Creating a business is above all about having a well-thought-out strategy. It is a question of not only having a vision, but also of preparing an exhaustive plan which will identify all actors and their reliability, all circumstances, even the most unpredictable. Anticipation is key! A business creator must establish a business plan to validate his creation project. For this he needs to specify the different stages to build his business plan. The future entrepreneur must therefore ask himself all the necessary questions (and provide the answers) to ensure the success of his business. What are the necessary steps to build your business plan?
Step 1: evaluation of your offer
It is first a matter of determining whether the products or services offered by the company that we are to create correspond to a real offer. It is therefore necessary to ask what the added value of the offered products or services is in relation to the already existing offer. Are these products original and stand out from other products offered by competitors? What are their advantages and how are they innovative? Does the target group have a real offer?
Step 2: Conduct detailed market research
Then it is necessary to know the market that your company’s services are targeting. It is therefore important to launch a market survey, the results of which will give a good overview of the defined market. Market research will make it possible to better identify potential customers: for example, to determine the average age of customers, to know their financial capacity and thus their purchasing power, the socio-professional categories represented, the geographical areas targeted… perfect knowledge of the market, will it be possible to establish the right marketing and commercial strategy for your company’s activity.
Step 3: Create your “business model”
This part of the business plan is used to show that his future business will be financially viable and that it will produce significant sources of income and profits. The sources of income can come from the sale of services or products, advertising, the sale of patents or technological licenses… In this same part, it will be necessary to determine and set the selling prices of its products or services. The prices will have to be placed in relation to those that are already on the same market. Finally, the business creator will propose his commercial strategy: ensure that he has a perfect knowledge of the market and the target customers, that he will be able to sell his products or services, that he will be able to find commercial partners.
Step 4: Position yourself against the competition
This part of the business plan allows the entrepreneur to position himself against the competition. He will be able to determine his pricing policy (prices higher or lower than the prices of the target market). The future entrepreneur must demonstrate that his company will be in a position of strength compared to its competitors and thus ensure the company’s sustainability over time.
Step 5: Define the nature of the business
In this part, the company creator must indicate the legal form chosen for the latter (SA, SARL, etc.). It must also specify the capital, the nature of the funds and the contributions. The future entrepreneur must also list the shareholders and define how they will distribute the company’s capital.
Step 6: Create an action plan
This is the heart of the business plan. The entrepreneur will present his various strategies to develop his business within the first three years after its creation. Thus, he will explain what are the key success factors for his business. It will provide quantified goals. The company creator will specify his research and development plan and with which funds and investments he will finance it. But he will also have to assess the production costs, give his commercial action plan, explain his personnel policy… He will therefore have to present a lot of figures and many arguments to show that he has a clear and precise vision of what will promote the success of his business over time.
Step 7: Establish financial forecasts
This last part is used to demonstrate the company’s future financial profitability over the first three to five years of its creation and development. The entrepreneur will therefore have to clarify his assessments with regard to estimates of income and expenses. In addition, he must establish a preliminary profit and loss statement, a preliminary balance sheet as well as the financing plan and finally the cash flow plan.