Every successful ecommerce business is supported by a foundation of solid business planning. A professional business plan sets the stage for your new business, acting as an internal and external roadmap for brand identity, financial planning, project management, and more.
Writing a business plan is an important and often difficult task for any entrepreneur or business owner. If you can't get your head around a business plan template, business planning software can help. If drafting a business plan from scratch sounds too daunting to tackle on your own, business plan software offers everything you need for business plan creation, including financial reports, sample business plans, how-to articles, and more.
Read on for a list of the best business plan software platforms, plus advice on how to choose the right business plan software for your needs.
6 best business plan software platforms for 2023
Affordable software with business plan templates and samples
- Pricing: standard plan is $15/month; premium is $30/month; annual discounts available
- Money-back guarantee: 60 days
- Capterra rating: 4.5/5
- G2 rating: 4.1/5
- Integrations: QuickBooks, Xero, open API
One of the most affordable pieces of business plan software on this list, LivePlan allows users to create unlimited business plans and offers more than 500 sample business plans and pages to start with. Get step-by-step guidance on how to write your plan and use templates for different types of business plans, making it easy to tailor your plan to your needs.
LivePlan also offers a robust set of financial forecasting tools, helping you to convert financial data like cash flow statements into easy-to-read charts and graphs.
Business plan software for entrepreneurs who struggle with writing
- Pricing: 7-day free trial; detailed plan is $19.95/month; performance plan is $39.95/month; annual discounts available
- Money-back guarantee: none, but no contracts are required
- Capterra: 4/5
- G2: n/a
- Integrations<: none
Enloop has many of the same features as other pieces of business plan software. It automatically syncs financial data and creates financial ratios. And when you write your plan, it assesses it and gives you a performance score, so you can improve it if needed. You can also add users for easy collaboration and sharing. Enloop is especially good if writing isn’t your strong suit, as you can plug in your metrics and let the software do the “writing” for you.
Business plan software for startups seeking investment
- Pricing: $29/month; $349 lifetime access; annual discounts available
- Money-back guarantee: 3 days
- Capterra: 4.4/5
- G2: 3.7/5
- Integrations: Xero, QuickBooks
Bizplan is a business plan software that caters to small businesses and startups seeking external investment. The platform makes connecting with potential investors easy, and allows users to easily publish a business plan on Fundable, a popular crowdfunding platform.
Other standout features include drag-and-drop tools for creating business plan templates, access to self-guided business courses from Startups.com, and financial tools to help set salaries, forecast revenue, and track expenses.
Best business plan software for planning, forecasting, and scenario analysis
- Pricing: 3-day free trial available; app and desktop require separate subscriptions at $99/month each, plus $29/month per additional user; discounts available for annual billing
- Money-back guarantee: 30 days
- Capterra: 4.2/5
- G2: 4.1/5
- Integrations: Xero, QuickBooks, Microsoft Excel
If the focus of your business plan is your business’s financial picture and potential, PlanGuru is an excellent option. In addition to offering most of the basic business plan software features you’d expect, PlanGuru offers tools for budgeting, financial forecasts and reports, strategic planning, and scenario analysis.
While PlanGuru supports additional users, each user also comes with an additional monthly fee of $29/month.
Best contract-free business plan software for new businesses
- Pricing: plans start at $15/month; Go service plan for $199/year; Guide service plan for $49/month; Grow service plan for $39/month; additional one-time services and recurring subscriptions available
- Money-back guarantee: none, but no contracts are required
- Capterra: n/a
- G2: n/a
- Integrations: MailChimp
While it may not have the longest list of business planning features, GoSmallBiz’s solution is part of a larger business continuity planning software platform that includes tools for everything from human resource management to tax payments. GoBizPlan also offers industry-specific business plan templates to kickstart your business plan creation. This is especially helpful if your business idea is destined for a specific vertical market.
GoSmallBiz users can create financial statements and projections for multiple years, including income statements, cash flow statements, and balance sheets. Finally, GoSmallBiz offers step-by-step guidance, prompts, and tutorials to help users get the most out of the platform.
Business plan software with the option to get help from professionals
- Pricing: free trial available; annual subscriptions available; PlanBuildr uses a custom pricing model; rates aren’t readily available on its website, but one landing page prices the business plan software at $3,500
- Money-back guarantee: none, but subscription may be canceled anytime within the first 30 days
- Capterra: n/a
- G2: n/a
- Integrations: various across accounting, CRM, and marketing tools
PlanBuildr is another user-friendly business plan software for people who aren’t as confident with the writing process. This software uses a fill-in-the-blank business plan creator to help you quickly build a simple but solid business plan. PlanBuildr also offers extensive financial reports and features, including charts and graphs and the ability to create various financial projections.
PlanBuildr has 10 business plan designs to choose from, and you can also hire PlanBuildr for additional business plan writing services.
Why use business plan software?
Entrepreneurs use business plan software to guide them through the process of turning a business idea into a complete business model. Only a select group of small business owners go into business for writing—the rest have stronger skills elsewhere. Business plan software can offer the exact support you need to get the wording, structure, and presentation just right.
Likewise, not every entrepreneur is good with numbers. Business plan software can help with financial forecasting by making sense of your cash flow and other financial data. Some software will even automatically generate financial statements for you, making it easier for you and your audience to understand the numbers.
Many business plan tools also offer a range of business plan templates. It’s almost always easier to follow a template or business plan example than to start with a blank page. Writing a business plan is a lot less intimidating this way. Plus, business plan templates can function as a checklist, ensuring that you don’t omit any important sections or information.
How to choose your business plan software
While most business planning software can accomplish the same end goal, each has its own pros and cons, depending on your needs. The best business plan software for you may be different than the best option for your fellow business owners. When shopping for business plan software, consider the following:
- Budget. Perhaps most obvious, the business plan software you choose needs to fit within your budget. Basic business plan tools may not have all the functionality you’re looking for, but more advanced features typically mean a higher price tag.
- Collaboration. If you’re collaborating on your business plan with a fellow founder, an accountant, or legal counsel, you’ll want a business plan tool that supports multiple team members. Some software also allow you to add users as viewers, which can be helpful for distributing the plan to shareholders, lenders, or potential investors, for example.
- Financial reporting. If business financials and reporting are important to you, choose business plan software that excels in this area. Look for business planning tools that offer financial forecasting features beyond basic data reporting, including marketing and performance reports and data visualization through charts and graphs. If you need more extensive financial tools, consider investing in accounting software.
- Interface. Every tool you use in your business needs to have an interface that’s easy to navigate. Choosing business planning software with a steep learning curve or difficult-to-navigate interface may make the process of creating a business plan more frustrating than it needs to be.
- Templates. One of the greatest advantages to using business plan software is access to business plan templates and examples. The best business plan software options offer a range of templates, enabling you to create business plans for multiple audiences and different contexts.
- Software integrations. If you have a tightly connected tech stack, it would behoove you to find a business plan software that can integrate seamlessly with other popular business tools, including Microsoft Office and popular platforms for marketing and accounting.
- Support. If you run into trouble with your business planning software, a great support team or library of business resources can help you get back on track. As a bonus, most business plan software providers also offer online learning tools to help you maximize your results, including video tutorials and built-in advice modules
Business plan software FAQ
What is the best software to write a business plan?
What are the 4 types of business plans?
- Startup business plan
- One-page business plan
- Internal business plan
- Strategic business plan