Quick Business Plan Template

Wednesday, March 13th, 2019

Whether you’re a first time start up or an established business looking to branch out, defining and presenting your initial business proposition is an integral first step.

Business Plans are a strategic management tool that aid in effectively establishing a clear idea of what it is you want to achieve, as well as identifying any problems, opening the channels for additional advice and providing a formal document for banks, lawyers and the like.

5 Tips For Building A Good Business Plan

Compiling a comprehensive Business Plan means incorporating many different factors and considerations, bringing them together in an easy to understand yet structured document. Here are our top 5 tips for preparing your business plan.

  1. Set Clear Objectives. Be specific and clear about what you want to achieve. 
  2. Keep It Simple. Don’t get bogged down with unnecessary info, stick with the basics and keep your business plan easy to understand.
  3. Be Realistic. Make goals that are realistic and relevant to current economy and industry conditions.
  4. Talk To Potential Customers. Gain an understanding of how your product works for them, and the price they would be prepared to pay.
  5. Determine Strengths And Weaknesses. A SWOT analysis is common practice in building a business plan and is helpful to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

How Can A Business Plan Help?

Business plans are not just for new startups, they can be useful in many ways even if you have been in business for a while. A business plan keeps you focused with clear goals and expectations on where you want to be and when. A business plan is useful for the following

  • Starting Out. When starting a new business the business plan is used to set goals, and identify issues that may arise and get everyone on the same page.
  • Monitoring Progress. A business plan is never a static document it should be continually monitored and updated, it is extremely useful for tracking your progress and identifying whether or not you are meeting your goals.
  • Applying For Funding. A business plan is a document that banks and lending experts will require when you are seeking extra funding for the business particularly for expansion.
  • Managing Unforeseen Circumstances. A business plan will help you keep ahead of the game and be ready for changes within the industry and market place and be on top of any resulting changes you need to make to your product or service.
  • Tackling New Challenges. Business planning can help you understand how any new business direction fits into your current working model and any impact taking this new direction make have on the business.

Business Plan Tools

Choosing the style or type of business plan that works for you is an important factor when preparing a business plan, choose to go with a document or sometimes a more visual representation like a business canvas might work better.

The Business Model Canvas

The ‘Business Model Canvas’ by the team at Strategyzer seeks to aid in simplifying this process, providing a systematic way to map out your entire business strategy from start to finish and is a good starting point when building a business plan.

This free Business Plan Template can be downloaded or used digitally or printed out. Essentially it is a large page divided into squares, each one containing one of the following aspects of the traditional Business Plan.

  • Customer Segments. Identifies who your customer base is – the target market. This can refer to paying customers or casual users depending on your business.
  • Value Propositions. Covers what you will offer these customers – what do they stand to gain from your business? Essentially, the product or service you are planning to offer.
  • Channels. How the service or product will be conveyed to the customer. This could be through physical retail outlets, online stores or subscriptions etc.
  • Customer Relationships. Outlines the type of relationship you’re establishing with your customers.
  • Revenue Streams. Identifies the way you expect to profit from the business. This covers not only the means of revenue but also forecast results.
  • Key Resources. Identifies what you will need to make this business plan happen. From production and development through to marketing and distribution, this should be a comprehensive list of what you will need to get the project off the ground.
  • Key Activities. The things you will need to do in order for your business to perform well.
  • Key Partnerships. You won’t own all the resources yourself, so it’s important to identify the partnerships you will need to build to get all the necessary components together.
  • Cost Structure. A summary of costs that are contained in the business structure.

Following a Business Plan template aids in creating a clear and logical understanding of your proposed business model, while bringing to light any oversights or potential issues. Remember your business plan is not set in stone, plan to regularly review and update if necessary. 

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Katie is a lover of words and art, born and raised in Christchurch. With a BA in English and Japanese, she’s happiest tapping away at her keyboard writing copy or articles, or else working on the latest illustration. To balance the creative side, Katie is also very motivated and a bit of a perfectionist, which helps with her SEO duties. Although her hobbies could probably be described as art, art and more art, she also enjoys long walks, good friends and travel.

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