Free Business Expansion Plan Template
Business plans are crucial tools that help you budget, adapt and run your small business. They can even be used to secure funding or recruit a new partner. Looking to open a new location? A business expansion plan can help you think about what you need to get there.
Every business is unique, but there are a few essentials to include in a business expansion plan. Whether you accompany your proposal with an elaborate presentation or keep it minimal, a business expansion plan should outline steps that you’ll take to facilitate and support the growth of your business, from securing capital to an updated marketing strategy in a new territory.
What to Include and How to Write Your Business Expansion Plan
Here are the fundamentals you should cover in your own expansion plan and how to go about writing them:
An executive summary is a concise statement that provides a high-level rundown of your business, your expansion and how you intend to achieve that vision. It should briefly highlight crucial areas like:
- Growth targets
- Projected and current operating costs
- Funding needs
- Marketing approach
Provide as much detail as necessary for someone reading only your summary to get the gist of your overall expansion strategy. It may help to complete this section last.
What You Do and What You Offer
Discuss what makes your business unique:
- What do you provide for your customers that other companies don’t?
- In what areas do you shine?
Use this space to communicate your business’s value propositions. You should also list your full line of products and services here.
Executive and Management Team
Identify any key players and stakeholders responsible for overseeing the expansion. You may also want to include your company controller/accountant, account manager or any consultant advising your activity.
Plan of Expansion
Now that you’ve laid the groundwork, this is where you detail your expansion proposal. Describe your goal and what you need to achieve your vision. Think in terms of planning, executing and maturing your expansion. Identify what or where you intend to expand:
- Are you releasing a new product?
- Do you plan to open a new branch?
- Does your expansion involve additional staffing needs?
Make sure to cover:
- How you intend to support your expansion
- Whether you’ll need additional staff, capital or resources for your plan
- Details about your new product or service, if applicable
- Goals and key performance indicators (KPIs)
- New regulations or legislation, if applicable
Identify and analyze your competitors in your new area of expansion. Consider what makes your competitors successful, their advertising strategies, prices, industry outlook and what opportunities you might have to reach new, niche audiences.
Outline the steps you’ll take to achieve the goals you’ve laid out. Identify your value propositions, any forms of advertising you plan to use, your key customer demographics and where/how you plan to sell your service or product. While you may not have fully developed concepts, you can include any marketing deliverables you intend to use in your strategy.
Financial History, Analysis and Forecasts
In this section, you’ll need a variety of financial documents, like sales reports, balance sheets, profit & loss statements and future forecasts to support your expansion plan. If you’re new to business bookkeeping or accounting, it may be a good idea to hire a professional who can help you prepare this portion of your plan. Use visuals like charts and tables to display complex data when possible. Potential investors, lenders and partners will likely pay particular attention to your finances, so make sure to double-check that everything is accurate and up-to-date.
Your expenses will fluctuate over the course of an expansion, so it’s a good idea to include financial projections for up to five years. With your previous data and forecasts, you should be able to estimate what you’ll need to run your business, including whether or not you need expansion capital to fund any new activity.