How To Write A Business Plan
Like most daunting projects, many business owners put off writing a business plan. But, writing a business plan is an important step in helping your company grow and thrive (no matter how long you’ve been in operation). A strong business plan can provide direction, purpose, and is also critical for businesses seeking funding.
Even if you aren’t seeking funding, there are still many compelling reasons you should take the time to write a business plan. Here are just a few things a business plan can help you with:
- Checking the profitability of your niche
- Developing your value proposition and a USP
- Taking a comprehensive view of your business
- Setting up business goals
- Avoiding costly mistakes
If you haven’t written a business plan before, it is best to start out section by section. The following are seven key components you will need to include:
The Executive Summary is the last part you’ll write, but it’s the first part of the business plan. This part serves as a summary of the entire plan.
The company description is a longer, high-level overview of your company, business model, products or services, types of consumers, and competitive edge.
Products and Services
This section should fully describe the product or service you offer, with a focus on customer benefits. You should also describe how your offerings differ from your competitors’.
The market analysis outlines your targeted market, where you fit in the market, how your prices are structured, how you will address competition and remain competitive in your industry.
Strategy and Implementation
This section describes your growth strategy. Here you can discuss your sales and marketing strategies and how you’ll implement them to generate leads, increase conversion and retain customers.
Organization & Management
Here, you’ll outline the structure of your business. Identify the owners and any requirements related to staffing, logistics and business development.
Financial Plan & Projections
The last section of your business plan should include all the financial data about your business, from expected costs, projected revenue and more.
The process of writing a business plan can be an intimidating task to tackle, but it will help you focus on the right things and give you a roadmap for future success. No matter what stage your business is at, spend some time making your business plan manageable and helpful so you’ll be better prepared for success.