Free business plan template for small businesses. Updated for 2024.

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Business Plan Template for Small Businesses

Business planning can feel complicated. It doesn't have to be. Start putting pen to paper today with your free business plan template download.

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Available formats:

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Downloads: 942,736

Our free template includes:

Detailed instructions

More than just a template, you'll learn how to write a winning business plan.

SBA-lender approved format

Your plan is formatted the way lenders and investors expect.

Paper with pencil represents documenting information.

Fill-in-the-blanks simplicity

You don't need to be an expert. This template makes business planning easy.

Expert tips & tricks

Get expert guidance sent straight to your inbox!

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All 100% free. We're here to help you succeed in business, no strings attached.

Why you need a business plan

Writing a business plan can seem like a big task, especially if you’re starting a business for the first time and don’t have a financial background. After all, business plans have changed over the years, and what lenders and investors expect now is different than it was even just 10 years ago.

What hasn’t changed is that writing a business plan will help you:

  • Develop a strategy for success
  • Reduce the risk of starting a business
  • Explore new business ideas
  • Attract investors and get funding

Learn more about how you can get value out of your business plan.

What is included in this business plan template?

This template includes definitions, guidance, and examples for every business plan component needed to start, fund, and grow your business.

After downloading the full template, you’ll receive instructions on how to fill out each of the following sections.

Executive summary

The brief summary of your business plan introduces everyone to your business, the problem you solve, and what you’re asking from your readers. It’s the first chapter of your business plan and the last thing you write once you have the details from your full plan.

Problem & solution

More than a simple description of your products and services – here you define the problem you’re solving and the value you provide. It’s also your chance to showcase any initial traction that shows you’re on the right track.

Market analysis and target market

A detailed assessment of the market you intend to enter, including the size and value of the market, potential customer segments, and their buying patterns.


Show that you know who your competitors are, what advantages you have, and how you’re positioning your business to be competitive.

Marketing & sales

Describe how you’ll reach and sell to potential customers with a detailed sales plan and chosen marketing channels.


What makes your business run? Outline the day-to-day workflows and what needs to be set up for your business to deliver a product or service.

Milestones & metrics

Set goals for your business that include the dates and people responsible for accomplishing them. This is what you’ll use to manage responsibilities, track growth, and execute your larger strategy.

Company overview and team

Provide a brief rundown of the legal and structural components of your company, including your history, current team, and gaps you need to fill.

Financial plan

Create well-structured and accurate financial statements to help you pitch to investors, land funding, and achieve long-term success. All without the help of a financial advisor or a degree in accounting.


While not required, this last section of your business plan is a great place to drop in additional documents that support and strengthen the rest of your plan.

How do you write a simple business plan?

If you’re exploring a business idea and don’t plan to pursue funding, then you actually don’t need to write a traditional business plan. Instead, opt for a one-page plan, which is far easier to create but just as effective.

To write a simple one-page business plan, follow the same core sections as a traditional plan. But instead of lengthy paragraphs and multiple pages covering each area of your business, stick with single sentences and bulleted lists.

If a one-page plan sounds like a better option, download our free simple business plan template to get started.

Start your business plan today

Whether you're writing a business plan to validate your business idea, secure funding, or grow your existing business – our template will help you achieve your goals.

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Business plan template FAQ

You can download and use this business plan template as a Google Doc, .docx (Microsoft Word), or PDF.

This is a printable business plan template that can be downloaded and printed no matter which format you choose.

Starting with a good business plan template (like this one) includes everything you need to get started. It helps you organize your thoughts, and provides guidance, instructions, and examples to create an investor-ready and SBA-approved business plan format. It really speeds up the planning process. Oh, and it's 100% free!

Using a business plan template can make writing a business plan easier. Additionally, if you focus on just getting your information down quickly, with the expectation that you'll revisit and revise your plan, you can speed up and simplify the process.

If you're still struggling to write your business plan even when using a template, you can look into hiring a professional business plan writer. We even have a free resource to help you ask just the right questions to make sure you find the right plan writer.

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