How To Write A Business Plan? Business Plan Content, Tips and Samples for Entrepreneurs

Writing a business plan is not difficult; but to truly demonstrate a one-of-a-kind business concept, you can take note of the following tips on writing a business plan, which will help you better conceptualise and present your unique business idea, enhancing your chance of turning your business plan into a reality.

writing business plan content

What Is a Business Plan?

Writing a business plan is an indispensable step in entrepreneurship. Once you have a comprehensive business plan, you can effectively evaluate business development progress, present your business vision and idea to banks, loaning institutions and investors. thereby raising the required funding for your business and expanding your network1. The main usages and purposes of a business plan include: 

●    Set business goals1
●    Develop a blueprint for future development1
●    Serve as information for banks, financial institutions and potential investors when raising funds1

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How To Structure A Business Plan Content Outline?

structure business plan content outline

The business plan content outline could primarily be divided into nine sections: an executive summary, current business status, industry overview, market and competitor analysis, marketing strategy, product and service features, organisational structure, operational plan and risk management, and financials status. The order and length of the content vary depending on the target audience1.  For instance, if your business plan is targeting investors, the content should be more focused on potential returns and the payback period1.

If you are writing a business plan for the first time and feel at a loss, you can start by drafting the content items for sections 2 to 9, as mentioned above, and then summarise the key takeaways in the executive summary of the business plan1. The executive summary is the most important part of a business plan, therefore, a clear and concise presentation can leave a strong impression on the reader1

Business Plan Sample 

Once you have the outline of your business plan, how should you develop the content for each section? If you have never set up a business before, having entrepreneurial thinking skills is especially important as it helps you clearly define your business operation model when writing your business plan and transform your wildest vision into viable action plans2.  

Before writing your business plan, you can start with three core questions that extend from the perspective of users or customers. These involve considering why you are doing it, what you are doing, and how you are doing it3?  As you brainstorm and draft your business plan, continue referring to the above questions. It not only ensures that you identify market pain points and the needs of your customers but also challenges you to think deeply how your products and service can solve these problems and meet demands. 

For example, when drafting a business plan for a food delivery platform mobile app ("Food delivery apps"), start from the consumer’s perspectives - during busy lunch hours, there is usually a considerable number of customers heading to restaurants to wait for dine-in spots or to buy takeout. These customers may go for other restaurant options if they don’t have time to wait. Food delivery apps can eliminate the need for customers to visit the restaurant and wait for dine-in seating or buy takeout, allow them to enjoy their desired meals by delivery, and help save time and provide great convenience. For restaurants with limited dine-in capacity or without a dining area, or even those with a lack of delivery personnel, partnering with a Food delivery apps can help expand and broaden customer base, thereby increasing their business profits. Based on this entrepreneurial roadmap, we can derive a business plan with these content: 

  • Executive summary: an overview of the business plan
  • Current business situation: describes new services and operational models under development
  • Industry analysis: includes the number of restaurants throughout Hong Kong and trends in food delivery services. 
  • Market competition analysis: includes the number of food delivery platform users in the market, their market shares, features and differences.
  • Marketing strategy: identifies and targets potential user groups for the food delivery platform on social media, such as restaurant owners, office workers, etc. 
  • Product and service features: include cost, pricing positioning, service features, and promotion methods that cater to the target client base. 
  • Organisational structure: includes information about the personnel structure and background of the founding team, e.g., do any team members have experience on operating food delivery services or any other relevant experience1.
  • Operation planning and risk management: includes daily operation workflow and marketing strategy, e.g., how to attract delivery staff and restaurants to join, how to manage or avoid staff strikes, how to split revenue with delivery staff etc1.
  • Financials status: cash flow forecast, returns, balance sheet, etc. Usually, a 3-year forecast is required1.

Business Plan Writing Tips

Showcase your uniqueness1.

  • Verify the logical relationships and accuracy between data, percentages, and quantifiable information clearly1
  • Fancy language will not enhance your business idea; therefore, use plain language that clearly conveys key takeaways1
  • Determine the outline of a business plan based on different audiences and purposes1.
  • Consider your readers' perspective and provide information they are looking for, such as the payback period and expected return on investment, etc1

Are you still exploring suitable business opportunities as an entrepreneur? DBS SME Banking is ready to provide the necessary financial support for you to start your own business. 


The above information is only for your reference. For detailed information, please refer to the sources and seek professional advice if necessary. 

Article published on 22 May, 2024

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1Source: Support and Consultation Centre for SMEs - Business Plan
( ) Illustrative Business Plan (Read-only) ( )  P.2, P.5-P.19

2Source: LinkedIn - What problem solving skills are essential for writing effective business plans? ( 

3Source: SEBC - SE Setup Guide ( A Practical Guide of Setting Up a Social Enterprise ( 

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