Every day an ambitious entrepreneur launches a new business. But did you know many startup founders don’t have a business plan in place?
Well, if you are also launching your own startup or business, creating a business plan is the first advice you need for starting a new business.
Just diving in and figuring things as you go, is a big NO!
No matter what your company sells, writing a business plan is a crucial step. According to the survey, people who make and follow a business plan have twice as many opportunities for success as those who don’t.
So, how do you create business plan for your SMB? Well, here are some tips that could simplify this process for you.
The executive summary is an advanced overview of the document that is placed first in the business plan but needs to be written last.
This little part can make a significant difference in your business plan as it provides an overview of your SMB, its vision and goals of the startup for the future. The executive summary should give your readers a general picture of your entire business plan.
Along with your company’s vision and goals, you can also describe your team, your products and services, and your mission statement.
Further, if you are looking for financiers, don’t forget to feature financial information and your business’ growth.
This is where you introduce your business and tell your readers why it is a perfect fit for the current industrial trends. Provide a brief history of your SMB and what influenced you to start the business.
Include details about your company’s location, team, and the competitive advantages you have. Mentioning how you are achieving long-term targets can also have a positive impact on the readers.
Analyze the market surrounding your business. Along with the details of the overall size of the market, it should have a thorough analysis of your product’s demand and your target market. Besides, include graphs and estimate tables with volumes and units of the product demand.
Make sure you answer the questions like:
⮚Who are the competitors?
⮚What are the major trends?
⮚What are your potential customers looking for?
⮚How can you meet your customer’s needs?
In addition to the assessment of your products against your competitors, this analysis will also provide how it will not fail against your rivals.
A business plan is incomplete without a description of the legal structure of your business and key managerial roles. Make sure you mention the legal form your business will take, for instance, LLC, sole proprietorship, C or S Corporation, etc.
Further, tell your customers about who is in your team, how your company is structured and who runs it. You should also include the percent ownership that each owner has and the extent of their ownership in the company.
Also, if you are looking for financing, you might want to include the CVs of your main team member and explain how their experience could help your business grow. Besides, this section is reckoned to be slightly longer, so it is recommended you split it into sub-sections such as management team, human resources, ownership structure, and external resources & services. Moreover, the best CRM for small businesses can also help in managing your organization interaction with potential customers.
●Products or Services
In this section, you need to define your products and services along with their lifecycle. Don’t forget to include why would the customers want your products and what makes them unique.
You can also share your plans for intellectual property like a patent filling or copyright. Google local business cards can also provide users with all the pertinent information they need to know about your business.
●Sales and Marketing
Instead of including a comprehensive small business marketing plan, just add a description of how you plan to attract and retain clients.
Defining your marketing and sales strategies in basic terms will serve as a reference point you can rely upon. Along with highlighting the strengths of your business, you can also focus on what sets your business apart from the competitors.
If you are seeking external funding or investors, you need to outline your funding request in this section. You need to clearly explain how much funding your business needs and what you will need it for.
Also, don’t forget to mention whether you want equity or debt and include a description of your future strategic financial plans, like selling your business, or paying off debt.
Financial Plan, undoubtedly, is the most important section of the entire business plan. Here, you need to prove to your investors that your business will be a financial success. Provide charts of projected profits, cash flow, capital expenditure, etc. for the next five years. You can even draw up projected quarterly or monthly reports for the first year of your operation.
Here, you need to include the supporting material that can make your case stronger. You can add pictures of your products, your team’s CVs, important legal documents, and anything that creates the image of a solid and stable business.
It’s not always possible to get the perfect business plan in the first go. But by following the steps above, you should get yourself a skeletal frame for your business plan. Also, make sure you use simple and plain language in your business plan. Last but not least, research thoroughly and know your audience and competitors before you start preparing a business plan.