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Top 5 Downloadable Gantt Chart Excel Templates for Effective Planning
In today’s fast-paced business environment, effective planning is crucial to stay organized and meet project deadlines. One popular tool that professionals rely on for project management is the Gantt chart. A Gantt chart provides a visual representation of project tasks, their durations, and dependencies. While there are numerous software options available for creating Gantt charts, many professionals still prefer using downloadable Excel templates. In this article, we will explore the top five downloadable Gantt chart Excel templates for effective planning.
Basic Gantt Chart Template
The Basic Gantt Chart Template is perfect for beginners who want to dive into project planning with ease. This template provides a simple layout with easy-to-use functionalities. It allows you to list your project tasks, set start and end dates, and track progress using color-coded bars. The Basic Gantt Chart Template also includes features like task dependencies and milestones to ensure smooth project execution.
Project Timeline Template
If you’re looking for a comprehensive Gantt chart template that goes beyond just task scheduling, the Project Timeline Template is an excellent choice. This template not only enables you to create a detailed schedule but also provides a visual representation of your project’s timeline. With the Project Timeline Template, you can easily track important milestones, deadlines, and critical path activities.
Agile Project Management Template
For those working in an agile environment or using agile methodologies like Scrum or Kanban, the Agile Project Management Template is a must-have tool. This template combines the flexibility of agile methodologies with the structure of traditional project management techniques. It allows you to break down your project into sprints or iterations and track progress using user stories or tasks.
Resource Planning Template
Resource management plays a significant role in successful project execution. The Resource Planning Template helps you manage your team’s workload effectively by providing insights into resource allocation across different tasks and projects. With this template, you can easily assign resources to tasks, track their availability, and ensure that your team is working at an optimal capacity.
Risk Management Template
Every project comes with its fair share of risks and uncertainties. The Risk Management Template helps you identify potential risks, assess their impacts, and develop mitigation strategies. This template allows you to document risks, assign risk owners, set risk levels, and track the progress of risk mitigation activities. By using the Risk Management Template alongside your Gantt chart, you can proactively manage risks and ensure project success.
In conclusion, downloadable Gantt chart Excel templates offer professionals a simple yet powerful way to plan and manage projects effectively. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced project manager, there is a template available to suit your specific needs. From basic task scheduling to comprehensive project timelines and resource management, these top five templates provide the necessary tools for successful project planning. So why wait? Download one of these templates today and take your project management skills to new heights.
This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.
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Free Business Plan Templates in Excel
By Joe Weller | September 27, 2020
In this article, we’ve rounded up an extensive list of free business plan templates and samples for organizations of all sizes. You can download all of the plans in Excel.
Included on this page, you’ll find business plan templates in Excel , business plan checklists in Excel , business plan financial templates in Excel , and more.
Business Plan Templates in Excel
These Excel business plan templates are designed to guide you through each step of a well-rounded strategy that supports your marketing, sales, financial, and operational goals.
Business Plan Template in Excel
This Excel business plan template has all the traditional components of a standard business plan, with each section divided into tabs. This template includes space to provide the executive summary, target audience characteristics, product or service offering details, marketing strategies, and more. The plan also offers built-in formulas to complete calculations for sales forecasting, financial statements, and key business ratios.
Download Business Plan Template
Excel | Smartsheet
One-Page Business Plan in Excel
To check the feasibility of your business concept, use this single-page business plan template. The template allows you to jot down the core details related to your idea. This template also includes room for you to provide concise information about what you do, how you do it, why you do it, who your idea serves, your competitive advantage, your marketing strategies, and your success factors. At the bottom of this one-page plan, you’ll find a table to conduct a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis. Find more downloadable single-page plans and examples at “ One-Page Business Plan Templates with a Quick How-To Guide .”
Download One-Page Business Plan
Excel | Word | PDF | Smartsheet
Sample 30-60-90-Day Business Plan for Startup in Excel
This 90-day business plan is designed for startup companies to develop a 90-day action plan. This template gives you room to outline the following: main goals and deliverables for each 30-day increment; key business activities; task ownership; and deadlines. This template also includes a built-in Gantt chart that adjusts as you enter dates. Visit “ 30-60-90-Day Business Plan Templates and Samples ” to download more free plans.
Download 30-60-90-Day Business Plan for Startup
For more free business plans in a wider variety of formats, visit “ Simple Business Plan Templates .”
Business Plan Checklists in Excel
These business plan checklists are useful for freelancers, entrepreneurs, and business owners who want to organize and track the progress of key business activities.
Business Planning Checklist with Timeline in Excel
Use this checklist to keep your business planning efforts on track. This template enables you to add tasks according to each phase of your plan, assign an owner to each task, and enter the respective start and end dates. The checklist also enables you to create and color-code a visual timeline when you highlight the start and end dates for each task.
Download Business Planning Checklist with Timeline Template
Business Plan Checklist with SWOT Analysis in Excel
Use this business plan checklist to develop and organize your strategic plan. Add the name of the business activity, along with its status, due date, and pertinent notes. This template also includes a separate tab with a SWOT analysis matrix, so you can evaluate and prioritize your company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
Download Business Plan Checklist with SWOT Analysis - Excel
Business Startup Checklist in Excel
This checklist template is ideal for startup organizations. It allows you to list and categorize key tasks that you need to complete, including items related to research, strategic relationships, finance, development, and more. Check off each task upon completion to ensure you haven’t missed or overlooked any important business activities. Find additional resources by visiting “ Free Startup Plan, Budget & Cost Templates .”
Download Business Startup Checklist Template
Business Plan Financial Templates in Excel
Use these customizable templates to develop your organization’s financial plan.
Business Startup Costs Template in Excel
Use this template to estimate and track your startup and operational costs. This template gives you room to list line items for both funding and expenses; you can automatically calculate totals using the built-in formulas. To avoid overspending, compare budgeted amounts against actual amounts to determine where you can cut costs or find additional funding.
Download Business Startup Costs Template
Small-Business Budget Template in Excel
This simple business budget template is designed with small businesses in mind. The template helps you track the income and expenses that you accrue on a monthly and yearly basis. To log your cash balances and transactions for a given time frame, use the tab for cash flow recording.
Download Small-Business Budget Template - Excel
Startup Financial Statement Projections Template
This financial statement projections template includes a detailed profit and loss statement (or income statement), a balance sheet with business ratios, and a cash flow statement to analyze your company’s current and future financial position. This template also comes with built-in formulas, so you can calculate totals as you enter values and customize your statement to fit the needs of your business.
Download Startup Financial Statement Projections Template
For additional templates to help you produce a sound financial plan, visit “ Free Financial Templates for a Business Plan .”
Business Plan Marketing and Sales Templates in Excel
Use these downloadable templates to support and reinforce the marketing and sales objectives in your business plan.
Sales Forecast Template in Excel
This sales forecast template allows you to view the projected sales of your products or services at both individual and combined levels over a 12-month period. You can organize this template by department, product group, customer type, and other helpful categories. The template has built-in formulas to calculate monthly and yearly sales totals. For additional resources to project sales, visit “ Free Sales Forecasting Templates .”
Download Sales Forecast Template
Marketing Budget Plan in Excel
This marketing budget plan template helps you organize and plan your campaign costs for key marketing activities, such as market research, advertising, content marketing , and public relations. Enter the projected quantity and cost under each campaign category; the built-in formulas enable you to calculate projected subtotals automatically. This template also includes a graph that auto-populates as you enter values, so you can see where your marketing dollars are going.
Download Marketing Budget Plan Template
Other Business Plans in Excel
Use these business plan templates to conduct analyses and develop a plan of action that aligns your strategy with your main business objectives.
Business Action Plan Template in Excel
Use this basic action plan template to develop a roadmap for reaching your goals. Add a description of each action item, assign the responsible party, and list the required resources, potential hazards, key dates, and desired outcome. You can use this template to develop an action plan for marketing, sales, program development, and more.
Download Business Action Plan Template
Business Plan Rubric in Excel
Once you complete your business plan, use this rubric template to score each section to ensure you include all the essential information. You can customize this rubric to fit the needs of your organization and provide insight into the areas of your plan where you want to delve more deeply or remove unnecessary details. By following these steps, you can make certain that your final business plan is clear, concise, and thorough.
Download Simple Business Plan Rubric
Competitive Analysis Template in Excel
This template enables you to analyze the competitive landscape and industry for your business. By providing details related to your company and competitors, you can assess and compare all key areas, including the target market, marketing strategies, product or service offerings, distribution channels, and more.
Download Competitive Analysis Template
Excel | Smartsheet
For additional free templates for all aspects of your business, visit “ Free Business Templates for Organizations of All Sizes .”
Turbo-Charge Your Business Plans with Templates from Smartsheet
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When teams have clarity into the work getting done, there’s no telling how much more they can accomplish in the same amount of time. Try Smartsheet for free, today.
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Free Business Plan Template
One of the reasons that so many small businesses fail is that they don't do the necessary up front work to create an accurate and realistic business plan. Creating a business plan doesn't guarantee success, but the process of writing a plan is critical for any successful new business. It isn't our goal to try to tell you everything you need to know about creating a business plan. Instead, our goal is to make the process easier by providing a professionally designed business plan template that you can edit easily using Word and Excel .
Business Plan Template
License : Private Use (not for distribution or resale)
Authors : Jon Wittwer and Jim Wittwer
Update (7/22/2016) : We've added a basic break-even analysis worksheet to the companion Excel workbook.
This template provides a business plan outline with sample questions, tables, and a working table of contents. It was created for newer versions of Word and Excel (Office 2007 or later) so that you can easily change the fonts and color scheme and the file will be compatible with the mobile and web-based Word & Excel apps.
It is best to use Excel for financial statements, data tables and charts. So, we have provided a companion Excel workbook with these sample financial statements and other tables and graphs that you can copy and paste into your Word document.
The companion workbook combines many of the different spreadsheets you can find on Vertex42.com, but customized specifically for inclusion in a business plan.
Using the Business Plan Template
Editing headings and table of contents.
Word allows you to assign format Styles to text and paragraphs, and we've designed the template to use these Styles for defining headings, sub-headings, and figure captions.
If you want to add a new section so that the Table of Contents updates correctly, just add a new heading in the body of the document and assign it the Heading 1 or Heading 2 style.
To update the Table of Contents, go to the References tab and within the Table of Contents group of buttons, click on Update Table and then "Update entire table."
Copy/Paste From Excel to Word
For simple tables, you can use Copy/Paste (Ctrl+c / Ctrl+v) to copy a table from Excel to Word. This will typically paste the data as a formatted and editable table in Word, though none of the formulas will be functional within Word (and the table will not be linked to Excel). If you don't want the table to be editable in Word, you can "Paste as a Picture" using Paste Special or by choosing the "Picture" option when you right-click in Word to paste the table.
Important : When you paste a chart object into your business plan, make sure to "Paste as a Picture" because pasting the chart as an embedded object means that the entire spreadsheet becomes embedded in your Word document (even though what you see is only the chart).
If you want to insert a table into Word as a "Linked Object" so that when you edit Excel, the table in Word will update automatically, you may have a more difficult time preserving the formatting of the original. However, at the least the entire spreadsheet won't be embedded within your business plan Word document.
More Related Templates
Resources for Writing a Business Plan
- Write Your Business Plan at SBA.gov - Anybody starting a business should become familiar with the SBA (small business association). SBA.gov also has an online tool for creating a business plan .
- YouTube: How to Write a Business Plan - Business Wales (3 minutes) - This video offers a quick overview and tips for the essential parts of a business plan.
- YouTube: How to Write a Business Plan - Berkeley-Haas (71 minutes) - This presentation offers both the venture capitalist and entrepreneur perspective on how to write a business plan that can successfully attract funding.
- Write Your Business Plan at Entrepreneur.com - A book written by the staff of a company that should know what they are talking about.
- Sample Business Plans at bplans.com - Finding a business plan for similar businesses in your industry is a great way to get ideas for what to include in your plan. This site is a great resource for not only finding sample plans, but also for creating a business plan online using their step-by-step approach.
Other Free Business Plan Templates
- Business Planning Template Gallery at SCORE.org - This nonprofit organization (supported by the SBA) has provided expertise and free mentorship for millions of small business owners. They also have a useful collection of templates.
- Develop Your Business Plan at business.gov.au - This Australian Government site provides a really good business plan template for Word, including a detailed guide, questions to answer, and sample financial statements.
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Do you want to increase the odds that your business startup will be a success? Download this step-by-step business plan template to lay the groundwork for your new business.
Writing a business plan allows you to carefully think through every step of starting your company so you can better prepare and handle any challenges. While a thorough business plan is essential in the financing process, it's helpful even if you don’t need outside financing.
Creating a business plan can:
- Help you discover any weaknesses in your business idea so you can address them before you open for business
- Identify business opportunities you may not have considered and plan how to take advantage of them
- Analyze the market and competition to strengthen your idea
- Give you a chance to plan strategies for dealing with potential challenges so they don’t derail your startup
- Convince potential partners, customers, and key employees that you’re serious about your idea and persuade them to work with you
- Force you to calculate when your business will make a profit and how much money you need to reach that point so that you can be prepared with adequate startup capital
- Determine your target market and how to reach them
A detailed, step-by-step plan gives you a blueprint you can refer to during the startup process and helps you maintain momentum.
What this business plan template includes
Writing a business plan for a startup can sometimes seem overwhelming. To make the process easier and more manageable, this template will guide you step-by-step. The template includes easy-to-follow instructions for completing each business plan section, questions to help you think through each aspect, and corresponding fillable worksheet/s for critical sections.
After you complete the 11 worksheets, you will have a working business plan for your startup to show your SCORE mentor .
Business plan sections covered in this template:
- Executive Summary
- Company Description
- Products and Services
- Marketing Plan
- Operational Plan
- Management and Organization
- Startup Expenses and Capitalization
- Financial Plan
The Appendices include documents that supplement information in the body of the plan. These might be contracts, leases, purchase orders, intellectual property, key managers’ resumes, market research data or anything that supports assumptions or statements made in the plan.
The last section of the template, “Refining Your Plan,” explains ways to modify your plan for specific purposes, such as getting a bank loan, or for specific industries, such as retail or manufacturing.
Complete the Business Plan Template for a Startup Business to create a working business plan for your startup.
Then, contact a SCORE mentor to review and refine your plan online or in person.
Quick Start Business Plan The aim of this module is to give you the tools, direction and ideas you need to build a business plan. If you're starting a business then a business plan is essential, because it forces you to think through your ideas and options.
10 Business Planning Tips for Starting a Business In this webinar, you'll learn 10 business planning tips to help you start your entrepreneurial journey on the right path.
Business Plan 101: Sales & Marketing The sales and marketing section of your business plan describes how you intend to sell your product. Learn what you should include in this section.
Copyright © 2023 SCORE Association, SCORE.org
Funded, in part, through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA.
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Business plan template for small businesses, startups, & entrepreneurs
Business planning can feel complicated. it doesn't have to be. start putting pen to paper today with your free business plan template download..
Our free template includes:
- Detailed instructions
More than just a template, you'll learn how to write a winning business plan.
- SBA-lender approved format
Your plan is formatted the way lenders and investors expect.
- Fill-in-the-blanks simplicity
You don't need to be an expert. This template makes business planning easy.
- Expert tips & tricks
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All 100% free. We're here to help you succeed in business, no strings attached.
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Whether you're writing a business plan to validate your business idea, secure funding, or grow your existing business – our template will help you achieve your goals.
Business plan template FAQ
What is a business plan template?
A business plan template is a document designed to help streamline your ability to write a business plan. It handles the structure and organization so that you can focus on filling in the blanks and defining the key aspects of your business.
Why choose this business plan template?
There are a few key features that make this business template more functional and effective than your average template.
- Written by planning experts: This business plan template wasn't just thrown together. It was crafted by seasoned planning experts with a combined 40 years of experience writing and reviewing business plans. Throughout this template, you find their expert tips and tricks, along with detailed instructions.
- Free course access: When you download your business plan template, you'll get access to a week-long email course covering critical business planning mistakes to avoid.
- Works with other Bplans resources: Need additional guidance to write your business plan? Our free business planning guide is built to support this template—giving you even more detailed walkthroughs for each section.
- Designed for funding: Even if you're not going right to the bank, using this template will prepare you to pursue funding and impress potential investors whenever you're ready. This template ensures your plan is in SBA format.
What is included in this business plan template?
This template includes definitions, guidance, and examples for every business plan component needed to start, fund, and grow your business. After downloading the full template, you'll receive instructions for how to fill out each of the following sections.
Executive summary: The brief summary of your business plan that introduces everyone to your business, the problem you solve, and what you're asking from your readers. It's the first chapter of your business plan and the last thing you write once you have the details from your full plan.
Problem & solution: More than a simple description of your products and services - here you define the problem you're solving and the value you provide. It's also your chance to showcase any initial traction that shows you're on the right track.
Market analysis and target market: A detailed assessment of the market you intend to enter, including the size and value of the market, potential customer segments, and their buying patterns.
Competition: Show that you know who your competitors are, what advantages you have, and how you're positioning your business to be competitive.
Marketing & sales: Describe how you'll reach and sell to potential customers with a detailed sales plan and chosen marketing channels.
Operations: What makes your business run? Outline the day-to-day workflows, and what still needs to be set up for your business to deliver a product or service.
Milestones & metrics: Set goals for your business that include the dates and people responsible to accomplish them. This is what you'll use to manage responsibilities, track growth, and execute your larger strategy.
Company overview and team: Provide a brief rundown of the legal and structural components of your company including your history, current team, and gaps you need to fill.
Financial plan: Create well-structured and accurate financial statements to help you pitch to investors, land funding, and achieve long-term success. All without the help of a financial advisor or a degree in accounting.
Appendix: While not required, this last section of your business plan is a great place to drop in additional documents that support and strengthen the rest of your plan.
What file formats are available for this business plan template?
You can download and use this business plan template as a Google Doc, .docx (Microsoft Word), or PDF.
Can you print out this template?
This is a printable business plan template that can be downloaded and printed no matter which format you choose.
Why should you start with a business plan template?
Starting with a good business plan template (like this one) includes everything you need to get started. It helps you organize your thoughts, and provides guidance, instructions, and examples to create an investor-ready and SBA-approved business plan format. It really speeds up the planning process. Oh, and it's 100% free!
Why do you need a business plan?
Writing a business plan will help you develop a strategy for success, reduce the risk of starting a business, explore new business ideas, attract investors, and get funding. Learn more about how you can get value out of your business plan .
Is writing a business plan easy?
Using a business plan template can make writing a business plan easier. Additionally, if you focus on just getting your information down quickly, with the expectation that you'll revisit and revise your plan, you can speed up and simplify the process .
What are the 5 elements of a business plan?
While there are more than five sections of a business plan, you can group the key elements of a plan into the executive summary, business opportunity, execution, company overview, and financial plan. Thinking of the plan in this way can help you break up the writing process and make tackling each strategic component a separate and focused task.
Can someone write your business plan for you?
If you're still struggling to write your business plan even when using a template, you can look into hiring a professional business plan writer. We even have a free resource to help you ask just the right questions to make sure you find the right plan writer.
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What is a business plan?
A business plan is a document that helps small business owners determine the viability of their business idea. Combining market research and financial analysis, a professional business plan helps startup CEOs and potential investors determine if the company can compete in the target market.
Typically, a good business plan consists of the following:
- Executive summary
- Company description
- Mission statement
- Product and services
- Marketing plan
- Operations plan
- Management organization
- Financial plan
- Conclusion & appendix
Every section involved in a business plan is designed to help startup businesses reach their target market.
A business plan asks founders and entrepreneurs to detail their business strategy in a step-by-step process that makes sense from an operational perspective. This is essential if a startup is seeking a business loan or an investment from a venture capital firm.
However, even small businesses that are already economically viable can benefit from creating a business plan, since it encourages business owners and their management teams to examine their business model and reevaluate the best ways to reach their target customers.
Should I use a business plan template?
Yes. If you’ve never written one, a business plan can be challenging to write.
Creating a successful plan that you can use to grow your small business can require weeks of market analysis and financial preparation. You may spend time using Microsoft Excel or Powerpoint in order to create documentation which better supports our operational decisions.
However, almost every professional business plan is structured in the same way and most ask for the same information. Because of this, using a business plan template is advisable to save time, money, and effort.
Business plan templates for free
Rather than spending time trying to figure out how to write a business plan , use a free template as a guide to completion.
Business plan templates from PandaDoc can help you reach an effective go-to-market strategy even faster by asking you to provide all the relevant information you need when creating an effective business plan.
Grab a free template to get started!
Frequently asked questions
How many pages should my business plan be.
This depends on the kind of business plan you need to write and how you intend to use the plan that you create.
For example, a plan for a small business seeking potential investors or a business loan will need to provide income statements, cash flow statements, and a balance sheet (usually for a three-year or five-year forecast period).
These financial statements can be omitted if a small business owner isn’t seeking funding and is instead planning to use their business plan as a guiding document for themselves and their management team members.
Some business plans may only run a few pages. Fully-developed business plans can be as long as 50 pages. Much of this depends on the type of business, the operational strategy, and the level of detail that goes into developing the business plan.
Who needs a business plan?
Every business should have a business plan. This is an essential guidance document for any founder or CEO.
Good business plans help a company determine the viability of its place in the market and can help the business develop better strategies for differentiating itself from its competitors.
Business planning also forces business owners to evaluate their marketing strategy, the cost of customer acquisition and retention, and how they plan to grow their business over time.
What is the best business plan template?
Business plans come in all shapes and sizes. The best business plan template for your business is one that you understand and that matches the size and legal structure of your operation.
If you’re a sole proprietor, a business plan template designed for a big corporation probably doesn’t make sense. However, a business plan that helps you build an effective roadmap to grow your business while protecting your intellectual property is a good starting point.
PandaDoc offers specialized business plan templates for common industries along with tips to help you get started with business planning.
Should I hire someone to write my business plan for me?
No. You’ll find freelance writers and business strategy companies out there who are happy to write your business plan for a fee. These resources can guide you through the process, but you should write (or be heavily involved in) the creation of your business plan.
The reason for this is simple: You know the most about your business, and your business needs you to succeed.
A writer can work with you to make your business plan sound better to investors, and a consultant can help you fill in knowledge gaps — like how to conduct a SWOT analysis — and point out weaknesses in your plan. But, at the end of the day, you need to use the business plan to pitch investors and run your business.
Those ideas and guiding principles aren’t something you can outsource.
Should I use business planning software?
Software isn’t required when creating an effective business plan. Most business planning software is designed to help you navigate the outlining and writing process more effectively.
You don’t need software to write a professional business plan, but a solid template can help you get started. Download a free template from PandaDoc today and take your business to the next level.
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Simple Business Plan Template for Startups, Small Businesses & Entrepreneurs
Our simple business plan template.
A business plan template is a document that allows you to quickly write a detailed business plan. Among other things, it includes all key business plan sections: an executive summary, company description, industry and market analyses, competitive overview, marketing and operations plans, management team and five year financial projections. Get started writing your business plan today by using our simple business plan template.
Growthink’s business plan template is the result of 20+ years of research into the business plans that help entrepreneurs and small business owners attract potential investors, raise investment capital, and build successful companies.
Using our traditional business plan format, you will be able to write a proper business plan for your new or growing business. It will also help you lay out your business goals and your strategies for reaching them.
Importantly, our simple business plan template allows you to create a winning business plan much faster than starting from scratch. Use our template now to complete your plan for your startup or established business and achieve the success you desire.
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BUSINESS PLAN TEMPLATE OUTLINE
- Business Plan Template Home
1. Executive Summary
- 2. Company Overview
- 3. Industry Analysis
- 4. Customer Analysis
- 5. Competitive Analysis
- 6. Marketing Plan
- 7. Operations Plan
- 8. Management Team
- 9. Financial Plan
- 10. Appendix
- Business Plan Summary
Start Your Business Plan Here
Writing a Business Plan and Business Plan Template FAQs
How can i access growthink’s ultimate business plan template.
Download Growthink’s Ultimate Business Plan Template and complete a solid business plan and your financial statements in hours.
How Do You Write a Business Plan in Microsoft Word?
Our startup business plan template includes an outline of each of the 10 key sections to help you write a plan to start a new business, grow your existing business, and/or help you secure funding such as a business loan from the Small Business Administration, local bank, grants, angel investors, venture capitalists, or from other financial institutions.
Unlike our premium version, our free templates do not include all the key sub-sections, the questions that walk you through step-by-step, the professional cover page designs, nor the financial projections template that allows you to create a professional financial plan in minutes.
Click here to learn more about the World’s #1 Best-Selling Business Plan Template .
Where can i download a free business plan template pdf.
You can access our business plan pdf download here. This is a pdf version of our basic business plan template .
Our free business plan template pdf includes everything you need to include in your plan- executive summary, company overview, industry analysis, customer analysis, competitive analysis, marketing plan, operations plan, management plan, financial plan and appendix- and the key questions that each must answer. This free business plan template pdf will definitely get you started in the right direction.
We do offer a premium version of our business plan template. Click here to learn more about it. The premium version includes numerous features not available in the free template . Its most touted feature is its financial projections template which allows you to simply enter your estimated sales and growth rates, and it automatically calculates your complete five-year financial projections including income statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements . Here’s the link to our Ultimate Business Plan Template.
How Do I Write a Simple Business Plan?
Steps to write a simple business plan template, company overview.
- What type of company are you operating (e.g., a software company, a bakery, etc.)?
- Are you offering a product or a service?
- What is the legal structure of your company (e.g., sole proprietorship, limited liability company (LLC), corporation, etc.)?
- What is your mission statement and value proposition?
- What is the company’s history?
- What is your business model and business idea?
- Is there a market pain that your business solves?
- What is it about your company that makes it (or will make it) uniquely qualified to succeed?
- What milestones has your company achieved to demonstrate success?
2. Industry Analysis
- In what market are you competing (e.g., the fast-food market, the running shoe market)?
- How big is the industry and is that size big enough?
- Are there positive or negative trends affecting the market (e.g., is it growing/shrinking, is government regulation on the horizon that could change the market analysis)?
3. Customer Analysis
- Who are your target customers?
- What are their primary needs when choosing a product/service provider such as your company?
4. Competitive Analysis
- With whom will your company compete and how will your company better serve customer needs than your competitors?
- How else will you “beat” your competition? What are your key points of differentiation and your value proposition?
- How does your product or service compare to those offered by the competition?
5. Marketing Plan
- What is your product or service offering?
- What marketing and sales strategies will you use to attract customers? and what promotional methods will you employ (e.g., radio advertising, pay-per-click ads) ?
- How will you price your product or service?
- What discounts or promotions will you offer?
6. Management Team
Key members of the team.
- Who is on your management team?
- What experiences, relationships, etc. do they possess that will help your venture succeed? Have they ever run other businesses?
- Are there key employees that you must hire in the future to improve your company’s odds of success?
- Do you have any business partners that take part in developing the business strategy?
7. Financial Plan
- What is the main financial information about your company (revenue and expense projections) ?
- How much outside funding (if any) do you need? What are your specific needs? (equipment, supplies,e etc.)
- What are your revenue streams? How much revenue can you really generate each year over the next five years?
- Are the profit margins high enough to sustain the company?
- What are your loss projections?
Completing this simple business plan template will provide a road map to completing your business plan and force you to answer key questions about your company which will help in determining its feasibility and likelihood for success.
For example, in choosing the ideal promotions strategy to attract new clients, you will be able to estimate the cost of acquiring new customers. This will allow you to compare that cost to your estimated customer lifetime value and ensure healthy profit margins are possible (or not).
Likewise , a competitive analysis might alert you to stiffer competition than you imagined and prompt you to opt for a new business idea or creatively come up with ways to outmaneuver competitors.
On a similar note, in completing this lean business plan , you might realize the market size isn’t big enough to support the large, thriving enterprise you’d like to create. Or perhaps market trends are moving away from the problems your company’s products and services solve.
Yet another example of the importance of this exercise is that it forces you to really think about your target customers. The better and more narrowly you can define your target customers, the more cost-effectively you’ll be able to attract them and the more successful you can be in developing a value proposition that appeals to them.
In any case, a simple business plan template allows you to better understand your venture and what it will take to make it successful.
Two additional types of simple business plan templates:
- One-page business plan- A one-page business plan is a compressed version of a traditional business plan that fits neatly into a single page. It usually includes only high level information about your business. Looking for a one-page business plan? Learn more and download our free one-page business plan template.
- Lean Business plan- A lean startup is supported by a one-page business plan that does not require extensive financial information, market research and/or business development plans. The lean startup needs to focus on factors that present immediate opportunities in order to gain a competitive advantage. Looking for a lean business plan? Learn more about the lean business planning process .
What are Some Examples of Business Plans?
It can be helpful to review sample business plans before starting your own business planning process. You can download our sample business plan pdf here to help you get started.
While this is a very common business plan template faq, remember, the most important part of your plan is to explain why your company is uniquely qualified to succeed, so resist the urge to copy a business plan sample completely. Also, importantly, a business plan is a living document that should be updated annually as your company grows and changes.
We also have over 300 business plan examples and free business plan templates available for you to develop a professional business plan.
How Do I Write a Startup Business Plan?
A startup business plan is nearly identical to writing a business plan for an established business. The main difference between a startup business plan and business plans for an existing company is that established businesses should focus more on discussing past accomplishments and rely on historical data in their financial forecasts. In a startup business plan, the company needs to spend more time validating future forecasts since there’s no hard data on which to base them and proving that you will be a successful business owner.
A startup business plan template provides a road map to long-term success and business growth. It should include the same 10 key components of all business plans – executive summary, company overview, industry analysis, customer analysis, competitive analysis, marketing plan, operations plan, management plan, financial plan and appendix.
Learn the step-by-step writing process for how to write a comprehensive business plan and get a startup business plan template.
Can Anyone Write a Business Plan?
While anyone can write a business plan following a traditional business plan template, it’s important to remember that the most important part of your plan is to explain why your company is uniquely qualified to succeed and have strong financial data to support your business idea. This is why it’s important to do your market research to have a clear understanding of your industry, market analysis, target customer, and competitive landscape.
If you have a complex business or need help writing a professional plan, it can be helpful to use business plan software , hire an expert business plan consulting firm, or a business plan writer. So, while you may want to write your business plan, the experience of a consultant can help you develop a more thorough and achievable business plan for you to attract investors, secure funding and/or grow your business. They will also be able to provide helpful tips to help navigate the business planning process.
Learn more about Growthink’s expert business plan consultants and how we help develop winning business plans.
How Can I Get a Printable Business Plan Template?
A business plan is a very important document for any business. It helps you to outline your goals and business objectives, as well as how you plan to achieve them. If you’re looking for a printable business plan template, there are a few different options available to you.
One option is to download a free business plan template . Be aware that free business plan templates are often generic for any type of business, so while it will help you write your business plan, you may need to do some additional editing before using them.
Another option is to purchase a template from a business planning company. These types of business plan templates are of higher quality and include a range of features that can help you to create professional-looking business plans and financial model including the income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statements.
Ultimately, the best option for you will depend on your needs and budget. If you’re looking for high-quality, printable business plan templates that are easy to edit, then a purchasing a business plan template is the best option. If you’re on a tight budget or you don’t need a lot of features, then a free, simple business plan template may be a better choice. Whichever option you choose, make sure to take the time to customize the template to fit your specific business.
Is a Business Plan Required For Funding?
Yes, a written business plan is nearly always required when seeking financing. You need a business plan whether you are a small business, a startup, an existing business looking to grow or a seasoned business owner. Business plans fall into three common categories: business plans for funding, those used for strategy, and business plans for both fundraising and strategy.
Regardless of their business model, many business owners use their business plans to raise bank loans to grow. The funding request allows them to acquire additional business resources and improve their financial health. New business owners often seek bank loans as well as funding from angel investors and/or friends and family.
Importantly, regardless of the source of funding you desire, a good business plan will stand out to a potential investor by showing compelling reasons why you will achieve financial success. A successful business plan must clearly highlight the business opportunity and want investors to buy in. Investors will recognize a well researched business plan. A winning business plan will help you achieve long-term success, business growth and secure funding.
What are the 10 Key Elements of a Business Plan?
10 key elements of a winning business plan.
Most business plans have the following 10 key components:
Industry analysis, customer analysis, competitive analysis, marketing plan, operations plan, management team, financial plan.
A professional business plan will also include a table of contents and a nicely designed cover page. Business plans should also be customized with your specific information and designed to fit with your business concept.