Free Business Model and Business Model Canvas Templates

By Joe Weller | November 26, 2018

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In this article, you’ll find the most comprehensive business canvas and business model templates in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PDF formats. Document, outline, and manage your unique business structure to ensure you are optimizing your target market, key resources, value proposition, and more.

Direct Sales Business Model Template

Direct Sales Business Model Template

Strategize on sales and distribution tactics and plan for your organization’s unique sales pipeline with this template. With room to document distribution models, pricing models, partner strategy, and sales management, you can easily create an effective sales business model. Download this template in Microsoft Excel, Word, or PDF formats.

Download Direct Sales Business Model Template

Excel | Word | PDF  | Smartsheet

Pay-Per-Use Business Model Template

Pay Per Use Business Model Template

Designed for business structures that rely on pay-per-use customers, this business model template allows you to track the success of your organization and strategize on future plans. With sections to document and track year-over-year paying customers, customer growth, premium paying customers, and net new customers, you can stay on top of the success — or areas of improvement — in your pay-per-use business model.

Download Pay-Per-Use Business Model Template

Excel | Smartsheet

Business Model Canvas Template

Business Model Canvas Template

This template is designed to analyze and review current business models or to plan and document a strategy for new business models. Use this template to document the key details of your business plan, including key partners and activities, value proposition, and strategic channels. This template is available for customization and download in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PDF formats.

Download Business Model Canvas Template

Excel | Word | PDF

Franchise Business Model Template

Franchise Business Model Template

Use this template to create a targeted business model for franchises in order to illustrate potential success or highlight current profits. This template includes areas for documenting executive summaries and company descriptions, product or service descriptions, management structure, and more. This free template is available in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PDF formats.

Download Franchise Business Model Template

Freemium Business Model Template

Freemium Business Model Template

This template provides a business model for companies that have a freemium pricing strategy. It helps you enumerate key products or services that the organization should upcharge for. Use this template to document critical details of your freemium business, such as cost structure, customer segments, and revenue streams.

Download Freemium Business Model Template

Subscription Business Model Template

Subscription Business Model Template

Outline subscription details, monitor business growth, and keep track of the highest producing revenue streams with this business model template. This template offers space to document and track new subscription members, premium subscription members, and total yearly paid revenue. Download and customize this Microsoft Excel template based on your business needs.

‌ Download Subscription Business Model Template - Excel

Startup Business Model Template

Startup Business Model Template

Create a traditional business model and detail all key aspects of your organization with this startup business model template. This template allows you to document the components of your startup that you want to highlight, such as executive summaries, company descriptions, marketing plans, and financial information. This template is available for download and customization in Microsoft Word.

Download Startup Business Model Template

Collective Business Model Template

Collective Business Model Template

Gather, document, and report on all the key details of your business with this collective business model template. Use this template to share the core components of your organization, such as key partners, resources, and activities, as well as customer segments and cost structures.

Download Collective Business Model Template

Inclusive Business Model Template

Inclusive Business Model Template

This free template includes space to document the most fundamental building blocks of your company, so you can create a comprehensive business model. Document and communicate key details, such as products or services, cost structures, revenue streams, and more. This template is available for download in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PDF formats.

Download Inclusive Business Model Template

Open Source Business Model Template

Open Source Business Model Template

Use this template to plan and record a comprehensive business model for open source projects. This template includes sections to document everything from problems and solutions to unique value propositions and customer channels. It is available for download in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PDF formats.

Download Open Source Business Model Template

Consulting Business Model Template

Consulting Business Model Template

Geared toward businesses in the consulting field, this template lets you construct a comprehensive overview of your organization’s business model. Customize the details of this template to fit your needs. The template includes sections for company descriptions, mission statements, finances, key business metrics, and more.

Download Consulting Business Model Template

Small Business Model Template

Small Business Business Model Template

This template is perfect for small businesses who want to map out their business model, either at the beginning stages of their business, or as their business grows. Use this template to include the most important high-level details, such as company description, market analysis, organization information, and financial projections.

Download Small Business Business Model Template

Harvard Business Model Template

Harvard Business Model Template

Use this business model template, influenced by the Harvard Business School, to create the most comprehensive and detailed overview of your business. With space to include key details, like partners, business activities, resources, and value propositions, this template allows you to customize your business plan and share the details among your team.

Download Harvard Business Model Template

SaaS Business Model Template

SaaS Business Model Template

Leverage this template to accurately explain, build out, and model your SaaS business plan. This template is especially helpful in mapping out key resources, like developers, software value propositions, and revenue streams based on usage. Download this template, available in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PDF, and customize it based on the details of your company.

Download SaaS Business Model Template

Lean Business Model Template

Lean Business Model Template

To eliminate waste and provide the best value to the customer of a lean business, use this template to document and track the core components that contribute to your organization’s success. With room to include potential problems and solutions, cost structure, and unique customer segments, this template allows you to model and perfect the ideal lean business.

Download Lean Business Model Template

Service Business Model Template

Service Business Model Template

This template is designed to analyze and review business models related to the service industry. Use this template to document the key details of your business plan, including key partners and activities, value propositions, and strategic channels. This template is available for customization and download in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PDF formats.

Download Service Business Model Template

Affiliate Business Model Template

Affiliate Business Model Template

Use this preformatted template to plan, track, and assess the business model of an affiliate business in order to keep all details in check. With space to record key details, such as market segmentation and targeting, marketing strategy, business operation, and more, this template gives you the structure to maintain a successful affiliate business. This template is available for download in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PDF formats.

Download Affiliate Business Model Template

What Is a Business Model Canvas?

A business model canvas is a strategic management document that assists you in developing business models of all kinds, from lean to startup to subscription models. It is a purely visual chart that identifies and describes core business elements, like value propositions, market segments, and customers.

What Is a Business Model Canvas Used For?

Typically a one-page document, a business model canvas grants a high-level overview of the business structure and operation and describes the overall value of an organization. Not only is it a strategic tool for developing a new business, but it’s also a way to upgrade or analyze an already-active business. A business model canvas brings clarity, strategy, and simplicity to a business plan, especially regarding areas that are usually difficult to describe.

Why Is a Business Model Canvas Important?

A business model canvas is important because it helps provide a company with clarity, focus, and strategy. It offers a detailed structure of what the business does, how it should perform, and what markets or customer groups it should target.

What a Business Model Canvas Can Help an Organization Do

A business model canvas not only increases the transparency of the business plan by supplying a single, flexible explanation of the business and its strategy, but also helps a business or organization to do the following:

Describe, design, or redesign a business model

Organize new thoughts and ideas about how a business can increase its success

Enable both new and existing organizations to increase their focus on the operations and processes that run their business

Provide a platform to explore new options for a business, test any assumptions, and discover new opportunities

Devise new strategies for a business

Look at a business with a critical eye, identifying areas of improvement or areas of great success

Reevaluate any unique aspects of a business that are working and fine tune those aspects in order to improve an overall business strategy

Discover opportunities to grow or improve upon existing processes

Provide either a general guideline or a detailed layout of a business, depending on its structure

Identify specific instructions on how to achieve a new or improved business plan

Assess potential trade-off opportunities

Align marketing strategies and other business activities

Enable a structured conversation about a business model and an operation and management strategy that can include stakeholders, key team members, and external resources

Present strategic analyses, like a market analysis, customer analysis, or operational analysis

Develop new insight on customers and what they are seeking from a business

Describe the relationships between new initiatives and how a company can achieve those initiatives simultaneously

Who Created the Business Model Canvas?

Business theorist Alexander Osterwalder created the business model canvas following his earlier work on business model ontology.

The Core Structures of Business Models

Based on his analysis, Osterwalder proposed that all businesses share similar modeling, using the following core structures:

Infrastructure : This includes key business activities, key resources, and key partners that the business leverages on a regular basis.

Offering : The concept of offering deals with the unique value proposition of a business, which is what distinguishes one business from another.

Customers : This includes customer segments, channels, and customer relationships, all of which drive the strategy and overall success of a business.

Finances : Finances include both the cost structure and the revenue streams that drive the profit of a business.

When Was the Business Model Canvas Invented?

Alexander Osterwalder invented the business model canvas in 2008, following his work on business model ontology. Since 2008, business experts have created many variations on Osterwalder’s original business model canvas, including ones that are industry specific.

What Do You Include in a Business Model Canvas Template?

A business model canvas has a few main components that build out the structure, organization, and strategy of a business. The components include the following:

Key Activities : The key activities identify the crucial steps and activities a business must perform in order to deliver on its propositions and continue to succeed. As a business changes and grows, it must discover new techniques to perform better, provide better services or products, and consider how these key activities help to drive the value proposition.

Key Resources/Partners : The key resources delineate the strategic assets needed to achieve core business goals and maintain a more targeted and successful approach than one’s competitors. Three core business products make up the key resources: product, scope, and infrastructure.

Value Proposition : This is the driving force of the business, as it identifies the uniqueness of a business’s offering (i.e., what differentiates it from other competitors). The value prop works to pinpoint the needs of the customer and deliver on those needs with the company’s own product or service.

Channels : The channels signify the various media used to communicate the value prop to the appropriate customers. Channels also identify where and how you will sell your product and to what customers.

Customer Segments : This refers to the way in which customers interact with the business through the product or service lifecycle and which type of market a customer might engage with. Types of markets can include niche, mass, segmented, diversified, or multi-sided.

Cost Structure : The cost structure of a business model canvas pairs together how key activities will drive costs and determines how well the costs are aligned with the value prop. It is at this time that businesses must determine other key cost decisions, like using a fixed, variable, cost-driven, or value-driven structure and figuring out how the scope and scale of the business relate to the costs and revenue.

Revenue Streams : This determines the way a company generates revenue from each customer segment. Revenue streams can come in the form of asset sales, usage or subscription fees, lending, leasing, renting, licensing, brokerage fees, and advertising. A business determines its revenue streams based on its overall structure.

What Is a Business Model Canvas Report?

A business model canvas report is a roll-up of all the key details described in a business model canvas. The report aims to describe each component in further detail, providing commentary on both why a company is structured the way it is and how it plans to attain that structure.

What Is a Lean Canvas Template?

A lean canvas template is a one-page business plan that summarizes a business and breaks it down into nine key elements. Those elements include problems, solutions, key metrics, value propositions, advantages, channels, customer segments, cost structures, and revenue streams.

Why Have a Business Model Canvas?

Businesses and organizations should have a business model canvas in order to break down the key components of a business and discuss what is and isn’t working. This process will help you identify problem areas, improve on certain aspects, and continue to grow, generate revenue, and succeed.

Tips For Creating a Business Model Canvas

The best way to get started is by gathering a core group comprised of key team members and stakeholders (ideally around 3-5 people) and drawing out a canvas on paper or creating a canvas digitally.

Allow yourself plenty of undisturbed time to start mapping out a high-level overview of the business and its structure. Connect the core building blocks of your business, like market segments and target customers, and brainstorm how to achieve the most success.

Make sure to keep on open mind and separate the current from the ideal state of the business. After you have completed your canvas, review it and share it with your team to collect further ideas or comments. Ask team members to look for missing details, both in the design and structure of the canvas.

Once you have completed the canvas review, test your new plan and analyze it periodically to ensure it is working for your business.

Examples of Successful Business Models

As you begin to create your own business models and business model canvases, use the following resources to help you create the best business model for your organization.

Score’s Business Plan Template for Startups

The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Business Plan Tool

The $100 One-Page Business Plan

LawDepot’s WYSIWYG Business Plan Template

Santa Clara University’s My Own Business Plan Template

Rocket Lawyer’s Business Plan Templates by State

Move Beyond Your Business Model Canvas with Real-Time Work Management in Smartsheet

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The Smartsheet platform makes it easy to plan, capture, manage, and report on work from anywhere, helping your team be more effective and get more done. Report on key metrics and get real-time visibility into work as it happens with roll-up reports, dashboards, and automated workflows built to keep your team connected and informed. 

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How to create a Business Model Canvas with MS Word or Google Docs?

The Business Model Canvas allows companies to devise up new strategies for their businesses and to critically analyze and evaluate their current business model. The canvas or template of the model can be easily designed on MS Word and Google Docs so that businesses today can easily draw the model for free. It is not difficult to create the model; however, it is slightly time consuming. All you need is a simple toolbox which is available on both MS Word and Google Docs which draws shapes.

A template of the canvas on Google Docs by doing the following steps:

From Google Docs, Select CREATE > From Template

business model canvas docx

In the search box please enter “Business Model” and click Search Templates, from the results you can see free and ready Business Model Canvas to use:

business model canvas docx

Here is the screenshot of what it shows for this Google docs version:

business model canvas docx

You can also have the Business Model Canvas template from the internet absolutely for free which performs all the functions which MS Word and Google Docs perform together. You can easily save, share, and add texts whenever and wherever you wish to.

The following link provides the Business Model Canvas for free without the hassle of creating one yourself:

The next level

You love working with canvases? How about bringing innovation and collaboration to the next level with great canvases and a great app.

21+ Business Model Canvas (BMC) Templates – PDF, DOC, PPT

To build up new strategies for your company, free PSD format  business model canvas templates are very helpful. They help the businessmen to analyze and judge the current models that are running in the small business. You can outline key activities and key resources like healthcare, cost structure, HR, supply chain channels, coaching, marketplace value propositions, and other components. These blank templates can be easily downloaded and designed for MS Word format  so that the models are done for free.

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Free The Business Model Canvas with Key Resources Template

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Free Het Business Model Canvas Template with Components

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Social Enterprise Business Model Canvas with Cost Structure

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Restaurant Business Model Canvas Customer Relationships

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Business Model Canvas IT Department with Key Activities

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Free Online Business Model Canvas Template

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Free Innovation Business Model Canvas Format Template

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Free Healthcare Business Model Canvas Template

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10 Work Model Canvas Templates in Word furthermore ClickUp

Haillie Parker

March 31, 2023

The foundation for a succeeds business is an effective business model—your organization won’t be able to get off the ground excluding first!

At the same moment, creating your business model is no walk in the park, and you’ll likely need to lean on some or all of your resources in the development process. One of the most walkable and time-saving resources in this area is a business model canvas template, and if you don’t take one yet or are seeking a new one, you’ve come the the right placing!

Tracking along as we dive into the top FAQs, benefits, and features of one best business model canvas templates the 10 downloadable examples for any type of economic. Business Model Canvas Term Template

  • What are a Store Model Canvas Template?
  • Grades of a Success Business Model Canvas Template
  • 1. Business Pattern Wall Template by ClickUp
  • 2. Startup Business Canvas Template by ClickUp

3. Lean Canvas Template by ClickUp

  • 4. Trade Planning Template by ClickUp
  • 5. Business Planning Document Template by ClickUp
  • 6. Lean Business Schedule Template from ClickUp
  • 7. Business Ideation Blueprint by ClickUp
  • 8. ClickUp Business Brainstorming Screen
  • 9. Business-related Model Movie Print fork Microsoft Word
  • 10. Space Business Model Big Template for Microsoft Word

What is a Business Model Canvas Template?

Enterprise model projection templates are pre-built and customizable tools to outline and visualize your business model in a single page. These documents quickly define your company’s unique value proposition, target audience, revenue, cost, resources, key partnerships, and more. Welcome to the Neos Chronos Template Archive

Sans a template, developing your business model canvas can be an lengthy and difficult process. Plus, business model canvas templates decrease an margin available fail or ensure you’re thinking strategically, working efficient, and meeting your stakeholder’s expectations. Neos Chronos Business View Cinema Word. Designed for: Designed on: Release: Reading: Economy Model Canvas. Key Partners, Key Activities, Value Propositions ...

Business model canvas templates are also great resources go share the the all team both keep everyone aligned up your organization’s long-term goals.

Skills of a Successful Business Model Canvas Template

There are ton of simple, accessible, and release business model canvas templates available required close every business management software —but not all templates are created as! Here are five must-have features to look for before downloading:

  • More views to customize to framework of your business print plot and how you visualize it
  • Collaboration features to involve the gang, stakeholders, and others departments
  • Ease of use and simplicity to ensure you’re using and submission correctly
  • Flexibility to accommodate different company sizes, industries, and business models
  • Multiple integrations to take context furthermore information from other work diy into your template

10 Business-related Model Projection Templates

Searching for the pitch business model canvas template can be an overwhelming process.

Instead of fishery through web of links or resorting to the trial-and-error type, start here with 10 of the best business model canvas templates available ClickUp press Microsoft. 

1. Economic Model Canvas Patterns by ClickUp

The Business Model Canvases Template by ClickUp empowers teams to create new business models with ease about adenine collaborative Board. An template starts to nine main color-coded segments to structure your business-related exemplar canvas:

  • Key Affiliate
  • Key Activities
  • Value Proposition
  • Customer Relationships
  • Company Segments
  • Key Resources
  • Cost Structural
  • Total Power

Defining these sections will help thou develop every element of your business-related model and give your organization the foundation go grow. This template also prompts you for indicate the company you’re compose the business example available, along with the designer involved or the target of creation. You can also specify the version name and number are her plan on creating multiple iterations of ampere business model with this template. And as Whiteboards is ClickUp provide an infinite canvas, you’ll never run out of space developing respective ideas.

2. Start-up Business Canvas Template by ClickUp

Foundation do unique planning requirements and need a toolbox that can build an solid foothold for the novel company. And Startup Canvas Bulletin Template by ClickUp was designed with this inches mind, and why ClickUp itself is one starting who best tools for startups int the konzeption phase. 

This template includes everything you need to gauge the feasibility of your startup general based on various parameters. The template includes 13 segments that cover nearly everybody aspect of your startup to help thou entire realize your vision for the business. Easily name your organization’s key join, the problem your business or your become solve, your aim market, objectives, equipment costs, the key factor to your success, and more.  Create one Business Model Canvas (BMC) Easily with Editability Samples in DOC, PDF, PPT, additionally Other Sizes. We Feature Blank Examples for Recording Business Models Effectively. Take Advantage of On Free Downloads plus Prepare a BMC in MS Word, PowerPoint, or Other Platforms.

This beginner-friendly Whiteboard template allows you the form a concise summary on your business, which you want to achieve with it, also like you can succeed. Information can plus serve as an skeletal highway for a more comprehensive business flat as your company extend.

The Lean Film Presentation from ClickUp helps business leaders identify the maximum crucial and dangerously assumptions in their organization. It’s especially helpful when launch a news product or service, how it presents all ideas and potential problems in an organized, easy-to-understand list. Another greatly your for startups, this template isn’t just for and planning phase—you able use it multi-user times to organize any area of your business throughout its lifecycle.

A little different than the Whiteboard diagrams we saws above, this template applies ampere pre-made List to your Workspace with three five observe contains ClickUp’s unique Form view , Kanban-like Board view , and Table view . Using such views, managers can choose method she visualize the issues by hand and can set them based on factors like customer segment, cost, metrics, channels, and more.

Include all template, you’ll also find a detailed Received Started How ClickUp Doc to support your equipment process, three customize statuses, and eight Custom Fields to entrance key resources promptly and directly from your tasks.

4. Business Konzeptuelle Template by ClickUp

If you’re first a new business concept, the Business Planning Template by ClickUp will help you develop a thorough business plan that blade don areas overlooking. This details all tasks you and one team must comprehensive additionally keep everything organized on a clear timeline .

This template will immediately prompt them at connection in your organization’s information, deadlines, and projects the ready-made tasks arrange on an interaktiv list, Kanban board, instead table. With four custom positions and three Custom Area to add references, approvals, and sections to each task, here template is somewhat simpler toward learn than the previous one nevertheless includes a comprehensive Business Plot ClickUp Doc go built-out thine strategy.  

Ready to learn more about business strategy? Use this guide down with another strategic planning stencil to ensure you’re taking the proper course of action.

5. Business Planning Document Document according ClickUp

If you’re not prepared to put your business model plans the action, start with an Business Planning Document Screen with ClickUp at all outline and visualize your business strategy. What’s unique over which template is the it’s especially and only for ClickUp Docs. And while it’s visceral until learn real start using quickly, it’s by no means a simple one-pager!

The arrange Doc tutors you since the above down. Starting with your society name, overview, background, and team, you’ll soon be prompted to define key metrics press research inclusive:

  • Your marketing analysis
  • Sales both marketing strategy
  • Operational strategy

The more! Plus, you can connection tasks directly in respective Business Plan Doc and rotating any script into an action item, helping you act on brand ideas the moment they come up. And with can automatically saved version history, collaborative live editing, or allocation comments, your Doc will remain updated and actual when a referrable source of truth throughout the development of your business proposal and model.

6. Leaner Business Plan Template by ClickUp

For something a bit smaller extensive for our other business plan and Whiteboard templates, him can makes the most starting your technology with aforementioned Lean Business Plan Create by ClickUp . 

In this template, you’ll do access to multiple views depending on your preferred layout including a dynamism List, a pre-built Kanban board, and multiple Help Docs . Within each view, you’ll find convenient sections for all of your key get including your plan summary, business model canvas, prioritized my, or notations.

In your plant summary, you can categorize your tasks on five different custom statuses, add multiple proxies for cross-functional teams , set scheduling, attach Doc, and more. This template will establish the bare skeletal of a business plan like you and your teams get things done, working toward your business goals.

7. Business Ideation Template by ClickUp

Needed the perfect tool to practice the developer your ideation methods ? Apply the Business Ideation Template by ClickUp to start assign out add concepts. It’s also adenine great resource at have on hand during bunch discussions instead brainstorming sessions. 

The template presents users with an Ideation Diagrams ensure features different segments to help categorize and organize notions. You can jot down all brainstorming based on either they’re process, product, or people-oriented. The legend indicates each category, and the Pool of Ideas segment will allow you additionally others to addieren confident general ideas such thee can categorize future.

The entire diagram is highly visual and organized using ClickUp’s digital whiteboard software the capture and develop ideas the momentaneous you have them.

8. ClickUp Business Brainstorming Template

Especially whenever you rely on ClickUp as brainstorming programme , the Commercial Brainstorming Template by ClickUp will help you nurture new ideas. 

This template allows you to categories ideas based on:

  • What you love
  • What you know
  • What people need
  • Where people will paid for 

Include multiple people set your Whiteboard diagram the use collaborative determination to see viewing your work or edit alongside each other without overlap.

This unique visual aid will make everyone feel like they’re actively contributing to talk and brainstorming sessions, round are you work asynchronously. You can also take this template a step further and use to finishes diagram to prioritize newer ideas and determine what’s worthwhile exploring further.

9. Business Pattern Canopy Template for Microsoft Word

Another option to find originate your business model is the Microsoft Term Business Pattern Canvas Presentation. It’s related until ClickUp’s business model canvases templates and can for simple organization from this varied facettes of your company.

Using this basic template, you can establish many keyboard details about your business model including key partners and distributor, your value proposition, real relationships. Identified the tv you’ll need to use to reach your customers, forward with the resources required in each activity. In addition, you can add information about revenue streams and cost structure. These objekt are part of their Word document. ... To insert adenine drawing canvas, on the Interpose tab, click Shapes, press then click New Drawing Projection.

This tool is free to transfer and allows for instant use taken Microsoft Phrase. If simplicity is something you’re looking required with to businesses model canvas template, this is a good place to start. 21+ General Model Canvas (BMC) Templates – PDF, DOC, PPT

10. Empty Enterprise Model Canvas Screen for Microsoft Word

Looking for a different Word template to builds your next business design? This Blank Business Full Canvas Template is adenine little more complex and yielding than the previous document—it’s also free to click! The Business Model Wall Word Template is a hight-quality 100% editable and compatible by Microsoft Term. Free Download.

On template gives thee and members about your team a centralized view of your business type, keeping everyone off that same page, words and figuratively. It holds the segments from the print above also presents them in an diagram format. You canned view all important partners, activities, and more in organized sections and add details in who form of sticky notes. Choose from different formatting options, including colors, fonts, and placements to optimize wie you present your data. Business Model Wall Template Word DOC

Find the right business model canvas style for your company

Choosing the right business type template is essential for developing a successful plan that aligns with your business goals both objectives. With a variety of options available, is can subsist overwhelming to find the ideal blueprint is fits your specific requirements.

ClickUp’s extensive Preset Library offers a range a customizable templates to streamline your business planning processor press achieve choose goals. Plus, you can access whatever template, hundred of improving features , both over 1,000 integrations for free when you sign up for ClickUp today .

Questions? Comments? Visit our Help Center for support.

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business model canvas docx

What is a Business Model Canvas | Learn How to Create a Business Model Canvas With Examples


Got a new business idea, but don’t know how to put it to work? Want to improve your existing business model? Overwhelmed by writing your business plan? There is a one-page technique that can provide you the solution you are looking for, and that’s the business model canvas.

In this guide, you’ll have the Business Model Canvas explained, along with steps on how to create one. All business model canvas examples in the post can be edited online.

What is a Business Model Canvas

A business model is simply a plan describing how a business intends to make money. It explains who your customer base is and how you deliver value to them and the related details of financing. And the business model canvas lets you define these different components on a single page.   

The Business Model Canvas is a strategic management tool that lets you visualize and assess your business idea or concept. It’s a one-page document containing nine boxes that represent different fundamental elements of a business.  

The business model canvas beats the traditional business plan that spans across several pages, by offering a much easier way to understand the different core elements of a business.

The right side of the canvas focuses on the customer or the market (external factors that are not under your control) while the left side of the canvas focuses on the business (internal factors that are mostly under your control). In the middle, you get the value propositions that represent the exchange of value between your business and your customers.

The business model canvas was originally developed by Alex Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur and introduced in their book ‘ Business Model Generation ’ as a visual framework for planning, developing and testing the business model(s) of an organization.

Business Model Canvas Explained

What Are the Benefits of Using a Business Model Canvas

Why do you need a business model canvas? The answer is simple. The business model canvas offers several benefits for businesses and entrepreneurs. It is a valuable tool and provides a visual and structured approach to designing, analyzing, optimizing, and communicating your business model.

  • The business model canvas provides a comprehensive overview of a business model’s essential aspects. The BMC provides a quick outline of the business model and is devoid of unnecessary details compared to the traditional business plan.
  • The comprehensive overview also ensures that the team considers all required components of their business model and can identify gaps or areas for improvement.
  • The BMC allows the team to have a holistic and shared understanding of the business model while enabling them to align and collaborate effectively.
  • The visual nature of the business model canvas makes it easier to refer to and understand by anyone. The business model canvas combines all vital business model elements in a single, easy-to-understand canvas.
  • The BMC can be considered a strategic analysis tool as it enables you to examine a business model’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and challenges.
  • It’s easier to edit and can be easily shared with employees and stakeholders.
  • The BMC is a flexible and adaptable tool that can be updated and revised as the business evolves. Keep your business agile and responsive to market changes and customer needs.
  • The business model canvas can be used by large corporations and startups with just a few employees.
  • The business model canvas effectively facilitates discussions among team members, investors, partners, customers, and other stakeholders. It clarifies how different aspects of the business are related and ensures a shared understanding of the business model.
  • You can use a BMC template to facilitate discussions and guide brainstorming brainstorming sessions to generate insights and ideas to refine the business model and make strategic decisions.
  • The BMC is action-oriented, encouraging businesses to identify activities and initiatives to improve their business model to drive business growth.
  • A business model canvas provides a structured approach for businesses to explore possibilities and experiment with new ideas. This encourages creativity and innovation, which in turn encourages team members to think outside the box.

How to Make a Business Model Canvas

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to create a business canvas model.

Step 1: Gather your team and the required material Bring a team or a group of people from your company together to collaborate. It is better to bring in a diverse group to cover all aspects.

While you can create a business model canvas with whiteboards, sticky notes, and markers, using an online platform like Creately will ensure that your work can be accessed from anywhere, anytime. Create a workspace in Creately and provide editing/reviewing permission to start.

Step 2: Set the context Clearly define the purpose and the scope of what you want to map out and visualize in the business model canvas. Narrow down the business or idea you want to analyze with the team and its context.

Step 3: Draw the canvas Divide the workspace into nine equal sections to represent the nine building blocks of the business model canvas.

Step 4: Identify the key building blocks Label each section as customer segment, value proposition, channels, customer relationships, revenue streams, key resources, key activities, and cost structure.

Step 5: Fill in the canvas Work with your team to fill in each section of the canvas with relevant information. You can use data, keywords, diagrams, and more to represent ideas and concepts.

Step 6: Analyze and iterate Once your team has filled in the business model canvas, analyze the relationships to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and challenges. Discuss improvements and make adjustments as necessary.

Step 7: Finalize Finalize and use the model as a visual reference to communicate and align your business model with stakeholders. You can also use the model to make informed and strategic decisions and guide your business.

Key Building Blocks of the Business Model Canvas

There are nine building blocks in the business model canvas and they are:

Customer Segments

Customer relationships, revenue streams, key activities, key resources, key partners, cost structure.

  • Value Proposition

When filling out a Business Model Canvas, you will brainstorm and conduct research on each of these elements. The data you collect can be placed in each relevant section of the canvas. So have a business model canvas ready when you start the exercise.  

Business Model Canvas Template

Let’s look into what the 9 components of the BMC are in more detail.

These are the groups of people or companies that you are trying to target and sell your product or service to.

Segmenting your customers based on similarities such as geographical area, gender, age, behaviors, interests, etc. gives you the opportunity to better serve their needs, specifically by customizing the solution you are providing them.

After a thorough analysis of your customer segments, you can determine who you should serve and ignore. Then create customer personas for each of the selected customer segments.

Customer Persona Template for Business Model Canvas Explained

There are different customer segments a business model can target and they are;

  • Mass market: A business model that focuses on mass markets doesn’t group its customers into segments. Instead, it focuses on the general population or a large group of people with similar needs. For example, a product like a phone.  
  • Niche market: Here the focus is centered on a specific group of people with unique needs and traits. Here the value propositions, distribution channels, and customer relationships should be customized to meet their specific requirements. An example would be buyers of sports shoes.
  • Segmented: Based on slightly different needs, there could be different groups within the main customer segment. Accordingly, you can create different value propositions, distribution channels, etc. to meet the different needs of these segments.
  • Diversified: A diversified market segment includes customers with very different needs.
  • Multi-sided markets: this includes interdependent customer segments. For example, a credit card company caters to both their credit card holders as well as merchants who accept those cards.

Use STP Model templates for segmenting your market and developing ideal marketing campaigns

Visualize, assess, and update your business model. Collaborate on brainstorming with your team on your next business model innovation.

In this section, you need to establish the type of relationship you will have with each of your customer segments or how you will interact with them throughout their journey with your company.

There are several types of customer relationships

  • Personal assistance: you interact with the customer in person or by email, through phone call or other means.
  • Dedicated personal assistance: you assign a dedicated customer representative to an individual customer.  
  • Self-service: here you maintain no relationship with the customer, but provides what the customer needs to help themselves.
  • Automated services: this includes automated processes or machinery that helps customers perform services themselves.
  • Communities: these include online communities where customers can help each other solve their own problems with regard to the product or service.
  • Co-creation: here the company allows the customer to get involved in the designing or development of the product. For example, YouTube has given its users the opportunity to create content for its audience.

You can understand the kind of relationship your customer has with your company through a customer journey map . It will help you identify the different stages your customers go through when interacting with your company. And it will help you make sense of how to acquire, retain and grow your customers.

Customer Journey Map

This block is to describe how your company will communicate with and reach out to your customers. Channels are the touchpoints that let your customers connect with your company.

Channels play a role in raising awareness of your product or service among customers and delivering your value propositions to them. Channels can also be used to allow customers the avenue to buy products or services and offer post-purchase support.

There are two types of channels

  • Owned channels: company website, social media sites, in-house sales, etc.
  • Partner channels: partner-owned websites, wholesale distribution, retail, etc.

Revenues streams are the sources from which a company generates money by selling their product or service to the customers. And in this block, you should describe how you will earn revenue from your value propositions.  

A revenue stream can belong to one of the following revenue models,

  • Transaction-based revenue: made from customers who make a one-time payment
  • Recurring revenue: made from ongoing payments for continuing services or post-sale services

There are several ways you can generate revenue from

  • Asset sales: by selling the rights of ownership for a product to a buyer
  • Usage fee: by charging the customer for the use of its product or service
  • Subscription fee: by charging the customer for using its product regularly and consistently
  • Lending/ leasing/ renting: the customer pays to get exclusive rights to use an asset for a fixed period of time
  • Licensing: customer pays to get permission to use the company’s intellectual property
  • Brokerage fees: revenue generated by acting as an intermediary between two or more parties
  • Advertising: by charging the customer to advertise a product, service or brand using company platforms

What are the activities/ tasks that need to be completed to fulfill your business purpose? In this section, you should list down all the key activities you need to do to make your business model work.

These key activities should focus on fulfilling its value proposition, reaching customer segments and maintaining customer relationships, and generating revenue.

There are 3 categories of key activities;

  • Production: designing, manufacturing and delivering a product in significant quantities and/ or of superior quality.
  • Problem-solving: finding new solutions to individual problems faced by customers.
  • Platform/ network: Creating and maintaining platforms. For example, Microsoft provides a reliable operating system to support third-party software products.

This is where you list down which key resources or the main inputs you need to carry out your key activities in order to create your value proposition.

There are several types of key resources and they are

  • Human (employees)
  • Financial (cash, lines of credit, etc.)
  • Intellectual (brand, patents, IP, copyright)
  • Physical (equipment, inventory, buildings)

Key partners are the external companies or suppliers that will help you carry out your key activities. These partnerships are forged in oder to reduce risks and acquire resources.

Types of partnerships are

  • Strategic alliance: partnership between non-competitors
  • Coopetition: strategic partnership between partners
  • Joint ventures: partners developing a new business
  • Buyer-supplier relationships: ensure reliable supplies

In this block, you identify all the costs associated with operating your business model.

You’ll need to focus on evaluating the cost of creating and delivering your value propositions, creating revenue streams, and maintaining customer relationships. And this will be easier to do so once you have defined your key resources, activities, and partners.  

Businesses can either be cost-driven (focuses on minimizing costs whenever possible) and value-driven (focuses on providing maximum value to the customer).

Value Propositions

This is the building block that is at the heart of the business model canvas. And it represents your unique solution (product or service) for a problem faced by a customer segment, or that creates value for the customer segment.

A value proposition should be unique or should be different from that of your competitors. If you are offering a new product, it should be innovative and disruptive. And if you are offering a product that already exists in the market, it should stand out with new features and attributes.

Value propositions can be either quantitative (price and speed of service) or qualitative (customer experience or design).

Value Proposition Canvas

What to Avoid When Creating a Business Model Canvas

One thing to remember when creating a business model canvas is that it is a concise and focused document. It is designed to capture key elements of a business model and, as such, should not include detailed information. Some of the items to avoid include,

  • Detailed financial projections such as revenue forecasts, cost breakdowns, and financial ratios. Revenue streams and cost structure should be represented at a high level, providing an overview rather than detailed projections.
  • Detailed operational processes such as standard operating procedures of a business. The BMC focuses on the strategic and conceptual aspects.
  • Comprehensive marketing or sales strategies. The business model canvas does not provide space for comprehensive marketing or sales strategies. These should be included in marketing or sales plans, which allow you to expand into more details.
  • Legal or regulatory details such as intellectual property, licensing agreements, or compliance requirements. As these require more detailed and specialized attention, they are better suited to be addressed in separate legal or regulatory documents.
  • Long-term strategic goals or vision statements. While the canvas helps to align the business model with the overall strategy, it should focus on the immediate and tangible aspects.
  • Irrelevant or unnecessary information that does not directly relate to the business model. Including extra or unnecessary information can clutter the BMC and make it less effective in communicating the core elements.

What Are Your Thoughts on the Business Model Canvas?

Once you have completed your business model canvas, you can share it with your organization and stakeholders and get their feedback as well. The business model canvas is a living document, therefore after completing it you need to revisit and ensure that it is relevant, updated and accurate.

What best practices do you follow when creating a business model canvas? Do share your tips with us in the comments section below.

Join over thousands of organizations that use Creately to brainstorm, plan, analyze, and execute their projects successfully.

FAQs About the Business Model Canvas

  • Use clear and concise language
  • Use visual-aids
  • Customize for your audience
  • Highlight key insights
  • Be open to feedback and discussion

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Amanda Athuraliya is the communication specialist/content writer at Creately, online diagramming and collaboration tool. She is an avid reader, a budding writer and a passionate researcher who loves to write about all kinds of topics.

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We have created our resources in the template library as a service to the entrepreneur community. This is why we provide them under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , unless marked otherwise. Like more than two (2) million people so far, you are free to use and adapt the content for your own purposes as long as you visibly acknowledge Neos Chronos as the source in any derivative work. In practical terms this means that you are free to use and adapt this Lean Canvas Template as long as you do not remove our copyright notice, and you do not restrict the rights you received from us when sharing the result with others.

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