If you're like most small business owners, you don't have a lot of time to waste. You want to get started on your small business plan for 2023, but you're not sure where to start. At Skills Certified, we’ve created the ultimate small business plan cheat sheet that you can use, no matter what your business is.
Why your small business needs a plan
A business plan helps you clarify your goals and understand the scope of your business, as well as the amount of time, money, and resources you'll need to achieve those goals, and help you focus your time and energy on the ones with the highest chance of success. It can also help you secure funding or determine which customers to target, which will help you gain a competitive advantage in your industry.
What your small business plan should include
- Your business vision and values
Your business vision should be clear and concise and focus on why you're creating the business. What do you hope to achieve? Your values will help inform your decisions and ensure you stay true to your mission.
- Projected income and expenses
You'll need to determine how much money your small business is likely to make or spend over a certain period of time. This information can be used to calculate the amount of capital you'll need, as well as identify any potential risks associated with running a small business.
- Identified business risks
You'll need to identify potential risks that could affect your small business and develop strategies or solutions to mitigate them.
- The customer segments you intend to target
Knowing who you're targeting will help you focus your efforts and maximise the success of your small business.
- The value proposition of your business
What makes your small business unique? How does it stand out from competitors? And what values do you offer customers? Your value proposition should clearly communicate why customers should choose your product or service over others.
- Channels that could reach your target customers
How will you reach potential customers? Consider both direct and online marketing channels to make sure you reach the most relevant people.
- Your customer service plan
How do you plan to provide an exceptional experience for your customers? Consider how you will manage inquiries, complaints, and feedback.
- How you will receive payment for products and services
You'll need to select a payment method that works best for your small business, such as credit card payments or mobile payment systems.
- The activities needed to achieve your outcome
What are the tasks you'll need to undertake in order to meet your goals? Make sure these are realistic and achievable given the resources available.
- The resources you will need
What materials and personnel will be required in order to operate successfully? There could also be legal obstacles or licensing requirements to consider.
- Details of your partners or collaborators
Who will you be working with to make your small business a success? This could include suppliers, investors, customers, and other businesses who can provide help.
- The cost structure for your products and services
How much will it cost to produce and deliver your product or service? Make sure you factor in the costs associated with hiring staff, marketing materials, legal fees, etc.
Creating a small business plan might seem like an overwhelming task at first, but if you break it down into smaller steps, it becomes manageable. By following the above guidelines, you'll have a solid foundation on which to build a successful small business that meets all of your goals.