sure the niche is in demand and it will continue increasing sales for years to come. There are millions of such stores working online, which makes it extremely challenging to stand out in the competition. Unless you are competing within a small location, you need to differentiate your product from other stores to enhance the sale rates. 

So, make sure the store you’re going to buy has a growing or profitable niche. You can use Google Trends to see if a product/niche is growing or not. 

use google trends

04. Does the Website have a Clearly Defined Target Audience?

Considering the current economic situation, there is no alternative to a well-targeted market and audience: 

  • What are the competing websites? 
  • Does this website clearly define and target the audience?

It is a simple but most important question. If your answer is yes, then how nice is it working with your potential audience?

Content can change and keywords can effectively assist in targeting the potential audience to your website; however, there is no alternative to replace the already established audience with a website.

PRO TIP: Use similarweb.com to quickly get more information about a website's target audience. 

05. SEO situation: Domain Authority, Keyword Ranking, and Organic Traffic

It can be difficult and costly to optimize a website for research purposes. While buying a Shopify store, it is always a great idea to check its optimization before making a final purchase.  Buying a website with excellent research results will be the most profitable decision of your life.

You need to ensure the highly-ranking phrases and keywords match well with the targeted audiences. 

use similarweb.com to quickly get more information

It is significant to check the current SEO situation of the website for the long term. The idea is not expecting a website to continue generating excellent results without investing in its maintenance. Rather, it checks if words and phrases are most likely to perform well in six months or six years for producing maximum traffic.

Since Domains have been around for a short time and they do not perform well in various search engines even with impactful SEO factors. If you are ready to invest and wait for the business profits, then it’s your personal choice. However, you should shortlist or avoid domains that are one or two years old for getting an instant profit.

You need to take time to review the history and authority of the website domain and its impact on current or future success. It is significant to go through different analytical reports and any other information related to the website. Remember, if the seller does not provide relevant information, then it's not a reliable indication to invest your finances.

To get all of these information, simply hop over to Ahrefs's Site Explorer 

Ahrefs's Site Explorer

Then, look for: 

  • How is the keyword ranking of this website? Is it showing a steady development? The steady growth of the website is the perfect indication of strong SEO and marketing of the website. Higher peaks represent experimentation and expensive paid advertisements and decreased SEO tactics, which should be avoided under all conditions.
  • Number of existing blacklinks: See if their backlinks are all natural and come from relevant sites, or if they come from spammy, irrelevant domains. If it's the latter, you don't want to buy it. 

V. How To Buy A Shopify Store On Exchange Marketplace?

Buying a website is a lot similar to investing in a real estate business. With careful selection and correct maintenance, purchasing a Shopify business is capable of creating consistent income streams without beginning a business from scratch. 

If you are geared up to buy a store on Shopify, check out the effortless buying and selling of hundreds of established businesses with an extensive series of niches at Exchange.

01. Find the Right Shopify Store

At Exchange Marketplace, you can browse by industry, business type, sales channel, business attribute, and Shopify’s listings. You can arrange searches by prices, business health, revenue, and with the newest listings. 

Find the Right Shopify Store at At Exchange Marketplace

Stores with better revenue and business value are generally more expensive than the others. Try analyzing the whole purchase; however, if a store was listed a long time ago, then you might want to rethink that investment­—or use negotiation skills for getting a better value. 

02. Decide & Shortlist Interested Business/Industry

Several organizations buy and sell business accounts with particular interests. If their audience is enthusiastic about fashion, they might start buying and selling clothing or a makeup business.

After getting the available listing, decide your targeted industry, estimated budget, time, and resources that you are willing to invest in this business. If you are thinking of keeping a low price, then dropshipping is the perfect option for you. You need to have a website and some marketing resources for the offered services and products.

 Decide  Interested Business

Exchange marketplace offers different types and sizes of Shopify businesses. You can draw a shortlist of interested businesses and consider them in detail. 

03. Do Research for the Shortlisted Businesses

After finding a potential candidate, notice the fundamental numbers for a buyer.

Do Research for the Shortlisted Businesses

Apart from providing general information, each listing should offer information like:

  • Asked price
  • Total revenue
  • Inventory value
  • Monthly expenses
  • Social network followers
  • Estimated monthly revenue

04. Contact the Seller

After finalizing the interested store, contact your seller through the secure messaging platform of Exchange and get additional information.

You will need account verification before requesting a business price over $5000 from the seller. However, you need to connect your LinkedIn profile with the Shopify account for asking a business price of $20,000 or more.

05. Do Your Research

When you are waiting for the seller’s response, it is always a great idea to conduct some sort of research by checking their forums, social media accounts, and reviews in other communities.

Consider checking about the owner of the company, taxes, financial details, legal verification, and website traffic, offered products, operational processes, and customer information.

Tools like Moz and SEMrush are highly effective in the evaluation of the site's traffic in comparison with the shared details of Exchange. Do not forget to question the associated discrepancies; they are prospective red flags.

06. Create An Offer

When you are satisfied with the seller’s answers and provided information, it is time to create an offer and pay complete payment at the time of sale.

07. Seller Agrees with Offer

When the seller concurs with the buyer’s offer, they accept it by creating an Escrow transaction and you receive an email notification for it.

https://www.escrow.com/

08. Accept Conditions and Make Payment

The buyer receives an email with complete notice of attached conditions and directions to pay through Escrow.

09. Seller Transfers Assets

The seller receives a notification to transfer the assets after approval of the requested payment. The buyer marks them “received” within Escrow later.  

Shopify Exchange

10. Inspection and Approval of Shopify Store

Shopify recommends an inspection period of 3-30 days. Make sure to have complete access to the domain’s name, apps, advertisement account, physical inventory, and social media accounts. You should check these assets and never export data, payment settings, products, and shipping details.

11. Shopify Makes you New Owner

After acceptance of the assets, Shopify changes your staff account with an administrator within three business days. After the process, you will receive an email notification.

Escrow processes the payment and hands over the site to the new buyer. 

VI. How To Sell A Shopify Store On Exchange Marketplace?

Exchange Marketplace is the easiest and reliable way for selling a Shopify business online. The partnership of Exchange with Escrow ensures a smooth and effortless processing system for the payments, listing, and transfer of assets.

 Sell A Shopify Store On Exchange Marketplace

Presently, Exchange only permits Shopify businesses to create a live listing. If you own a Shopify business, then don’t worry about the actual number of sales before selling it. Exchange does not require a minimum or maximum quantity of sales for listing your Shopify business.  

It is compulsory to carry out the following requirements before listing your Shopify business Exchange:

  • While selling a Shopify store, only the owner is eligible for accessing or installing the Exchange app for the Shopify business.
  • Try having a paid or development proposal for your Shopify described account. It should include the Shopify pause or build online store plan.
  • You cannot have a Shopify Plus strategic plan for your business. If you are employing a Shopify Plus plan, then contact Shopify Plus Support and converse about negotiating the existing contract or downgrading to a suitable plan.
  • A business should never be in a trial period. It takes 24 hours to receive the complete eligibility after paying the first Shopify subscription.
  • Your account should be in a great standing position for using Shopify payments. If your business has been disqualified for Shopify payments, then you are ineligible to list your business on Exchange.
  • You cannot receive any type of economic assistance from Shopify Capital.
  • The listing and other details should meet the conditions of the Shopify Partner contract and provisions of service.  
  • There is no availability of open tickets from the Shopify Legal team, Shopify Risk team, or Shopify Recovery team. You need to settle all issues and matters before listing your store for sale on the Exchange marketplace.

After listing your store on Exchange, the process of selling a business can be complicated at times. However, you can follow these steps to successfully selling your business.

  • Make sure you are eligible for listing and have thoroughly evaluated the guidelines of the Exchanges marketplace.
  • Consider installing the app for Exchange Marketplace.
  • After creating the listing of your business, submit it for evaluation.
  • Publish your listing after getting approval for evaluation.
  • You will receive a message from the buyer.
  • Respond and answer buyer’s questions.
  • The buyer sends an offer for your store.
  • You agree to the buyer’s offer.
  • You construct the Escrow transaction within the Exchange app.
  • The buyer receives a notification to accept the conditions and deposits paid to the Escrow transaction.
  • You get notified for transferring assets to the buyer.
  • The buyer will mark the obtained assets in Escrow.
  • The buyer will perform a safety examination of the assets.
  • The buyer denotes assets and accepts them in Escrow.
  • You receive funds from Escrow and they arrive in your bank account within five business days.  
  • The buyer receives the ownership of the store within three business days by the Shopify team. The team ensures the secure and successful removal of your billing and payment details from the account.
  • You get notified by email upon successful transfer of ownership.

Exchange Marketplaces is an effortless way of buying and selling Shopify stores with validated metrics. You can browse stores by a specific industry or revenue, and purchase one that’s suitable to your requirements and goals.

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