Business Plans Help Avoid Pitfalls in Your Online Business
You’ve read all the promises about having an online business. Little work, big paydays! Automatic revenue with multiple streams of income! Work in your PJ’s, from any location and make money now! I’ve seen it and I know you’ve seen it. But here’s the thing; A business is a business, and it does not matter if you run it from your kitchen table, or a corporate office building. It is a business. There are so many consequences to running a business poorly, from unexpected tax liabilities, to legal considerations you’ve never had to think about. In fact, maybe you even need to convince investors or spouses to get on board with the business or it won’t happen.
A business plan can help with all of that. Business planning for the online business helps avoid many major pitfalls, including losing your shirt. By writing down a plan, and then following the plan, you’ll avoid financial, legal, and even emotional issues. You’ll know what to do in a crises because you’ll know exactly what your business stands for and what your clients are about.
The business plan covers the following:
Description of your business — This includes the overall vision of your business as well as a mission statement. Why does this business exist and how will it deliver?
Analysis of the market – Who is your competition, who is your target audience, how will you approach your market and differentiate yourself from the competition?
Outline of a marketing plan — What products / services are you offering, what will you charge for them, how will you deliver them, and how will you promote them?
Developing a plan of operation — What equipment do you need to successfully run your business, such as computers software, personnel, contractors and supplies.
Instituting a financial plan — One of the most important components of your business plan; how will you finance the start up, and how will you use the money you earn? Forecasts are often included. This part of the plan, like the others, can be adjusted as more information comes to light.
Executive Summary — Done last, but it will actually go at the top of your business plan. It is essentially a short summary in a couple of paragraphs about the overall business plan.
As you can see, going over all this, and putting it in writing will obviously help you avoid pitfalls that you may not have thought of without writing it down. The process of creating the plan is often more important than how the plan looks at the end for the online business owner who isn’t seeking loans or investments. The process is what will teach you about the pitfalls within your own niche, and your own skill level.
By identifying your mission and goals as well as the product / services you plan to promote will make clear its potential. You’ll show via your marketing plan how it will be managed by you and how you will operate your business. Including how you’ll fund it, and what you’ll do with profits. This process will help you align your actions toward the right ones that will create more business success.
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