Business Plan Questionnaire
Successful business plans clearly explain a company’s business model, objectives, strategies, and competitive advantages. Use our business plan questionnaire below for a list of the questions you should answer in each section of your business plan to ensure clarity and understanding of your business’s hopes and mission.
Download our Ultimate Business Plan Template here
What Questions Should Be Asked in a Business Plan?
The business plan questionnaire can help you get started on your business plan. It will give you a concrete set of directions for the future and allow you to further examine and learn about the market you are entering. Be sure to provide answers to the following questions in each key section of your business plan.
Executive Summary Questions
You may ask yourself:
- What is the issue your business is addressing?
- How are you solving it?
- What are your business’s strengths?
- Why should an investor be interested in your business?
Company Analysis Questions
Ask yourself the following:
- What is your business’ mission?
- What is your history?
- What are some of your past achievements?
- What is your business’ legal structure?
- Where is your business located?
- Why did you start the business?
- How do you measure your business success?
Industry Analysis Questions
Include the answers to the following questions:
- What is the size of the market?
- What are the characteristics of the market: growth trends, units sold, employment?
- What factors are influencing growth or decline in the market?
- Are there any barriers to entering the market?
- Are there any government regulations that affect the market?
Customer Analysis Questions
Be sure to include the following in your analysis:
- What is the size of the target customer market?
- Where are these prospective customers located?
- What are their desires and needs, and how will your business meet those needs?
- In descriptive terms, who is your target market? (what motivates them to purchase, what influences their purchasing decisions)
- Why will your target customers seek out your business?
- What trends/purchasing shifts could occur in the market?
- How will you monitor customer satisfaction? (e.g., surveys, reviews, etc.)
Competitive Analysis Questions
First, simply focus on your competition and what they are up to.
Address the following:
- Who are your direct competitors? (e.g., other businesses in your genre) What percentage of market share do they occupy?
- Who are your indirect competitors? (e.g., other companies that may not be specified in your business’s genre, but provide similar results to that of your business)
- What are your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses?
- What are their products and pricing like?
Then, look into your business’ competitive advantage to describe how your business will be better.
- Will you offer more or better features?
- Will you ensure better results for your users?
- Will you offer better pricing?
- Will your customer service be more efficient?
- Will you offer a better overall customer experience?
Marketing Plan Questions
A complete plan will include the following:
- How will you communicate to your target customers about your product or service?
- Why are you choosing these specific avenues (e.g., website, Social Media, etc.)?
- What materials do you have or need, and what will be the cost of this?
- What do you plan to spend on marketing per prospect and per client?
- How will you retain existing customers?
- How will your business attract publicity?
- What media will you target?
- How will your product or service be delivered to the market?
- How might future changes impact your marketing?
- How will you price your product relative to others in the market to be competitive yet profitable?
- What type of payment will you accept?
- Overall, how will your marketing strategy be effective to your target customers?
Operations Plan Questions
Consider the following:
- What equipment is needed, and what is the cost?
- What are your hours of operation and number of shifts?
- How many employees will you have?
- What are the skill sets required when looking to hire new employees?
- What are your practices for scheduling, managing, and hiring personnel?
- What are the processes you will use to produce and sell your product or service?
- What is your purchasing process?
- How will finished goods be distributed?
- How will quality be measured and improved over time?
- What will your procedures to keep track of inventory look like?
Management Team Questions
In this section, answer the following:
- Who are your founding members and what is their background?
- Who are your support team members and what are their responsibilities? (include position title, person’s name, and role)
- Do you offer any ownership options to attract key management?
- Do you have any Board of Directors?
- Do you have any outside consultants that will work with your business as it grows?
- What is your business’ organizational structure?
Financial Plan Questions
Your financial plan should include:
- Profit & Loss statement
- Cash flow statement
- Balance sheet
- Sales volume forecast
- Personnel plan
- Break-even analysis
Here, you must gather data and convey just how much money your business will need and how much income you will earn, as well as when your business will be profitable.
Be sure to consider the following:
- How were your numbers calculated?
- Why are the salaries and office expenses you have calculated reasonable to your business?
- Why are your expense estimates realistic?
- How have you budgeted for unexpected costs?
- Is there any debt the business currently has?
- What is the amount of equity the owners and stockholders have?
- What is your annual interest expense?
- What is the percentage of sales issued for returns?
- What is your average daily inventory value?
- Are you using a fixed or variable inventory method?
- What is the limit on your line of credit and the average interest rate?
- What is your minimum checking account balance to have at all times?
Your financial plan should prove that you are informed and knowledgeable on the numbers around your business. It should prove that you are aware of all potential unexpected costs or other out-of-the-blue setbacks.
Appendices may be anywhere from just a few pages to a hundred or more.
Your appendix can include:
- Resumes of key management, blurbs on other management members
- Job descriptions/titles
- Copies of any agreements having bearing on the business plan
- Copies of licenses
- Personal and business tax returns (if applying for a loan)
- Marketing materials
- Photos or sketches of the building, property, equipment, products
- Industry studies or other information supporting industry trends
- Summaries of secondary market studies
Download Your Free Business Plan Questionnaire PDF
Business plan questionnaire conclusion.
The business plan questionnaire should be a guide for you to use as an outline and checklist of items that will need to be addressed in your company’s business plan. Growthink’s Ultimate Business Plan Template includes each of these key elements and more to help your business succeed.
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Use This Business Plan Questionnaire to Strategize Your Company's Growth
Hugo Britt Mar 15, 2022
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Without a plan, running a business is like setting off on a trek into the wilderness with no map, no knowledge of your destination, and no understanding of how you will get there.
Writing a business plan may sound like a chore, but it can ultimately generate value in terms of attracting investment and plotting future growth. Business planning can feel all the more daunting for new business owners as it is difficult to determine where you would like to be in 12 months, let alone five years down the track.
While some business plans are intended to be internal documents only, most are written to help attract an investor or procure a business loan. We have created the following business plan questionnaire to help guide business owners through the process.
1. Executive Summary
The executive summary is like a 30-second elevator pitch. It should be written with the assumption that a busy lender or investor will give it no more than a glance before making the decision to 1) ignore it or 2) find out more. Don’t be boring — find a way to hook the reader’s attention from the outset. However, avoid going into too much detail.
- What problem does your business solve, and how?
- What makes your business uniquely qualified to succeed?
- What are its core strengths?
- How much money do you need from the lender/investor?
- What will be their ROI ?
- Why should the lender/investor find out more?
2. The Business
Now that you have hooked the reader’s attention with the executive summary, they will want to know more about the business itself.
- What is your business mission/vision?
- What sector does the business belong to?
- Where is the business located?
- What is the business ownership structure?
- What products or services do you offer?
- What is the potential for future growth?
- What differentiates this business from its competitors?
The nuts and bolts of the plan, this section tells the lender/investor how your product or service is produced. This is another area where business planners risk going into too much detail. Keep things simple, concise, and free from technical jargon.
- How is your product or service produced?
- What does it cost to produce your product or service?
- What facilities, equipment, and materials are needed?
- Who are your main suppliers?
- What licenses or permits are required for operation?
This section should reassure the reader that your business is in safe hands and that there is a management plan to support future growth.
- Who manages the business?
- Who is on the management team?
- What are their key skills and qualifications?
- How many employees does your business have?
- Is there an adequate pool of talent for future hires?
- Do you have an organizational chart?
- Do you have a management strategy?
Demonstrate that you have researched the size of the market, know who your customers are, and are familiar with any competitors who have the potential to erode your market share.
- What is the size of the market?
- What are your customer demographics?
- What do you charge for your products or services?
- What market share do you currently have, and what share do you plan to achieve?
- Who are your key competitors?
- What is your marketing strategy?
This part of your business plan must be 100% accurate. Keep in mind that some readers will skip straight to this part after reading the executive summary.
- If a new business: What costs are involved in setting up your business?
- What will be your estimated business income for the coming year?
- What is your projected business income for the coming three years?
- What is the breakeven point, and what sales volume is needed to make a profit?
- What are your overheads?
- What are your current assets and liabilities?
- How much are you asking the lender/investor for?
A common flaw in business plans is that they are frequently built upon best-case scenarios and do not consider the impacts of risk events — such as an economic downturn — taking place. Acknowledge the risks, and show how they will be prepared for and mitigated.
- What are the main risks that could impact the business?
- How likely are they, and how significant would the impacts be?
- How are these risks managed?
- Do you have a business contingency plan?
After detailing the current state of the business, it’s time to turn to future growth. Use this section to establish that the business has an opportunity to grow, along with a plan to do so.
- Do you have a growth strategy?
- By what percentage do you intend to grow, and by when?
- What are your growth milestones?
- What additional resources will be needed to support growth?
9. Call to Action
Conclude your business plan by reiterating the main request for an investment or loan. Provide a call to action to set up a meeting.
10. Supporting Documentation
Include any documentation needed to support the information above, such as financial details, copies of operating licenses, or your marketing, personnel, and growth strategies.
Other Business Plan Articles
- How to Write a Business Plan for a Welding Company
- How to Write a Business Plan for a Machining Company
- How to Write a Lean Startup Business Plan
- How to Write a Business Plan for a Solar Farm
- How to Write a Disaster Recovery Plan for Your Business
- How to Write a Business Contingency Plan
Image Credit: Image courtesy of SmartPhotoLab / Shutterstock.com
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The business plan questionnaire template will help you capture details of businesses that approach a start-up for investment or partnering in a streamlined process. M ake necessary edits using the builder to suit your needs. White label the form using your organization’s brand name, themes, and colors.
Features of Business Plan Questionnaire Template
Get appealing, easy-to-fill, and organized business questionnaire for your needs. Make sections to organize your questions, use entry-based logic to direct your customers to the specific questions and use attractive themes to make it easy on the eye.
Responsive to all screen size, more features of business plan questionnaire template.
With the help of this strategic business plan questionnaire, you can capture the details of the upcoming new business and provide them with funds if required.
Multiple Question Types
This questionnaire is equipped with different business planning questions such as ratings, date, multiple-choice, and upload question type, which will make the form engaging for the customers, and they fill it with more clarity. The upload question type helps you to collect the document, signature, and images directly from the template responses.
Add your brand logo to the form and make it look more attractive to the respondents. You can use our builder to customize the form with your themes. You can also create a URL of your own with the name of your business in it. This feature helps you maintain the brand identity and make the form look yours.
Share at Ease
This business questionnaire template can be shared with many people at once. You can share the form on multiple platforms, such as Slack or MS teams. This form can also be shared via email, SMS, or Weblinks. This feature helps you increase the response rate of the template.
Make your business start-up survey questionnaire concise by asking only relevant business planning questions. The skip/display logic feature allows you to ask questions based on the responses given to the earlier questions. You can define criteria such as a response, name, or contact information. You can skip to the next question, thank you page, or a specific URL.
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Use our business plan questionnaire below for a list of the questions you should answer in each section of your business plan to ensure clarity and understanding of your business’s hopes and mission. Download our Ultimate Business Plan Template here What Questions Should Be Asked in a Business Plan?
Who manages the business? Who is on the management team? What are their key skills and qualifications? How many employees does your business have? Is there an adequate pool of talent for future hires? Do you have an organizational chart? Do you have a management strategy? 5. Customers
Executive summary. Briefly tell your reader what your company is and why it will be successful. Include your mission statement, your product or service, and basic information about your company’s leadership team, employees, and location. You should also include financial information and high-level growth plans if you plan to ask for financing.
Starting a Business indicator, which measures the number of procedures, time, cost and paid-in minimum capital requirement for a small and medium-size limited liability company to start up and formally operate, is one of the 11 indicator sets published by the Doing Business report. The report attracts much attention around the world.
than 580 reforms making it easier to start a business. In 2015/16, 49 economies implemented such reforms. For Starting a Business, most focused on simplifying pre-registration and registration formalities. We are honored to be able to count on your expertise for Doing Business 2018. Please do the
Make your business start-up survey questionnaire concise by asking only relevant business planning questions. The skip/display logic feature allows you to ask questions based on the responses given to the earlier questions. You can define criteria such as a response, name, or contact information.