Should You Sell Your Online Store or Keep it as a Cash Cow?

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Running an eCommerce store can be a great way to make a living. When you have an online store that is generating a decent amount of revenue, you probably want to hold onto it forever. But is that necessarily the best thing? Big Commerce wrote a great article about this, which I found very interesting.

There are a lot of platforms to sell online stores, such as Shopify Exchange. But is that the right option? Here are some questions that you should answer when deciding whether to keep running your eCommerce store or whether you should sell it.

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How Stable is Your Revenue?

Running an eCommerce store can both be very exciting and frustrating. The problem is that revenue tends to fluctuate. For some stores, revenue fluctuates a lot more than others. If you are selling products that people tend to give as gifts, you will probably notice that your sales surge during the holiday season. Many online stores generate about 75% of their revenue between November and December. You can tell this from the peaks in sales data from the Census bureau.

Having a very unstable revenue stream can be stressful, even if your store is lucrative overall. If you don’t want to deal with the fluctuations, you may want to sell your store and use your money for something else.

What is the Future Profitability of Your Niche?

Some ecommerce stores sell evergreen products. Others sell products that are likely to become even more popular in the future. There are also stores that sell novelty and fad products that will go out of style in the near future.

If you have a good track record for forecasting trends, you will want to take some time to understand the future of your niche. Here are some tips:

  • Niche will be less lucrative in the future. If you believe that the niche will be less lucrative in the future, then you may want to sell your online store before others catch on. Many people will look solely at your cash flow and net income statements. They won’t think far enough ahead to consider future trends that will weigh on growth or cause sales to fall.
  • Niche will be more lucrative in the future. You may have enough experience in a field to realize that sales will probably surge in the future. Other people may not recognize the trend, so they fail at running your online store. Try to squeeze as much money as you possibly can out of this.

Forecasting the future of your industry won’t be easy, but you will be ahead of the game if you can do it well.

How Easily Can You Replicate Your Success?

At first glance, your revenue statements are an indicator of the success of your online store. However, they are probably more a reflection of your success as a marketer. You may have generated a lot of revenue from your online store, but that doesn’t mean that anyone else will have as much success.

On the flip side, if you are a great marketer, then you can probably replicate your success by starting a new online store. You could try selling your online store and then starting a new one to compete. The only drawback with this approach is that you would need to invest some time building a new brand.

Should You Sell Your Online Store?

There is no right or wrong answer to this question. You need to use your own judgment. There are a lot of things to take into consideration. However, selling your online store may be a great option to consider if you feel that your relationship with your eCommerce store has run its course.