eBay Business Plan Template [Highly Actionable]
There are over 25 million sellers on eBay.
No matter what you sell, with competition like that, you need to have a plan. Fortunately, with around 182 million users, there’s plenty of opportunity to grow and thrive.
The purpose of an eBay business plan is to articulate your idea and figure out how to make it feasible.
To do this, you will need to explore the different aspects of your business which define what it is and how it will operate. Once you have a handle on the crux of your business, you will be able to determine the resources you’ll need to succeed and which areas you can automate.
In this eBay guide, we will cover the following bases:
- 10 benefits of an eBay business plan
- How to start your plan
- Your eBay business plan template
- Business plans and the bigger picture
- Plan to save time and money with A2X accounting
10 Benefits of an eBay Business Plan
Why bother with a business plan for your eBay store in the first place? Let’s see.
- Cash flow will be managed better: Meaning, quite simply, a better chance of survival.
- Stick to your strategy: You can more easily avoid getting caught up in routine and interruptions as life takes over.
- Measurable objectives are easy to track: See your progress, plan for and celebrate it! You can decide ahead of time what you do next at each stage of your growth.
- Your instincts and educated guesses will be more accurate: You’ll have the data as well as the experience to back them up.
- You’ll better manage interdependencies: When one thing relies on another, you will be able to plan for that and ensure you are prepared for multiple scenarios.
- Delegation and automation will be easier: You’ll be able to see where it slots into the bigger picture, as will any employees you might take on.
- You can be proactive rather than reactive: Basing your decisions on evidence and data means you can take more calculated risks and push forward.
- Never base decisions on assumptions: With solid records and information about your business, you won’t risk making baseless assumptions ever again. You know what they say about assumptions…
- Easy to correct your course: If you are tracking your journey and its projections aren’t matching your goals, you can act early with less fallout.
- Provides solid foundations for investment or sale: If you want others to invest in your business or even buy it, giving them this level of detail and records could prove invaluable and get you a higher price.
That’s a pretty strong argument for making a business plan. And remember, at this stage, you don’t need all the answers for how you will make millions. Growth strategy comes next.
For now, we want to focus on articulating the spine of your business and its vital organs - what does it need to exist and function efficiently?
Starting a Business Plan: eBay Guide
Feel free to play along with us. Here are some questions for you to start thinking about in preparation for writing your eBay seller business plan. This should help you get into the zone and start covering off the basics.
After we explore these, we will move onto an example eBay business plan template which you can bookmark and use for your own business.
Who are you?
Your store came into being for a reason. Why? What was the problem, and how are you attempting to solve it for customers? This should become your value proposition.
Do you have a brand identity yet? This is an important part of growing an ecommerce store. If you want to earn customer loyalty and build awareness, you will need to consider this.
What is your brand positioning? What do you want customers to think and feel about you?
Discover strategies for building your ecommerce brand.
Where are you going?
What are your short and long-term goals? Ensure that most of them are SMART goals, i.e., measurable. This way, you can use them to make informed decisions about your business, make realistic predictions and forecasts, and grow in an intentional, proactive way.
How to set business goals and strategies to achieve them.
What will help you get there?
What tools and resources might you need to help you achieve your goals? What will they cost? How will you measure the return they should give you? Will you set parameters for when to invest in them, and when to pull back?
You don’t need too much detail on these in your initial plan, but it’s good to have an idea of your dream ecommerce toolkit.
By thinking through any future commitments you might make to software or human resources, you can ensure you get the maximum output from calculated input, with profit at the end.
How and why you should be planning for your ecommerce technology development.
eBay Business Plan Template
Now that you’ve had a chance to lay the foundations of your eBay business plan, let’s get to work!
Just as every business is unique, there will be a multitude of business plan options out there to match. Some fit on one page, some spread across one hundred pages.
This is our eBay business plan sample based on the critical elements every ecommerce seller should consider in the early stages, made simple and easy to digest. Anyone should be able to pick up your plan and understand it.
If you’re more of a visual learner, scroll down for an infographic that shows how each element of your plan relates to the others and the bigger picture.
Remember, as you grow and develop, so can your eBay business plan. Get good at prioritizing!
A one or two-line summary of your business idea.
An overview of your product - what is it? Where are you sourcing it from? How much are you paying for it? Does this change based on volume?
Keep it short and simple: how will your product beat the rest. What makes it unique?
How to build a value proposition.
Target Market and Competition
Who is your target demographic and who else is selling to them? How will you cut through the rest and stand out to that audience? You could also do a SWOT analysis for inspiration.
How to define your target market.
Where does your audience spend time and how will you reach them there? How much will you spend on marketing efforts?
Guide to ecommerce marketing in 2021.
How will you ship your products? What will this cost you? Will you explore dropshipping? Will you start out one way and evolve as you grow? What will be your parameters for this?
eBay shipping options and advice for sellers.
Budget and Sales
Forecast your sales and outgoings. What should your profit margins be? What volume of sales do you need to survive and thrive? Is your business financially viable?
How to forecast sales for your ecommerce business.
Ecommerce demand forecasting: what it is and why you should care.
Break down your goals into bite sized chunks. Set a timeline, what you want to achieve by then and what you’ll need to make that happen. Be realistic!
Examples of milestones for small businesses.
Team and Resources
What roles exist within your team, or may exist in the future? What will they need to succeed? What roles can be outsourced or automated?
Funding and/or Investment
Identify how much you need or have raised, from whom, and when you plan to pay it back. Alternatively, you might look for this at certain milestones. The more information you can offer potential stakeholders, the better.
Tips to fund your ecommerce business.
Business Plans and the Bigger Picture
This helpful infographic offers a way to visualize some of the elements of a business plan and how they relate to each other:
Save Time and Money with Automated Accounts
Money will be the lifeblood of your business.
No matter how strong and in depth your eBay business plan is, without efficient accounting, your business won’t survive.
Luckily, accounting is a critical element of your ecommerce gig that you can automate.
Repetitive number crunching is what software is designed for, so why not leave it up to the mechanical experts?
See what A2X can do for your business:
Try A2X for eBay for free today! Sign up here.
Also on the Blog:
Learn how to manage your eBay accounting the right way
Accounting for eBay sales comes with a unique set of challanges and opportunities. Discover the key challenges sellers face, the taxes and fees, and a free setup checklist.Download our free guide