Business Plan Structure

Posted on Posted in Business Plan

BUSINESS PLANYour business plan structure is essential for your business – it’s your blueprint for the future. It sets the direction for your business and keeps you on track once you’re up and running. It’s also vital for securing finance.

Depending on what type of business you intend to start, your business plan could include these elements:

Executive summary:

The executive summary is often considered the most important section of a business plan structure. This section briefly tells your reader where your company is, where you want to take it, and why your business idea will be successful. If you are seeking financing, the executive summary is also your first opportunity to grab a potential investor’s interest.

If you are an established business, be sure to include the following information or if you are setting up a business put in what you think is going to be your final information (it can be changed later):

  • The Mission Statement – This explains what your business is all about. It should be between several sentences and a paragraph.
  • Company Information – Include a short statement that covers when your business was formed, the names of the founders and their roles, your number of employees, and your business locations.
  • Your Products or Services – Briefly describe the products or services you provide.
  •  Financial Information – If you are seeking financing, include any information about your current bank and investors

Marketing analysis:

The market analysis section of your business plan structure should illustrate your industry and market knowledge as well as any of your research findings and conclusions. It should include elements like industry description and outlook, information about your target market, size of the primary target market distinguishing characteristics and pricing and gross margin targets. Your business plan structure should also cover questions like how much market share can you gain?

Management and marketing plan:

Your overall marketing strategy should include elements like a market penetration strategy, a growth strategy, channels of distribution strategy and communication strategy. After you have developed a comprehensive marketing strategy, you can then define your sales strategy. This covers how you plan to actually sell your product.

Your sales strategy should include two primary elements i.e. a sales force strategy and your sales activities. Answer questions like whether you plan to use internal or independent representatives, or the type of recruitment strategies will you use.

Organization & Management:

This section of the business plan structure should include: your company’s organizational structure, details about the ownership of your company, profiles of your management team, and the qualifications of your board of directors. Give a detailed description of each division or department and its function.

Financial plan:

The financials should be developed after you’ve analyzed the market and set clear objectives. The historical financial data to include are your company’s income statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements for each year you have been in business (usually for up to three to five years). All businesses will be required to supply prospective financial data. Each year’s documents should include projected income statements, balance sheets, cash flow statements, and capital expenditure budgets. For the first year, you should supply monthly or quarterly projected budgets.

Including all of these elements will ensure that you have a great business plan structure that will allow your business to be successful in the long run!  Did you know that you can get a Business Plan Template with audio support by clicking here.

Kaye Dennan is an experienced home business owner/online marketer of 11 years with a further 25 years as a small business owner. Click on this link for  A BOOK FULL OF HOME BUSINESS SUCCESS TIPS which can be downloaded for FREE.

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