|Editor's Review Costs & Features Videos User Reviews|
We have awarded Live Plan our prestigious Gold Award in this category, having reviewed 12 Business Plans Software & Services. Read our review below to find out why...
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LivePlan offers an online service for creating and developing your business plan. Although it is more catered towards start up businesses, more seasoned entrepreneurs may still find it to be of use in helping to develop existing plans, and to check whether their financial targets are continually being met. You can use the system for any kind of business plan, and the site provides a number of samples from different industries as examples of what you can achieve and the sorts of things you might include.
If you’re not entirely sure of all the sorts of information you ought to include in your business plan then LivePlan ought to be a great help. It asks all of the questions that need answering in a business plan, and the documents produced use industry-standard structures so that yours ought to be seen as competently produced. That said, if you’re looking for a service that guides you through a plan that is very particular to your industry then you may need to look elsewhere, as the majority of the planning done on LivePlan is more generic (and in some sense, therefore more flexible for producing very different plans in the future).
Users will be able to organise their financial plans whilst tracking their performance over time. This allows you to identify any shortcomings and to monitor how you are progressing towards your goals. You can also edit all areas of the plan so that they are specific to your company, reducing the general sound of segments and making sure that they will speak clearly to potential investors. Live Plan offers 10 different designs for your plan, allowing you to give a particular look and feel to each one. As well as this you are able to produce multiple plans, so you are not restricted in terms of how many edits you make, or how many unique plans you can produce during your license period. Once you’ve finished you can either send the plan in an email (as a PDF) or print it off.
If you’re not too hot on the finance side of things then this system provides a range of basic formulas that do all the hard work for you. You can also convert this information into graphs, which makes for a more visual interpretation of data and is better suited to any pitches you might be giving to gain investment. However there is no way to import data from non-Quickbook sources, which could become a pain if you have a lot of data you need to import from another program.
LivePlan is a solid business plan creator with a few extra features that are bound to help start up businesses, particularly if they’re keen to keep a close eye on their finances. Whilst it system doesn’t allow you to stray too far from a standard plan, you are still able to personalise each one in terms of its content and layout. You will also be able to access your plan from any machine with an internet connection, and can invite others to collaborate on it if you need a bit of extra input. Whilst LivePlan doesn’t necessarily have all of the features that more established businesses might be looking for, the ones it does have do a good job and ought to be of use.
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