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Business Plans And Home Import/Export Businesses

Business Plans And Home Import/Export BusinessesPlanning is important for any project you undertake.  The home import/export business is a big project, so it is even more important to have a plan.  The plan doesn’t have to be complicated.  All a business plan is really is just a basic roadmap to follow.  After all, if you don’t know where you’re going, it’s hard to tell where you’ll end up.  Often times, beginning entrepreneurs fail to realize the importance of a business plan until it’s too late.  When they do realize it, they’ve miscalculated funds, time, and effort they should have allowed for start-up.  This causes them to struggle, and sometimes even fail.

You may think putting together a business plan is difficult, time consuming and/or expensive.  It doesn’t have to be.  Any cost and time it may take is worth it, because a plan can prevent a multitude of start-up disasters.  There are several reasons to complete a business plan for your import/export business.

  • To apply for a loan or obtain financing— Unless you have your own funding, the initial product purchase from Chinese sellers can be costly.
  • Build a roadmap for the direction for the business to follow— Show where you’re starting, where you want your business to be, and how you plan to get there.
  • Define a new start-up— Show what your business is, what you plan to buy from your Chinese sellers, and how you plan to sell it.
  • Have a written agreement for partners to refer to— If you have partners in your business, this will help in case conflict arises.
  • Establish a value on a business you want to sell— This will be necessary for legal purposes should you want to sell.
  • Evaluation of a new product line new marketing promotion— If your product is an original one, this will help to show that the product is yours.  It will show the timeline of the products creation, and help to establish your legal rights should it be necessary.

If you need investors, financing, or want other business people to listen to you, a business plan is important.  A plan is basically a step-by-step guideline for you to use as you grow your business.  A plan shows:

  • Start-up Costs
  • What you operating costs
  • Costs of tasks you need to accomplish in order to reach your income goals

It helps you establish a budget for your business.  This will help you be less likely to overspend and run out of money.  One of the greatest reasons businesses fail is due to lack of funds.  This is something you don’t want to happen to your business.  While it is not required, and some companies do not start with a plan, traditionally, companies with plans do better and reach successful levels faster. Plans can help beginning businesses save money and avoid common disasters that many businesses encounter.
Many banks won’t even talk to you without a business plan, so it is an important step if funding is required.  If you’re not willing to take the time or make the effort to prepare a business plan, why should bankers take time to listen to you? 

When you write a business plan, focus on convincing investors and partners that your business idea is a profitable one. If you have enough data and research, a lender will feel comfortable putting his or her money into your business.  Just stick to the point, and keep it as brief as possible.  Don’t, however, leave out important details.  There are seven parts to a business plan

  • Executive Summary—This is a summary of the plan for your business.
  • Company Summary—This section is the description and history of the business.
  • Products and/or Services—In this section, you give a description of your company’s products/services and how they are unique in the marketplace.
  • Market Analysis—Here is where you show your market data research and your market growth forecast.
  • Implementation and Strategy—This area shows your plan of action, how products will be sold, and a timeline for task completion.
  • Management Summary—Here you list your staff and give key information about them.
  • Financial Plan includes information on sales, cash flow and company profits
    While writing a plan is relatively easy, beginners often need help guiding them through the process.  Here are a few ways you can get help with your plan:
  • Hire Professional Services—There are professionals who have experience as business plan writers.  You can hire them to handle the writing task for you. You still need to provide the writer with the information you want in the plan. 
  • Buy a Book—There are books you can purchase that will help you learn how to write a business plan from scratch.  If you’re looking for a step-by-step guide in language you can understand, you may want to go to Amazon and purchase “Hurdle:  The Book on Business Planning,” by Timothy Berry. 
  • Use Business Planning Software—If you’re looking for a quality business plan, you can also use templates or software.  They can give you a professional outline to follow which provide basic plan structure so that you don’t have to start from scratch.

All-in-all, a good thing to remember when considering whether or not to write a plan is: “If you don’t have a plan, you may be planning to fail.”

 

 
 
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