45 + Business Plan Templates
Do you need help writing your business plan? Wise Business Plans have created over 45 free business plan templates for nearly all industries to assist you in writing your business plan. There are also tips on how to write your business plan and answers to key sample questions.
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A business plan able you to plan well for your business and increases the chances of a business’s financial success. It helps you stay on course. A business plan template helps you create your business plan.
A template comes with a proper business plan structure. Your odds of securing funding for your business are higher with a business plan created with the help of a professional business plan template.
A business plan template will help you to:
Business Plan Templates By Business Category
Why Do You Need a Business Plan?
A business plan gives detailed information about your business goals, your strategy for achieving those goals, and how much time you will take in the process.
Creating a business plan will help you in the following ways:
- Understand your target market and a strategy to reach your target audience
- Detect any mistake in your business idea and attend to it before opening your business
- You may find new opportunities and more effective ways of conducting business
- You will think hard about your competition and refine your idea
- You will spot challenges better and you will face those challenges well-prepared
- Your business plan tells your employees, investors, and partners that you are determined to your business idea
- You will calculate your business’s breakeven point and profitability and you will know how much capital you need to reach the breakeven point
Are You Looking for a Customized Business Plan Template?
Why Should You Start with a Business Plan Template?
A business plan is a lengthy and fairly detailed document. It starts with a summary of your business and goes on to explain your products and services, and your financial, production, & operational plan.
Traditional Business Plan vs Lean Business Plan
When we search for a free business plan template, we usually see a traditional business plan.
Traditional Business Plan
- Long and detailed document
- Sections and subsections for every detail
- Discusses your goals and strategy to achieve those goals at length
- Investors and lenders will require this business plan to consider your business idea
Lean Business Plan
- Short and concise version of a business plan
- Only 1-2 sentence introduction to each business plan section
- Introduce your goals and strategy with only a statement
- Expandable, you can turn it into a full-length business plan
- Mostly used by lean startups & small businesses who won’t need any funding
- Potential lenders and investor may request more detail
What Does This Business Plan Template Achieve?
Our free business plan template is to help you create a business plan easily. We have business plan templates in Word and PDF formats for both traditional business plans and lean business plans.
With the help of this free business plan template, you will be able to create a comprehensive business plan within a few hours.
We have also included a section on how you can convince potential investors and venture capitalists to invest in your business idea. We believe that a business plan should help you win investment for your business.
How to Use This Free Business Plan Template?
Free: Business Plan Examples
Do you need help creating a business plan? Check out these six free, proven business plan examples from different industries to help you write your own.
How our business plan template helps you write a world-class business plan?
When you have a business plan template, writing a business plan is fairly easy. You will just need to commit to the task for a few hours if you have the necessary data already.
Writing a business plan may take more time if you are starting with a clean slate, i.e. the idea just came into your mind and you started writing a business plan.
There are nine sections to a traditional business plan.
- Executive Summary
- Company Description
- Market Analysis
- Organization and Management
- Service or Product Line
- Marketing and Sales
- Funding Request
- Financial Projections
It is not important to stick to the exact business plan outline; you can move the sections as you deem necessary. However, it is recommended to keep all nine sections of the business plan template.
Introduce your company briefly and tell why your business idea will be a success. Your executive summary is essentially a short version of your business plan.
Try to make the executive summary a stand-alone document as many investors and lenders will evaluate your business idea solely on that. If they like your executive summary, they will ask for a complete business plan or pitch.
A good executive summary will include:
- An overview of your business idea
- Product or Service detail
- Information about the target market
- Information about your team
- Financial Plan
- Operations Plan
- Funding requirement
Write an executive summary after completing your business plan. Since it is a summary of your business plan, you will be able to write it better at the end.
Free: Executive Summary Examples
Download the free business plan executive summary examples to make writing one easy for you!
The company overview section of a business plan is the place to talk about your company’s strengths.
You can talk about the competitive advantage your company has in the market. Discuss how your company will solve a specific problem and what organizations, consumers, or customers it will serve.
Your market analysis includes how you are positioned in the market, who your potential customers are and how they will benefit from your product or service. You will make a good point if you are precise and your analysis is based on data and reality.
Talk about your market dynamics like what are trends in your target market and how it is changing over time. This will help you understand the long-term outlook of your business.
Organization and Management
Give information about your organization and structure and key people in it. You will need to give details of the legal structure of your company. Is your company an LLC, partnership firm, sole proprietorship, or corporation?
Include your organizational chart in it to help investors and lenders understand your company. Show how each team member adds to the success of your business idea. If you can include resumes of your key people, that would be great.
Pro Tips: Learn how to write a management team section in business plan.
Service or Product Line
Explain the product or service in your business plan you are going to offer. Talk about the benefits of your product. If you have plans for intellectual property like TradeMarks, copyrights, or patents, discuss that here.
If you have a research and development plan for your product or service, tell your readers about that in this section.
Marketing and Sales
Marketing and sales are dynamic. You can only lay out the first marketing plan to bring in initial sales.
Talk about how a sale will happen. How you will attract the customers and how you will maximize customer lifetime value. Marketing and sales are directly linked to your financial forecast, make sure both align
Pro Tips: Learn how to write a sales and marketing plan in a business plan.
Outline how much funding will you need for the next five years and where you will use it.
Try to be specific here. When you are asking for funding, make sure you tell about:
- How much funding will you need in the next five years
- Where you will spend this money (like will you buy machinery, equipment, pay salaries, do marketing, etc)
- Talk about the terms you will offer like equity or debt
- How you will pay your debts
Bonus Tip: Explore the 14 common funding sources for your small business.
Sales and Financial Projection
Financial project is one of the business plan sections that will be most pondered upon. Financial projections make the case for your business’s financial success.
The financial projections will include a balance sheet, income statement, and cash flow statement. If you are already running a business, you can include current financial statements. You will include forecast financial statements for your business if you are just starting.
Make 5 years financial projections. Make the financial projections and forecast financial statements for the first year with even shorter intervals like quarterly or biannually.
Try to keep your financial projections close to reality.
Pro Tips: Learn how to create a financial plan in a business plan.
The appendix is the place to enter information that you could not enter elsewhere.
Include any missing data chart, terms definition, legal notes, or tables here. Marketing material, key employees’ resumes, permits, leases, and market study data will also be added to the appendix.
Bonus Tip: Learn what to include in a business plan appendix when writing a business plan.
Are You Looking for a Customized Business Plan Template?
What is a lean business plan and how to write one?
A lean business plan is a concise business plan that outlines and gives a straightforward management plan. A lean business plan is made for internal use but it can be expanded into a lengthy, traditional business plan.
A lean business plan is also called a lean start-up business plan, startup business plan, lean startup format business plan, or lean canvas business plan.
How to write a Lean Business Plan?
Writing a lean business plan is fairly easy. Since it is a short, one-page business plan and you are making it for yourself or your business partners, you do not need to include lengthy details.
A lean business plan will have a one or two-sentence introduction to each section. For example, the executive summary in a lean business plan may only talk about your target customer and how you are a good fit for them.
A variation of a lean business plan is a lean canvas business plan. The difference between a lean business plan and lean canvas business is that the lean canvas business plan is visually appealing. A lean canvas business plan deconstructs your startup business plan and makes it easy to understand.
We have included a lean startup business plan template in PDF and Google Docs. You can download our free lean business plan template below.
Need help writing your business plan?
If you need help in writing a business plan for your idea, we can help. Here is how:
- Learn how to write a business plan in our business plan writing guide.
- Check out our collection of sample business plans for different industries; you will surely find a business plan for your business idea.
- Hire our expert business plan writers and get your business plan done professionally with the help of our business plan writing services.
Or get our business plan template here.
Recommended: For good impression on your reader visit our page on business plan cover examples
How to win investments and capital with your business plan?
The ultimate goal of your business plan is to win you the investment and resources.
Any business plan template will do the job for you when your only goal is to understand your business and how you will run it. This may be the case when you are all in all of your business.
You are starting a business with a plan to expand and scale. Any business idea worth scaling will need more money and other resources than you may have. You will need to pitch your idea to venture capitalists and investors. For that, your business plan must address them and answer their questions.
Here are Five checks you can implement to make your business plan more investor-friendly and win investments with a business plan.
Free vs Paid Business Plan Template
WiseBusinessPlans offers free as well as paid business plan templates. Both templates come with their advantages and disadvantages.
If your business is cash-strapped, a free business plan may serve you better. Although you will face some challenges, you can create a functional business plan with a free template too.
Free Business Plan Template
WiseBusinessPlans offer free business plan templates, business plan samples, business plan writing guides and tutorials. You can learn and develop a top-notch business plan with the help of our free resources.
Free business plans templates are suitable for people who don’t need any loans or investments.
Free business plan templates are created in a way that everyone can use them. Mostly, they have a set pattern and even if you put unique data, you may not get a perfect, investor-ready business plan.
Another drawback of a free business plan template is the pre-filled, sometimes dummy, data in the template. If you are not careful, you may forget to replace this data with actual data about your business.
Paid Business Plan Template
A paid business plan, or template, is your way to go when you need funding for your startup.
Getting a paid business plan template comes with advantages like customized data and good graphics.
When your business idea is backed by real data, you are more likely to convince lenders and investors to give you funding.
A good business plan writing service may be expensive but its comparative cost is little if you get funding.
Interested in getting a paid business plan template? Explore these options.
LivPlan is a business plan-making software. It gives you step-by-step instructions. It also helps with creating financial statements, financial forecasting, and KPIs. The price starts at $15 per month.
BizPlan is similar to LivPlan. It is cloud-hosted and gives you a walk-through experience of creating a business plan. The annual plan costs $20.75 per month.
GoSmallBiz is another business plan software with the added advantage of tutorials and how-to videos. You can learn as you go and make a business plan fit for securing investments or loans. The price starts at $15 per month.
If you only need help with your financial plan section in a business plan, Enloop may be a great choice for you. Enloop generates detailed financial forecasts for your business idea. Monthly price starts at $11 per month.
Frequently Asked Questions
A business plan helps you prepare for launching your business. It gives you a clear plan and roadmap to achieve your goals.
A business plan is a very important document. It introduces your business to your potential investors, shareholders, and lenders. A business plan also helps you apply for credits and loans by effectively presenting your business.
Attracting investment and getting loans at the start of your business can be tough. When you have an excellent business plan, you can convince then investors and lenders of your potential and secure their support.
A business plan does not only talk about goals and promises. The more accurate and factual your business plan is, the more reliable it will appear. With dedicated effort, you can convince anyone that your business's financial success is only a matter of time. Our free business plan template will help you achieve that.
Your business plan length will vary as per your unique needs.
For small businesses that solve a problem for a small market segment and they do not need a lot of funding, a short business plan may work fine. In the case of a traditional business plan, the length may be anywhere between 15-20 pages.
For medium and large businesses or businesses that can potentially serve a large market segment and their growth prospects are good, they will need a business plan that fully explains their business idea. A typical business plan length for such business can be anywhere between 30-50 pages.
For startup businesses, a one page lean startup business plan will cover everything in 1-2 pages.
Anyone starting a business, looking to secure funding for expansion of their business, or understanding the business thoroughly will need a business plan.
A business plan prepares you for making your business idea a financial success. It can help you spot any weaknesses and unidentified opportunities.
Even if you are not going to ask for funding or investment for your business, writing a business plan will up your chances for success by 30%.
(2 Burke, A., Fraser, S., & Greene, F. J. (2010). The multiple effects of business planning on new venture performance. Journal of Management Studies, 47(3), 391-415.)
The best business plan template is the one that serves your needs well.
A traditional business plan template is good for convincing investors and securing funding; a lean startup business plan is good for understanding a business idea quickly and taking action fast.
Generally speaking, hiring a business plan writer may not be the best idea. Writing your business plan is an opportunity for you to understand your business plan in greater depth. A business plan writer may be able to get all things right and make a complete business plan but your understanding of your business idea will not increase.
Also, writing a business plan is easier than ever with the help of a free business plan template. Our business plan template guides every step of the process. You will only need to gather information and write it down.
The chief advantage of business planning software is that it makes the business plan writing process more interactive. The experience is similar to filling out a PDF business plan template with the same outcomes.
An award-winning business plan is written by professional writers. We have MBA-qualified business plan writers at Wise Business Plans.
Download our ultimate Business Plan Template
We will show you some real-world business plan examples so you may know how to write your own, especially if you are seeking a bank loan or an outside investment and need to use SBA-approved formatting.