When submitting my concepts to invention hunts, licensing agents, manufacturers, retailers, engineers, and the patent office, I was asked many different kinds of questions. The questions ranged from "What problem does it solve?" to questions that required extensive research such as "Who is your target market?"
"Half the population in [a] new ABC News poll thinks both job security and retirement prospects in the years ahead will remain worse than their pre-recession levels." ("Poll: Less Job Security is the 'New Normal,'" ABC News The Polling Unit, June 15, 2009, analysis by Gary Langer) This confidence, or lack thereof, is an integral part of an economic cycle.
So, although a detailed business plan may not be required for an online business, I am going to include it here so you can at least look at and consider each section and determine yourself if it applies to your business.
I also said that a business plan consists of a narrative and several financial worksheets.