Small Business Plans https://smallbusinessplans.com Free Help with Small Business Plans Sun, 10 Sep 2017 23:39:37 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.1 The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/the-six-startup-rules-for-launching-an-internet-business/ https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/the-six-startup-rules-for-launching-an-internet-business/#respond Thu, 09 Mar 2017 19:04:21 +0000 http://www.badbirthdays.com/?p=779

The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of people using the Internet. The increase in internet users is due in large part to the availability and popularity of new Internet-capable devices, such as smartphones and tablets. By using these devices to connect to the Internet, consumers can obtain information about products and make purchases with great ease and convenience. The popularity of the Internet as a shopping tool is good news for existing and aspiring online business owners because it means that they will have access to a seemingly unlimited pool of potential customers.

Moreover, the cost of starting an online business has become much lower over the past few years. It is now possible to get a good web hosting plan at a negligible fee, as well as a wide range of free apps that provide excellent support for a startup business. In the past, some technical knowledge or expertise is required to set up a website, but now, most web hosting solutions are very easy to implement. It is possible for business owners to get their new websites or online stores up and running in a very short time, without the assistance of a software engineer.

While many things have changed over the years, the principles of online business success have remained the same. If you are planning to start a business on the Internet, it is important that you build a solid foundation for growth and success. You may be able to count yourself among the successful with a bit of luck, a lot of hard work, and if you follow the guidelines below.

Rule No. 1 – Your Business Must Offer Solutions to Your Customers’ Problems

Consumers purchase products or services because they expect their purchases save time or solve a problem. Whether your customers are buying essential medications to treat their health problems or just getting fashion accessories to enhance their appearances, they want your product to work. Before you start your online business, you need to ask yourself whether or not your products or services can help your customers solve their problems. What is it about your products, services, or business that can convince or compel your customers to part with their money? By answering this question, you are actually defining your business values and goals.

Some companies focus on making as much profit as possible, without dedicating enough effort to satisfying their customers’ needs. In an endeavor to make a quick profit, they may neglect the quality of their products and services. While they may rake in good profits in the early stages of their operations, it is likely that their profit will diminish over time. These businesses lose money because they overlook the importance of keeping their customers satisfied with effective solutions.  By providing practical solutions and excellent support for your customers, you can gain their trust and establish reliable long-term relationships with them. Long term customer retention can lead to recurring purchases and referred customers, giving you a steady stream of revenue.

Rule No. 2 – Understand the Strengths and Weaknesses of Your Competitors 

After you have determined the values and goals of your online business, you should start thinking about your competitors.  The increase in the number of online shoppers has generated a lot of opportunities for businesses, but it also means stiffer competition (have you heard of a little startup called Amazon?). More and more business owners are taking advantage of the online shopping trend to sell their products both locally and internationally, and they collectively offer almost any product or service of which you can think. If you do some research, you will find that many businesses are selling the same goods and solving the same problems as you. Don’t let this demotivate you! Seeing competition in the marketplace means people are making money doing what you want to do. If that does not give you confidence, just remember that Domino’s did not invent the pizza, and look at them now. It is important to know your competitors, and you have to know their strengths and weaknesses to build a successful online business.

Overcoming competition can be daunting for a new online business owner. Some of your competitors may already have substantial customer bases, and defeating them may seem like an impossible task. However, you have to know that every business has their strengths and weaknesses, and you need to learn from their strengths and capitalize on their weaknesses to succeed. For instance, if your competitors are strong in social media marketing, you have to find out more about their social media practices and apply them to your business. If possible, you should also invest more time and effort in social media marketing to try to beat them at their own game. If your competitors are not doing well in the area of customer service, you should take advantage of their shortcomings and focus on providing better customer service to win over their customers. It is important to continuously track your competitors’ online activities and take the necessary measures to stay one step ahead of them.

Furthermore, the larger and more established a business becomes, the less agile it tends to be. If you are competing against a big business that seldom changes and continues to lead the pack in your industry, take a look at what the big business’ customers want but are unable to receive from their product or service. You can carve out a niche within the market by solving a problem that isn’t big enough for them to account for, but it could give you a big enough customer base to get your business going strong.

Rule No. 3 – Know Your Customers and Their Buying Behaviors

To make your business more appealing to your clients, you have to be able to identify your target consumers correctly. Just targeting consumers according to location and age group is not enough. You also have to take into consideration factors such as income, occupation, marital status, education level, ethnicity, interests, hobbies, and personalities. If you can narrow down your target market to a very specific group of consumers, you will be able to develop highly-targeted strategies to make your business especially appealing to your customers. Creating clear “buyer personas” may not help you gain a large number of customers at first, but it will give you high-quality customers who can stay faithful to your business for a longer time. By concentrating on a very specific group of customers, you will also set yourself apart from your competitors.

Other than identifying your target consumers, you also need to have a profound understanding of their buying behaviors. It is important to know the factors that influence their purchasing decisions. Do they buy your products or services because your prices are competitive? Are they more concerned about the quality and effectiveness of your products? Do they read reviews of your products or similar products before they buy? Does customer service play a major role in influencing their purchasing decisions? By knowing the exact reasons why your customers buy your products, you can implement the right business strategies to appeal to their specific needs and preferences. For instance, if many of your customers are attracted to your products or services because of your low prices, you can offer price-based incentives, such as discounts, coupons, and promotions, to entice them to buy more.

Rule No. 4 – Create a Solid Budget Plan

If you are flying an airplane, you need to know how much fuel your plane is required to reach your destination.  Some business owners find themselves in financial trouble because they only calculate their startup costs when they start their businesses.  In many cases, start-up businesses only start to become substantially profitable after months or even years of operation, and it is important for business owners to have a budget plan for sustaining their businesses until they see real profits. Failure to budget properly can result in a lack of funds for necessary business activities, which can blunt your competitive edge and even force your business to shut down.

A well-prepared budget can serve two functions simultaneously. Firstly, it allows you to keep track of your business income and expenses so that you will have enough cash available to keep your business running. Also, it can be a tool for estimating your business income and expenses in the future. These two functions are imperative to a startup business’ success. A good budget plan prevents you from getting into situations that can jeopardize the effectiveness and profitability of your business, such as the inability to pay your suppliers or fulfill orders, and lack of funds to execute marketing plans. Such situations can also undermine the professional reputation of your business, which can make it more difficult for you to secure extra funding in the future.

Rule No. 5 – Develop a Revenue Model

After you have created a good budget plan, you should have a clearer idea of the amount of revenue needed to sustain your business. The next thing to do is to develop a revenue model to estimate the number of sales you need to make on a monthly basis to break even. This can be done by estimating the average revenue you will make from each sale and subtracting all external costs, which will give you the gross profit for each sale. Then, divide your monthly operating expenses by the per-unit gross profit. The result of this equation can be astonishing for many startup business owners. For instance – you may think that you can break even with 200 sales a month, but your revenue model shows that you may find you need to generate 400 sales. If your revenue model does not add up, you can find yourself in a lot of trouble in the future. One thing you have to bear in mind is that your revenue model is constantly evolving, and you need to refine your model and forecast continually.

It is important to have an accurate revenue model because it is an effective way to ensure that your business will be financially healthy. Your revenue model will give you a better understanding of your cash flow and expenses, enabling you to have a clear plan for earning revenue and maximizing your profitability. Not only does it help you build financial confidence; it can also improve your ability to get funding from investors or financial institutions.

Rule No. 6 – You Need to Be Passionate About Your Business

Running a business is not an easy task. From inventory management to marketing, you have to perform a broad range of duties to keep your business operating smoothly and efficiently. Problems and obstacles can also arise from time to time to test your resilience and resolve, and you will most likely give up if you treat your business activities merely as duties. You need to have a positive attitude and a strong inner drive to achieve business success. These qualities come from your passion for your business.

If you are passionate about your business, challenges and obstacles that are supposed to discourage you will become a source of motivation. Think of these obstacles as opportunities for you to test your business skills and determination, and know that you will be stronger and more confident if you succeed in overcoming them. Likewise, competition should not scare you; instead, it should be your lifeblood. As a passionate business owner, you will constantly think of ways to improve your business. You will always be looking out for new products, technologies, methods, and ideas to keep your business up-to-date, so that you can always stay ahead of your competitors. Most importantly, if you have a great passion for your business, you will be more ambitious when setting your business goals, and you will have the extra dedication needed to achieve them, even if you experience many setbacks along the way. Overall, the difference between a passionate business owner and an ordinary business owner is that the former is willing to go the extra mile, or many extra miles, to achieve business success. Passion is the quality that distinguishes great entrepreneurs from good ones.

In Conclusion

Achieving success in today’s online business world can be a very challenging task, considering that there is so much competition on the internet. Many aspiring business owners are attracted to the idea of starting an online business because they think that it is an excellent way to make fast profits. Some of them neglect the importance of building a strong foundation, and they see their businesses crumble over time. While the Internet offers almost limitless potential for business success and growth, you need to put in your fair share of effort to take full advantage of online opportunities. Following the rules mentioned above will help you start your online business on the right foot and prepare you for all the challenges that you may face in the future.

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Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of people using the Internet. The increase in internet users is due in large part to the availability and popularity of new Internet-capable devices, such as smartphones and tablets. By using these...
Read More

College Business Plan Class Project

We’re often contacted by students who are in the midst of a college business plan class project. In fact, we’ve even been flattered to have professors contact us about using our materials for their own classes (which we have obliged). Individuals from both groups...
Read More

Small Business Loans: Tips On How To Get A Business Loan

Whether you wish to start a new business or expand your existing one, you will most likely need to find a source of funding. There are many ways to secure funds for your business venture, and one of the most popular methods is getting a business loan. Business loans...
Read More

How to Write a Business Plan

How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

Write Your Small Business Plan

By Bill Darken A small business plan is vital to the success of starting a small business, Faced with writing a small business plan; the panic sets in. Confusion clouds your mind. You wonder where to start. This is important. It is the outline to how your idea will...
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College Business Plan Class Project

We’re often contacted by students who are in the midst of a college business plan class project. In fact, we’ve even been flattered to have professors contact us about using our materials for their own classes (which we have obliged). Individuals from both groups often express the notion that it’s hard to write a business plan designed to get a business loan without divulging personal information about credit worthiness, co-signors or guarantors. Stop right there! The number one reason most entrepreneurs write a business plan is to clarify their own ideas.

This makes the endeavor ideally suited for a college business plan class project. After all, most of college is about clarifying one’s own ideas. Moreover, writing the plan as a project provides additional opportunities. You’ll find that people knowledgeable in the industry you choose are more willing to share their time and critical thinking—where they might otherwise be guarded.

Your College Startup Could Be the Next Big Thing

The ultimate reward for clarifying your own ideas is that you might just join the ranks of mega-successful companies that started out as class projects, or by individuals still in college. They include Federal Express, Dell, Google and of course Facebook.

Regardless of whether your business plan class project is something you actually intend to pursue, find a business idea that you have some passion for. Ideally, you’ll choose an idea about which you already have some familiarity, knowledge or expertise. It’s essential that you have the mindset of the customer of your business. Being able to think like a customer is critical to knowing how to succeed in your selected business. By contrast, few delis are started by vegetarians.

Create a Business in a Young Industry

This is where college students have an edge. They are often consumers of new products or services that older, more experienced entrepreneurs are not familiar with. Choosing a business where nobody has 10, 20 or 30 years of experience can be an advantage. While critical thinking and careful planning will certainly still be required, you can avoid stepping into a well established industry with clear market leaders. Establishing your own experience or knowledge as a competitive advantage is a very compelling edge to any business plan.

Forget that your business plan is for a class project and approach it like you’re really going to invest your time, energy and family’s money. Think through every detail and reconcile your facts. In the end, your business has to work as a strategic and operational blueprint for your business. Here are just a few examples:

  • Backup your sales forecasts with a sales execution plan. If your plan says that you’re going to generate $1,000,000 in revenue in year one, make sure your labor and advertising budgets support that forecast.
  • Find financial data for similar businesses and compare your financial forecasts—particularly in the area of expenses. Too many college business plans gloss over the details. An accurate and detailed breakdown of startup costs and on-going expenses is what separates business plans from wishful thinking.
  • Think carefully about your go-to-market plan. Where will you start? What is the first product or service you will offer? Who will be your early customers? Almost every $100,000,000 business started out with a few thousand dollars in sales and grew from there in a thoughtful and well planned way. Where will you start?

Treat Your Project Like Your First Investor Pitch

Most college business plan class projects require a written document and a class presentation. The written documents are often comprehensive and thorough—the product of dividing the task among several participants. Make sure your presentation is equally focused on being compelling. Avoid the temptation to make your presentation entertaining. Your business plan and your presentation should make your audience (and especially your professor) say, “I could invest in this.” …Who knows, maybe someone in your audience will connect you to your first investor, client, or business partner.

For more information on the specifics of how to write your entire business plan, or specific sections, refer to our business plan template page.

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Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of people using the Internet. The increase in internet users is due in large part to the availability and popularity of new Internet-capable devices, such as smartphones and tablets. By using these...
Read More

College Business Plan Class Project

We’re often contacted by students who are in the midst of a college business plan class project. In fact, we’ve even been flattered to have professors contact us about using our materials for their own classes (which we have obliged). Individuals from both groups...
Read More

Small Business Loans: Tips On How To Get A Business Loan

Whether you wish to start a new business or expand your existing one, you will most likely need to find a source of funding. There are many ways to secure funds for your business venture, and one of the most popular methods is getting a business loan. Business loans...
Read More

How to Write a Business Plan

How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

Write Your Small Business Plan

By Bill Darken A small business plan is vital to the success of starting a small business, Faced with writing a small business plan; the panic sets in. Confusion clouds your mind. You wonder where to start. This is important. It is the outline to how your idea will...
Read More

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Small Business Loans: Tips On How To Get A Business Loan https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/small-business-loans-tips-on-how-to-get-a-business-loan/ https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/small-business-loans-tips-on-how-to-get-a-business-loan/#respond Thu, 30 Mar 2017 23:13:48 +0000 http://www.badbirthdays.com/?p=791

Small Business Loans: Tips On How To Get A Business Loan

Whether you wish to start a new business or expand your existing one, you will most likely need to find a source of funding. There are many ways to secure funds for your business venture, and one of the most popular methods is getting a business loan. Business loans are offered by many traditional and alternative loan providers across the country, and each lender has its own set of rates, incentives, and terms and conditions. Choosing the right business loan provider can be a difficult task due to the extensive selection available and the strict requirements involved in some cases. Below is a comprehensive guide on how to secure a business loan.

 

 

Know the Different Kinds of Business Loans Available

Presently, there is a wide variety of business loans available in the market, and some of them can meet your needs and preferences better than others. They can differ significantly in terms of maximum loan amount, interest rates, length of loan, eligibility requirements, and terms and conditions. Below are a number of options for you to choose from.

Small Business Line of Credit

This option enables you to get funds from the loan provider as needed. There is a limit as to how much you can borrow, which can be, for instance, $100,000 or $500,000, but getting a line of credit is a great way to manage your cash flow and unforeseen expenses. Usually, you will be required to pay a fee when you are opening a line of credit, but you do not have to pay interest until the funds are drawn down. In most cases, interests are paid on a monthly basis, and the principal is often paid off over years. However, a small business line of credit usually requires annual renewal, which may come with an additional fee.

Accounts Receivable Line of Credit

This type of loan is a credit facility that is secured by the accounts receivable of your company. It enables you to obtain funds right away based on the amount of accounts receivable you have, and its interest rate is variable. The line of credit is paid down as your customers pay their bills.

Working Capital Loans

Working capital loans are debt borrowing vehicles that can be used to finance your daily business operations. You can use a working capital loan to manage revenue and expense fluctuations that result from seasonality and other circumstances. It is possible to get an unsecured working capital loan, but you will have to pledge collateral or obtain a personal guarantee if you do not have a substantial or good credit history. This type of loan is usually a short-term loan that ranges from 30 days to one year, and its maximum amount can be anywhere between $5,000 and $100,000.

Small Business Term Loans

A small business term loan is typically a fixed-amount loan, and it can be used for capital expenditures, expansion, or business operations. It requires you to pay monthly interest and pay off the principal within half a year to three years. A term loan can come in the form of a secured or unsecured loan, with fixed or variable interest.

SBA Small Business Loans

Certain banks provide small business loans with low interest rates that are guaranteed and backed by the US Small Business Association (SBA). Due to the SBA guarantee, this kind of loan offers better repayment terms and interest rate  compared to most other types of loan. The maximum amount you can borrow can vary from $30,000 to $5 million. However, you have to be prepared to undergo a time-consuming loan process with strict requirements.

Equipment Loans

If you need funds to purchase equipment for your business, you can try to secure an equipment loan. An equipment loan usually requires a 20-percent down payment of the equipment’s purchase price, and the equipment serves as the collateral. Interest is usually paid on a monthly basis, and the principal has to be paid off over two to four years. The loan amount for an equipment loan is usually between $5,000 and $500,000, and interest rate can be fixed or variable. Sometimes, this type of loan can be structured as an equipment lease.

Small Business Credit Cards

A small business credit card can serve as a form of short-term financing for your small business. Interest rate can vary significantly depending on the issuer of your credit card, available funds on the card, and your creditworthiness. In many cases, the principal owner is required to be co-liable with your business. Some credit card issuers offer zero-percent interest rate for six to nine months as an introductory promotion.

 

Do Research on Loan Providers

The best way to find out about potential loan providers is to do research online. All reputable commercial banks and local banks have their own websites, and you can read about their loan options online. You can also find suitable lenders using online tools such as peer-to-peer lending sites, or visit the sites of direct online lenders, such as SwiftCapital and LendingTree. There are also business loan comparison sites that provide convenient tools for you to compare loan offers from many established business loan providers. If you wish to secure an SBA loan, you can get comprehensive information about SBA loan options and requirements on the official SBA website.

 

Understand How a Lender Determine Your Eligibility

Loan providers have an established set of standards for determining whether or not they should offer you a business loan. The main factors that they will take into consideration are your credit score and risk profile. They will also look into factors such as your business assets, investors, financial statements, and duration of business operation. Before you apply for a business loan, it is best that you check your credit report and get rid of any blemishes you can find.

 

Prepare Your Financial Statements Properly

If you are planning to borrow a large amount, you can expect your loan provider to review your financial statements very carefully. To increase your chances of securing the loan, you have to make sure that your financial statements are complete, thorough, and accurate, including your balance sheet, cash flow statements, and income and loss statements. The lender will evaluate your gross margin, cash flow, accounts receivable, accounts payable, debt-to-equity ratio, EBITDA, and others, so you have to be ready to answer questions about these aspects of your business. It is a good idea to get your accountant to go through your financial statements to look for issues that may be of concern to the lender.

The best thing to do to get your business loan application approved is to hire a certified public accountant to audit your financial statements. However, if you do not want to pay a high price for an audit, you can get a certified public accountant to “review” your financial statements instead. A review or audit of your financial statements may not be required by some loan providers.

 

Collect Detailed Information for Your Loan Application

Another way to improve your chances of getting approval for your business loan application is to collect and submit detailed information about your business.  Make sure the information is properly organized. Some of the types of information that loan providers will typically ask you to provide include:

  • Name of your business, including DBAs
  • Federal tax identification number
  • Names of executive officers, as well as their background
  • Legal business structure
  • Financial statements for the previous two or three years, and financials for this year, including income and loss statements, balance sheet, cash flow statements, and shareholder equity
  • Forecasted financial statements
  • State filings, such as certificate of incorporation, good standing certificates, and foreign corporation filings
  • Copies of general liability and keyman insurance policies
  • Business credit report
  • Potential collateral for loan
  • Amount of loan needed
  • Financial statements of the owner or principal shareholder of the business
  • Tax returns of your business for the previous two or three years
  • Business bank statements
  • Business plan, Investor Pitch Deck, and Executive Summary

 

Specify the Loan Amount and Explain How the Loan will be Used

When you are applying for a business loan, you will have to specify the amount of loan you need and let the lender know how the funds will be used. Will you be using the loan for capital expenditures, equipment purchases, expansion, hiring, inventory increase, marketing, research and development, or product development? It is advisable that you borrow a little more than needed in case you experience a cash crunch that goes on for one or two months. It is important that you try to avoid defaulting on your loan.

 

Determine What Kind of Guarantee and Security You Can Provide

When deciding whether or not to offer a loan, the lender is most concerned about the borrower’s ability to repay the loan. If you want to get a business loan successfully, you can give the lender a security interest on the assets of your company, such as property, equipment, or accounts receivable. Some loan providers may ask you to provide the personal guarantee of the main owner of your company. It is best that you avoid giving such guarantee, as it will place the personal assets of the owner at risk, not just the company’s assets.

 

Evaluate the Key Terms of the Business Loan

In order to make sure that a certain proposed loan is suitable for your business, you should evaluate the key terms that are proposed by a loan provider and make comparisons with the terms offered by other lenders. Below are some key terms that you need to review.

  • The interest rate and its variability over time
  • Interest payment frequency (weekly or monthly)
  • Principal due date and payment
  • Loan origination fee
  • Costs and fees imposed, such as administration fees, underwriting fees, and loan processing fees
  • Operating covenants imposed, such as minimum cash threshold or maximum debt-to-equity ratio
  • Circumstances that allow the lender to declare a default
  • Collateral or security needed
  • Future financial statements and reports that must be given to the lender
  • Limits for the use of the loan proceeds
  • Possibility to prepay the loan early without incurring a penalty and the amount of penalty

 

Review Your Online Presence

A loan provider may check your company’s website and social media accounts when deciding whether or not to offer you a business loan. Evaluating your online presence and activities will give the lender a better idea of the popularity and reputation of your business, as well as the effectiveness of your business activities, which can be a good indication of your ability to repay your loan. As such, it is advisable that you make improvements to your online profiles and postings to impress your lender. Make sure your website is professional-looking and up-to-date, and review your presence and postings on Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social media websites. Also, take a look at the reviews that your company received on review sites such as Yelp.

 

Learn More about Small Business Lending

The more you know about the lending options available for small businesses, the higher your chance of finding and securing the right loan. With extensive knowledge of business loans, you can ask lenders very specific questions and negotiate more effectively to get a loan that meets your needs and preferences. It also enables you to meet the requirements of a loan application more satisfactorily to boost chances of getting approved.

In order to get the best business loan, you have to be prepared to invest substantial time and effort to do research and comparison shopping. Getting the right business loan for your small business can be beneficial to your business in many ways. Other than ensuring that you will have enough funds to start, expand, or improve your business, it can also reduce your interest payments and fulfill your loan obligations with greater ease.

 

 

 

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Popular Posts

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of people using the Internet. The increase in internet users is due in large part to the availability and popularity of new Internet-capable devices, such as smartphones and tablets. By using these...
Read More

College Business Plan Class Project

We’re often contacted by students who are in the midst of a college business plan class project. In fact, we’ve even been flattered to have professors contact us about using our materials for their own classes (which we have obliged). Individuals from both groups...
Read More

Small Business Loans: Tips On How To Get A Business Loan

Whether you wish to start a new business or expand your existing one, you will most likely need to find a source of funding. There are many ways to secure funds for your business venture, and one of the most popular methods is getting a business loan. Business loans...
Read More

How to Write a Business Plan

How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

Write Your Small Business Plan

By Bill Darken A small business plan is vital to the success of starting a small business, Faced with writing a small business plan; the panic sets in. Confusion clouds your mind. You wonder where to start. This is important. It is the outline to how your idea will...
Read More

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How to Write a Business Plan https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/how-to-write-a-business-plan/ https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/how-to-write-a-business-plan/#respond Thu, 20 Apr 2017 23:26:59 +0000 http://www.badbirthdays.com/?p=797

How to Write a Business Plan

How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is how to write a small business plan. This article will help you gain an understanding of the process and help you to frame how you’ll go about creating your plan.

Ten or fifteen years ago a business plan was a comprehensive research document with 50 – 100 pages or more. You could expect to find exhibits and schedules packed in the back of the document and an executive summary in the front. The executive summary typically comprised about 15 pages.

Today, a small business plan is more like an executive summary, about 10 – 15 pages in length. It’s hard to say exactly when or why the transition occurred. Some say entrepreneurs didn’t have the skill set, desire or inclination to write research papers. Others say bankers and investors didn’t like to read them. Probably both are correct. Let’s answer that question about how to write a business plan right now!

 

What is a Business Plan?

Your business plan must contain four main sections, listed below. Guidelines on how to write each section of the business plan follow.

  • Introduction of Your Business
  • Sales and Market Potential
  • The Management Team
  • Financial Projections

How to Write a Business Plan: Introduction

Probably no aspect of how to write a business plan is more important than the introduction. The introduction of your business plan is the ‘new’ executive summary. This brief section has to be the hook that compels the reader to press on and read the rest of the plan.

Being able to write an introduction that hooks the reader will require that you have thoroughly thought through the essential elements of your business plan. The key to writing an introduction that will grab the attention of an investor or banker, is succinctly describing a business idea that answers the five main questions on their minds. Those questions are:

  1. What problem does your business solve, or what need does it fill?
  2. Who will you solve it for?
  3. How many are there with the problem or need?
  4. Based on that number of people, what is the dollar potential of the business?
  5. What makes you qualified to start this business?

Notice how closely the numbered questions above follow the bullet point outline of the business plan. The introduction gets straight to the point, bypassing all the details. Strive to answer each of the five questions above in no more than two to three sentences each. Then read your introduction and ask yourself, “Does this business idea sound exciting to me?” After all, you are the first person that must be sold on your business plan.

How to write a Business Plan section for Sales and Marketing.

In addressing how to write a business plan, the text below uses some examples based on restaurants. These examples are meant to be easy to follow. The thinking behind the examples can easily be mapped over to your line of business.

In the introduction of your business plan you already defined the problem your business will solve and how many people have that problem. A full assessment of your sales and market potential must also take into account the competition. Depending on the nature of your business, you might need to think of competition more broadly than businesses that are exactly like yours. Italian restaurants compete with Chinese restaurants.

For virtually any type of business you can find some metric on the consumption of that type of product or service. For example, let’s say that we find the average per household spending on restaurants is $2,325 per year. With a little additional effort you can easily make your number more precise by factoring in the average household size and income in your area. Then find industry statistics that take those numbers into account. Multiplying the average consumption per household by the number of households in your addressable market will tell you the market potential for all restaurants in your market.

Given the power of the internet, it’s equally easy to determine how many competitors you have in your market. Simple math would help you determine the average revenue per business. Finally, you would need to take into account why your business should be expected to do more or less than the average.

Using this type of thinking you’ll gain a clear understanding of the potential of your business while also ensuring that your business plan doesn’t project revenue that is out of line with what the market can support.

 

How to write a business plan section for your management team.

Businesses are nothing more than a group of people executing a plan. It’s important that the people be well matched to the plan. Think of a basketball team. The game plan is very important. The people executing the plan are equally or more important.

The management team section of your business plan needs to make the case that you have all the right people for the key positions. Your team must include individuals who know the customers and how to sell to them. Your team must also include individuals who know how to manufacture, procure or deliver the products and services you plan to sell. Most importantly, your team should include individuals who know how to run a business. When you are writing your plan, not everybody ‘on your team’ has to be ‘on your payroll.’ You can surround yourself with advisors who will mentor you through the early phases of your business. Include these people, with their permission, in the team section of your business plan as advisors or mentors.

 

How to write a business plan section for your financial statements.

When future business owners think about how to write a business plan, the financial projections section is where many need to reach for outside assistance. Even if you need to do so for your final numbers, make the effort to pencil out your expected revenues and expenses on a monthly basis for the first 12 months. Ultimately, your business plan should include 3 – 5 years of projections. If you decide to work with an outside source to help create your financial projections, be sure to work closely with them. In the end there are two things that are important. The financial forecasts must reflect what is written in the rest of your business plan. Secondly, even if they were created by someone else, as the future business owner, you should go over them carefully until you understand them thoroughly and intuitively.

Your business plan will need to include the following financial statements:

  • Startup Costs
  • 3 Year Income Statement
  • Cash flow statement

For example financial templates for each of the items above, visit the following links on the Small Business Plans website:

Startup Costs

Income Statement

Cash Flow Statement

 

For More Help

This article provided an overview of how to write a business plan. For more help regarding business plans, browse the Small Business Plans website. We provide a business plan template for each section of your small business plan and additional business resources information.

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Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

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How to Write a Business Plan

How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

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Read More

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Write Your Small Business Plan https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/write-your-small-business-plan/ https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/write-your-small-business-plan/#respond Thu, 13 Apr 2017 23:18:44 +0000 http://www.badbirthdays.com/?p=795

Write Your Small Business Plan

By Bill Darken

A small business plan is vital to the success of starting a small business, Faced with writing a small business plan; the panic sets in. Confusion clouds your mind. You wonder where to start.

This is important. It is the outline to how your idea will become reality. Actually, it proves you are serious and you need it if you need finance.

Writing the Feared Business Plan

The screen is blank. Your mind is blank. Really, this is an important part of setting up your business. If you can not put it on paper, how do you make a living from it? Try thinking along these lines and start by mapping out your small business plan. The basic elements all small business plans have are:

– Summary – a one-page overview of your business plan. When your business plan is complete, go through it and summarize it into one page.

– Introduction – Briefly talk about your vision and goals for the business. Write yourself a vision, but avoid the old clichés. Remember to have a beginning, middle and an end.

– Marketing Brief – Analyse the market your business fits into. Who is you target audience? Why target them?

– Marketing Strategy – Talk about how you will attract clients in your demographic. What tools you are going to use to achieve this? Does the internet play a part in this? Do you need a website? Newspaper, television and radio advertising?

– Plan of Operation – This is how you will operate and set-up the business; where it will operate from; business name; legal requirements; and anything else you need to operate your new small business.

– Management Plan – Talk about how you intend to manage your business. Will it operate from home; or rental premises? How will you manage this? What tools and equipment do you need to support your business?

– Financial Plan – How do you intend to finance your dream? Work out your budget and work out the financial projections for the future. This is vital to show potential lenders and investors you have a plan. It gives them a basis to judge whether they should back or lend you money to finance the dream. Be realistic about you projections

Instead of fearing the old business plan, think of it as your friend. The skeleton or backbone to build on. And, remember, this is only one element of starting a small business from scratch.

Copyright Bill Darken – who has a history of consulting to both small and large business over three decades and has provided a more in-depth piece at this link on starting a small business from scratch for your interest.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Bill_Darken

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Popular Posts

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

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How to Write a Business Plan

How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

Write Your Small Business Plan

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Read More

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Importance of Small Business Plan https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/importance-of-small-business-plan/ https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/importance-of-small-business-plan/#respond Thu, 06 Apr 2017 23:16:17 +0000 http://www.badbirthdays.com/?p=793

Importance of a Small Business Plan

Importance of having a small business plan for starting and running a business

By: Jovana Zivanovic

If you are currently in the process of starting a small business, the first important thing you should keep in mind is a small business plan. Each year, because of a variety of reasons a large number of individuals plan to start a business. Yet despite the desire and motivation to run their own business, many don’t get off the starting blocks. One of the reasons for the inability to get a business off the ground is the lack of a clear thought process – the task appears so daunting that the idea quickly fades away. One tried and tested method for developing ideas into action is to write a business plan. Business plan will serve as a stepping-stone of your business success. Whilst it may come in different formats you will find that all business plans have the same aim and that is to give a clear idea and direction as to exactly what your business is or will be.

One of the key benefits to having a business plan is that you will know what you need to do to get your business up and running. For example, if you know what type of customers you will be targeting and how, you have a better chance of success. In a way, a business plan for a start up business (or one that is looking to expand) is essentially a to-do list. A business plan will force you to think about the steps you need to take to get your business up and running; it ensures you get your planning as accurate as possible. A business plan is a great guide, especially if this is your first time starting your own business.

Business plans are also an effective tool and requirement to attract capital to invest in your business. Venture capitalists are individuals or a company that can provide you with the necessary capital that you need to start a business. Business loans are used to finance new business start ups or give a boost to your existing business for growth and improvement. These loans are tailored according to your requirements. And a business plan is really the only way (other than your charm!) to convince a financial lender or investor that their money will be put to good use and is safe in your hands. It is also an ideal tool to use when selling your business. A business plan will not only let an intended buyer know exactly what your business is or what it does, but it will also help them understand exactly how it got to where it is today. Even if you have not got your business off the ground, you may still be able to sell your idea based on your business plan and the research you have done. An effectively written business plan can be the spring board to realize a good selling price for the core idea of a new business.

Now there are a number of business plan software packages and self-help books that sell thousands and thousands of copies. Software can be very helpful in developing financial models and preparing projections. But they are not going to write the narrative sections of the business plan for you, so you may be disappointed in the results you get from using a computer program in building your business plan. How can the programmers of “Super Duper Hot Business Plan Whizzed” or writers of similar books, possibly know how your plan should look since they have never met you and do not know anything about your company?

So, here are the tips that you should keep in mind in order to write an impressive business plan:

  • A business plan should be easy to read. A good business plan is a complete business plan-containing all the information but it mustn’t be too long.
  • If it isn’t straight to the point it’s a bad business plan. You should specify your objectives in simple sentences.
  • Your plan should be realistic. If you put in unrealistic sales goals or unrealistic expense budgets you will scare off the person or company that you are trying to convict to invest in your business.
  • You shouldn’t make complex financial models-for example planning the finances for next few decades. Particularly in this age when technology is evolving so quickly, it is impossible to accurately forecast 3 years out, let alone 7. Concentrate instead on answering these questions: How fast are we going to use the investor s money, when does the company s cash flow turn positive, and what margins can this company earn? If the plan is to include different periods, these can be separately categorized into short, medium and long term plans.

Structure of a business plan:

  • Executive summaries which is written after the plan is finalized briefly provides an overview of the business plan in terms of the approach employed and key considerations in terms of business offerings, key staff and expectations in terms of financial results. Introduction consists of a brief description of the business, the policies, mission, vision, purpose and objectives of the business for the specific business period. A short review of the previous business period would be appropriate.
  • Marketing analysis. Here the specific industry is assessed in terms of how the business would meet the challenges.
  • Marketing plan. What would be the marketing strategy best suited to benefit from the opportunities identified and overcome the challenges foreseen.
  • Operations plan. The how and what of the business in terms of structure, location, rules and regulations, key operational processes and such other details.
  • Management plan. How the business is to be managed including key personnel, their qualifications and experiences as well as relevant business credentials.
  • Financial plan. The dollars and cents that will realize the business including costing and financial projections. Charts and graphs would be beneficial. General Recommendations In putting together a business plan the process must include adequate consultation, gathering of relevant inputs, discussion on strategies, review and validation of information.

Your business plan must be easy to understand, logical and promising that if a friend asked you to invest in this business, you‘d say yes. Most importantly, make sure you record your business plan somehow…whether you write it by hand, type it into your computer, or put it on sticky notes on your wall. Keep it someplace handy where you can refer to it when you are making important business decisions. And, make sure you review it monthly–or, even better, weekly–and update it at least annually.

It is also important not to loose the main idea for your business, and that is one more reason to invest some effort and time in making this kind of plan:

  1. Your goals: What do you want your business to provide for you? (time, money, freedom, who you work with)
  2. Customers : Who are your customers and what do they want/need?
  3. Products and Services : What products/services will you provide to meet customer s needs?
  4. Markets : Where are your customers and what do you know about them as a group? “Where” might be geographic, it might be what kind of places they hang out, or where they go to find products or services like yours. What is their age, income, gender, hobbies, family structure, etc.
  5. Your Style : How will you reach customers and what will you say? Your methods of reaching customers needs to match with where your customers are–and with a message that they can relate to.
  6. Competitors : Where else are your customers likely to get this need met? Find out all you can about how your competitors price, market, and provide service.
  7. Your Uniqueness : How will your product/service meet customer s needs differently than your competitors? Consider how your personal uniqueness impacts that.
  8. Your Abilities : Of the skills necessary to run your business, what do you do well, and what do you need help with?
  9. External Resources : What people/technology/services will support you in the skills you need help with?
  10. Fulfilling your Dreams : How will your business provide the kind of working environment you desire, both in how much time you spend, how you perform your work, and how much money you make?

Here s where the rubber meets the road–make sure you can show how you will sell X amount of product or service at Y price, cover your expenses, and reach the goals you set in 1. above.

And let’s remind us once again-why do you need it?

  • A business plan is a must for an entry level entrepreneur-for it gives you the focus toward your business goal.
  • This makes your efforts credible in the eyes of the investors or the financial institutions that are willing to finance your project. Your business plan is the proof of your understanding of the business to the investors and financers.
  • It is also your blueprint for entrepreneurial success. A well chalked out business plan helps you to keep track of your business growth and provides guidelines for tackling the situations when it goes downward.

Always keep in mind that persistence is the key element to success. If you have a good plan and spend enough time and energy on realizing that plan you will soon be privileged to watch your business grow and expend.

About the Author

Jovana is technical writer, small business expert, SEO expert and editor at Bizcloud. Bizcloud is a combination of applications, site and services that are created to promote small business. Visit us on www.bizcloud.net

 

(ArticlesBase SC #1526641)

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/Importance of having a business plan for starting and running a business

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Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business

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Read More

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Read More

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How to Write a Business Plan

How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

Write Your Small Business Plan

By Bill Darken A small business plan is vital to the success of starting a small business, Faced with writing a small business plan; the panic sets in. Confusion clouds your mind. You wonder where to start. This is important. It is the outline to how your idea will...
Read More

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Sustainable Advantage – Every VC’s “Gotcha” Question https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/sustainable-advantage-every-vcs-gotcha-question/ https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/sustainable-advantage-every-vcs-gotcha-question/#respond Thu, 02 Mar 2017 18:55:45 +0000 http://www.badbirthdays.com/?p=776

Sustainable Advantage – Every VC's "Gotcha" Question

Today I had lunch with a friend who has been part of several startups and has done quite well. He even took one of them public. He’s at it again–in the process of raising money for another new business.

business-plan-sustainable-advantage-smlWe started talking about the usual questions angel investors and venture capitalists ask all founders. One of the favorites is “What is your sustainable advantage?” In other words, what makes you different today and how will you protect that difference so that nobody else can ever catch up?

Clearly it’s a question every new business owner should be ready to answer. But it’s also a loaded question. Unless you’re starting a business based on a patent which has already been granted, whatever makes you different (better) today, is not likely to last long. The more successful you are, the more likely you are to be copied. Yes, you can do things to leverage your advantages. But your strategy for tomorrow can’t be to make today last as long as possible.

When you’re starting a business, you need to know how you’ll fill a void in a way that others currently are not. Then, you need to be committed to continuously evolving to improve upon what you offer today, so that you can out-pace your competitors. Most advantages don’t last long. As an investor, I would be looking for business owners with the following traits:

  • A good idea today articulated in a business plan
  • A go-to market strategy that fills a niche Demonstrated knowledge of the market-space
  • The right team to execute the plan

Once these items are ‘checked’ the best sustainable advantage is having a founder who is smarter than his or her competitors, is willing to work harder and has a passion for the business. The only true sustainable advantage is to get the lead and then run as fast or faster than all the others in the race. Today’s advantages will be fleeting; the ability to innovate and re-invent will be essential. Find investors who believe in your plan, believe in you and have faith in your ability to stay ahead.

Complete Your Business Plan in 1 Day!

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Popular Posts

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of people using the Internet. The increase in internet users is due in large part to the availability and popularity of new Internet-capable devices, such as smartphones and tablets. By using these...
Read More

College Business Plan Class Project

We’re often contacted by students who are in the midst of a college business plan class project. In fact, we’ve even been flattered to have professors contact us about using our materials for their own classes (which we have obliged). Individuals from both groups...
Read More

Small Business Loans: Tips On How To Get A Business Loan

Whether you wish to start a new business or expand your existing one, you will most likely need to find a source of funding. There are many ways to secure funds for your business venture, and one of the most popular methods is getting a business loan. Business loans...
Read More

How to Write a Business Plan

How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

Write Your Small Business Plan

By Bill Darken A small business plan is vital to the success of starting a small business, Faced with writing a small business plan; the panic sets in. Confusion clouds your mind. You wonder where to start. This is important. It is the outline to how your idea will...
Read More

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The Importance of Writing a Startup Business Plan https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/startup-business-plan/ https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/startup-business-plan/#respond Tue, 21 Feb 2017 18:52:05 +0000 http://www.badbirthdays.com/?p=774

The Importance of Writing a Startup Business Plan

The Importance of Writing a Startup Business Plan

startup business plan graphA startup business plan’s importance cannot be overemphasized. If you want your business to be successful and profitable, you’ll need to have a clear understanding of your strengths, customers, and competition. These elements are fundamental to developing a winning business strategy. Writing a startup business plan will force you to address these issues early.

A common misconception is that you only need a startup business plan if you need a loan or investors—this is not the case!  Writing a business plan will help you organize, strengthen, and refine your initial ideas and strategies.  If you choose to write a startup business plan, the biggest beneficiary will be you, the business owner.

Most anyone who is a current business owner or entrepreneur will tell you, writing a business plan will be the best business decision you can make.

The Importance of Writing a Startup Business Plan Cannot Be Overemphasized

A business plan is a way to logically articulate your thoughts. Being able to do so is an essential prerequisite to starting a business.  Why would you start on a journey if you don’t know where you’re going AND how you’re going to get there?

Most businesses fail due to lack of capital—which is really just a lack of planning. If you ask yourself these tough questions when you first start writing your startup business plan, it will likely pay off in the end:

  • Am I going to need to try and get a loan or do I need the financial backing of an investor?
  • How am I going to convince a bank or potential investors to help fund my business?
  • How much capital will I need?

The answers to these questions should all come from the process of writing a business plan. It is important that they do!  Not having a business plan is like flying a plane across the ocean without knowing how much fuel you’ll need before you start.

 

A Common Misconception: You Only Need to Write a Startup Business Plan if You Need Outside Capital

One of the biggest curses of self-funded businesses is the lack of discipline required. Yes, you may not need to write a startup business plan for the sole purpose of attracting investors, but you do need a way to clearly and logical organize your thoughts.

An unfortunate and common mistake of self-funded business owners is believing that if you don’t need outside money, you don’t need a startup business plan.  There is a significant difference between having enough funding to “start a business” and having enough to sustain a business until it is cash flow positive – which can be years. A startup business plan will help you see how much cash your business will need until it can sustain itself.

 

Biggest Beneficiary of a Business Plan is the Business Owner

Writing a start up business plan requires “reconciling” all the interrelated parts of a business.  How much will I sell?  How much can I produce?  How many people will it take to ‘make’ that much?  How much marketing will it take to bring in the number of customers required?  Finally, how will all of these things work together to make the business successful.

Writing a startup business plan transforms an idea into a “how to” manual, allowing you to chart your course from point A to point B, and then revise and fine-tune that strategy until it’s as strong as possible.

A well written startup business plan takes into account the size of the market and the strength of the competition.  Too often, these factors are given scant attention.  A properly written startup business plan will force a disciplined approach to taking these into account and will make you an expert on your business in your market.  This is the knowledge you will need to actually succeed.

 

The Best Decision You Will Ever Make

There are two ways to detach the emotional high about the idea of starting a business from the reality of what it will really be like:

  1. Quit your job and invest your life’s savings into the idea
  2. Write a startup business plan

It should be no surprise that the failure rate is much higher among those who opt for number one. Even if writing a startup business plan ends up being the event that talks you OUT of staring your business, the decision to write the plan will have paid off tremendously. Writing a startup business plan is the only way you can make an educated, informed, intelligent decision about whether now is the time for this business, in this market, by this person—you!

For more help on every section of your business plan, browse the information found on our site and utilize our business plan outline.

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Popular Posts

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of people using the Internet. The increase in internet users is due in large part to the availability and popularity of new Internet-capable devices, such as smartphones and tablets. By using these...
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How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

Write Your Small Business Plan

By Bill Darken A small business plan is vital to the success of starting a small business, Faced with writing a small business plan; the panic sets in. Confusion clouds your mind. You wonder where to start. This is important. It is the outline to how your idea will...
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Business Plan Templates – Should I Use One https://smallbusinessplans.com/uncategorized/business-plan-templates-should-i-use-one/ https://smallbusinessplans.com/uncategorized/business-plan-templates-should-i-use-one/#respond Tue, 07 Feb 2017 18:49:23 +0000 http://www.badbirthdays.com/?p=772

Business Plan Templates - Should I Use One?

Free Business Plan Templates are a Great Place to Start When Writing Your Business Plan

Generally, the most common question about business plans is “where do I start?” Many people have great ideas, but are unsure of the next steps they need to take in order to grow that idea into a business. Fortunately, there are free business plan templates available online that answer that question for you. Using a business plan outline will not only help you strategize and organize your ideas, but it will end up saving you quite a bit of time and money in the long run.

Not all Free Business Plan Templates are Created Equal

It’s important to get quality information when writing your business plan – make sure the resources you use are legitimate. For instance, all the information found on the Small Business Plans website and within our business plan outline was created by an industry professional. With abundant resources on the internet, it may be hard to cut through the clutter – make sure you’re using information from someone who has practiced and succeeded as an entrepreneur.

There are several things to look for when choosing a business plan template to work from:

  • Does the site tell you who created it?
  • Was it created by experienced people who have written business plans before?
  • Have they owned/operated successful businesses?
  • Have they used business plans to raise money?

The answers to these questions will help you know when you’ve found a quality business plan template.

Look Beyond the Business Plan Template or Business Plan Outline

A business plan outline is great, but don’t forget to pay attention to the details! Each section of the free business plan template or outline you are using should also have in-depth information about what to include within each segment. Numerous sections within the free business plan template found on our site not only include brief descriptions of each part, but they also include important considerations for the author to be aware of, as well as real life, working examples.

Find business plan templates that include:

  • The purpose of each section
  • Detailed descriptions about how to write each section
  • What should be included in each segment (sub categories)
  • Additional considerations the author should be aware of if necessary
  • Real life, working examples that the user can relate to their own strategy
  • Common mistakes to avoid
  • Comments on what investors or bankers look for (as these are likely the people you will need to pitch to get your business up and running!)

Why It’s Important to Choose the Right Site for Free Business Plan Outline Information

Since you’re investing your own time following the directions the site owner provides—be sure you’re comfortable with the advice they offer.

Do some research before committing to one particular business plan outline. It takes time to assess quality websites – look for sites that provide depth so that you can come back again expecting to find updated, reliable information for your business plan outline.

Using a Free Business Plan Template: Overview

  • Using a free business plan template saves time and money
  • Be sure you find quality sources online for free business plan templates and outlines
  • Look for experienced, proven business leaders to provide this valuable information
  • Be selective and choose sites you can believe in and trust when writing your business plan outline

Complete Your Business Plan in 1 Day!

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Popular Posts

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of people using the Internet. The increase in internet users is due in large part to the availability and popularity of new Internet-capable devices, such as smartphones and tablets. By using these...
Read More

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We’re often contacted by students who are in the midst of a college business plan class project. In fact, we’ve even been flattered to have professors contact us about using our materials for their own classes (which we have obliged). Individuals from both groups...
Read More

Small Business Loans: Tips On How To Get A Business Loan

Whether you wish to start a new business or expand your existing one, you will most likely need to find a source of funding. There are many ways to secure funds for your business venture, and one of the most popular methods is getting a business loan. Business loans...
Read More

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How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

Write Your Small Business Plan

By Bill Darken A small business plan is vital to the success of starting a small business, Faced with writing a small business plan; the panic sets in. Confusion clouds your mind. You wonder where to start. This is important. It is the outline to how your idea will...
Read More

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Simple Business Plan https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/simple-business-plan/ https://smallbusinessplans.com/business-plan/simple-business-plan/#respond Sat, 21 Jan 2017 18:45:25 +0000 http://www.badbirthdays.com/?p=769

Create a Simple Business Plan

Creating even a simple business plan will provide significant benefits to anyone thinking about starting a business.   Almost every business starts with an idea or concept.  A simple business plan is the road map to turn that concept into a true “business idea.”

simple-business-plan-idea-2With a concept, you only need to come up with the highlights–the fun part.  A simple business plan forces you to think about all of the parts.  Equally important, a simple business plan will ensure that all of the parts fit together to form a complete business.

There are a lot of people who can think of great ideas, but far fewer who have the talent and will to act on them.  For most, they have an idea but that’s where it stops.  Future business owners need to be able to transform their ideas into fully functional plans.  Once complete, that simple business plan will be its own reward, providing its author with the confidence of knowing, “I really do have a good idea and now I have an action plan.”

When you talk to successful business people, you’ll often hear them say that they always knew they would be successful.  Just like an athlete who mentally trains by visualizing him or herself winning the big prize, the business owner has seen this day coming in their own mind for years in advance.  Creating that simple business plan is the first step in visualizing yourself being successful.  It takes you beyond a desire to be successful, into a plan for being successful.

Most entrepreneurs excel at some but not all aspects of the business.  They might be good with product ideas, but not production.  Or, they could be great with numbers but not with sales.  While any business will have areas in which it is stronger than others, there can be no areas of complete void.  Creating a simple business plan will force the entrepreneur to address the complete company. Products or services, sales, marketing, finance, operations and the management team—even in a simple business plan, they must all be addressed.  In doing so, the founder confronts how every aspect of the business will be mastered, leaving no glaring holes in what must be a complete company.

Once all of the parts of the business are on the table, the value of a creating a simple business plan really starts to come through.  The plan says there will be $500,000 in revenue in the first year—but are there enough people selling to generate that level of revenue?  Does the plan show that there will be sufficient resources to produce or deliver that level of revenue?  Do the startup expenses listed in the finance section take into account the equipment and people needed in the early stages of the business in order for the business to achieve its goals?

A simple business plan brings this act of ‘reconciling the parts’ into clear view.  These types of issues can be challenging to solve in a business plan, but that is precisely the place where they should be addressed.  Once a business is operational, problems of this nature can become extremely expensive and difficult to solve.  Once again, the simple business plan, as the first step, is the answer.

Every first-time entrepreneur wonders, “Do I have what it takes to be successful.”   Having the will and the tenacity to create a business plan will help to answer that question.  By taking command of the planning process you will gain a new level of understanding of exactly what it will take.  The challenges and the solutions will come into focus in high resolution.  Your simple business plan will help to answer the most important question for any business idea, “What will it take for this business to be profitable?”  After all, that is the purpose of any new business.   That is what it takes to be successful.

Finally, as mentioned earlier, successful business owners frequently share the common trait of having always known they would be successful.  This isn’t blind faith.  It is the culmination of planning, vision and hard work.  Properly constructed, a simple business plan can be the spark that ignites that vision in you.  Looking at your own plan and knowing the thinking that has gone into it, how everything is there and knowing how all of the pieces fit together, you will be able to say, “I see exactly how I am going to succeed in this business.”

You will be well rewarded for the time you invest in creating a simple good business plan.  Get started today!

For more help on how to create a simple business plan, start with our free business plan template and business plan outline.   Find a host of related topics on the Small Business Plans website.

Complete Your Business Plan in 1 Day!

100% Money Back Guarantee

GET STARTED

Popular Posts

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

Want a great business plan template you can complete in just one day?

Click GET STARTED to access our great fill in the blank business plan. Our template is in-depth and covers all the details you need to develop a foundation for many businesses of various industries. We are so confident you will like this plan that we even offer a full money back guarantee.

The Six Startup Rules for Launching an Internet Business

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of people using the Internet. The increase in internet users is due in large part to the availability and popularity of new Internet-capable devices, such as smartphones and tablets. By using these...
Read More

College Business Plan Class Project

We’re often contacted by students who are in the midst of a college business plan class project. In fact, we’ve even been flattered to have professors contact us about using our materials for their own classes (which we have obliged). Individuals from both groups...
Read More

Small Business Loans: Tips On How To Get A Business Loan

Whether you wish to start a new business or expand your existing one, you will most likely need to find a source of funding. There are many ways to secure funds for your business venture, and one of the most popular methods is getting a business loan. Business loans...
Read More

How to Write a Business Plan

How to write a business plan!  You’ve decided to start a business. The excitement level is high. It’s something you’ve always wanted to do. All the experts say “you have to have a business plan!” Perhaps that’s why the first research most entrepreneurs undertake is...
Read More

Write Your Small Business Plan

By Bill Darken A small business plan is vital to the success of starting a small business, Faced with writing a small business plan; the panic sets in. Confusion clouds your mind. You wonder where to start. This is important. It is the outline to how your idea will...
Read More

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