Using Google Ads to sell your business online Part 1

Sell your business with Google Ads


Hello and welcome to this three -part instalment from


We are living in a digital age and if you want your business to survive in the real world then it needs a strong pulse in the virtual one. This couldn’t be truer for business owners, directors and business brokers who are looking to sell one, or a portfolio of businesses.


We have covered business sales techniques using the natural Google ranking in our previous two posts (you can access those posts here) but what of Google ads?


What are Google Ads?


Google ads are the sponsored listings that appear above the natural listings and normally have an ‘Ad’ marker to the left of them as shown below:


The main difference between the paid ads and the natural listings is … wait for it – You pay to be seen. At the time of writing (above) are not on the first page for the natural listings ( are and have offered advice on how to do this in previous posts, feel free to browse) but they have outbid every other company to appear at the top of Google.


How much you will pay depends upon many factors, and if you don’t know what you are doing, then paid for Google advertising can be one of the fastest ways to flush your hard earned advertising spend down the toilet. Conversely, for those who use it properly Google advertising can be an amazing tool to generate massive brand awareness, high click through rates and ultimately sales in a relatively short amount of time.


This post is designed to help you sell your business using Google Ads in the fastest possible time, without the unnecessary ad spend.


Selling your business using Google Ads


In previous posts we have discussed marketing strategies focussed around having a specific page or a micro site from which you can promote your business for sale, or using third party websites, which is a popular choice for business brokers. If you missed those, you can access them here. In any event I’m going to assume you have such a digital space and you want to drive qualified leads there – ultimately to result in a business sale.


The fastest way to get to number 1 with Google Ads


The top spot Google search engine ad is awarded to the highest bidder, which means that if you pay just one penny higher than all of your competitors then you will dominate the search engine rankings.


Google makes its money (for the most part) every time someone clicks on your ad and goes through to your site, whether they use your service / buy your product or not. It is your job then to make sure that the people coming through to your site have a high probability of buying your business for sale.


Business sale example using Google Ads


Let’s suppose you run an accountancy business and you’ve decided that the time has come to drift into early retirement. You want to sell your accountancy business in Newcastle and you’re going to use Google Ads to do it.


Task 1


Look at the sale of your business from the point of view of your potential customer.


In your marketing efforts to date you have been selling your accountancy service to people who need that specific service. Now that you are selling your accountancy business, your offering is different, your customers are different and it follows that so are their wants and needs.


Lets identify your new offering, customer base and their wants and needs.


To do this, answer the following questions:


  1. Who are your potential customers?
  2. Why would they want to buy your business?


Put your answers in plain English and try to avoid tech speak unless of course your potential buyer speaks the same business language as you.


Steve Jobs (of Apple) once commented:


“If you can’t describe your business in simple terms then you either don’t know your customers well enough or your business.”


One of the other reasons Apple speaks in plain English is because they target the emotive reasons that someone would buy an apple device before even attempting to introduce tech speak.


YOUR ad needs to instantly answer a question or to find a winning solution for your proposed clients AND it needs to repel the people who are less likely to want to purchase your business. If you can manage to appeal to – only – your potential business buyer on an emotive level then your chances of a sale are greatly increased.


In Google marketing terms this is known as an ATTRACT and REPEL strategy.


Without this mind set you are likely to receive either no clicks or many erroneous clicks to your site that have little to no chance of ever resulting in a sale. Either way, Google wins and you are paying for every single click through to your site.


Task 2


Based on what you have so far, write some ad copy. Write something that answers your potential business buyer’s questions, or shows that you identify with their pain points and offer an immediate solution.


Take a look at competitors who are trying to sell an accountancy business


When we speak about competitors here, we are NOT talking about the businesses that you have been used to calling competitors throughout the lifespan of your business, unless of course, like you, they are now looking to sell their accountancy business.


Competitors in our sense are websites set up with the specific purpose of selling an accountancy business. Or in more general terms to sell any business within a geographical (if you have a physical location) area.


How do you find businesses that are selling businesses?


Like most things these days, it starts with a Google search. But what keywords do you enter into the search engine to get the desired results?


Task 3


Get together with friends and colleagues, perhaps investors too, to brainstorm some keyword combinations. That is what your ideal business buyer might type into Google to find your site.


You are looking for more than one but less than 100 phrases here.


I’ve learned never to trust stats over common sense so if a search term is obvious, something like:


“Accountancy firm for sale in Newcastle”


Then put it in. The worst that will happen here is that no one types it in to the search engine, which will cost you nothing at all.


Just to satisfy your burning curiosity, this is what we see when we type in the phrase above:


sell accountancy business




The first Ad from is showing up for this search term and they are bidding higher than everyone else to get there. This would be good if the ad wasn’t a complete waste of money (sorry guys). They are searching for people that need accountancy services NOT people who are looking to purchase an accountancy firm. This means firstly that any clicks on that site will almost certainly NOT result in a sale, secondly, whatever they are bidding for this search term is money down the toilet and thirdly, they should probably have a quiet word with their marketing department.


The next two ads are more like it. They are (not surprisingly) from business brokers who in all probability have not just one but many businesses for sale.


A little shameless plug here: save business brokers a lot of time and money when it comes to the promotion and sale of their client’s businesses. So, if you need help in that respect get in touch and we will try to make your life easier.


What makes your business for sale unique?


After writing down those phrases, looking at what the search results pull up and then by visiting the websites in question you will probably have a good idea as to what words or phrases are being used to entice a prospective buyer into a sale. You will also have an idea of what words or phrases do not work.


At this point it may be an idea to revisit your ad copy and eliminate or add keywords / phrases as necessary.


Before you do, dig a little deeper and see if you can come up with a USP (unique selling point). By that I mean answer the following:


How are you different from other sites selling accountancy businesses in Newcastle, and why should a prospective buyer purchase your business rather than that of a competitor?


Basically – Purchase my accountancy business and get this specific benefit.


The benefit has to be either something one of your competitors does not offer or does offer but it is not listed as a benefit in their sales copy. You are effectively writing a lead line or a hook line to inspire the reader to keep reading, and then click through to your site.


Congratulations you have completed the hardest and probably the most time consuming steps. In our next post we will look at launching your first Google Ads campaign to sell your business.


So, in our next post you will have a step by step guide leading toward your first Google Ads campaign. We will also explore winning advertising copy strategies. For now though, you have a list of potential groups of people that might want to buy your business.


Before we sign off a little helpful hint: If you enter a search term into Google and you DON’T see ads then this can be an indication that the people typing this search term do not have commercial intent. That is they may be unlikely to purchase your business for sale. Not everyone who types something into Google is looking to part with his or her money. Some are looking for entertainment whilst others are simply looking to be educated on a given topic.


If you have any questions about this post or would like help from in buying or selling a business in the UK then get in touch here, and we will do our best to help.