Buying a business on Exchange Marketplace

You can use Exchange Marketplace to browse through all of the businesses for sale by a number of categories including, business type and location. Once you find something that seems like a good fit, the buying process begins.

Our goal is to ensure that you have an easy, seamless, and secure experience when purchasing a business. No matter what size of business you're buying, you'll receive support throughout the process from the dedicated Exchange support team.

Since Exchange started, thousands of businesses have been sold through our marketplace. Are you new to running an online store? Shopify Support is ready to help by answering any questions that you might have.

Process overview

The buying process generally follows these steps:

  1. Find a listing that interests you.
  2. Message the seller.
  3. When the seller responds, send an offer.
  4. Seller accepts offer.
  5. Seller creates Escrow transaction.
  6. You are notified to accept the terms and submit payment.
  7. Escrow approves the payment.
  8. Seller transfers all assets to you.
  9. Mark all assets as received in Escrow.
  10. Conduct your inspection period.
  11. Mark all assets as accepted in Escrow.
  12. The Shopify Accounts team turns you from staff to the store owner within 3 business days. You will be notified when this ownership transfer is completed.
  13. Your funds will be disbursed to the seller from the Escrow transaction. The Escrow transaction is finalized at this point, and a return or refund is not possible.

Exchange user requirements

It is our goal to provide a fair and safe environment for anyone who wants to buy or sell a business on Exchange. To help achieve this, we've set the following requirements and guidelines:

  • You need to be at least 18 years old.
  • If you live in one of the following countries or regions that Escrow does not support, then you can't use Exchange:
    • Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Burundi, Cambodia, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cuba, Côte d'Ivoire, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, France, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Honduras, Islamic Republic of Iran, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Moldova, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Russian Federation, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Suriname, Syrian Arab Republic, Tajikistan, Uganda, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Yemen, Zimbabwe
  • Don't use Exchange Marketplace to promote a product or service.
  • Exchange Marketplace doesn’t support an auction format. Sellers are expected to set and adhere to their asking price so that they don't confuse buyers and create a negative experience.
  • Don't ask for or include a personal email address, phone number, or any other form of contact information in a listing or any communications, and don’t move the conversation off of the Exchange Marketplace. Buyers and sellers should only communicate through Exchange.
  • Always have Exchange make store ownership changes for you.
  • Exchange doesn't support searches for business partnerships. A business needs to be sold in its entirety in order to be listed on Exchange.
  • All listings should be unique and not copies of existing Exchange listings.
  • Online store templates that are sold on Exchange need to be unique. To avoid issues with dissatisfied buyers, it's important that each business sold is not a duplicated version of another one.
  • Unlike regular development online stores made by partners, businesses that are listed on Exchange are not eligible for a commission.
  • You might be subjected to a "Know your customer" request, to confirm your identity.
  • Don't encourage either party to begin a payment transaction outside of Exchange's payment flow. If a transaction is completed outside of the Exchange Marketplace flow, then Shopify can't help you with any issues that involve that transaction. Using outside of Exchange to begin a new transaction is considered outside of the authorized Exchange payment flow. All official Exchange transactions will have Shopify Inc. listed as the broker in the transaction.

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