Steps to Liquidating a Business

Deciding to close your business and liquidate your inventory is generally not a decision that is arrived at lightly. There are many reasons that this might be the next logical step in your journey as a business owner from retirement to prolonged illness to a down-turn in the economy. For whatever reason you are getting out of the game, it’s important to make the most of your going-out-of-business sale.

Keep it Short

One of the most important factors in a store closing inventory liquidation sale is to set the parameters of the sale so that it doesn’t go on too long. Consumers are wary of stores that always seem to be going out of business. Plus, you don’t want to use up any profit you might make by having to pay salespeople, security, utilities and rent for longer than necessary. The faster you can move your inventory, the more money you will make from the sale.

Focus on Timing

For everything, there is a season, and going-out-of-business sales are no different. Savvy shoppers know when to search for sales on certain items. For example, December through January are the traditional sale months for appliances and electronics. Furniture sales tend to occur in September. Depending on what you’re trying to liquidate, you might find better luck running your sale when people are shopping for those items anyway.

Organize Your Markdowns

Keep the system of markdowns simple and well organized. If you’re confused by the way discounts are handled, your customers are likely to be also. Some stores use a sticker system where the discount that applies to merchandise with a certain colored sticker increases every week. Other store owners prefer to let a liquidation company handle the pricing. Whatever you choose, make sure that it’s clear to everyone involved.

Developing a liquidation plan is just as important as the business plan that got you launched in the first place. Whether you’re quitting business for personal or economic reasons, you owe it to yourself to create a plan that honors all your hard work over the years.