How to Write a One Page Business Plan
Writing a business plan doesn’t have to be over-complicated. A one-page business plan focuses on your core aspects.
Writing a business plan can often be a daunting task. They can be long, complex, and be time-consuming to put together. But regardless, having a business plan is important to guide your business into the future.
A one-page business plan can be a great solution to explain your business idea. They force you to think a little more critically about who your business is and how you’re going to operate.
Instead of having a long and drawn-out plan you can get right to the point. Even though a traditional business plan still has a ton of benefits, a one-page business plan also brings some added benefits.
Here is everything that you need to know about how to write a one-page business plan.
Here’s What We’ll Cover:
What Is a One-Page Business Plan?
A standard business plan is going to encompass exactly what your business does, your goals and outline how you’re going to achieve them. It's an overview of your business model and business strategy. Typically, they’re going to include roughly eight different sections:
- Executive summary
- Company summary
- Products and services
- Market analysis summary
- Strategy and implementation
- Financial projections and plan
- An appendix
And even further than this, each of those eight sections can include additional subsections.
While the traditional plan is still important for your business, a one-page business plan almost acts as a type of pitch document. It can be a more approachable way to get your plan in front of the right people. Plus, it’s going to deliver a much more distinct message which will allow you to grab the audience's attention.
One-page business plans make you structure your thoughts and explore the most important business ideas that you have. Essentially, you can explain in a single page everything about your business and how you’re going to deliver on the goals you set.
Here are some of the important elements that your one-page business plan should cover:
- Who your customers are and the problems that they have
- How you’re going to solve those problems for your customers
- Who your competition is and how you’re going to set yourself apart
- The people that makeup your team
- How you’re going to generate revenue
- The costs that you can expect to incur
It’s going to cover all the same points that a full-length traditional business plan would cover, only much more condensed.
What are the Main Advantages of a One-Page Business Plan?
There can be several advantages and benefits to developing a one-page business plan. You can better condense your thoughts and apply them to where your business is going to go. Plus, it can help you identify all the internal and external factors that you need to take into consideration.
This is different from a detailed business plan, which will have everything from vision statements, loss projection and pricing strategy. A one-page business plan touches on the key assumptions and every critical aspect of your business.
Writing a One Page Business Plan
You’re going to condense everything you would have in a traditional plan into a one-page format. It’s going to follow a similar structure, but you’re instead going to highlight the main areas of your business. Here are 8 sections for you to include.
The biggest factor in your summary is going to be where your business is currently. What are you trying to achieve? Are you just starting out or have you been in business for a while? Try and write only one or two sentences about either:
- The general concept of your business
- Your current financial situation or the needs that you have
- Your current business situation in a general sense
- The biggest and key success factors of your business
2. Market Analysis
Focus primarily on the specific segment of the market you’re targeting. Dive into your niche market and try to keep it as specific as possible. You can include a few sentences about the customer needs in your target market and the primary target market segment.
Be sure to also explain how you can differentiate your product from the competition.
3. Competitive Analysis
Again, in a few sentences, explain how competitive your products or services are against your competition. Explain the different opportunities that you have found and how you’re going to leverage them. You can also discuss the potential threats and any risks that you have found from doing your competitive analysis.
Where are your products or services going to have the biggest opportunities? Who or where are you going to face the biggest threats? Are there any products or services that are going to be most competitive to yours?
This part of the one-page business plan can be a little difficult, but it can also be one of the most important and useful. Explain why and how your business is going to be different from the competition. Touch on the key competitive capabilities and weaknesses that your business has.
If your strategy isn’t as clear and distinct as possible, you might need to re-do it. Focus on your differentiation and how customers are going to benefit from your products or services. Try and keep this section to only a few sentences, even though you might want to explain in greater detail.
5. Products and Services
Where are you going to position your products or services? Do you have a competitive evaluation of what your competition is doing? Try and explain why your products or services are different and how they’re going to benefit the customer. But again, try and keep it to one or two sentences.
6. Marketing and Sales
Narrow down your marketing strategy and your sales tactics to clearly define what they are. Similar to strategy, this can be a little more difficult to condense. But are you focusing on publicity? Social media? Inbound marketing? Just describe what you’re going to do and how it’s going to contribute to generating revenue.
In this section, try and explain the strongest or most relevant aspect of your operations. It could be your organizational structure, your key personnel or your facilities. It could even be a human resources plan, customer service or how you’re going to deliver your product or service.
Essentially, in one or two sentences, focus on the operations that provide your business with a competitive advantage.
Make sure that you try to focus solely on profit and loss. You can include details for gross sales, gross profit margin and selling in general. Try and keep it as focused as possible and you can also explain the sales targets that you’ve outlined.
One of the biggest things to remember with a one-page business plan is that you want to highlight the most critical aspects of your business. Focus on the areas that are the most relevant to what you want to get out of the plan. You can go into more depth in your longer, traditional business plan.
That way, even though you are staying as condensed as possible, you still have a document that provides greater details. For example, pitching your one-page business plan to a potential investor can provide the overview that they need. But they still might want a few more details to get a better understanding of your business as a whole. That’s where your longer, more traditional business plan can come into play.
To keep your one-page business plan on one page, you are going to need to be as succinct as possible. Try and only focus on the main areas and highlights of your business. It’s a way for you to fully explain the goals of your business and how you’re going to get there.
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