In this article, we are going to help you create a perfect business plan template for your growing business. These business plan templates are designed to assist you in understanding how you can sustain your business while being able to generate the maximum possible income from it. Just follow these simple instructions and business plan templates and you will have a good business plan in no time.
You may have heard the popular saying “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” Whoever uttered those wonderful words was right to the core. If you desire a successful and prosperous business, then a business plan is a must-have for that. A business plan, in its essence, can be considered as a road-map that your business requires to meet the goals set up for your business. Therefore, it consists of the actions and deadlines that you set up to achieve the business goals. To create a good business plan, you need a good business template. A good business plan template ensures that your business plan is to the point and meets the objectives that you set while being a useful guideline that your company can follow along to reach the predetermined destination.
Why do you need a business plan?
- To set a definite objective, side objectives (map the future) and check the deviations from your goals to bring your business back to track
- To monitor your progress and rate of your growth at any point in time
- To ensure that your business grows and receives funding
- To know about your competition and how you can do better than them
- To analyze your business structure so that you can make necessary modifications
Now without any further ado, let us hop on to the business plan template :
A business plan consists of the following components as the chapters :
Sales and marketing
Staff and management team
Now let us go in-depth about each of the chapters of the business template that we mentioned above
In the first section of your business plan template, the executive summary is essential to land the first impression to the readers that essentially excites and interests them. The executive summary section is the one that directly falls after the title page. In this section, you introduce your company in general. You explain what your business is, what it stands for, and what activities are done in and by it. You also clearly mention what your expectations are from those who are currently reading your business plan. As the title explains, this section of the business plan is a summary and should contain all the necessary highlights and overviews of the details of your plan in a short yet sweet version. It is in its essence a tool for you that you can use to reel in the investors by letting them a peek at the general organizational layout and the planned objectives. Through this, you should be able to convince the investors that your plans and your mission statements are deserving of their precious investments.
The business overview also known as company overview as the name suggests is an overview of your business and contains the points about your company that stands out or is important. Usually the shortest part of the business plan, this section is an excellent way to introduce your business. When writing this section, it is advised that you write it as if you are explaining the business to someone that has never heard about your business and answer all the “WH” questions. After reading the section of the business plan template, your intended audience will know about your company’s history, details about who runs it, the legal structure of your business, your location and services you provide, and your intentions with the business. If you know about the sales pitch, then this is where you employ it.
Products and services
In this section of your business plan template, you describe what the products and services that you offer are. You also tell the audience how your products and services are created, how they are assembled, where do you make it and you deliver them to your customers. In the case of services you describe the range of services that you offer and at what time you offer it. And here is our additional tip that makes you stand out, you can avoid the buzzwords belonging to your industry but what you should not miss is the opportunity to show how your products or services differ from that of your competition. Do you have any uniqueness in your product? Do you have patents, copyrights, or registered trademarks? If yes then this is the time to show off. What should you aim to answer is, Is your product new to the market? And if it is not how do you expect to beat the existing products? What is the profit margin? When you know your trade, there is very little possibility that your audience will stop believing in you.
Customer and market analysis
Following the products and services section, we have customer and market analysis. This section of your business plan is where you show the power of your research and the level of your familiarity with the market and competition. Here you represent the identification of your target customers and recognition of the needs and requirements of the target audience and how your products or services fit the purpose. Here you show the general trend related to your products and the consumers and if the consumption has increased or decreased with time and by which rate, forcing the entrepreneur to be familiar with every aspect of the market and the company’s position in the market. This competitive analysis can be effective in knowing the chinks in the armor of your opponent and what their strong suit is.
In this section of the business plan, you team up with the account section and give key financial statements that include historical financial data and cash flow statements of your past. (You include a various financial statement that shows where your company currently stands and where it expects to be. You determine which type of financing would be most suitable for your business. If your business plan is for the expansion of an existing business, your statements will be based on existing financial data. But, in case if your business is relatively new, you can make the speculations realistic by the work of financial statements of existing businesses that is similar to yours. If you cannot find this data on your own, then you look for an accountant who has experience working with businesses similar to yours and can help you to create realistic financial projections.)You also talk about the prospects regarding the financial division and income forecasts. This section should not be much of trouble if you have got a good accountant to help you out with.
In this chapter of your business plan, you express the techniques that you are going to imply to establish and grow your business. The primary elements of the plan are the company’s vision, its mission statement, critical success factors, strategies and actions for objectives, and an implementation timeline. You write the business vision that includes the purpose, goals, and values of the business. It’s typically a one- to two sentence statement. Then you write the mission statement for the business including a description of the business – what type of business is it and how you plan to meet the needs of your target market. After that, you list the success factors the business has to meet to achieve that. And they can vary from business to business. Now you compile the business strategies; the action and the one responsible for completing the action. It typically includes marketing advertising actions as well and strategies to maintain a competitive edge, growth of sales, and a strong relationship with the customers. Techniques such as SWOT analysis ( strength, weakness, opportunities, and threats) can be effective to help you write this section.
And finally, you prioritize your timeline because you cannot implement everything at once.
Staff and management team
Here, in this chapter of your business plan template, you present an organizational description of the departments of your company and the key employees of different sections and subsections.
(In this section you describe your management team and how your business ownership is structured. Those who read your business plan will not only look for the management team but also the skills of staff that contribute to your business. You may divide these sections into different subsections; ownership structure, internal management team, external management resources, and human resources needs. The ownership structure describes the legal structure of your business. The internal management team describes the main business categories relevant to your business, identifies responsibilities, and profile. The basic business categories may include sales and marketing, Administration and Production work, etc. External management resources give your business management plan credibility and an additional pool of expertise and human resources needs section helps you to describe your human resources needs specifically.)
It is also a good idea to show the ownership structure and the list of advisers, accountants attorneys, and employees in general.
Now the template components aside, these things that we have mentioned below are some additional tips that are useful for creating a business plan.
Learn to copy
A master was once a beginner and achieved mastery by copying the master. The same is the case of a business plan. Find a plan that belongs to the pro of an industry that is similar to yours and then uses the sample business plan as inspiration and generates ideas. You should look out for word phrasing and writing style in general and then borrow it while adding your unique element to the plan.
Highlight the opportunities
A good business plan template lists out the exploitable opportunities in detail so make sure that you never miss listing any opportunities. A reader shows interest if and only if he/ she can recognize an opportunity that will benefit themselves via your organization. Make sure that you list out the pain points, proposed solutions, and compelling benefits.
One thing that you should avoid in the business plan template is overestimating yourselves and presenting false promises, just because you have to show your effectiveness does not necessarily mean that you create them out of thin air. Every statement that you put down in your business plan needs to have credibility, and you have to be able to back the statement up when push comes to shove.
Revise, revise, revise
We can not emphasize this enough. Your business plan needs multiple revisions; you will always have room to grow. Look out for grammatical errors, mistakes in data, or any possible thing that can go haywire. At the end of the process, you should feel that you outdid yourself and felt pride in your work because that is how the pros roll.