Business Start Up Advice UK
Research shows that having a business plan is absolutely vital to the success of your business.
This is the document that will ‘sell’ your product to everyone you show it too.
This is your biggest marketing tool that will explain where you are, who you are and where you want to go and most importantly how you are going to get there.
Below is a few minimum guidelines of what the plan must contain
Summary of Business Plan
An introduction to you, your team , your proposed business, product or service and a financial overview.
Detail of your (and partners etc.) management and/or business experience.
Product / Service
Detail the main product/s and/or service's.
Past, present and future of sales capability, competitors and customer profile.
Your product/service unique selling points and prices, who will sell, advertising avenues.
Business location, equipment in-situ, proposed equipment.
Short Term Trading
Short-term objective, contingency plans.
Profit and Loss Account, Balance Sheet, Cash Flow Forecast.
The SWOT analysis is one of the most popular, where you analyse the strengths and weaknesses of your business' capabilities, and any opportunities and threats to your business.
Once you've identified all of these, you can assess how to capitalise on your strengths, minimise the effects of your weaknesses, make the most of any opportunities and reduce the impact of any threats.
Opportunities And Threats To The External Environment
It's important to remember that opportunities can also be threats - for example, new markets could be dominated by competitors, undermining your position. Equally, threats can also be opportunities - for example, a competitor growing quickly and opening a new market for your product or service could mean that your market expands too.
A SWOT analysis can provide a clear basis for examining your business performance and prospects. It can be used as part of a regular review process or in preparation for raising finance or bringing in consultants for a review.
Once you have collected information on your organisation's internal strengths and weaknesses, and external opportunities and threats, enter this data into a simple table.