Why a free business plan is a waste of time.
Free business plan templates are readily available online. They are there to draw you in to buying business planning software, graph generators, financial templates, depreciation templates, SWOT templates and lots more. Don’t go there!
Why? Well, scratch a little deeper. I’m looking at one right now that offers 500+ free business plans. There’s a picture of a happy artist and his quote “I just wrote my first business plan in 24 hours using ….. (the name of their software) and it’s beautiful and complete”. There’s a sidebar that says “How to Write a Business Plan in 30 Minutes”. Then they offer a 60-day free trial! Huh?
Yes, you’ll end up (hopefully) with a very pretty end-product that has cost you hours of work and misses the target completely.
OK, so let’s look at buying a cheap business plan prepared by one of those very companies (guaranteed delivery within 7 days).
Do you ever get to meet them? No
Do they ever use your specific data? No
Do they always come up with a profitable business projection? Yes
Is that realistic without intensive interaction with you? No
A good business plan will cost an amount commensurate with the amount of funding that you seek. It will prepared by a multi-disciplined professional, for example a Pr(Eng); CA(SA), with extensive business experience and will draw extensively on his/her interactions with you. After all, it is you who is planning the business.