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The Complete Idiot's Guide® To Low-Cost Startups by Gail Margolies Reid

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Projecting Your Revenue

Anyone who has put a business plan together will tell you it is much easier to project expenses than it is to estimate revenue. First, you need to think about all the factors that will influence your cash inflow. For example, during the ramp-up period—the first few months after you open for business—you will be building a customer base. It will take you some time to reach full capacity and maximum revenue. You’ll have to work against persistent negative thoughts like, “No way I’ll ever do that much business,” just as you have to keep a realistic perspective to prevent yourself from overreaching and overestimating your success in the early stages.
The best way to project revenue is to think in terms of three scenarios: ...

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