LivePlan Reviews

LivePlan

Business planning & tracking software

4.59/5 (102 reviews)

Pros
  • The customer service is shockingly amazing. I requested one payment refund after not using it in over a year and it was super quick and easy.Jeremy F.Read the full review
  • I love that I can change and expand my business plan at any time. I can also share my plan with potential investors and feel confident that it is both organized and professional.Verified ReviewerRead the full review
  • I like the ease and simplicity of building the projections and adjusting them with different scenarios.Maranda O.Read the full review
Cons
  • Unfortunately it is limited to that time frame which disappoints because other than the time frame, just about everything else is customizable.Dennis D.Read the full review
  • The reason I stopped using this software is that the reports it generates is difficult for banking and finance professionals to digest.Lauren Z.Read the full review
  • I had a hard time going back to the plan - and comparing how i was doing in the forecast.Iliana D.Read the full review
98%
recommended this to a friend or a colleague
Laurie Schive

Best Planning Software for a Small Start-Up

Used monthly for 1-2 years
Reviewed 2020-01-17
Review Source: Capterra

LivePlan helped me create a workable, realistic strategic plan. After one year in business, I revisited the plan and saw that my projections on revenue, margins and start up costs were spot on, thanks in part to this great software tool. I recommended it it to several prospective bakery owners as a well-priced tool to start turning their dream into a viable business reality.

Pros
Live Plan was perfect for my needs - it helped me shape my strategic plan and think through my start-up capital requirements and revenue projections. I loved that it gave me some industry benchmarks and suggested budget items (like employee payroll liabilities) I hadn't thought of. The templates were also very helpful to show me what a plan should look like.

Cons
I didn't like that the software didn't highlight at the beginning how to coordinate between my LivePlan line items and my Quick Bookls like items. It made using the review feature (to compare projections with performance) more difficult to use.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thank you so much for the feedback Laurie - we greatly appreciate it!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Lucy Beck

Good for planning and forecasting, rubbish at Actuals to compare performance against plan

Used monthly for 2+ years
Reviewed 2018-03-28
Review Source: Capterra

Checked my business plan was viable, helped me clarify my thought processes. Gave me something to measure performance against. Unfortunately doesnt integrate to Zoho Books (as of March 2018), nor is there any opton to import from a CSV or other spreadsheet format. If you are a Xero or QB user you can link to get your actuals for comparison against plan, BUT proceed with caution. You cant undo the data import - everything needs deleting manually, and you cant choose which timeframe you import data for. Its last 2 years plus current year and thats that. So if your business has changed significantly and you only want say last six months dat you cant achieve this

Pros
Cloud based, easy step by step process for planning for novices. Once you have put in the basics of revenue streams and costs its very easy to play "what if" type questions and see the impact on your forecast. You can get into enormous detail if you want or build this up over time as you develop your thought process.

Cons
Where the product really falls down is when you want to compare with Actuals. It only connects to Xero and Quick Books and you have no control over the data or time period that it syncs at all - current year plus last two years, which is rubbish if your business has pivoted and you only want the last six months data for example. Whats worse is you cant roll back the sync - you have to manually delete all sync'd data. Further if you dont use Xero or QBooks, there is no option to import from a spreadsheet - so again you need a data entry person to manually enter actual data unless you want to spend ages doing it yourself... Very disappointed as up to this point had liked the platform.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 6/10

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Anonymous

GREAT Business Builder and Planner

Used weekly for 6-12 months
Reviewed 2020-06-10
Review Source: Capterra

My business is solving budgetary issues with LivePlan. It is creating a window into my business as a whole so that I can see what areas need to be improved, increased or eliminated. So far, my business is making great progress. One of the changes we made was to cut the size of our staff. Our workload is less, but we are making MORE money! Thanks LivePlan for your enlightenment!

Pros
Liveplan definitely has many features that I need in my service-based business. BUSINESS PLANNING SOFTWARE is one of the features that it provides via video instructions. IMPORTING OF QB INFORMATION for BUDGET ANALYSIS is a crucial need for any business looking to be successful.

Cons
I am not completely satisfied with the ease-of-use of Liveplan. To their credit, I haven't searched out for help or training....and I'm sure they have online support for new users. I would like support in understanding the numbers created by the many reports that can be analyzed.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 7/10

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Maranda Orando

Decent enough for SMEs

Used weekly for 6-12 months
Reviewed 2020-04-13
Review Source: GetApp

Overall a good starting point to assist a small business entrepreneur with little or no business planning experience,should consider more options to integrate with accounting apps and visually biased analytical tools to enable better tracking of post planning perfomance on more devices as well.

Pros
I like the ease and simplicity of building the projections and adjusting them with different scenarios.

Cons
The write up section is a bit limiting in certain aspects for example there are no font selection options if one wants to change to their company document preferred font style ( Century Gothic) as well as set my paragraphs as justified as opposed to left indented.I cannot import tables and adjust them within the plan document, The graphical representations of the projections are a bit visually limited in color and info graphic presentation options .particularly if one wants a more visual document.It would also be nice to have a quick preview option for the document as u build it without necessarily having to export or down load a pdf to get and idea of how it look in print.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 5/10

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Pasha Sochnev

The only business planning software that gets the job done

Used daily for 6-12 months
Reviewed 2020-06-03
Review Source: Capterra

It took a few attempts to put together a business plan, but it worked out.

Pros
This is all-in-one software that helps you organize thoughts, data, expectations and organize everything in a meaningful way that helps you plan, budget and forecast.

Cons
It’s needed at the beginning, but not later.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Stacey Mobley

Satisfied over the last 10+ Years

Used occasionally for 2+ years
Reviewed 2020-04-01
Review Source: Capterra

The biggest thing for me is that after I created my plan for my current business, going back to see where I made mistakes after I had been open a year allowed me to understand more what I should have done. Luckily, my business is a success, even with my numbers being somewhat off.

Pros
For me, the examples presented allow the user to get a sense what is needed in each section. Help is also valuable when using this software. A Business plan can be difficult to create & with the help, it does answer most of my questions at the time. I have created a couple of plans over the last 10+ years where I had ideas for businesses. I did use this platform for my current business that started in 2012. Going back to view ones business plan does allow them to get a better sense where they might have fell short on predicting income, payroll, etc..

Cons
Overall, I don't think there is CON to using this software. Sure there are some obstacles to overcome, but the help & examples help a lot. I say look at example business plans before one starts.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thank you so much for leaving a review, Stacey!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Jeanette Luytkis

Too expensive

Used occasionally for 2+ years
Reviewed 2020-02-06
Review Source: Capterra

Ok to use but when done with the plan, there is not really a reason to keep paying.

Pros
Easy to use and good help for creating a Business plan

Cons
When you have done the plan it is just there and I have been paying a lot of money for just storing my Business plan for 2 years. Now I have to prioritize what I spend my money on and this is one thing I dont need at the moment.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thanks for your feedback Jeanette, we appreciate you taking the time to leave it!

Many people keep their subscription long term, because they use the Dashboard feature to track their progress, compare their actual results to their plan, and continually update their plan based on what they've learned from experience.

LivePlan is a great tool in this regard to manage your business if it is already running, or when you begin operations.

LivePlan is also non-contract, so you can use the software for as long as you like, and cancel when you need. So if you need it just to make one plan quickly, you are welcome to cancel when you are finished with no risk. You can also switch a monthly plan to annual billing later to take advantage of the savings offered there if you plan on using it for longer.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 6/10

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Lauren Ziegler

Great product for understanding business

Used weekly for 6-12 months
Reviewed 2019-10-16
Review Source: Capterra

This software was amazing for my initial business planning phase. Unfortunately, because I am a franchise I have access to other tools that are integrated with my ordering software and reporting software that automate most of the dashboard and bench-marking features. If this could link up to my other software i would likely come back to it since it is so easy to test out possible business plans and forecasts.

Pros
This software helped fill in the gaps for me. I don't have a business background, so purchasing an existing business was a little out of my knowledge comfort zone. This software helped me understand how business works and how my decisions effect the whole picture of my business.

Cons
The reason I stopped using this software is that the reports it generates is difficult for banking and finance professionals to digest. My applications for additional funding got delayed because I needed to redo my forcast and business plan in a way that was easier for my finance people to digest.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thank you for your honest feedback, we appreciate it!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Trevor Ghylin, PhD, PE

Great

Used weekly for 2+ years
Reviewed 2020-01-12
Review Source: Capterra

Pros
Very easy to put together a professional business plan and slide deck for investor presentations.

Cons
Monthly fee. Expensive during times we weren't actually using it

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thanks for taking the time to review LivePlan, we really appreciate it Trevor!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Seyi Osazuwa

EXCELLENT PRODUCT

Used weekly for 1-2 years
Reviewed 2020-02-19
Review Source: Capterra

Farm setup business plan

Pros
I like the reviews form the pitch and the task reminders some days before it is to happen. It is simple t use if one just follows every direction and guide provided.

Cons
You can only work online. If it can be designed in such a way that you work offline and then upload online, that would be nice. Anyway that's my thought.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thanks for leaving feedback Seyi!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Anonymous

LivePlan takes the intimidation out of writing a business plan!

Used weekly for 2+ years
Reviewed 2018-10-07
Review Source: Capterra

LivePlan is helping my business grow because I am able to stay organized with goals and milestones as we are meeting them. I can see firsthand what is allowing my company to grow and where we need to make changes to be successful.

Pros
I really liked working with LivePlan to build a business plan. LivePlan helped me with having a template available to build my business plan upon. I thought writing a business plan would be something I would have to outsource and get help with. LivePlan allowed me to take control of writing and creating my own business plan. I love that I can change and expand my business plan at any time! I can also share my plan with potential investors and feel confident that it is both organized and professional.

Cons
I would like if the software would integrate with my accounting software, that way I can see in realtime how my cash flow is cooresponding with my company goals.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Anonymous

LivePlan Review

Used monthly for 2+ years
Reviewed 2020-01-08
Review Source: Capterra

Software is good but for one job only. If the size of plant change I need to start all over. If it goes back to the initial plan I have to redo it all over again unless I have saved and downloaded the original version.

Pros
Easy to use and guide you to what it has to be done.

Cons
The fact that you can not make several business plans at the same time for example a business plan for a 300 ton per day plant and a business plan for a 1000 ton per day plant if I am building both plants at the same time.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thanks for the feedback -

A standard LivePlan account includes one active company at a time but you can create as many companies as you want.

You may archive your current plan, then create a new plan. It's easy to switch back and forth between companies.

Here are detailed instructions from the Help Center:
Managing your companies, pitches, and plans (https://help.paloalto.com/hc/en-us/articles/115004655828-Managing-your-companies-pitches-and-plans)

If you need to be able to have multiple companies active simultaneously, you may upgrade your account.

Changing the number of active companies on your account (https://help.paloalto.com/hc/en-us/articles/115004922227-Changing-the-number-of-active-companies-on-your-LivePlan-account)

You may also choose to create multiple financial forecasts within one company:

Using multiple forecasts (https://help.paloalto.com/hc/en-us/articles/115004824088-Using-multiple-forecasts-to-create-scenarios)

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features

Likelihood to recommend: 8/10

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Aaron Pace

LivePlan - Don't Write a Business Plan without It

Used daily for 6-12 months
Reviewed 2019-12-18
Review Source: Capterra

It was a great experience. I was able to complete my business plan in much less time than I expected. While I ultimately walked away from the business idea, I couldn't have realized the plan at all without LivePlan.

Pros
LivePlan is very easy to use. That was the first thing that drew me to it. It's packed with all the features I needed when writing a business plan for my software development company. I really like the archive feature because I needed to do two business plans and could do that with the base subscription by switching which plan was archived. That was very handy.

Cons
There were a couple of instances when I had issues with formatting, but I wondered if that was the internet browser I was using at the time. Overall, no complaints.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thanks so much for the feedback Aaron, we greatly appreciate it!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Dennis Doherty Jr

A business plan software that anybody can use.

Used weekly for 1-2 years
Reviewed 2017-05-19
Review Source: Capterra

A full business plan, and real projections of what is expected to be spent and what is expected to be made. After the projections the actual real numbers show, when conducted right the projections are accurate.

Pros
LivePlan is extremely easy to use and straightforward. The options are almost endless. Every aspect of a business plan can easily be addressed and completed with help from the software itself. Everything has an explanation from profit and loss projections to real time profit and loss and that's just one feature. Business summary, analysis, and the executive portfolio are all ready to be put together and turn out very well put together as well as the step by step process of putting together your business plan.

Cons
Limitations on time. Liveplan offers three options: 3 year, 5year, and 10 year projections. Unfortunately it is limited to that time frame which disappoints because other than the time frame, just about everything else is customizable.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 8/10

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Nicholas Salter

Go from business idea to business plan fast. Super easy to use.

Used daily for less than 6 months
Reviewed 2020-02-21
Review Source: Capterra

Overall, i was able to put my business idea on paper and see exactly what the budget and funding looks like. It really helped me decide whether or not the business idea was worth pursuing. I highly recommend it to anyone of any level looking to write a business plan.

Pros
I was able to create the exact business plan that I had envisioned. The software has great tools to help along the way. I had never written a business plan before, but using the software made it very easy with plenty of help and examples to create my own. The forecasts, budget, and funding pitch were what sold me on their software, and it was definitely worth it. It works exactly as advertised, and you'll know after you finish your business plan if it's really worth pursuing.

Cons
Everything about it was great. I got stuck at the beginning a little bit with the various summaries. I recommend writing out the full plan then coming back to the summary. It's much easier to do it this way and the software allows you to skip around.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thank you so much Nicholas - we really appreciate you taking the time to review LivePlan! Best of luck!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Karen Bonner

LivePlan is an excellent business planning solution

Used daily for 2+ years
Reviewed 2017-12-21
Review Source: Software Advice

Pros
I love the output of LivePlan. The business plans and one-pagers look clean, modern, and professional. It's very simple to enter information about our business into LivePlan, and the software asks great questions.

Cons
If you already have a separate financial model or set of financial projections for your company, it can be difficult to enter them into LivePlan.

Rating breakdown

Ease of use
Features

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Anonymous

Great product to start a business

Used occasionally for 1-2 years
Reviewed 2020-03-31
Review Source: Capterra

Pros
Very useful in planning, pitching and eventually starting my business. It supported every element from ideation through to detailed p&l & balance sheet for presentation to investors. The software guides you through how to write your proposal/business plan and then helps you formulate and plan all the revenue & costs you need to think about and plan for. Integration with my online accounting software was pretty helpful too.

Cons
I found that for my business the options for calculating revenue and cost of sales were clunky - adding support around these elements in terms of how COS are not necessarily all incurred in the months the product is produced. In my case it can take 3 or 4 months to build the final product - incurring costs along the way. Reporting variance against plan with integrated accounting software is clunky.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thanks for your feedback!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Jeremy Fischer

Shocking service.

Used occasionally for 2+ years
Reviewed 2018-08-27
Review Source: Capterra

It was a great experience with LivePlan. They have a clean and attractive user interface with helpful guidance. The customer service is shockingly amazing. I requested one payment refund after not using it in over a year and it was super quick and easy. Highly recommend this software.

Pros
It's clean, attractive, and easy-to-use.

Cons
It is subscription based and not cheap, however, I was shocked at how quickly and easily they refunded and cancelled my subscription after my request since I had not used it in over a year (Thanks Chris!)

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Miranda Wilsnagh

I especially like the dashboard

Used daily for 6-12 months
Reviewed 2019-04-06
Review Source: Capterra

Excellent way to stay on top of numbers and / or line up your business for sale.

Pros
The dashboard gives you nice graphical view of your monthly, quarterly and annual financials. Highly recommended this software especially to SME's that needs to keep on top of cash flow!

Cons
You can't upload financial figures from a file, only from Xero or Quickbooks Online. No international benchmarking data

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Indraneel Roy Choudhury

The best software for making business plan

Used daily for 6-12 months
Reviewed 2018-11-26
Review Source: Capterra

It has been a great experience to create business plans on the fly and also to track the actual results against your plan

Pros
- Very easy and flexible software - Its an excellent software for making business plan without the hassles of learning excel formula - Very easy depiction of balance sheet and P&L statement and auto generation

Cons
- There is absolutely nothing I don't like about this software

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Sandy Morgan

Excellent Business Plan Writing and Easy Forecast Models

Used monthly for 2+ years
Reviewed 2018-06-18
Review Source: Software Advice

Overall the software excellent. I wish I could get my customers to utilize it more on a consistent basis.

Pros
LivePlan takes you through the process of writing a business plan and putting together financial forecasts in an easy, step-by-step manner. Built in benchmarks are great for planning and analysis. The Pitch is excellent for summarizing the focus of any business. QuickBooks integration and Financial Dashboards are outstanding tools for tracking actual vs. budgeted income and expenses. The milestones are perfect for keeping everyone on task.

Cons
Could have better interface and step-by-step instructions for the assets and liabilities - how the items in QBO relate to LivePlan. The financial portion of the plan could be better formatted when printing.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 8/10

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Daniel Marques

Making a Business Plan? This is the best software!

Used occasionally for 2+ years
Reviewed 2020-01-14
Review Source: Capterra

The experience was productive and the software is great!

Pros
I've bought the software recommended by a friend. The software is easy to use, however there are lots of resources that my team has never used. LivePlan was only used to make a couple of Business Plans. It's not the cheapest in the market, however its worth while.

Cons
It's only possible to open and manage a company at a time without paying an extra fee.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thanks so much for your feedback Daniel!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Rosario Aiuto

Cash flow Companion

Used occasionally for 1-2 years
Reviewed 2019-12-27
Review Source: Capterra

The cash flow report showed me how much funding we would need, and when, in order to keep the doors open.

Pros
LivePlan gave me the answer I needed to make that go, no go decision to even start a new business by showing me the cash flow I needed, not only to start up but also to operate the business month after month.

Cons
LivePlan totally met all our needs. The bank loan officer said it was one of the best business plans they have seen, and wished every applicant could submit such a professional document.

Response from Palo Alto Software


Thanks so much Rosario, we really appreciate you taking the time to review LivePlan!

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 10/10

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Allan Delmare

Absolutely the stand-out business plan writing / sales forcasting / start-up tool available.

Reviewed 2015-12-23
Review Source: GetApp

I've checked out no fewer than 10 other options. This is by far the most simple, the most user friendly, and the most feature-rich option out there. It's not only the cleanest and best-working (no bugs!), but it actually gives you the tools you need to cover a wide variety of business planning needs. Given the range of functionality (for example, you can do month-by-month sales forecasting for 36 months at the basic price level - something that most other services charge you an arm and a leg to upgrade tiers to gain access to), no other software comes close to this. And the final output of the business plan is SO CLEAN. A nice variety of example plans are available, and the "guided" element of going step-by-step is really actually helpful (instead of prohibitive, as I've found some guided software just takes you too far away from what you should really be focusing your time on).

Pros
Price is very affordable Extremely rich feature set Very flexible Easiest and cleanest user interface Fantastic examples Rich and clean output

Cons
This software really only seems to lack a timeline option - you can't custom map a gantt chart for your project timeline. I had to go to another piece of software to get this element in place. But I used LivePlan for the rest of the business plan.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Customer support

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John Whelan

Easy to use, with a range of features to create a business plan.

Used occasionally for 1-2 years
Reviewed 2017-09-22
Review Source: Capterra

- Saves Time - While I don't believe in business plans for startups it gives a clear view for established companies. - Gives a helicopter view of company's future plans.

Pros
- The accounting section, input a few numbers and hours of work is saved. - The option to downgrade your account. - Multiple heading and sections to choose from - The option to create a pitch deck

Cons
- Some heading won't or are difficult to change. - Formatting It's hard to track where your information is on the page, ie your last sentence might up on the first line of the next page.

Rating breakdown

Value for money
Ease of use
Features
Customer support

Likelihood to recommend: 9/10

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