Part of Business

Create a business plan

Don’t just wing it – create a game plan. Writing out business goals and action steps not only helps you clarify and organize priorities, it gives potential investors a clear vision of your roadmap to profitability.

Elements of an Effective Business Plan

The plan usually projects 3-5 years into the future and includes 8 basic parts.

  1. Executive Summary
    Briefly explain your business and plans for the future
  2. Business Description
    Describe your business and your product or service, and explain how they are different from other businesses.
  3. Market Analysis
    Identify your potential customers, and describe your industry and competition.
  4. Organization & Management
    Show how you plan to structure your business and introduce your management team and their responsibilities. 
  5. Service or Product Line
    Describe your product or service, including the features and benefits of your product or service.
  6. Marketing & Sales
    Explain how you plan to market and sell your product or service to the potential customers you’ve identified. 
  7. Finances
    Show your current and projected financial status, including balance sheets, a cash flow statement, and revenue projections.
  8. Appendix or Supporting Documents
    Include additional documents that support your plan.

As you form your business plan, consider the impact it may have on the environment. Learn how to Green your business.

Next step

Continue in the Step by step guide to starting a business in San Francisco

Finance your business