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Writing the Plan

Now that you know what goes into a successful business plan, all you have to do is write it. As daunting as that sounds, it isn't that difficult. The hardest part is just sitting down and getting started. Carve out a few hours of an evening or on the weekend, close the door, turn off the radio, and disconnect the telephone and the Internet. Concentrate on the task at hand, starting with a rough outline and filling in the details as if you were telling them to a friend. Take as much time as you need; a few hours, a few evenings, or a few weeks. Don't overthink it, just start writing and worry about editing later.

Once you have a rough draft down, re-read it as if you were a stranger to the story. Even better, give it to someone else to read and see if it tells them everything they need to know. See what questions they have, and incorporate these into any changes you need in your second draft.

After all the words are right, you can spend a few minutes making your document look pretty. Print it out, give it a final proofreading, and you're done. Then, and only then, you can start using the plan—to get your eBay business up and running.

The Absolute Minimum

Before you start your eBay business, you need to determine what type of business you'll be running—and how you'll run it. Keep these points in mind:

  • Successful sellers don't engage in random selling; they have a plan that describes and focuses their eBay activity.

  • A written business plan is also necessary if you need to borrow money for your business—or if you want to attract investors.

  • Good business plans are conversational—as if you're telling the story of your business to a friend.

  • Your business plan doesn't have to be long or formal—a few pages is fine, as long as it achieves what it needs to.

  • Every business plan should include the following sections: Mission, Opportunity, Strategy, Organization and Operations, Strengths and Weaknesses, and Financials.


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