A proper business plan will detail everything you need to know about the idea in your head. It will tell you your startup ideas, all of your goals and aims, contingency plans, etc.
Many people think you can draft up a business plan in no time at all, but this isn’t the case. Writing one will take some time, as you have to conduct loads of research beforehand. But, all the effort is worth it as you’ll finish with a complete plan that helps keep you focused and give you a sense of direction in which to proceed in. Plus, there’s every chance that different people will request to see your business plan if you hope to get help from them. For example, if you need a loan from a bank, they’ll need to see your plan, and it needs to impress them, or you aren’t getting any funding.
Bearing all this in mind, how do you write a proper business plan? The easiest way to do it is to split the plan up into different sections.
Below, you’ll see each section along with a breakdown of what should be included in it:
First and foremost, you need to write a summary of your business idea and what you hope to achieve with it. This section needn’t be too long, as it’s just there to give people an overview of everything. Keep it brief, describe your business, talk about your goals and clearly state what you want.
After your summary, you need to write a section that describes your company in much more detail. This won’t be as brief as the summary and is more focused on what your business is and how you differ from other similar businesses.
This section is important as it’s used to convince readers that your company is special and that they’re not wasting their time reading your business plan. Be sure to also include information on your industry as it shows you’re aware of the field you’re venturing into. Plus, it also gives readers a background on the industry so they can see that your business will stand a chance against other companies.
After you’ve spoken about your company, it’s time to present your market analysis. What is this? It’s a section where you essentially show the reader what your target market is. You present your analysis of the market and include all the relevant information such as their age group, gender, lifestyle, interests, etc.
Amongst this analysis, you should provide a strategy as to how your business will appeal and approach your target market. What are you going to do to ensure you tap into the market and promote your business as best as possible? This is very important as it helps formulate the structure of your future marketing plan.
Service Or Product Line
In your service/product line section you will be talking about the main part of your business; what you’re selling. This part is all about telling a story of your products/services and how they will benefit others. What you’re aiming to do is convince readers that your target market needs your products/services.
In this section, you should also include details on how the products will be created and sold, as well as how the services will be offered.
Organization And Management
Next, you need to dive deeper into the structure of your business and compose a section on organization and management. The idea with this section is to inform readers how your business is going to be run, who will be in charge of it, the number of employees you hope to hire, and many other things along the same lines.
You will describe how your company aims to function on a day-to-day basis and talk about the roles that all of your employees will take. Who will be in charge of what, and what will they do every day? It’s also a good idea to talk about how much the organization & management of your business is going to cost.
This is an essential section as it will be used to inform readers of how much funding you’re hoping to receive. As a result, you must conduct a plethora of research before writing this part. Firstly, you should analyze your business idea and consider how much money you’ll need to get things started. Take into account the cost of organization and management, the cost of procurement, the cost of any premises you hope to rent; the list goes on and on. Essentially, if you need to buy anything, make a note of how much it will cost.
Total up all of your predicted expenditure, and it will give you a rough idea of how much startup money you need. It’s a good idea to overestimate just in case your predictions are wrong, and things are more expensive. Plus, by asking for more than you think you need, it means you have a little bit of extra money as a backup in case things go wrong during the startup process.
Your financial projections will be used as a backup for your funding request. This is the part where you make some calculations based on your product/service line and how much money you think you’ll make.
Think about how much it costs to supply your service/product, and how much you’ll make from each sale. Then, set a target for how many sales you want to make each month, and you can calculate your projected earnings. Make sure you play around with figures until you’ve reached a point where you’re definitely making a profit with every sale. You’re far more likely to secure funding if the reader can see your idea is a money maker.
Finally, you have the option of adding an appendix to your business plan. This isn’t essential but is a good place to include additional information such as your resume, permits, and leases.
Follow this structure, and you will soon have a proper business plan written and completed. Make sure you check it through multiple times for any errors as it needs to be perfect.