How To Prepare An Effective Internet Business Plan
Many people enjoy the thrill of an adventure. They don’t want to be bogged down by a business plan. The way I see it, starting a business is in itself such an adventure that a business plan helps you keep all your marbles. Although most experts recommend that you start with a business plan, you’d be surprised at how few of them had business plans right from the start.
In fact, many great entrepreneurs still operate without a business plan. If your idea is so great that you can’t sleep, then forget the business plan for now. If you are confident that success is imminent, then don’t plan it to death. Go for it. You can also skip the business plan if you, like me, have no choice. For me it was swim or sink. Not much of a choice. Swim! Plan when you reach the shore.
When to use a business plan
If you are not 100% sure that your idea will work, if you have the time or if you need to attract outside financing, then there’s no excuse. Don’t think of it as extra work. A good business plan is an asset. It forces you to think in different directions. It forces you to do research, to compare, to evaluate and finally to focus. A business plan, no matter how good, is not a guarantee for success, but by identifying the strengths and weaknesses of your business idea, you greatly improve your chances.
Sample business plan
Here is a business plan format. You can it as an outline for your own business plan.
1. Executive Summary: This should be about one page long. Describe the business in general terms.
2. Overview: Your mission. What do you want to achieve, where are you going and why do you think it will work.
Purpose – explain in detail where you want to go with this
History – a summary of important development highlights
Critical Success Factors – what’s going to make it work?
4. Business Environment
Market – this is where your market research results go.
Problems and possible solutions
Competition from competitors
5. Description of Product or Service
Unique Selling Points (Generally referred to as your USP)
Benefits to the customer
Current Problems and possible solutions
Potential Problems and possible solutions
Patents, Licenses, Copyrights etc.
Show your potential customers that you are serious.
Good web design and logo design.
Other important documents
Apart from your business plan, you should also have the following documents ready – especially if you need to attract financing. You can either incorporate them as headings into your business plan or treat them as separate. The sub-headings under each are suggestions. You should add/delete sub-headings to fit your situation.
6. Marketing Plan
7. Operation Plan
Support structures / advisory team
Facilities and Equipment
Standard Operating Procedures
8. Financial Plan
Cash Flow Projection
Balance Sheet Projection
9. Financing Proposal
Schedule of Major Events
History of Sales
The good thing about business plan is that you can make it unique. And that is by simply adding more information about your business that your competitors will forget to add to their business plan. Plan your business well and the create a business plan that show the plan in written.
Using your business plan
Treating the above documents as separate is usually best, because it makes updating them less time-consuming. Yes, it needs updating. Your business plan is a tool. This is very important. If it is going to gather dust, stop here and go do something productive like search engine promotion. When you use your business plan, it becomes a map to the top. If you’re really in the mood for planning, create separate business plans for separate purposes. You could create one specifically for attracting investment. Another for the in-house running. In each, you emphasize those aspects that are important to the people who will be using it.
In fact, it is quite common for businesses to have separate business plans for separate potential investors! Don’t think of it as cheating. Think of it as emphasizing the points that particular investors would be more interested in. Planning for a couple of days or even weeks could be a good thing, but there is such a thing a too much planning. You know you’re planning too much when the fun and excitement of entrepreneurship becomes distant memories or when you spend so much time planning that it keeps you from actually implementing anything. The idea is to plan properly without setting boundaries for yourself, then to implement your ideas without being bogged down by the initial plan.
I hope this helps? If it does, then do something about it. Do something like going ahead to write your business plan; sharing this post with your business network; commenting on this post etc. Also, you should subscribe and become part of our readers so that you too can get more helps on how to make real money online, build online business and also create wealth.