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It walks you through getting started, marketing, product, competitive analysis, SWOT, and more, with a window below the input fields to show you the plan as you work away at it.
You can download it free with a trial subscription, but you'll have to remember to cancel it within the week if you don't plan to continue using it. writes about products and services in this and other articles.
Read everything you can about your industry and talk to your audience. A business plan, as defined by Entrepreneur, is a “written document describing the nature of the business, the sales and marketing strategy, and the financial background, and containing a projected profit and loss statement.” However, your business plan can serve several different purposes.
As Entrepreneur notes, it’s “also a road map that provides directions so a business can plan its future and helps it avoid bumps in the road.” That’s important to keep in mind if you’re self-funding or bootstrapping your business.
Even broken into sections, it's a long document and a bit of a slog to get through, but it produces a professional-looking and useful business plan.
This is particularly helpful if your idea isn't fully fleshed out and you know you have homework to do--it prompts you for information.Recently, I shared 18 Mistakes That Kill Startups, an infographic created by Mark Vital over at Funders and Founders.A lot of those mistakes (most of them, in fact) are the result of poor planning.So, here are seven steps for writing a perfect business plan.“Research and analyze your product, your market and your objective expertise,” William Pirraglia, a now-retired senior financial and management executive, has written.“Consider spending twice as much time researching, evaluating and thinking as you spend actually writing the business plan.“To write the perfect plan, you must know your company, your product, your competition and the market intimately.”In other words, it’s your responsibility to know everything you can about your business and the industry that you’re entering.Who said a business plan has to be a long, complicated document?Some funders are going to want to see a lot of detail, but you can provide that in appendices.Bad location, a marginal niche, having no specific user in mind, raising too much or too little money--all of these issues can be prevented or at least mitigated with good planning.Creating your business plan is more than just getting your ideas down on paper for potential funders to see.When readers click on these links, and buy these products or services, Inc may be compensated.This e-commerce based advertising model - like every other ad on our article pages - has no impact on our editorial coverage.