Who Is LivePlan for?
As you will soon learn from our LivePlan reviews, this cloud-based business planning software is ideal for entrepreneurs starting a business for the first time.
Namely, LivePlan will not only walk you through the whole business planning process, but you’ll also get to use:
- More than 500 sample plans
- Financial reports, charts, and graphs
- Different financial scenarios to get an idea of how your business is progressing.
In addition, the LivePlan business plan is perfect for people who collaborate with international companies since it comes with multilingual support. You can write your plan in Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, German, French, and Italian.
What Is LivePlan?
LivePlan is a cloud-based software that specializes in helping inexperienced entrepreneurs create solid business plans. LivePlan was developed by Palo Alto Software, a company supporting small businesses since 1988.
Palo Alto Software is known for its numerous entrepreneurship competition sponsorships, charitable work, and free donations. The company also supports local and regional business organizations, such as Oregon Entrepreneurs Network and RAIN.
Next, in our LivePlan business plan reviews, we’ll discuss the application process.
To set up your account, first, you need to create a name for your company and choose your goals (funding, managing your business, creating a strategic plan, testing your business ideas, preparing a sales forecast, etc.).
Once you enter the app, you’ll need to write a summary of your business (pitch). I.e., add your logo, write a sentence or two about your company’s goals, and offer a solution and target market. You can send this pitch via email or publish it on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.
Once you’ve done with the pitch, you need to create a full business plan. To do this, you can use the old-fashioned “chapters and sections” approach, or you can customize your document by removing/adding different sections.
As mentioned before, you’ll get to use more than 500 sample business plans. And since the LivePlan app has an extensive business plan library, from medical and health care to pets and animal shelters, you won’t have any problems finding the preferred industry.
After finishing this section, you’ll need to create your budget. Now, this is where LivePlan shines. Namely, you don’t have to be a mathematical genius to finish this step. Just enter the anticipated sales and expenses, and the software will automatically calculate the numbers.
Which features make LivePlan the best business plan software? Let’s find out.
Variety of Business Plan Examples
As mentioned before, LivePlan offers more than 500 business plan templates you can use. You also get to choose between different categories, such as:
- Automotive, Travel, and Transportation
- Medical and Health Care
- Children and Education
- Pets and Animal Shelter
- Computers and Internet
- Professional Services
- Real Estate
- Food, Restaurants, Cafés, and Bars
What’s more, LivePlan offers its users ten pre-designed and SBA-approved templates you can customize so your company can be presentable to your partners and potential customers.
That said, you can export your LivePlan business plan as a word document or a PDF file using one of the templates.
Writing a financial report is a nightmare for many business owners, even experienced ones. Going over the spreadsheets is not only challenging, but it’s also time-consuming.
On that note, you’ll appreciate LivePlan’s automatic financials feature. Not only will it automatically calculate your budget, but it will also give you sales forecasts. Just tap the “expense” or “add a revenue stream” button, and the software will do the rest.
In addition, the software will automatically create numerous graphs and charts you can use.
Sharing Your Plan with Other People
LivePlan allows you to add two contributors and an unlimited number of guests to your plan document. While guests can only view and comment on your document, contributors have a right to edit anything they want, except the billing/payment info and profile data.
You can also work on multiple business plans.
LivePlan offers two plans to its users:
- Standard $20.00 per month (or $15.00 if you pay annually) and
- Premium $40.00 per month (or $30.00 if you pay annually).
While both plans include step-by-step instructions, automatic financials, and 500+ sample plans, the Premium package offers additional tools for more experienced business owners, such as financial forecast scenarios, key performance indicators, benchmark data, and performance dashboards.
The Standard package is ideal for people who need to create a simple and professional business plan. On the other hand, if you want to take advantage of numerous financial tools, go with the Premium package.
What’s best, you can switch from one plan to another anytime you want without any penalties.
35-Day Money-Back Guarantee
Although we found it disappointing that there’s no LivePlan free trial, the software comes with a generous 35-day money-back guarantee policy. So, if you’re not satisfied with LivePlan, you can contact the company via phone or email to get a full refund.
LivePlan’s application works well on Windows, Mac, and iOS devices (iPad, iPhone). However, it doesn’t have a mobile application. This means Android users will not be able to use the app.
Since LivePlan has several limitations, such as the lack of a mobile app and free trial, you might want to consider other options. Some of the best alternatives to LivePlan are Enloop, BizPlan, GrowThink, and Business Plan Pro.
Now, let’s see how these business planning software compare and what differentiates them.
Enloop vs LivePlan
Let’s start with the similarities. Both Enloop and LivePlan are cloud-based software, which means you can’t use them offline.
Furthermore, both are suitable options for inexperienced entrepreneurs. They also have similar prices ($19.95 and $39.95 per month vs. $20.00 and $40.00 per month).
When it comes to main differences, Enloop has leverage over LivePlan only due to its free trial option and AutoWrite feature.
LivePlan vs BizPlan
The main BizPlan vs LivePlan difference is that the former is created for small and large businesses, whereas the latter isn’t suitable for large enterprises. There is also a price difference — $29.00 vs. $20.00 per month.
However, when it comes to features, LivePlan and BizPlan are quite similar. Both offer financial projections, financial templates, and pitch presentations.
Business Plan Pro vs LivePlan
LivePlan and Business Plan Pro are Palo Alto software’s creations that are known for their large number of business plan samples. Like LivePlan, Business Plan Pro has an extensive library of more than 500 business plan examples.
The main LivePlan vs Business Plan Pro difference lies in their price. To get Business Plan Pro, you’ll have to pay between $99.95 and $159.95. Plus, the software works only on Windows. I.e., you won’t be able to use it if you’re a Mac user.
Next, LivePlan has more extensive features, such as a screenboard for quick performance checks and secure plan backups.
What is a LivePlan software business plan, and is it worth it? Yes, definitely. It’s an excellent starting point for small to medium business owners who want to take advantage of numerous useful business planning tools, educational resources, business plan examples, and customizable templates.
What’s more, compared to other business plan software, LivePlan offers affordable monthly plans and a 35-day money-back guarantee.
Pros & Cons
- 500+ sample business plans
- Ideal for beginners
- User-friendly application
- 10 fully customizable templates
- 35-day money-back guarantee
- No mobile app
- Not suitable for large businesses
How do I unsubscribe from LivePlan?
Pretty easy. Log into your account and find the “Manage Account” icon (upper right corner). Here you’ll find the “Cancel Account” button. Tap it. That’s it.
Is LivePlan secure?
Yes, it is. LivePlan is secured with bank-level security. I.e., your data is stored in numerous locations and on special modern servers that back up your data daily. Your data is also encrypted during transition.
Regarding the passwords, you are the only person who can see them since they are hashed. Furthermore, to protect your credit card transactions, LivePlan uses the same level of encryption as traditional banks.
How much does LivePlan cost?
You can choose between the Standard ($20.00 per month or $15.00 if you pay annually) and the Premium ($40.00 per month or $30.00 if you pay annually) plan.
As you can see from our LivePlan reviews, both packages offer all the necessary tools for creating a professional business plan.