Are you thinking of starting your own business? Maybe you’ve got an idea for a product or service that you think is really going to sell. Most investors, however, won’t have anything to do with you if you sit them down and say “Hey, this is my idea, will you invest some of your money to help me get started?”
A business plan is a formal document that enumerates and explains your business goals and gives a reasonable plan of reaching those business goals; usually forecasting 3 or 5 years into the future. It should also give background information on who is going to execute the business plan, how funds will be allocated, and potential challenges.
There is no strict fixed content in a business plan; however, people are often confused about the first thing to do when writing a business plan and they may create one that lacks sufficient detail or structure. Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of the best online resources for business plan templates, outlines and samples as well as other useful business templates to help you out.
SCORE is a non-profit organization that has been helping aspiring entrepreneurs and small businesses for over 40 years. The organization offers free business counselling, workshops, as well as various resources and tools.
On their website, you can find downloadable templates of business plans for both start-ups and established businesses, various templates used in financial matters, and sales templates.
B Plans is a company that specializes in guiding entrepreneurs step-by-step in building their businesses. While B Plans does sell LivePlan which provides expert counselling and tools, it also has a large collection of free sample business plans from various categories such as retail, restaurants, services, and health care.
The business plans provided are actual business plans that companies have used so they serve as great reference points that you can follow when creating your own.
This is under the same mother company as the previous example but it operates under a different group in London. Bplans.co.uk also provides several business plans from different categories that can fit nearly any kind of business you’re hoping to start.
This Australian government website has several guides for planning a business as well as an excellent template for creating a business plan. The business plan they feature on this site covers everything from business details and market research, to financial reviews and a break-even analysis.
The best part is that also included in the site is a guide on how to use their business template with explanations for each section. This way, you’re not just following the template haphazardly but utilizing it to its maximum potential.
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