Who are your direct and indirect competitors? You really should gain at least an initial understanding of who else is offering similar products or services to your target market. It's good to know how their products or services are currently used and perceived _ why people buy them, and why they don't. In doing so, you begin to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors from the consumer's perspective. Depending on what your product or service is, you can find all kinds of information about user experiences with your competitors' offerings. Sites like Amazon let you see product reviews by customers who bought products.
What do you need to get your business rolling/growing, and what will it cost? This is arguably the most painful part of business planning. Yet, what is the point of having a plan if you don't know how it all adds up financially? You may not know how to put all the numbers together on your own. If that's the case, invite or even hire someone to help you sort out the numbers. Aside from any potential revenues earned from sales of your product or service, you'll need to know your fixed expenses _ what it costs you to run your business whether or not you sell a single item, and your variable expenses _ what it costs you for each item sold. Naturally, in the early stages of planning a business, you will be doing a lot of forecasting, and your numbers may not be as accurate as you'd like them to be. So, you'll want to be as conservative as possible about how much revenue you'll generate and how much your business will cost to run.