When starting a business, you need to write a business plan. Writing it, however, is not something that comes naturally to anyone. It is a long process that can come with a lot of frustrations, from researching to formatting and editing it to look and sound professional. But if you are serious about starting a business, you definitely need one. That is why we have compiled a list of nine tools that can assist you in writing a business plan.
1. Business Plan Apps
There are apps for your computer and mobile devices that can help you through the process of writing a business plan at every step. These apps not only simplify the process but also help you write up a business plan that is professional and can ultimately convince investors (if you are looking for any).
You will be hard-pressed to find an article about tools that help you write a business plan and not find StratPad on that list. This app for the iPad helps entrepreneurs with everything involved with strategic planning, including writing a business plan. With this app, you can write one in a day. The good thing about this app is that it does more than just help with business plans, it also helps you plan your entire business at every step.
Enloop is a web-based app that helps you write a traditional business plan from start to finish. Actually, it does more than help you by actually writing the entire document for you based on the data you feed it. The business plan comes complete with all the visual elements, such as tables, charts, and graphs as well as useful projections like sales, cash flow and profit, and loss.
4. Business Plan & Start Startup
Android users can use Business Plan & Start Startup, which is a business and motivation app for would-be serious entrepreneurs. This means that on top of helping you craft a professional business plan, it also keeps you motivated to make sure that you don’t demotivate yourself and end up not completing your goal. It does this by allowing you to get help from community members who provide helpful advice and insights that will keep you going when the frustrations and hardships arise.
5. Business Plan Templates
If you don’t know what a business plan should look like, then a template can give you a good idea. All you have to do is download it and fill in the blanks. The good thing about the template websites mentioned below is that you can use the templates they contain for any business, whether it is an accounting firm or civil engineering company.
If you are looking for comprehensive templates that will touch on all aspects of writing a business plan, then check out SCORE. Any business can use SCORE, from startups to already established businesses. Other than that, you can also download templates for other business plan-related items, like startup costs, balance sheet projections, profit and loss projections, sales forecasts, and more.
If you want business plan templates for a specific idea, this Microsoft Office website, has plenty of them to choose from. It also has all the tools you need to represent data for business in a meaningful way (charts and graphs) and can help you craft a PowerPoint presentation based on the information you put into the template in case you need to present the plan to the relevant parties.
8. Business Plan Tutorials
If you are keen on writing the business plan yourself and want to understand and enjoy the process of writing a business plan, then there are plenty of sites dedicated to explaining this to you. When you know how to create a business plan from scratch, you can customize it however you like to suit your particular situation.
How to Write a Simple Business Plan
Sometimes, your business plan can fit on one page, which means it makes no sense to read a detailed and long tutorial on the subject. You don’t always need to spend weeks researching and writing just to complete a business plan. If you are looking to write a streamlined plan for your business, this tutorial explains the process in eight simple steps.
Shopify’s Ultimate Guide to Business Plans
As the name of this tutorial suggests, this ultimate guide goes into extreme detail on every aspect of crafting a respectable business plan. Even though it is mostly geared towards writing one for an e-commerce store, the information contained therein can ultimately be applied to a number of businesses. The entire tutorial is comprised of nine easy-to-read chapters.
SBA’s Video Business Planning Tutorial
Not everyone loves to read or has the time to read a long tutorial on the subject of business plan writing. This is where this video series comes in, providing you with in-depth knowledge of the subject in short 2- to 3-minute videos. There are nine of them in total, but there are enough to help you get started and are fun to watch and easy to follow.
Writing a business plan doesn’t have to be a daunting task since there are a variety of online tools that you can use. As an entrepreneur who is serious about starting a business, you can’t skip this important step. And if you are finding it extremely difficult, the above-mentioned tools can help you out. But if you still find it hard to write a custom business plan from scratch, you can always hire a writing company to assist you.