Effective use of information technology is an important aspect of running a business. In this section you must describe how you plan to use Internet technologies to reach your customers, manage your business and reduce costs. You must include information on:
• the activities of electronic commerce (online sales of your product or service)
• Development of a website
• hardware requirements and software
• relationships with outside experts in the field of information technology
Remember that the implementation of e-business strategies can result in savings – if you do, you may indicate the potential savings in this section.
• E-business plan
The first step in any project is planning. Think about what you want to get e-business and ways to get there.
• What is e-business?
Visit this site to understand what e-business.
Financial forecasts and other information
This section is essentially to transform your plans in numbers. As in any business plan, you must provide financial projections for your business. Your forecast should cover the next three to five years. However , forecasts for the first 12 months should be more detailed and include assumptions regarding costs and revenues, so that investors can clearly see your goals behind the numbers.
By putting your plans on paper, remember that it is important to think objectively. By analyzing your business three views – optimistic, pessimistic and realistic – you have a good idea of what you can expect in the future.
Your financial projections should include:
• statements of cash flows – this is the flow of cash and its monthly change from 12 to 18 months. They include working capital, wages and sales;
• forecasts of profit and loss – these are benefits you expect to achieve, based on projected sales, costs of products and services, and indirect costs;
• sales forecasts – it is the amount of money you expect to achieve sales of your product / service.
The elements to consider:
• How much money will you need if you are looking for external funding?
• What guarantee can you offer to lenders?
• How do you repay any loans?
• What are the sources of revenue and income?
Your forecasts should cover a range of scenarios, and you must include contingency plans you have developed to mitigate risks. You can also review the benchmarks and averages for your type of business and explain the position of your business.
• Benchmarking Tool for Business
See how your business is small compared to companies in your industry.
You may want to carefully examine your plan when you’re done. Try to avoid specialized vocabulary – the person reading your plan may not have the same knowledge you your business. You can ask friends, family, business associates and your mentor to review it. Do not hesitate to seek advice from professionals such as lawyers and accountants. You may also hire a professional proofreader to correct mistakes.
Remember that your business plan is your business so you want it to be as professional as possible.
For answers to frequently asked questions and to view templates and sample business plan, see the resources below.
• Business Plans – Templates and Samples
organizations listed here offer free templates, style guides and sample plans to help you develop a professional business plan.
• Frequently asked questions about business planning
Find answers to frequently asked questions about preparing a business plan.