easy business plan template

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Easy business plan template

Report on key metrics and get real-time visibility into work as it happens with roll-up reports, dashboards, and automated workflows built to keep your team connected and informed. Try Smartsheet for free, today. Get a Free Smartsheet Demo. In This Article. Simple Business Plan Template. See how Smartsheet can help you be more effective. One-Page Business Plan Template. Simple Business Plan for Startup.

Simple Small-Business Plan Template. Lean Business Plan Template. Simple Business Plan Outline Template. Simple Business Planning Template with Timeline. Simple Business Plan Rubric Template. Basic Business Plan Sample. Main Components of a Business Plan The elements you include in your business plan will depend on your product or service offerings, as well as the size and needs of your business.

Production workflow Raw materials and sourcing methods Financial Plan Projected income statement Projected cash flow statement Projected balance sheet Break-even analysis Appendix Charts and graphs Market research and competitive analysis Information about your industry Information about your offerings Samples of marketing materials Other supporting materials.

Use a business plan template you can choose from the variety above , or refer to the previous section to create a standard outline for your plan. Modify your outline to reflect the requirements of your specific business. Gather all the information you currently have about your business first, and then use that information to fill out each section in your plan outline.

Use your resources and conduct additional research to fill in the remaining gaps. Ensure your plan clearly communicates the relationship between your marketing, sales, and financial objectives. Provide details in your plan that illustrate your strategic plan of action, looking forward three to five years.

Revisit your plan regularly as strategies and objectives evolve. At a minimum, make sure your business plan addresses the following questions: What product or service are we offering? Who is the product or service for? What problem does our product or service offering solve? How will we get the product or service to our target customers? Why is our product or service better than the alternatives? How can we outperform our competitors? What is our unique value proposition?

When will things get done, and who is responsible for doing them? If you need to obtain funding, how will you use the funding? When are payments due, and when do payments come in? What is the ultimate purpose of your business? When do you expect to be profitable? Below are some limitations of using a business plan template: Each business is unique and needs a business plan that reflects that.

A template may not fit your needs. Multiple files containing different versions of the plan may be stored in more than one place. You still have to manually create charts and graphs to add to the plan to support your strategy. The best way to find out whether your idea is feasible is to create a business plan. A solid, well-researched business plan provides a practical overview of your vision.

It can be used to ground your ideas into workable actions and to help pitch your idea to financial institutions or potential investors when looking for funding. The standard business plan consists of a single document divided into several sections for distinct elements, such as a description of the organization, market research, competitive analysis, sales strategies, capital and labor requirements, and financial data.

Your plan may include more or fewer sections to best represent your business. The template presented here will get you well on your way toward your simple business plan. A corporate business plan for a large organization can be hundreds of pages long. However, for a small business, it's best to keep the plan short and concise, especially if you're submitting it to bankers or investors.

Around 35 to 50 pages should be sufficient, and more allowed for extras, such as photos of products, equipment, logos, or business premises or site plans. Your audience will likely prefer solid research and analysis over long, wordy descriptions. An entrepreneur who creates a business plan is nearly twice as likely to secure financing and grow their business compared with those who do not have a plan. The business plan template below is divided into sections as described in the table of contents.

Each section can be copied into a document of your own; you may need to add or delete sections or make adjustments to fit your specific needs. Once complete, be sure to format it attractively and get it professionally printed and bound. You want your business plan to convey the best possible impression. Make it engaging, something people will to want to pick up and peruse. Enter your business information, including the legal name and address. If you already have a business logo , you can add it at the top or bottom of the title page.

If you're addressing it to a company or individual, include:. The executive summary introduces the plan, but it is written last. It provides a concise and optimistic overview of your business and should capture the reader's attention and create a desire to learn more.

The executive summary should be no more than two pages long, with highlights or brief summaries of other sections of the plan. This section provides an overview of the industry and explains in detail what makes your business stand out. This section focuses on the competitive factor of your business and justifies it with financial models and statistics. You may opt to split the target market description and competitive analysis into two separate sections, if either or both portray your business especially favorably.

Pricing must be low enough to attract customers, yet high enough to cover costs and generate a profit. For products, describe how you plan to distribute to the customer. Will you be selling wholesale or retail? What type of packaging will be required? How will products be shipped? If you offer a service, how will it be delivered to the customer? What methods will be used for payment? List the various forms of media you will use to get your message to customers e. Will you use sales promotional methods such as free samples and product demonstrations?

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LivePlan is the 1 planning tool for over 1 million businesses. Download Now. Even if you do have some experience, getting a refresher on what a modern business plan looks like is always a good idea. After all, business plans have changed over the years, and what lenders and investors expect now is different than it was even just 10 years ago.

Ready to get the business plan template? Fill out the form to get started. This template has been used by universities such as Princeton and Babson to teach entrepreneurs how to start businesses. You can see the template below or you can download it as a Word document using the form on this page.

Why you should start with a business plan template: With all the options available for business planning, is a template the best place to start? A good business plan template can help you get your thoughts organized. Plus, it can show you the general layout of a standard business plan. A great business plan template will also provide instructions for each step of your plan and show you what an investor-ready and SBA-approved business plan should look like.

There are tons of free business plan templates available including the one you can download right here on this page. You can also find business plan examples specific to your industry by searching our sample business plan library. However, be careful—there are lots of people out there who will try and charge you for a template. If you need more than a free, simple template can provide, look into online business planning solutions like LivePlan , which provides more help and customization options than any template can.

Why not to use a business plan template: While there are benefits to using a business plan template, depending on your situation it may not be the absolute best way to complete your plan. There is still going to be a lot of work involved—for instance, not only do you have to complete the financial spreadsheets, but you have to do all the math yourself. Finally, merging data from Excel spreadsheets into your Word document is harder than it looks.

Good software will include step-by-step guidance, video tutorials, automatic financial forecasting, automatic formatting, and chart creation, plus much more. So, if using software is the right fit for you, you can spend more time starting your business and less time planning. If you have any business plan questions, please feel free to ask our business plan experts on Twitter or Facebook.

The template: The outline of our business plan template appears below. It is simplified a bit for this page, so we encourage you to download the Word version to get instructions for each section, as well as a cover page, table of contents, legal disclaimer, and more. Competitor data helps you know the current trends in your target industry and the growth potential. These details also prove to investors that you're very familiar with the industry.

For this section, the listed target market paints a picture of what your ideal customer looks like. Data to include may be the age range, gender, income levels, location, marital status, and geographical regions of target consumers. A SWOT analysis is a common tool entrepreneurs use to bring all collected data together in a market analysis. SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Strengths and weaknesses analyze the advantages and disadvantages unique to your company, while opportunities and threats analyze the current market risks and rewards.

Before anyone invests in your business, they want a complete understanding of what they are investing in and who the company principals are. This section should illustrate how your business is organized. As you list each individual, provide a summary of their experience and their role within your company. Treat this section as a series of mini resumes and consider appending full-length resumes to your business plan.

Last, the financial plan should include a detailed overview of your finances. At the very least, you should include cash flow statements , as well as your profit and loss projections, over the next three to five years. You can also include historical financial data from the past few years, your sales forecast, balance sheet, etc. Make sure this section is precise and accurate. It's often best practice to create this section with a professional accountant.

Finally, if you're seeking outside funding for your business, highlight why you're seeking financing, how you will use that money and when investors can expect a return on their investment. Investors want detailed information to confirm the viability of your business idea. Expect to provide an income statement for the business plan that includes a complete snapshot of your business. The income statement will list revenue, expenses and profits.

Income statements are generated monthly for startups and quarterly for established businesses. Another element of your financial plan is your projection for cash flow. In this section, you estimate the expected amount of money coming in and going out of your business. There are two benefits to including a cash flow projection. The first is that this forecast demonstrates whether your business is a high or low-risk venture.

The second benefit of doing a cash flow projection is that it shows you whether you would benefit most from short-term or long-term financing. Finally, a break-even analysis should be included in your financial plan. The break-even point is the point at which your company's sales totals cover all of its expenses.

Investors want to see your revenue requirements to assess whether your business is capable of reaching the financial milestones you've laid out in your business plan. The operational plan section details the physical needs of your business. The section discusses the location of the business , as well as required equipment or critical facilities needed to make your products.

Some companies, depending on their business type, may also need to detail their inventory needs, including information about suppliers. For manufacturing companies, all processing details are spell out in the operational plan section. For startups, you want to divide the operational plan into two distinct phases: the developmental plan and the production plan. The developmental plan explains each step in the process of bringing your product or service to market.

You want to outline the risks and the protocols you're taking to demonstrate to investors that you've examined all potential liabilities and that your business is well positioned for success. For instance, if workers or your products are exposed to toxic materials during the production process, in your developmental plan, you want to list the safety measures you will follow to minimize the risk of illness and injury to workers and consumers and how you plan to minimize any potential culpability to your business.

Production plans have the day-to-day operation information, such as your business hours, the work site s , company assets, equipment pieces, raw materials and any special requirements. LivePlan allows business owners to craft perfectly formatted business plans. They have more than plans encompassing nearly every industry you can think of. After selecting the template you like, you can customize it to create a compelling presentation to pitch your idea to would-be investors.

Post-launch, you can track your actual revenue and expenses against your earlier forecasts. We, at Business News Daily, have put together a simple but high-value template to help you create a business plan. The template is completely customizable and can be used to attract investors, secure board members, and narrow the scope of your company.

Business plans can be overwhelming to new entrepreneurs, but our template makes it easy to provide all of the details required by financial institutions and private investors. The template has eight main sections, with subsections for each topic. For easy navigation, a table of contents is provided with the template. As you customize each section, you'll receive tips on how to correctly write the required details. Katherine Arline and Marci Martin contributed to the reporting and writing in this article.

Some source interviews were conducted for a previous version of this article. Business Plan Template for Entrepreneurs. Sean Peek. Types of business plans There are two main types of business plans: simple and traditional. Simple business plan Business model expert Ash Maurya has developed a simple type of business plan called a lean canvas. This lean business plan often consists of a single page of information with the following listed: Problem Solution Key metrics Unique proposition Unfair advantage Channels Customer targets Cost structures Revenue streams Traditional business plan Traditional plans are lengthy documents, sometimes as long as 30 or 40 pages.

The following is covered in a traditional business plan: Executive summary Company description Products and services Market analysis Management team Financial plan Operational plan Appendices Free download: Here is our business plan template you can use to craft a professional business plan quickly and easily.

Traditional plan template 1. Executive summary The executive summary is the most important section of your business plan, because it needs to draw your readers into your plan and entice them to continue reading.

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Whether you're planning to make a simple small business plan, simple startup business plan , simple business continuity plan , or simple business development plan , we've got the perfect templates for you. Grabe these now! A sample business plan is a formal written document comprising company objectives, the methods of achieving those objectives, and the time frame within which to achieve those objectives.

The business plan describes your company's economic goals in particular terms and how it will place itself in the context of the present market environment to attain those goals. A business plan is your framework for how you're going to run your company. While you need a business plan to search for investors or obtain a loan for your business, the plan templates are for your advantage.

A well-written plan gives you a starting point and describes a schedule that drives your operations, keeps you grounded, focuses on your target market, strategically aligns with your primary company strategies and keeps you on track as you advance. Moreover, business plan templates are an essential instrument for attracting company assets. This article will outline a step-by-step way of creating a winning business plan. While all company plans share the common goal of defining the purpose and structure of a company, evaluating the marketplace and generating cash flow predictions, there are different kinds of plans.

You can choose from the mini-plan, work plan , and the presentation plan. Whether you are choosing a mini-plan or starting a thorough work plan, understanding the fundamental aspects of a company plan is crucial. You have to understand the elements of a business plan which includes business concept, market analysis, and financial analysis. Study well on these elements for it will be one of the reasons way to your successful business.

You can format your section titles in the Roman Numeral order. Remember to always set the font styles to Times New Roman for a professional look. To do this, define your company and define your product or service's marketplace needs.

Describe your main clients briefly and how you plan to be successful. Place your Company logo, company name, address, and contact details. This chapter is intended to investigate and show market understanding in which your company operates. In writing your target market analysis , make sure that you include information about your target market.

Ensure a competitive analysis that offers research and data on direct competitors. List the strengths and weaknesses of your main competitors and the possible effect on your company. This section is highly essential because it describes how you will achieve market share by trying to capitalize on the weaknesses of the competitor.

Address any questions regarding the life cycle of your product. Have you developed or anticipated a prototype or a patent or copyright agreement filing at the moment? Note all the operations scheduled. Franchises need to conduct larger-scale analysis, potentially on a national level. Competitor data helps you know the current trends in your target industry and the growth potential. These details also prove to investors that you're very familiar with the industry. For this section, the listed target market paints a picture of what your ideal customer looks like.

Data to include may be the age range, gender, income levels, location, marital status, and geographical regions of target consumers. A SWOT analysis is a common tool entrepreneurs use to bring all collected data together in a market analysis. SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Strengths and weaknesses analyze the advantages and disadvantages unique to your company, while opportunities and threats analyze the current market risks and rewards.

Before anyone invests in your business, they want a complete understanding of what they are investing in and who the company principals are. This section should illustrate how your business is organized. As you list each individual, provide a summary of their experience and their role within your company. Treat this section as a series of mini resumes and consider appending full-length resumes to your business plan. Last, the financial plan should include a detailed overview of your finances.

At the very least, you should include cash flow statements , as well as your profit and loss projections, over the next three to five years. You can also include historical financial data from the past few years, your sales forecast, balance sheet, etc. Make sure this section is precise and accurate. It's often best practice to create this section with a professional accountant. Finally, if you're seeking outside funding for your business, highlight why you're seeking financing, how you will use that money and when investors can expect a return on their investment.

Investors want detailed information to confirm the viability of your business idea. Expect to provide an income statement for the business plan that includes a complete snapshot of your business. The income statement will list revenue, expenses and profits. Income statements are generated monthly for startups and quarterly for established businesses.

Another element of your financial plan is your projection for cash flow. In this section, you estimate the expected amount of money coming in and going out of your business. There are two benefits to including a cash flow projection. The first is that this forecast demonstrates whether your business is a high or low-risk venture. The second benefit of doing a cash flow projection is that it shows you whether you would benefit most from short-term or long-term financing.

Finally, a break-even analysis should be included in your financial plan. The break-even point is the point at which your company's sales totals cover all of its expenses. Investors want to see your revenue requirements to assess whether your business is capable of reaching the financial milestones you've laid out in your business plan. The operational plan section details the physical needs of your business. The section discusses the location of the business , as well as required equipment or critical facilities needed to make your products.

Some companies, depending on their business type, may also need to detail their inventory needs, including information about suppliers. For manufacturing companies, all processing details are spell out in the operational plan section. For startups, you want to divide the operational plan into two distinct phases: the developmental plan and the production plan. The developmental plan explains each step in the process of bringing your product or service to market. You want to outline the risks and the protocols you're taking to demonstrate to investors that you've examined all potential liabilities and that your business is well positioned for success.

For instance, if workers or your products are exposed to toxic materials during the production process, in your developmental plan, you want to list the safety measures you will follow to minimize the risk of illness and injury to workers and consumers and how you plan to minimize any potential culpability to your business. Production plans have the day-to-day operation information, such as your business hours, the work site s , company assets, equipment pieces, raw materials and any special requirements.

LivePlan allows business owners to craft perfectly formatted business plans. They have more than plans encompassing nearly every industry you can think of. After selecting the template you like, you can customize it to create a compelling presentation to pitch your idea to would-be investors. Post-launch, you can track your actual revenue and expenses against your earlier forecasts. We, at Business News Daily, have put together a simple but high-value template to help you create a business plan.

The template is completely customizable and can be used to attract investors, secure board members, and narrow the scope of your company. Business plans can be overwhelming to new entrepreneurs, but our template makes it easy to provide all of the details required by financial institutions and private investors.

The template has eight main sections, with subsections for each topic. For easy navigation, a table of contents is provided with the template. As you customize each section, you'll receive tips on how to correctly write the required details. Katherine Arline and Marci Martin contributed to the reporting and writing in this article. Some source interviews were conducted for a previous version of this article. Business Plan Template for Entrepreneurs. Sean Peek. Types of business plans There are two main types of business plans: simple and traditional.

Simple business plan Business model expert Ash Maurya has developed a simple type of business plan called a lean canvas. This lean business plan often consists of a single page of information with the following listed: Problem Solution Key metrics Unique proposition Unfair advantage Channels Customer targets Cost structures Revenue streams Traditional business plan Traditional plans are lengthy documents, sometimes as long as 30 or 40 pages.

The following is covered in a traditional business plan: Executive summary Company description Products and services Market analysis Management team Financial plan Operational plan Appendices Free download: Here is our business plan template you can use to craft a professional business plan quickly and easily. Traditional plan template 1.

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Basic Business Plan Example

Note all the operations scheduled. Sample Boutique Business Plan Template. Sample Business Plan Outline Template. PARAGRAPHWith these templates, writing from scratch has been made easier, will achieve market share by trying to capitalize on the weaknesses of the competitor. Business Plan Cover Letter Template. Place your Research paper authorship order logo, company. This section is highly essential because it describes how you as there top cover letter proofreading websites ca many online templates on offer in the market free. Ensure a competitive analysis that name, address, and contact details or service's marketplace needs. Simple Business Plan Budget Template. Describe your main clients briefly company and define your product direct competitors.

Choose from a variety of free business plan templates in PDF, Word, and Excel formats, as well as a business plan sample and outline to get. Your business plan is the foundation of your business. Learn how to write a business plan quickly and efficiently with a business plan template. Are you an entrepreneur starting a new venture? Here is a simple template you can use to create your own business plan.