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Where Can You Find a Business to Buy?

Here are Online Websites To Assist Your Search For a Business...

Where Can I Find A Business for Sale?

Our Business Brokerage firm is approached daily with Buyer inquiries for listings we have for sale. We estimate over 80% of these prospects come from our online ads with 3rd party websites. This post is a helpful guide for Buyers interested in finding a Company for Sale and some tips on how to get listings sent automatically to your inbox from those websites and from our Company.

Business Sales are Different than Residential Real Estate Sales:

First, Buyers should understand the market for selling a business is very different than when you purchase a home. Realtors have a Multiple Listing Service (MLS) that broadcasts the sale of their listing and also have an active company website that advertises pictures, listing details and financing options. Confidentiality is not required so Buyers see exactly what is for sale and for how much. This is not how business brokers sell companies below are platforms utilized by both business brokers and Sellers who are listing for sale by owner.

1) 3rd Party Websites

  • Bizbuysell

    The largest website devoted to the listing and selling of businesses for sale in the United States. Business Brokers pay a monthly subscription to list and market their listings. Business owners can also sell by owner for a monthly rate. The issue for sell by owner is confidentiality is breached almost immediately as sellers respond to buyers inquiries. If confidentiality is important think twice about selling online. Best for businesses up to $5,000,000. Great majority of buyers utilize SBA financing on deals over $500,000. We love bizbuysell and Playbook Advisory is an elite member on the platform -

  • Bizquest.

    Bizquest is a sister site of and although they say they generate different buyers are experience is they are the same at least in Chicago. Again, best for deals that are up to $5,000,000 and most buyers need SBA financing for acquisition financing. If you are choosing between the two sites pick bizbuysell. Our firm is also an elite member of the platform find our profile here.


    Another site similar to the above two but in our experience traffic is much lighter from We have generated successful buyers from the site so we continue to utilize the platform for our active business for sale listings.

  • is a US & UK platform that our firm has not utilized in 2018.

  • Dealstream

    Formerly knows as mergernetwork the site lists businesses a little differently and makes buyers register. Brokers can confidently use the site for generating buyers but in our experience they rank below the top 3 sites in this post. With that said the site has been working to make improvements but they need to clean up older listings that are no longer for sale.

  • Axial

    Axial focuses on larger M&A transactions and works hard to generate listings of size ($5mm & higher). In our experience there are more tire kickers and the follow through is low from buyers on the site, however, our typical listing is not necessarily a match so our sample size is low. Very professional platform and Axial charges a premium to buyers searching for a business to buy.

  • Equire

    Another site seeking to list companies with a minimum of $750,000 in cash flow (SDE or EBITDA). Our firm has not listed any companies on the site so I don’t have relevant feedback for the site.

As you can see, there are a number of 3rd party websites devoted to listing businesses for sale in the United States. We typically find buyers only concentrate on 1 or 2 but it might make sense for buyers to monitor each site for the following reasons;

1) Business Owners post listings on their own and will not pay to advertise on more than just one website.

2) Business Brokers may only advertise their listings on 2-4 websites with the great majority utilizing bizbuysell and their sister site bizquest.

2) Business Broker Websites:

Buyers can also receive listing information directly from local business brokers by signing up for the brokers listing alerts or newsletters.

At Playbook Advisory, we attempt to place buyers into the right bucket so that they only receive listings that are of interest, however, it’s fairly common for buyers to purchase a business they had no idea would be of interest so it helps to keep an open mind as you search.

If you contact us please let us know the following; 1) Location you would like the business to be, 2) Amount of Cash Flow/SDE required, 3) Amount your willing to invest, 4) Are you interested in Financing a business purchase? We can refer you to qualified SBA lenders in the Chicago area.

Although I'm aware of other Chicago business brokers that might be good for buyers to monitor send me an email I will respond with some tips on who I think can help your search based on your area of interest.

The search for a business can be exceedingly difficult at times but the rewards are life changing. Contact Jim Peddle at 312-525-9622 to discuss your needs or email me at

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