Here you explain in detail the product or service at the heart of your business. Remember to lay it out as if you're describing it to someone brand new to your idea it can be easy to forget to do this and phrase things more for someone already "in-the-know" since that's where you're coming from when you write it.
In this section, describe how you'll reach the marketplace you're aiming for. Are you going to create a website and social media profiles? Do you plan to attend trade shows? How about paid advertising? Don't limit yourself to what you'll do at the beginning — if you plan to hold off on paying for ads until later, make a note of that. This section includes a description of how you'll staff and manage your business, who the owners are if more than you alone , and the types of personnel you'll need.
Include team members you'll be looking to hire as well as those already working with you at this stage. Write a one-paragraph profile of each existing major team member, including yourself. This is a very important section, both for your own planning and especially if you're going to seek investors. Create a cash flow projection to describe your monthly predicted revenue and expenses, a break-even analysis to show how many sales you need to make to cover your initial expenses and make a profit, a sample profit-and-loss statement using anticipated values, and a balance sheet describing your business's current assets, liabilities, and equity.
These are the kinds of financial data you'll need to assemble every year at tax time, at which point you'll have real numbers to work with rather than projections. What will your investors receive, based on your cash flow? This doesn't just include outside investors who you might approach later and with a more formal business plan. It should also include estimates for the return on investment for anyone who has put money into the formation of the business, like you and anyone you're already working with.
The appendices are a collection of any supporting data you have, such as testimonials, research excerpts, charts, and other information relevant to your business. Your informal business plan only needs to be around 10 pages , and you can leave the appendices out if you desire. As mentioned, the informal plan doesn't have to be perfect, but it should still be reasonably professional — you may want to recruit a trusted friend or editor to proofread, for example.
Your formal business plan, on the other hand, can be up to 40 pages and should be written to the best standards you can manage, since the formal plan is the one you'd bring with you to secure a business loan or court investors. The appendices will come in handy here to help convince them of the value of investing in your business. Remember, your formal business plan should be impressive but honest. For additional information on how to start an online business you can download our free ebook below.
Sign Up. Starting a Business 5 min read How to write a business plan for your online business. By Gonzalo Gil 0 Comments. Point 1: Your Business Plan Executive Summary The Executive Summary of your business plan covers the objectives of your business and lays out your mission. Point 2: Your Business Description Describe your business from your own point of view and discuss how you plan to grow.
Point 3: Market Analysis and Competition Show that you've thoroughly analyzed the market you're targeting and prove that there's a demand for the product or service you're offering. Point 4: Your Product or Service Here you explain in detail the product or service at the heart of your business. Point 5: Marketing and Sales Plan In this section, describe how you'll reach the marketplace you're aiming for.
Point 6: Ownership, Management, and Personnel This section includes a description of how you'll staff and manage your business, who the owners are if more than you alone , and the types of personnel you'll need. Point 7: Financial Plan and Projections This is a very important section, both for your own planning and especially if you're going to seek investors. Point 8: Investment What will your investors receive, based on your cash flow? Point 9: Appendices The appendices are a collection of any supporting data you have, such as testimonials, research excerpts, charts, and other information relevant to your business.
Informal vs. FireStarters will offer young customers, in small towns and communities around United States, the youth-oriented products and clothing that are popular nationwide but not available locally. The difference between FireStarters and other youth-oriented e-commerce websites is that FireStarters is focused only on its small-town America customers. The target customer is a young person, age , who listens to alternative music and participates in youth sports like skateboarding and snowboarding.
Our target customer will look toward alternative clothing trends in large urban areas as their inspiration. FireStarters will exclusively advertise in small communities with populations between , and , residents. Communities of this size already have small youth-oriented businesses, like skateboard shops and alternative CD stores, that FireStarters can utilize to promote its product line.
The mission of FireStarters is to offer distinctive youth-oriented fashion and products to small-town America. Your business plan can look as polished and professional as this sample plan. It's fast and easy, with LivePlan. Don't bother with copy and paste.