Software development refers to the activities involved when developing or customizing software. Writing a business plan for software development is slightly different from writing one for other businesses because you are not selling something tangible like shoes or eggs.
Software developers sell their services to clients, and to do that, they need to produce an effective business plan. This invaluable document provides a clear roadmap of where you want your business to go and how you will get there.
It also ensures that everyone involved in the development of the software product is on the same page and working towards one goal: Successful implementation of the software.
There are only three sections in a business plan for software development: Executive Summary, Company Description & Financial Plan. The financial plan includes revenue generation, marketing, and growth strategies.
Use the following steps for effective business planning:
Determine Your Target Market
Very few developers are aware of this, but there is a difference between software development and product companies. Software developers are focused on developing custom-made solutions that meet their clients’ specific needs.
These solutions could be web-based, mobile apps, or other technical software. On the other hand, a software product company creates and commercializes off-the-shelf commercial products that don’t require client customization.
For instance: You want to create a website development company that will work with small business owners and home-based entrepreneurs to build their online presence.
Determine Your Unique Selling Point (USP)
Your USP is the main reason people will use your services instead of those offered by another company. It should be something that makes you stand out from the crowd and demonstrates that you are better than other competitors in the market. Here are some examples:
- We have developed 40 websites in the last three years
- We are Microsoft certified
- We offer free hosting for life to clients
Your USP is highly crucial because it will guide your sales strategy. You can use this knowledge later when you create marketing campaigns that allow you to take advantage of this USP.
Develop a Competitive Edge
All software developers have the same objective, but not all can achieve it. This is because some are more successful than others. The main reason for this is that they have a competitive edge over their competitors, enabling them to succeed where others fail. Competing on price alone or using false claims to win clients will only lead to failure.
You should work hard to develop a competitive edge over other software developers by increasing product quality, increasing the speed of delivery, offering more value for money, and so on. This is the only way you will be able to succeed.
Create Your Team
Your company’s success depends on the people you have working for you. If they are not skilled professionals or disrespectful, then clients won’t ever come back to work with you.
As a software developer, you have to deal with clients daily, so you need people who can communicate properly, follow instructions, and understand their roles within the company.
Make sure that you hire self-motivated individuals who are willing to learn new things on the job because this will give them an edge over others who are unwilling to take on new responsibilities.
If you develop a business plan for a software development company and put it down on paper, you will be able to focus on the following:
- Your needs and those of your clients
- How to solve their problems before they arise
- The role of individual team members and how to motivate them.