How to develop a business plan for an online clothing store. If the internet age catches your eye and you have a clothing business, an online store may become your best option. But, it´s important to clarify that starting an eCommerce is not as easy as opening a physical store. To attract the so-called “potential customers” you need to create a business plan. And if you don’t know how to do it, you don’t have to worry. Because in this post we will explain how to create an online clothing store business plan.
How to make a business plan for an online clothing store?
For the results of your eCommerce to be positive, you must have a plan in writing. Since just having your ideas in your head will not be enough. One of the most attractive parts of the business plan is that it can generate a lot of money. And even save it if you discover in time that your project is not perfect.
These are the points that can´t be left out when writing your business plan:
- Executive Summary The team that´s working for your online clothing store project or future investors will first be interested in reading your business synopsis. That´s why the executive summary is very important. And as it´s the first impression of your project, you can´t make the mistake of adding unnecessary elements. Or even using words that you can´t understand later. The best thing you can do is use your comprehension skills to write your ideas in the correct order. Also, it´s not necessary to extend it. Explaining each point of your virtual business plan and not leaving out the following elements will be more than enough:
- Presentation of Ideas It´s enough with two lines to make the definition of your project. And add what is the main competitive advantage and the value proposition.
- The team behind the project A good entrepreneur must know how to present themselves. So, it´s ideal to leave the repeated formulas aside when developing the curriculum.
- Basic data In this section, you should include the acquired legal form, the planned name, and the location. Another important item would be your goals concerning the scope of your business. And to make it easier for you, you can present this information using a table.
To describe your business, you must have within your objectives to identify your competitive advantage. So that it can be surpassed by your online clothing store. To do this, you must consider three points that will reflect your identity as the owner of a company:
- Mission Here you must explain the reason why you want to create an online store. The role it plays in the market, the audience you´re targeting, and the factor that differentiates it from other businesses.
- Vision The vision consists of explaining the goals that want to be achieved in the long term. Of course, a touch of ambition must be added to these goals to be motivating.
- Values It´s also relevant to publicize the ethical principles that will identify your eCommerce. Likewise, it´s important that in this section you only add those that can be supported by each of your acts. This point must be very well analyzed, and for this, the “SWOT analysis” can be used. As its acronyms describe it, through this type of analysis, both an internal and external assessment of the positive and negative characteristics of your project can be made. To know what should you work on or what needs changing for its proper functioning.
After conducting the SWOT analysis. It will be easier for you to include a return analysis with the following factors in your business plan:
- Competition It´s normal for the owners of an online store to think that having competition is a negative point. But, it´s only a mistake since the absence of competitors only means that there´s not enough demand. So, your online business plan should show that there´s competition for your online clothing store, but without posing a threat. The important thing is that you transform your competition into opportunities. So, you must analyze them one by one to know their strengths and weaknesses so that you can overcome them. Also, determining who your competition is is very easy. Since it will only be enough to take a look at Google to know the best-positioned pages.
- Legislation The legal aspects in the market where you interact should also appear in your business plan. That´s why you must be aware of any regulatory changes that may occur. As this could be beneficial or a threat. To know the legislation, you must know the legal requirements necessary to start an eCommerce.
- Technology If you´re going to start an online clothing store, you will without a doubt need the use of technology. Consequently, you must determine what the main work tools will be. And then analyze if they represent an investment if they are unique tools. And of course, whether you have enough knowledge to use them or you will have to hire third parties.
Products and services
When starting an online clothing store this is the first question to ask: What benefits do your products bring to your customers?
The reason is that your business plan must clearly express what your target audience will be. And the problems that you must solve for them. In the same way, you must know if there are other similar alternatives to establish your added value.
To handle this type of data you can also make use of a table. Where you will include your products, prices, and estimated profits. Also, if you´re looking for financing, the risk analyst will not pay much importance to the price. But to why users will want to pay it and the number of their earnings.
Your page also needs an online store marketing plan to handle the sales part. Of course, an online store is not the same as a physical store where many people can pass in front of it. On the other hand, to start with an online clothing store there´s no choice but to ask your friends or family to visit you. Since getting the visit of strangers will be a difficult thing.
This is where marketing is taken into account for your eCommerce business plan. And the goal will be to get constant visits to your online store. So, you should know that getting visibility is slow work and you have to plant it. That´s why a marketing plan is necessary. It allows an analysis of the market study of an example online store to identify its direct competition. Later, it is that you will decide on which marketing strategies to apply.
In the business plan, you must add the communication channels that you will use to get your brand message across. And get the highly acclaimed leads that will later become customers. At the moment, these are the most used channels for online stores:
- Social media.
- Email marketing.
- Videomarketing and YouTube.
- Traffic paid with Facebook Ads and Adwords.
- Content Marketing.
Your day-to-day business as a business owner should be included in the operational plan. Establish details such as your daily order of tasks, your work hours, your location, and your product inventory.
Similarly, the operational plan reflects the tasks that your online store requires to move forward. But, if it´s a single person in charge of the business, it´s enough to show what the routine is like. Likewise, it´s important to identify which work will require the most attention to grow:
- Offer customer service support.
- Returns management.
- Attention to any unforeseen event.
- Negotiation with suppliers.
- Inventory management.
- Much more…
It´s likely that during the journey as an entrepreneur you´ll have to make certain modifications to your online business plan. For better performance and to have all the tasks in control.
The first question to ask yourself to determine your financial projection will be the following:
Where do you see your online clothing store in 1 or more years?
This question must be asked as the business´ that doesn´t know where they´re going will be at a disadvantage.
So, this projection will be essential to move towards your goals and what you must do to achieve them. Once your first profits begin to arrive, you must set the percentage of profit that you´re going to reinvest to continue growing your business.
If you need external financing this point should also be on the business plan.
At this point the monetary amount required and what you´ll do with the entire amount is detailed. And it´s something logical.
Since no person will want to put their money into a project without first obtaining all the information of interest. That´s why you must be very specific. Not only with the amount of money you need but also your plan to use it correctly.
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Now that you know the steps to follow to create a business plan for an online store. The next thing to do is take all the information collected in an orderly manner to a Word document, Google document, or PDF.
There are many benefits that a business plan can have for your company. Since it´s the exact way to know the objectives of your project and get the resources to carry it out.
As for the writing, you can write it yourself or seek help. At BluCactus we have the necessary tools to create a business plan. And in addition to that, we can create the marketing plan you need so that your online store becomes visible and reaches your potential customers.
You just have to contact us, and we will gladly assist you! If you want to keep up with the world of digital marketing, you can also subscribe to our weekly newsletter.