In the process of hammering out a business plan? Having trouble getting organized and articulating your ideas? Business planning software can be a tremendous help, and there are tons of options for different entrepreneurs.
Our team has dedicated hundreds of hours to researching business planning software providers, figuring out the top options. In this Business Plan Pro vs. StratPad comparison, we’ll give you an objective look at pricing, features, customer reviews and more to help you decide which is a better fit. Enjoy!
Business Plan Pro & StratPad Commonalities
- Both have tools to help you set specific goals and financial projections, track your progress, and of course, write a killer business plan.
- Both come with educational material to help you learn the software, like video tutorials and workshops.
- Both can integrate with accounting software so you can easily carry over existing streams of financial data.
What Sets Them Apart
Business Plan Pro
- Business Plan Pro has been on the market since 1991, used by 1+ million businesses.
- They charge a one-time upfront cost rather than monthly or annual recurring payments.
- Super-responsive customer service that’s accessible via live chat, phone and email.
- Must be downloaded to your computer rather than accessed online.
- Integrates with all the popular accounting programs (Xero and QuickBooks).
- Only compatible with Windows, so you can’t install it on a Mac.
- StratPad is cloud-based, so you don’t need to download anything to your computer. Plus it’s compatible with any OS, so you can run it on any device, anywhere with internet.
- They offer monthly and annual payment options, as well as a free version that’s great for getting a feel for their software.
- Used by 100,000 businesses so far.
- Doesn’t integrate with Xero - only QuickBooks online.
- Not the easiest company to get in touch with in our experience. Their contact form isn’t always functional and they don’t have a customized voice mailbox set up.
Business Plan Pro
Business Plan Pro was built by Palo Alto software, and has acquired countless reviews on their Shopper Approved profile. Take a look at their rating distribution below:
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to tell how many of these reviews are specifically about Business Plan Pro, since Palo Alto has a couple other programs as well. For this reason, we can’t assume that BPP’s overall satisfaction rating is 4.6/5 - it could definitely be higher or lower, and there’s no third-party review platform to reference for confirmation.
Even so, it’s still comforting to know the company you’re buying from is highly-regarded, right? Palo Alto also created LivePlan, which is the #1 business planning software on the market today. That said, there are definitely some BPP-specific testimonials out there, like these:
"Business Plan Pro was an essential tool during the strategic planning stage of our start-up. The profit and loss helped us focus our resources on the most profitable channels, and the sales forecasts were useful in keeping us on track."
"I have used Business Plan Pro to get my business started off right, pitch to investors and to design a 3 year plan for my company. It is an incredibly easy to use, yet powerful tool. I would recommend it to everyone writing a business plan."
StratPad doesn’t have any reviews on typical platforms like Shopper Approved, but their iOS app does have some on the App Store. Unfortunately, their iOS app is a bit different than StratPad Cloud (their primary software), and we haven’t been able to get in touch with their customer service to find out exactly how much their features differ.
Regardless, it’s the only version of their services we’ve been able to find third-party feedback for, so it’s worth taking a look. Here’s their rating breakdown on the App Store:
It averages 4-stars, but a pretty mixed bag when you look at the distribution. Most of their complaints are about the low functionality of the free version and the high price tag on the upgrades (the app’s pricing model is different, too). Of course, our stance is that any free version should really be treated as a trial rather than an ultra-dependable lifelong resource anyway. Plus, it still has plenty of positive reviews:
“This is a great find for any entrepreneur or business. Helped me organize my ideas and polish up my business plan – lives up to the description, great resource to have – worth every penny.”
“I love this app! It does exactly what it says it will – makes strategic planning painless and, most importantly, makes it easy to operationalize the company’s plan. Great value for a great app!”
Pricing & Feature Differences
Business Plan Pro
Business Plan Pro has two different packages: Standard and Premier. As we mentioned, Palo Alto also sells LivePlan, so you’ll see its features compared to BPP’s below. Here’s a list of all the features you’ll get regardless of the plan you choose:
So for $99.95 you get all the tools you need to create a well-formatted, industry-specific business plan and do some financial forecasting. If that’s all you’re looking to do, the Standard package would be totally sufficient for you. If you’re seeking something more comprehensive, however, the Premier package offers some other great tools for managing your business:
The management dashboard and performance scoreboard are both helpful for staying on track with your goals in the long-term. As you can see, these features (and several more) are also available through LivePlan.
Now let’s take a peek inside the software. Here’s a sample profit and loss table:
Many people prefer this spreadsheet-style aesthetic over sleeker, more modern presentations. When it comes to the appearance of a software, it’s really a matter of preference - just make sure you choose one that’s intuitive to you!
For a closer look, check out our comprehensive Business Plan Pro Review.
StratPad also offers two packages, one for business owners and one for advisors. Either can be paid annually or monthly:
So, you’re looking at four price-points:
- The Business package is $19.99/mo if paid annually or $29.99/mo month-to-month.
- Unlimited is $39.99/mo annually or $49.99/mo monthly.
The only difference between the two is the number of plans you get - Business allows you to create up to 5 and Unlimited, of course, allows you an unlimited amount. Both packages come with step-by-step instructional videos, secure 5-level data protection, automated charts for tracking results, regular free updates and more.
Here’s a peek at one of their financial report pages:
Definitely a more contemporary feel than Business Plan Pro. Again, it all comes down to which design you’re most comfortable working with and navigating.
Head over to our StratPad Review for an in-depth look at their features!
Which is Right For You?
Business Plan Pro and StratPad are two of our top 7 favorite business planning tools. We think they’re both worth consideration.
That said, based on research, Business Plan Pro has more experience, more positive customer feedback, and top-notch customer service. However, StratPad has a useful free version which can be used if you're just looking for something simple to gather your thoughts. Either way, trust your gut and do what's best for your business!
Try Business Plan Pro or Try StratPad
Both are great business planning tools