Q4 is Here – Do you have a Plan?

I just finished my Q4 plan and can say with confidence that it is going to be an exciting three months! Every quarter I put together a detailed plan of what I want to accomplish and measurable goals I can track towards so I can definitively say whether I hit my plan or not. This is something that I think many people forget to do which means when the year ends you really don’t know how you did. Sure – you can say, well I made $X in profit – but if you never had a goal to begin with does that number really mean anything?

Given the current economy it is more essential than ever that you keep close track of your expenses and make sure that you are bringing in more money than you are spending. Since it is now October and the beginning of Q4 I thought this would be a good time to review how you can plan for the next three months. Below I have a list of questions you should ask yourself every quarter – if you haven’t done this yet – start doing it now! At the end of the year you can then look back on this list and see if you reached your goals, if you didn’t you can figure-out where you went wrong and avoid making the same mistake twice.

Print-out your list of goals and put it on your desk – every time you are about to spend money look at your list and make sure that what you are doing is helping you get closer to your goals.

What is your Q4 Revenue Goal? (Specify an exact number)

What is your Q4 Profit Goal? (Specify an exact number)

List the Top 3 Revenue Sources for Q4: (Could be domain sales, monetized domains, affiliate products, etc)

1) Revenue Source #1

2) Revenue Source #2

3) Revenue Source #3

How many domains do you plan to buy in Q4?

What is your budget for buying domains in Q4?

What are your 3 overall goals in Q4? (This could be to develop a site or two, start a blog, post more on a forum – make the goals measurable)

1) Goal #1

2) Goal #2

3) Goal #3

If you haven’t done anything like this before you will find it very empowering. This is a first-step towards taking charge of your business and expenses. Having this sheet in front of you each time you are at your computer will let you easily reference your plan and ensure that the tasks you are doing on a daily basis are moving you closer to your goals. So start planning for Q4 today – it’s already here!

{ 4 comments… add one }

  • Free Domain Newsletter October 2, 2009, 10:00 am

    “How many domains do you plan to buy in Q4?”

    This seems a little foreign to me. I have never intended to buy a specified number of domains in a specified time. I just make sure I have money for good deals when I see them.

    If you plan to buy 10 domains, but can’t find any you like do you just go buy any 10 just to meet your goal, likewise, if you plan to buy 10 and you see 20 that you know you can make a profit on do you not buy the 10 others because it is over your goal?

    Just seems to me that number of domains purchased is not something that should be a per se goal. We should always be looking for opportunity and have some cash tucked away to finance it.

    Do you disagree?


    • mlinton October 2, 2009, 10:14 am

      Thanks for the comment. My point here is an important one. Many new Domainers buy every good deal they find. The problem is that oftentimes what may seem like a good deal might take a lot of time and energy to sell to the right end-user.

      I’ve had many new Domainers email me over the years saying their one regret was buying way too many domains. At the time they all seemed like great investments but after letting hundreds drop they realized that they spend thousands of dollars that they didn’t have to.

      Setting a goal here is important. I do very careful research for every domain I buy but I make sure that I set a goal for how many new domain acquisitions I plan to make each quarter. There are obviously some exceptions if a great deal comes around but staying focused is important.

      So many Domainers just keep buying domains without selling or developing any. When it comes time to renew they realize they’ve just been spending without putting any time into earning. That’s the point I’m trying to make here.

  • Michael October 2, 2009, 11:39 am

    The other day I was watching a replay of Guy Kawasaki’s Art of the Start speech and took away a thing he said that every company should have. He calls it a MAT which stands Milestones, Assumptions and Tasks.

    Milestones would be like:
    – Revenue Goals
    – Number of developed sites
    – Number of sold domains
    – Number of bought domains
    – etc

    Assumptions would be a big list of assumptions that are needed to achieve your milestones

    Tasks are the things to be done to achieve the milestones.

    Priorities are important here too. Setting up a new blog might be important, but where does it stand next to completing a web development project with immediate positive revenue?

    After reading your post, I realized that I can break my MAT down into annual/quarter/month segments – whatever.

    Measure everything of significance.


  • Free Domain Newsletter October 2, 2009, 11:45 am

    “So many Domainers just keep buying domains without selling or developing any. When it comes time to renew they realize they’ve just been spending without putting any time into earning. That’s the point I’m trying to make here.”

    I agree with this point.


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