Business Plan Example: The Industry Overview

Woman playing with a small kitten
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Wondering how to approach the industry overview section of your business plan? Having an example might help. Let's look at the industry overview for Pet Grandma, a fictional pet-based business invented for this business plan sample.

The Pet Industry

According to the American Pet Products Association, pet expenditures in the U.S. totaled slightly over $72.5 billion in 2018, up from $48 billion in 2010, an increase of 51% in eight years. This includes:                  

  • Food: $30.32 billion 
  • Supplies/OTC Medicine: $16.01 billion
  • Vet Care: $18.11 billion
  • Live animal purchases: $2.01 billion
  • Pet Services: grooming & boarding: $6.11 billion 

These figures reflect the increasing humanization of pets, a trend that is showing no signs of waning. More and more people consider their pets to be people too and treat them accordingly. Karen McCullough, then director of marketing (2000-2010) for Winnipeg-based Petland Canada, which operates both company-owned and franchise stores across the country, says, "People are looking for more these days—absolutely. We see a lot now in higher-end products, people are demanding more for their pets, from treats to grooming supplies to brand-name toys and even clothing."

And, because people want the best for their pets, there is also an increasing demand for pet-care services. Across North America, the pet care business has seen an explosion of growth over the last ten years.

Our Position in the Industry

West Vancouver is an affluent area with a high pet density, an ideal market for a pet-sitting business such as Pet Grandma. People in this area not only have pets but can afford to spend money on them and are willing to do so.

Our market research has shown that nine out of 10 pet owners polled in West Vancouver would prefer to have their pets cared for in their own homes when they travel rather than be kenneled, and six out of 10 would consider having a pet sitter provide company for their dog when they were at work.

The Competition

While there are currently eight businesses offering pet sitting in West Vancouver, only three of these offer on-site pet care and none offers pet visit services for working pet owners.

Currently, there is no single company dominating the market. This may be because all of the pet-sitting businesses are relatively new; the oldest, Paula's Pet Sitting, has only been in business five years. However, half of the existing pet-sitting businesses control the majority of the market—Paula's Pet Sitting, Doggie Care Services Inc., Pet Petters, and Pet Sitters on Demand together make up 65% of the market.

Save your full competitive analysis for section four of your business plan, but briefly share competitor insights here as it relates to your industry and your unique position in it.

What Makes Pet Grandma Unique

Pet Grandma's marketing strategy is to emphasize the quality of pet care we provide. As our slogan, "A Grandma for your pet!" says, we treat people's pets as family members and strive to give them the same loving, personal care that their owners would give. In our marketing, we will be emphasizing the quality and personalized service we provide.

We will also offer some services that are currently unique, such as our pet visit services, where one of our trained staff will go to a person's home while they're at work and feed, exercise, and play with their pet, allowing dog owners who work to come home to happy, friendly companions rather than demanding, whiny animals.

Your Business Plan

That's a basic example of an industry overview for your business plan. It provides an look at your business's industry and highlights your place within it. Your plan should present well-researched information to display that you understand the industry well.

Once you have yours written, you can move on to the next section of the business plan, the market analysis.

Article Sources

  1. American Pet Products Association. "Pet Industry Market Size & Ownership Statistics." Accessed Jan. 8, 2020.