How can someone possibly forecast business sales?

In my case, I was pitching to an investor regarding one element of my business – which is selling ebooks.

I was asked: Where will the money come from? I explained the best I could but apparently I was completely wrong!

I was told that I need to know how many sales I will make, what my competitors are making and forecast based on this?

How in the name of god can I find out what competitors are making? And even more difficult, how can I know how many sales will be made, that could vary from 10 to 1000 in a year.

Can anyone tell me what is the going way of doing this? Thanks.

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2 Responses to “How can someone possibly forecast business sales?”

  1. Heather C says:

    A sales forecast is an essential part of your business plan, and a 3-5 year business plan is critical for a start-up company that’s looking for outside investors.

    In order to come up with a sales forecast, you need to perform some market research. The government publishes yearly and often quarterly statistics by industry sector – this is a valuable source of information. Use Google to help track down relevant data. Find out what the aggregate sales volume is for an average year, how many competitors there are in the industry, and who your main competitors are. Selling ebooks (selling ANYTHING) online is a big challenge, especially when your main competitor is a household word – Amazon.

    Check out websites like Entrepreneur.com and get some tips on how to construct a business plan. There is plenty of good information online, all you have to do is look for it.

  2. rawr says:

    You can find out what your competitors are making by research. If you sell computers, look at what apple or microsoft are selling. You can predict sales by estimating based on how much advertising you’ve done/will do and how many people you think will be interested in buying. If you’re selling to a wide range of people, you will likely make more sales than if you’re selling to a small niche.

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