Before you launch a business, you must be prepared if you want to succeed in the market. If other companies find gaps in your business model, they could exploit those gaps. Then, they might learn how to solve problems for your customers better than you, which may result in losses. The best way to prepare for a company launch is to create a business plan. Your plan will be your guide through the unstable journey of a growing business. Having an effective plan and sticking to it could mean the difference between success and failure. Fortunately, there are numerous samples and templates to set you on the right path.
1. Free Templates From the Small Business Administration
Several free templates on the Small Business Administration’s website can help you create a plan for your business. Whether you’re launching a startup or traditional company, you can review the format for each. Examples of each kind of plan are available too.
2. Guidelines From Harvard Business Review
Many sample business plans show you what to add to your own. However, these guidelines from Harvard Business Review also teach you the how and why behind each part. They can teach you how to write a compelling plan that underlines the market demand for your service and the financial benefits for investors. These are better points to highlight in a business model than just how great your service is.
3. Free Template From Bplans
If you want to create a more financially focused business plan, take a look at this template from Bplan. Many of the pages are dedicated to your financial plan and statements. As a result, filling it out will really demonstrate your company’s financial health and how to maintain or improve it.
4. Sample From ThoughtCo
You can use this sample from ThoughtCo as an actual business plan reference as you write your own. ThoughtCo created a fictional company with a full business plan for you to use as a guide for filling out your own. It can help you include important details that you might otherwise miss.
5. Free Template From PandaDocs
This free business plan from PandaDocs is very fleshed out compared to some of the other samples. It clearly explains what you should add to each section so that you don’t have to start from scratch. After filling it out, you’ll know even the tiniest details about your business and how the various departments should work together to achieve success.
6. One-Page Business Plan From HubSpot
HubSpot has created a business plan sample that will work well for a company of any size and type. It includes a framework for how to build your brand and track tasks as your business grows. You can use a new iteration of the plan to expand your own when your business matures.
There’s also a template from HubSpot that provides a checklist for starting your business. It shows you what to include in each business plan section and how to add the details.
Don’t Let Creating a Business Plan Intimidate You
It can be daunting and overwhelming to create a business plan for a new company. For this reason, it’s important to understand the information to include and the format to put it in. Let the above samples and templates be your guide.
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