Table of Contents Hide
- What Is a Business Description?
- Writing a Business Description
- What Goes Into the First Paragraph of a Business Description?
- Examples of Business Description
- #1. Zappos: Tell a Story
- #2. Google: Keep it Brief
- #3. Philips: Add Visual Appeal
- #4. Blurb: Don’t Be Afraid of White Space
- #5. Heineken: Go Beyond Your Product
- #6. Rackspace: Show Off!
- 7. Western Digital: Add a Personal Touch
- #8. Atos: Feature a Video
- #9. Starbucks: Share Your Inspiration
- #10. Lonza: Keep it Organized
- How do you Start Writing a Business Description?
- #1. Create a Basic Blueprint for Your Business Story That Covers the Who, What, Where, and When
- #2. Tell Us About Your Company’s Values
- #3. Describe Your Area of Expertise and the Work You Enjoy Doing
- #4. Tell a Short, Relatable Anecdote About How You Got Started With Your Company
- #5. Give Us a Sneak Peek Into Your Long-Term Objectives
- #6. Make It Simple for Your Reader to Respond
- #7. Put It All Together in a Single Clear Story
- Best Practices for Effective Business Descriptions
- What Does It Mean to Cite Your Sources?
- Checking the Business Description for Errors
- Final Thoughts
- Business Description FAQs
- How do you write a business description?
- What is business description and structure?
- What are the four types of businesses?
A small business plan includes a business description. It lays up the goals and how to achieve them. And this post will show you all that a business description entails with examples.
According to the Small Business Administration, a good business plan should include the following elements:
- A brief summary
- Description of the business
- Product or service
- Management and organization
- Market research
- Sales and marketing
- Request for funding
- Financial forecasts
What Is a Business Description?
The business description is usually included immediately after the executive summary in most business plans. The purpose of the business description is to give an overview of the company, including what it does and how it differs from others in the same industry. This description goes into great detail about the company. It includes information like the company’s location and the number of employees who will be employed, in addition to detailing goals and how they will be reached.
It also provides a detailed description of the company’s vision and goals, which aids lenders and stakeholders in forming a realistic picture of who and what the company is. A business’s description differs from one to the next. It will however include the following in general:
The business’s official name
- Where will the company’s operations be carried out?
- Type of Ownership (sole proprietorship, LLC, partnership, or corporation)
- Names of the company’s owners and any high-ranking personnel
- The business’s headquarters address
- When did the company start?
- What led to the establishment of the business
- The company’s objectives
- The purpose of the business is outlined in the mission statement.
- What is being offered, as well as the market to which it is being targeted?
- Objectives for the future (both short- and long-term)
- The business’s future vision stated in a vision statement
Writing a Business Description
To pique the interest of investors and lenders, you must know how to pitch which starts with writing/preparing a business description. Right away, your description should address who, what, where, when, why, and how.
So, how do you write a business description? We’ll go over the 5 W’s (and 1 H) to keep in mind when writing your first copy.
For starters, Who are you? Who is your business?
In the business description part of your business plan, double-check that your company’s name is obvious. Include your name (along with the names of any other owners) since lenders and investors would want to know who is behind the company.
Who is your ideal client? Who are you trying to sell to? Make sure you know who you’re talking to when you’re describing your company. There’s a good probability that no one will be interested in your business if you don’t know who your target consumer is.
What is the nature of your product or service? Lenders and investors may pass on your idea if they can not comprehend what you’re offering or why it’s important. When telling lenders and investors about your company, be specific, narrow, and focused.
What are your business objectives? Set short- and long-term goals that are attainable. Include the objective in your description if you expect to sell $20,000 worth of product or service by the end of the second month.
Where is the location of your company? List the address of your business if it is currently open for business. If you’re still looking for office space, make sure you mention where you want your company to be.
When will you put your business plan into action and start seeing results? Include the date you intend to start your business (or when you opened it).
When do you intend to achieve your objectives? Also, discuss the timing for your primary objectives (both short-term and long-term).
When do you believe you’ll retire from your company? Remember to talk about your departure strategy. Be explicit about when you expect to retire in 20 years, sell your firm in 15 years, or close it down in 10 years.
Why would a buyer want to purchase from you? Describe how you differ from the competitors. This is where you can discuss the uniqueness of your company. Lenders and investors want to know why customers would choose your small business over one of your competitors.
Why are you in this line of work? Make sure to include your company’s mission statement as well. A mission statement explains why your company exists and what your objectives are.
How is your business’s structure going to be? Which type of company will you start: a sole proprietorship, a limited liability company, a partnership, or a corporation? Also, explain why you chose the structure you did. Mention any small business advisors you engage with to aid with registration procedures, rules, and liabilities (e.g., a business attorney).
How are you going to attain the company objectives you’ve set? Will you hire people to assist you, or will you manage all of your obligations on your own? Discuss the steps you’ll take to achieve the objectives you’ve set.
How do you see your business developing in the future? Include a statement about your organization’s vision in your company description. A vision statement is a declaration that describes how you want your company to look in the future.
What Goes Into the First Paragraph of a Business Description?
The opening paragraph of a business description should be quite descriptive, including all of the important details about the company. You want to make sure the company’s name is conveyed properly in this paragraph. Also, be sure to include the company’s current outlook as well as its future potential.
It’s also a good idea to add facts and information about the markets where your products/services will be sold. You should also include any new items or advancements that are likely to hit the market and could have a favorable or negative influence on your business.
Examples of Business Description
Below are some examples of a business descriptions from different companies;
People are more likely to connect with a story than with a list of facts. Take the Zappos method and tell a story about your business if you want people to remember the facts on your business page.
To be honest, not every brand has a compelling story to share — and that’s fine. The fact that you’re providing information in the form of a story is more essential than the content of the story.
What can you say about yourself when you’re a corporation as large as Google that hasn’t previously been said?
Unlike many corporate descriptions that go on and on, Google’s defining events are highlighted in one paragraph each.
This may appear simple, but when you consider how much Google has accomplished and the hundreds of acquisitions and initiatives it has been a part of, it’s difficult to condense it into a single page.
While they do include a link to a website detailing the company’s history from 1998 to 2014, Google does not seek to bore you with the facts right away.
Anyone can keep their illustrious history brief if Google can.
This example of a business description is, without a doubt, the most visually striking of all of our examples. Philips uses large, bright photographs across its business profile, breaking away from standard corporate style.
You can tell Philips does a lot more than sell consumer goods just by looking at the photographs and copies.
It’s also worth noting that the corporation keeps the page dynamic and up-to-date, with highlights from the fourth quarter included. The majority of business profiles are stagnant and collect dust, whereas Philips refreshes its at least four times every year.
Blurb, on the other hand, takes the opposite approach to Phillips, emphasizing its successes on its corporate page through minimalist design and white space.
The self-publishing platform company is a smart SEO move, including links to relevant information throughout the timeline provided, giving you not only the highlights but also the facts (and keeping you on the website) if you want to learn more.
Do you want your company to stand out from the crowd? Take a page from Heineken’s playbook and engage with your customers beyond your goods — show them more of your brand’s human side.
Heineken’s company profile is built around a list of four major factors that distinguish it from the competition — most notably, its global reach and dedicated, diverse workforce.
The page goes beyond just a beer for readers, highlighting the brand’s beliefs and providing simple access to a variety of other content, such as the brand’s current stock prices, most recent annual report, and Twitter feed.
There are times when you should be humble and times when you should pat yourself on the back. Do you have any awards? Positive feedback? Customers/clients with clout? One of the few areas where it’s acceptable for your brand to talk about these things is in your business profile.
Rackspace, for example, isn’t shy about proclaiming that it’s “renowned as a leader” and displaying dozens of certifications and other acknowledgments.
Western Digital took a unique approach to its business page, publishing a brief letter from the CEO about the organization.
The letter fulfills the same goal as other profiles (telling you what the firm does, who its customers are, and a brief history), but it adds a personal touch by being presented as a personal communication from the company’s leader.
Consider adding a headshot and handwritten signature, or even a video, to your company profile to take this notion a step further.
When it comes to video, Why tell people about your company when you can show them?
In their business description, Atos includes a video that conveys all of the critical information found in a typical company profile in a more engaging and efficient style.
To be honest, I wish Starbucks had put a little more effort into the visual design of this page, but the content is surely not lacking in innovation.
Folklore was the area that drew my interest the most. The corporation states that it was named after Moby Dick’s first mate and that its emblem was inspired by a Greek mythology twin-tail siren.
Maybe your genesis tale isn’t as interesting, but if it is, tell it. In the minds of your audience, these subtleties and eccentricities will make your brand more memorable and well-rounded.
The majority of large firms have corporate profiles that are simply too long. Lonza, on the other hand, has discovered a method to present a lot of information without being overpowering with its unusual display.
Are you interested in learning more about the company’s history? There’s a link to that somewhere. What if we only looked at the facts and figures? There’s also a link for it.
How do you Start Writing a Business Description?
With the examples above, writing a business description shouldn’t be too much of a bother. But we’ll go through some key steps you should follow just to get a hang of it.
#1. Create a Basic Blueprint for Your Business Story That Covers the Who, What, Where, and When
The easiest method to start telling your small business story is with a simple framework.
You should introduce your company, describe what you do, where you operate (or the markets you serve), and how long you’ve been doing it.
For example, a simple template could be;
We’re “Company Name,” and we’ve been doing “What your business does” in “Location” since “Date.”
We’re The Coffee Bean, and since 1981, we’ve been roasting and serving organic coffee in Toronto.
#2. Tell Us About Your Company’s Values
Tell us what you stand for so that people can connect with your company. Do you want to learn more about Fair Trade? Is it possible to achieve social justice? Honesty? Transparency? Organic? Is it sourced locally?
You’re almost certainly running a business in a competitive market. Adopting and articulating your company philosophy as part of your core business description can help you stand out from the crowd. People love to rally behind a good cause, so offer them a reason to support your company.
Sample: We believe in purchasing only responsibly grown beans, roasting them in-house, and offering our clients fresh coffee at a reasonable price.
#3. Describe Your Area of Expertise and the Work You Enjoy Doing
People like entrepreneurs who are passionate about their work. Your audience will skim your story for evidence that you care about your company. Tell people about the projects that your firm is passionate about. Alternatively, tell your audience what you want to see in your sector, whether it’s an innovation, a company philosophy in action, or a project.
#4. Tell a Short, Relatable Anecdote About How You Got Started With Your Company
A solid foundational tale will appeal to your readers. Share your ‘a-ha’ moment (the moment when you decide to start your own business) with the rest of the world! We often start enterprises because we are dissatisfied or sense an opportunity. Allow your customers a taste of your eureka moment. Most of them would most likely relate to you, begin to recognize you as a person, and form a bond with you.
Formula: I established this company because of (X), and I was confident in it (Y).
For example, I founded my company because I was sick of drinking bad, pricey coffee and thought there had to be a better way.
Inform your customers about your company’s future plans.
#5. Give Us a Sneak Peek Into Your Long-Term Objectives
We know who you are and what you believe in; now it’s time to show your customers where you want to go. Incorporate your long-term objectives (or how you see your company evolving) into your business narrative. These elements help to flesh out your story and paint a clearer picture of where your company began and where you want it to go in the future. Your audience will feel more at ease knowing that you’re in it for the long haul, and they’ll be more willing to work with you right now.
Sample: We’re excited to launch two more locations in Toronto, as well as collaborate with Ontario farmers on a new line of local, organic baked goods.
#6. Make It Simple for Your Reader to Respond
It’s time for your reader to take the last action. After all, you’re attempting to operate a business and want to figure out how to get genuine clients to visit your website. Here’s where you should make things simple for them by asking them to do something.
Sample: I’d like to personally welcome you to come in and sample one of our freshly brewed coffees.
Tip: Offer a free consultation if they fill out your form, tell them to call you, or tell them to come in.
#7. Put It All Together in a Single Clear Story
Combine all of your elements into a single paragraph.
“Since 1981, we’ve been roasting and serving organic coffee in Toronto at the Coffee Bean.”
We believe in purchasing only responsibly grown beans, roasting them in-house, and giving our clients fresh coffee at a reasonable price. Also we specialize in working directly with farmers to establish long-term relationships. We recently assisted in the construction of a new coffee estate in Ecuador. We adore coffee, and it shows in every cup we serve. I created this company because I was sick of drinking bad, pricey coffee and thought there has to be a better way. We’re excited to establish two more locations and provide a new line of organic, locally sourced baked goodies. I’d like to personally welcome you to come in and sample one of our freshly brewed coffees.”
Make sure to update your website with your updated business description. It’s also a good idea to distribute it to any of your current employees. Your story has the potential to have a startling impact on the culture you create for your current and future employees.
Keep in mind that your story should adapt and evolve as your business does. Keep it updated with any new developments or achievements.
Best Practices for Effective Business Descriptions
Here are some pointers to help you build a good business description:
Begin With an Elevator Pitch: Your business description’s opening paragraph should include all of your most important details. It’s good to think of it as an elevator pitch, where you only have a few sentences to describe your company’s major features.
Only Include High-Level Information in Your Business Description: Some of the information you put in your business description will also appear in other sections of your business plan. Concentrate on giving only a high-level overview of these components, leaving the specifics to another section.
Communicate Your Enthusiasm: The purpose of a business description is to entice the reader to read the rest of your business plan. To do so, make sure the tone of your description accurately reflects your enthusiasm for the organization and its goals.
Check for Length: Business descriptions should be clear and simple, even if the length varies based on how complicated the business strategy is. Go over your business description again after you’ve finished writing it to remove any redundant or unnecessary information.
What Does It Mean to Cite Your Sources?
All of your observations should be based on credible data, with sources listed in the footnotes. If you’re looking for finance for your business, you’ll need to include these footnotes. Your sources will be requested by the investor to check that your estimates are not based on assumptions. Your objective is to capture their interest and persuade them to invest in the business. Make sure to sketch out the structure of the company description as you write it. Are you a retail business? Is it a manufacturing company? What is the name of the accounting firm? Are you a people person?
Checking the Business Description for Errors
Your business description should always be proofread. This proofreading should be done by someone who was not involved in the creation of the business plan; this gives the description a fresh set of eyes to look for typos and grammatical issues.
Even if it feels like excessive work, writing the business description section of your business plan should be enjoyable. This is your chance to talk about your business idea and enlist the help of others (such as lenders and investors). Consider a live pitch before thousands of audience. Your audience are your investors and of course your customers. And both are vital personalities that you need to impress.
Here are a few more pointers to remember when learning how to construct a business description:
- Fill in the blanks for the 5 Ws and 1 H.
- Maintain brevity, simplicity, and readability.
- Check to see if it’s intriguing.
Business Description FAQs
How do you write a business description?
Creating an efficient business description involves the following;
- Researching the industry and competitions
- Describing the industry’s present and future state
- Providing your business’s fundamental information
- Crafting a problem statement from the industry
- Identifying your target market
- Explaining plans for manufacturing, marketing, and distribution.
What is business description and structure?
While business description talks about the business in its entirety, a business structure refers to a company’s legal structure, which has an impact on the company’s day-to-day activities.
What are the four types of businesses?
The four types of businesses include: sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, and Limited Liability Company, or LLC