Business Planning: Developing an Idea

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These subscription databases can be used remotely with an active Austin Public Library Card or on the public computers at any of our locations.

Prepare to Write a Business Plan

Before developing a business plan, consider the following steps to ensure that you have a solid foundation for your plan. 

  • Conduct a competitive analysis: Research your industry, competition, and target market to ensure there is a need for your product or service.
  • Identify your target market through Market Research: Determine who your ideal customer is, what their needs are, and how your product or service can address those needs.
  • Define your value proposition: Clarify what sets your business apart from competitors and why customers should choose your product or service.
  • Develop a pricing strategy: Determine how you will price your product or service, considering your target market and competition.
  • Determine your business structure: Decide on the legal structure of your business, such as sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, or corporation.
  • Identify your funding sources: Determine how you will fund your business, whether it be through personal savings, loans, or investors.
  • Choose a location: Decide on a location for your business, whether it be a physical storefront or an online presence.
  • Outline your marketing strategy: Determine how you will promote your business to reach your target market.

By completing these steps, you will have a better understanding of your business and its potential for success, which will help you develop a more effective business plan.

This guide was developed with the assistance of the City of Austin
Economic Development Department Small Business Division.