“They know what you can expect sales to be for that type of business in that market,” Allen says.
“If you walk in with a sales forecast 50% higher than other businesses, they are going to know that you are not being realistic, and that’s going to work against you.” Keep it concise: All you need is 15 to 25 pages for a good business plan, as long as the plan is clear, concise and contains all of the relevant information, Allen says.
Accuracy is key, so carefully analyze your past financial statements before giving projections.
Your goals may be aggressive, but they should also be realistic.
Writing a business plan is an opportunity to carefully think through every step of starting your company so you can prepare for success.
This is your chance to discover any weaknesses in your business idea, identify opportunities you may not have considered, and plan how you will deal with challenges that are likely to arise.A well-written business plan can help convince investors or lenders to finance your business.After you complete the 11 worksheets, you will have a working business plan for your startup.To do this, many or all of the products featured here are from our partners. A strong, detailed plan provides a clear road map for the future, forces you to think through the validity of a business idea, and can give you much greater understanding of your business’s financials and the competition. It spells out exactly what you’d like to accomplish, both in the near term and over the long term.A business plan typically looks out over three to five years, detailing all of your goals and how you plan to achieve them. If you’re looking for outside funding, you can use this section to explain why you have a clear need for the funds, how the financing will help your business grow, and how you plan to achieve your growth targets.However, if you’re an existing business seeking small-business loans, you’ll want to include income or profit-and-loss statements, a balance sheet that lists your assets and debts, and a cash flow statement that shows how cash comes into and goes out of the company.You may also include ratios that highlight the financial health of your business, such as: [Back to top] This is a critical part of your business plan if you’re seeking financing or investors.For more than 100 years, Deluxe Corporation has sought to create the tools that help shape our economy.Since 1915, Deluxe has recognized the vital role that small business plays in our communities, from job creation to business development.This section can also highlight the strengths of your business and focus on what sets your business apart from your competition.[Back to top] If you’re a startup, you may not have much information on your business financials yet.