SME Toolkit Logo
Partner Logo
 Share  Print Version  Email

The Industry

Adapted from content excerpted from the American Express® OPEN Small Business Network

Begin your business description with a brief overview of the industry you will be competing in. Ultimately, you want to demonstrate that you are in a "hot" industry with an excellent long-term outlook. You're also setting the stage for your company description by showing where you fit in the marketplace.

Discuss both the present situation in the industry, as well as future possibilities. You should also provide information about the various market segments within the industry, with a particular focus on their potential impact on your business. Be sure to include any new products or other developments that will benefit or possibly hurt your business. Are there new markets and/or customers for your company/companies such as yours? What about national trends or economic trends and factors that will impact your venture?


  • Feel free to be dramatic. You can describe your industry like you're telling a story. Grab the reader's attention with strong, exciting language that will get them interested in your industry and your business.
  • Answering "why" makes any description stronger. Saying "the market will grow at 25% annually" may sound impressive. But what caused that rate of growth? Adding "...because a growing number of baby boomers now entertain at home instead of going out" makes it stand out.
  • This is not a discussion of your competition. That information will come later in the competitive analysis portion. Instead, you are providing an overview of the industry where you and other companies will compete.
  • Many business plans make the mistake of basing their market observations on conjecture. Instead, you will want to research your industry and back up your observations with facts. Be sure to note all sources.
  • Trade associations are excellent sources of information about trends in your industry. To find the trade association for your industry, consult the Gale Encyclopedia of Business and Professional Associations.
  • General business newspapers and magazines (like the Wall St. Journal or Business Week) and trade newspapers and magazines (those covering a specific industry) often report industry-wide trends as well. Many research and university libraries carry various trade publications and newsletters. Look in Bacon's Media Directories for lists of publications, or use a database like Nexis to find references on specific subjects.
  • Don't be afraid to include negative information about your industry. Discussing the possible roadblocks your company might face shows you have a realistic view of the market.
  • If you cite information from specific newspaper or magazine articles or research reports, you might want to include a copy in your business plan appendix.

FAQ's   Introductory Elements   Business Description The Market
Development & Production Sales & Marketing Management Financials

Copyright © 1995-2016, American Express Company. All Rights Reserved.

 Share  Print Version  Email
Comments & Ratings (10) Overall  
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
If you are a human, do not fill in this field.
Click stars to rate.
   Comments are truncated at 1000 characters
What Others Are Saying
Sort by
  • Currently 4.0/5 Stars.
Robertbengly Bengly, Bali, Indonesia  |  October 31, 2016
Thank you for sharing, however it seems that to be a strong company is also need to have a strong team and sometime when we have an idea to expand the business there will be need a strong team and management system,this is just sharing,thank you for your great article and this is one of the important thing is doing the business. visit also us
  • Currently 0.0/5 Stars.
RBS FINANCE  |  October 19, 2016
Are you a business man or woman? Do you need funds to start up your own business? Do you need loan to settle your debt or pay off your bills or start a nice business? Do you need funds to finance your project? We Offers guaranteed loan services of any amount and to any part of the world for (Individuals, Companies, Realtor and Corporate Bodies) at our superb interest rate of 3%. For application and more information send replies to the following E-mail address: (Whatsapp +917289037578 +17274140074) Thank you
  • Currently 4.0/5 Stars.
Alip Iskandar, google, Indonesia  |  August 22, 2016
  • Currently 5.0/5 Stars.
Bette Daoust  |  June 23, 2016
Thanks for the great example of a marketing strategy statement, we have been able to use this as a template for our own statement. -Dr. Bette Daoust
  • Currently 4.0/5 Stars.
Abdulkadir Muhammad  |  August 17, 2015
  • Currently 5.0/5 Stars.
Alex Shakaryan  |  October 13, 2014
  • Currently 0.0/5 Stars.
Gopal krishna Debnath  |  November 28, 2013
customer is the focal person of a business, hence he/she should be properly honored and addressed. clear description of the product is very important so that actual customer get the real and to the point information.
  • Currently 5.0/5 Stars.
Sandeep Chandra  |  February 03, 2011
  • Currently 5.0/5 Stars.
Muhammad Hamayun  |  December 09, 2010
  • Currently 5.0/5 Stars.
moqassalamin amin  |  September 01, 2010