Business planning serves multiple purposes, such as defining goals and securing funding. The business plan is the first step in starting your business and is your roadmap for continued growth.
Write Your Business Plan
The planning process differs for everyone, but a business will not succeed without a solid business plan. You can learn how to write a business plan by taking advantage of a startup business plan software, free business plan samples, and examples of executive summaries.
What a Business Plan Accomplishes
Your business plan explains how you intend to organize your company, market your services and/or products, manage your business with a chain of command, and most importantly how you will finance your business. All these goals require specific documentation.
Business Plan for Marketing and Funding
In starting a small business, a well-developed business plan provides lending institutions with convincing data to secure funding for your venture. For example, the marketing part of your plan provides market research that ensures you have a marketable business idea backed up by a detailed analysis of your customer base.
Your Business Name
Before you start any official paperwork related to your business, you need to conduct a business name search. This search will determine if the name you want for your business is available. The guidelines may differ from one state to another. You can always use free ideas on how to name your business.
Required Legal Paperwork
In addition to your business plan, there is specific documentation required before you can operate a business. You should familiarize yourself with the various government regulations for businesses to ensure you have all required licenses and documentation, such as how to apply for a Federal ID number, local and state licenses, a sales tax number, or other legal paperwork.
Type of Corporation
You must decide if your company will be a S corporation or a C corporation, general partnership or a LLC (Limited Liability Company). You need to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of each. You should consult a tax accountant to discuss tax strategies and all your options. A visit to your local Small Business Administration (SBA) will also give you a wealth of startup information.
Type of Business
In deciding to start a business, you want to consider the various types of businesses you may enjoy operating. Your marketing plan can assist you in analyzing how viable your idea is. For example, you may want to open a lawn care business, but discover the market isn't big enough to support another one in your area. You may discover a niche market like a brewery business model is ideal for your locale.
Understanding Business Planning and How to Start a Business
You can explore the various ways business planning is vital to starting a company. By taking the time upfront to fully understand what goes into planning a startup business, you can save yourself money and time while ensuring your business idea is a success.