Confused On How Long Should A Business Plan Be? Here Is The Answer
What should be my business plan length? It is a common question for entrepreneurs who are new to business planning.
Certain people hold the opinion that a business plan should be one page long, while some people hold that a business plan should be extensive and filled with minute details.
Are you confused about the length of a business plan? Every business plans and businesses are different. While some strategies may be heavily text-based and include extensive market research, others may rely on graphics to make their points.
If your business plan is too brief, you’re probably not offering potential investors enough details about your operation. In contrast, if it goes on for too long, you will bore them, and they will lose interest since you are giving them too much information.
Your business plan should be as extensive as necessary to persuade the reader that it is worthwhile to invest in or take an interest in.
In light of this, a business plan for achieving that objective typically has between 15 to 30 pages.
Let’s see the detailed guide on how long should a business plan be.
Length Depends On The Purpose Of Your Business Plan
While determining the ideal length of your business plan, don’t overlook the main mission of your plan. The goal of your business plan is to persuade readers to support your business financially or by being an active part of your business.
The length depends on the purpose of the action you want your audience to take. Certain questions to answer to know your purpose are:
- Who is the target audience first, for whom you are creating a business plan? (as an example for banks, investors, hiring people, or someone else)
- Will it have details of the business and the management team that everyone can read?
- Do you require to show the whole business plan or only the executive summary to your readers?
- Does it contain thorough research, plans, designs, and charts?
The Length Of An Executive Summary Is Crucial
The executive summary is typically the whole overview of the business plan, so it is one of the essential components. Therefore, make sure your summary is well-presented and brief with all the details.
The Executive Summary’s opening paragraph in particular is of utmost significance since if you don’t grab the reader’s attention right away, they won’t continue reading.
It should normally be one to two pages long to get the reader’s interest in your plan.
A good executive summary should be 5-10% of the whole business plan, so write all the information in a synchronized yet clear manner.
Your business plan has six essential components after the executive summary. These sections should each be between one and two pages long.
→ Download Now: Executive Summary Template
Correctly Format Your Plan
By organizing your plan, you can avoid including information that would make the plan too cluttered, long, and difficult to read. Formatting will:
- Give readers a more enjoyable experience and make it simple for them to locate the exact information
- Help you fit in the ideal length of the business plan
- Increases engagement and your chances of getting results
- Will also help you understand key elements of your business
No One Wants A Novel
When it comes to your business plan length: no one would be interested in reading 100 long pages.
If you include every question, your plan will be excessively lengthy, and the majority of readers will become bored. Keep in mind that no one will read a 100-page business plan.
Instead, include the most significant information in the executive summary, and then in the other sections of your plan, validate what you mentioned in the executive summary.
Move Supporting Documents To the Appendix
While an executive summary gives a quick overview of your overarching strategy, the appendix supports the data presented in the plan, making it simple to read with all the evidence.
For instance, the primary component of your plan includes revenue projections for years 1 and 5. You can include the specifics of how those forecasts were made in your appendix rather than putting all pertinent information in the main text.
Therefore, do not include all the documents in the other sections of a business plan, and move all the supporting documents to the appendix.
The 15 Minutes Readability
The 15-minute readability is an actual answer to the question; how long should a business plan be? After quickly scanning the main points of a strong business plan for 15 minutes, the reader should have a good understanding of its main components.
Format, headlines, white space, and graphics all significantly impact readability. The main ideas of a business strategy should be presented as rapidly as they are in a business proposal or business presentation.
If you are still confused about how to write a business plan, then you can also use free business plan samples to make your plan perfect.
Use Graphics Wisely
Never reduce a plan by removing helpful graphics. Readability and understanding of the plan are much more important with the help of graphics.
Make your financial projections easier to understand by using business charts to illustrate the numbers. As much as possible, use pictures and drawings to illustrate locations, items, sample menus, product images, and other things.
Types Of Business Plans
The page count of a business plan also depends on its type. There are three types of business plans, let’s deep dive into them, and then you can decide the ideal length of your business plan.
One-Page Business Plan
A business owner prefers a one-page business plan to introduce their business to investors. A one-page business plan encompasses the key elements of the company into one page, much like an executive summary.
One of the advantages is that investors can read it quickly because it is simply one page long and has just enough details to pique their interest.
A one-page business plan is not for investors who are already interested in your business, as it doesn’t give away much information.
→ Download Now: One Page Business Plan Template
Mini Business Plan
A mini business plan contains 1 to 10 pages and has every component that is in a normal business strategy, but all are synchronized.
A short business plan gets right to the point and frequently uses bullet points to complete the section. Even though it contains some of the same details, a detailed business plan is still necessary.
If an investor asks for further details, after reading a one-page business plan, then this mini-business plan can come in handy.
This version will contain more detailed information, such as the problem, the solution, the marketing plan, the expected financial results, the target market, the company and management team, short financial tables, business charts, and the details to secure funding.
The Comprehensive Business Plan
Comprehensive business plans can range in length from 15 to 35 pages and beyond.
This business plan provides readers with a complete overview of the company, including the market problem, the proposed solution, company description, objectives, and goals, as well as its marketing plan, competitive analysis, operational plan, financial projections, financial plan, management team, and funding request.
A comprehensive plan starts with an executive summary and then expands on it with supporting data. This plan includes essential research to validate the overall business idea.
These business plans should only be provided upon request and following the delivery of a one-page or mini-business plan. An extensive business plan gives investors a complete picture of the company while raising the starting capital.
Which Type Of Business Plan Do You Want?
Many business owners merely write up one business plan, which they send out in every circumstance. Unfortunately, this approach is ineffective.
Instead, business owners should be prepared to provide the appropriate business plan when required by having all three types of business plans in their toolbox.
The most crucial factor isn’t how long your plan is; it’s knowing which kind of plan to utilize and when that will offer you an advantage when looking for finance.
Are You Ready For Your Business Plan?
Whether you are a small business or a startup, a business plan page count can not be that lengthy. To keep your readers interested till the last page, make it to the point and be researchful.
Start writing your plan today with the help of our sample business plans, and make the procedure of an investment-ready plan as easy as possible with us.
Frequently Asked Questions
1 What Are The 7 Essential Elements Of A Business Plan?
- Executive summary
- Company description
- Products and services
- Market analysis
- Strategy and implementation
- Organization and management
- Financial plan and projections
2 How Long Should A Business Plan Take?
According to the research, three months was the ideal amount of time to devote to the plan. This led to a 12% improvement in the likelihood of developing a successful business plan with all the market analysis and business understanding.
3 What Are The 3 C's Of A Business Plan?
The main three C’s of the business plan are:
- A clear idea of what your business entails
- Determining who your customers or clients will be
- The cash flow of your firm