No matter how small the business, every business needs a business plan.
It doesn’t need to be elaborate or consume 1,000 hours to create. A plan on a napkin is better than no plan at all. Then all of your business decisions should be according to the plan.
Start with the basics:
- What is the market you are serving?
- Who are your customers?
- What are you providing? A product, service or both?
- What are your projected expenses?
- What are your projected revenues?
With this very basic information you can get a good feel for if you are on target with your advertising, monthly sales, monthly expenses, your purchasing decisions, etc.
Just get these basic items “written down”, yes you may have them in your head but writing them down gives clarity and substance to the vision you have for your business. You can always flesh it out if you like with more details and information, which will be helpful should your business need a loan. But for now, just start with the basics and see if it doesn’t help move you forward.
Also keep in mind that Business Plans are not cut in stone. As the market needs change, or your needs change, you change the plan as necessary. That isn’t to say you change things on a whim, but if major forces dictate a change in plan then change the plan.
Other plans you may wish to consider are: Marketing/Sales Plans, Strategic Plans, Operating Plans, Etc. There is a lot of planning that needs to be done to “successfully” run a business. It doesn’t have to be complex, just a sentence or two to capture your thought process and so you and others can refer to it later.
Now go out there and sell millions!