Starting Your Business

Business Plan Checklist


Use this handy business plan checklist to ensure that you have the necessary parts in your business plan.

Please note that the elements of your business plan might vary depending on the nature of your
business and, in some cases, your lender’s requirements. For a list of resources to help you develop
each of the areas outlined below, please refer to our Business Plan Resources Guide.

Business Plan Sections and What to Include:

Executive Summary:

  • Max one-page summary of key points covered in your plan (including high-level description of your company and its products/services, proposed sources and use of funds, competitive advantage)

Description of Company

  • Nature of business
  • Brief history of business (including when and by whom it was started, company structure)
  • Company size and location (relative to your market)

Description of Product/Service

  • Key features and benefits
  • Pricing

Market Analysis

  • Industry analysis (including trends, opportunities and threats, competitive analysis, main competitors, etc.)
  • Market research (proof that there is demand for your product/service)
  • Target market (who your typical customers are, how they behave, their characteristics)
  • Market niche

Marketing Plan

  • Pricing
  • Product positioning
  • Promotion/advertising
  • Sales and distribution


  • Production or procurement (describe the processes required to run the business)
  • Inventory management
  • Personnel
  • Others (e.g. hours of operation, licenses and permits required, one-year action plan, etc.)

Financial Plan

  • Historic financial statements (if it is an existing business)
  • Financial projections (cash flow projections for a minimum of 12 months based on unit sales forecast; if possible, include sensitivity analysis)
  • Financing requirements & capital purchases (including funds required, use of funds, proposed repayment terms)
  • Break-even analysis
  • Accounts payable and receivable

Risk Analysis and Contingency Plan

  • Competitive reaction
  • External risks
  • Internal risks
  • Risk management & contingency plans

Supporting Materials

  • You can include photographs of the product or space, resumes of the key members of the management team, letters of intent, letters of support, etc.

Click here for a downloadable version of this business plan checklist.