Is It Right For You? (Pros, Cons, & More)
Last Updated: By TRUiC Team
Overwhelmed by the thought of writing a business plan? Thinking about leveraging software, but unsure which to choose? PlanGuru is a budgeting and forecasting-focused business planning software with a lot to offer small and medium-sized businesses.
In this PlanGuru Review, we’ll go over pros and cons, pricing and features, customer reviews, and more. Once we’re through, you’ll know whether or not it’s right for your business. Enjoy!
Recommended: Read our review of the best business plan software tools.
Pros & Cons of PlanGuru
Pros of PlanGuru
- Free trial: Their free 30-day trial is a great way to explore their services before committing. It’s all-inclusive, except you can’t print or export your reports. Still a bargain since their plan typically costs $99/mo.
- Learning: There’s no lack of educational support resources. They offer got live demos, video tutorials, and full-on courses through PlanGuru University - but it’s up to you to seek out the support and actually learn!
- Generous packages: The sheer volume of services you get for your money is pretty impressive. We’ll dig into this in a minute.
- Quickbooks and Excel: PlanGuru integrates with Excel and Quickbooks, making it super easy to import your financial data.
- Money-back guarantee: Their month-to-month and annual packages come with a 30-day and 60-day money-back-guarantee respectively. That means trying out their services is basically risk-free!
Cons of PlanGuru
- The software has to be downloaded to your computer, and it can only run on Windows PC. They do offer a cloud-based version that works with any operating system, but it costs an extra $45/mo.
- Their prices are significantly higher than many of their competitors, with a monthly rate of $99/mo compared to LivePlan’s $19.95/mo.
Pricing & Features
Although their plans have evolved over time, PlanGuru is currently keeping it simple by offering only one package for businesses/nonprofits. Your rate depends on whether you go month-to-month or commit to an annual plan, how many users you need to include, and how many additional features you choose to buy.
Single Business/NonProfit Package = $99/mo (or $899/yr)
PlanGuru’s higher rates are justified by their massive wall of features, which you can see in the screenshot above. Some of the features that distinguish them from other providers are:
- The 20+ forecasting methods.
- Their scenario analysis feature.
- The analytics dashboard.
If you’re new to all this, you might not understand what half of PlanGuru’s features are -- but we encourage you to do your research before turning away. Their offerings might bring tremendous value to your business, or they may be extraneous. It all depends on your needs.
When to Use: PlanGuru’s single business package is a great option for any small business looking for super-sophisticated financials and personalized support. If you choose to use their business planning services, this is the package you’ll buy. You can also take advantage of their add-on features (which we’ll outline below), but this is the base plan you’ll build upon.
PlanGuru Launch: PlanGuru’s Launch add-on is perfect for folks who are looking for in-depth one-on-one support and customized educational materials. Their GoToMeeting collaborative sessions will help you implement strategies to you launch and grow your business.
PlanGuru Analyst: PlanGuru’s most robust option, with increased capabilities and even more personalized support. Pricing for the Launch and Analyst add-ons depends on the needs of your business -- you’ll create a cost-effective plan during the free consultation.
PlanGuru doesn’t have nearly as much customer feedback as more well-known providers like LivePlan, but they still have a couple dozen ratings across the web. Here’s an outline of the current state of their reviews:
Customer reviews as of: 9-21-2017
- Software Advice: 4/5, 16 reviews
- Getapp: 4/5, 16 votes
- TrustPilot: 8/10, 6 reviews
- Capterra: 4/5, 16 reviews
- Serchen: 4.2/5, 5 votes
- TrustRadius: 9/10, 1 review
It’s worth noting that some of these reviews are duplicates shared between review forums, but they’ve still got a decent amount to go on. If you read through the reviews you’ll notice that the majority are positive, but they’ve definitely got some complaints, too.
Most of the negative reviews are about the program’s complexity. That said, many of their positive reviews state that the software is extremely easy to use, so the verdict really seems to depend on 1) the user’s expectation going in and 2) the amount of effort they put into learning the program.
Overall, they’ve got about 80% positive feedback, which isn’t bad for such a complex software. Plus, if you track their reviews over the past several years, you can tell they’re constantly making improvements based on customer input.
How Does PlanGuru Compare?
PlanGuru is an incredibly thorough business planning software, but as we’ve discussed, it’s a bit expensive. To give you a sense of how they size up, let’s take a look at one of their primary competitors: LivePlan.
Pricing: LivePlan wins by a mile if your main priority is keeping costs down. PlanGuru and LivePlan each offer a single business package, but PlanGuru charges $99/mo and LivePlan only charges $19.95/mo.
Features: PlanGuru has more to offer when it comes to in-depth financial planning, but LivePlan still covers all the basics and more. LivePlan also offers ten customizable themes when you’re crafting your business plan, which, in our opinion, results in a more aesthetically pleasing end-result.
Customer Support: PlanGuru and LivePlan both provide phone and email support, and LivePlan also offers live chat. PlanGuru doesn’t have a live chat option, but they do provide each new client an hour-long one-on-one consultation.
Number of Businesses Served: As one of the most popular providers in the industry, LivePlan has acquired over 500,000 users, while PlanGuru has only served about 5,000.
HERE’S A QUICK VISUAL
500,000+ Businesses Planned So Far
Perfect for: Anyone wanting a full featured business plan software that walks you through the entire process
5000+ Businesses Planned So Far
Perfect for: Anyone wanting a comprehensive planning & forecast software with generous packages & features
Frequently Asked Questions
Are their services user-friendly?
It really depends on how much effort you put in at the beginning. Their platform is more complex than many of their competitors, but customer reviews indicate that their support staff is quick with troubleshooting problems. If you take the time to attend a live demo, watch instructional videos, etc., using the software should be a breeze.
What’s their return policy?
Their month-to-month plan comes with a 30-day money back guarantee, and their annual plan with a 60-day money back guarantee. The details of these guarantees aren’t listed anywhere on their website, so call their customer service if you want more information.
Is there a trial version?
Yep! PlanGuru lets you try out their services for free for 30 days.
What about ongoing support?
Their help center is a good resource for specific questions, but its answers are limited. If you need to get in touch with them directly, you can submit an email request or call the customer service number at the top of their website.
Should You Use PlanGuru?
Based on everything we’ve discussed in this review, we give PlanGuru 4.1/5 stars. They’re certainly on the expensive side, but they offer some incredibly sophisticated features that other providers don’t. We’re not saying they’re right for everyone, but they’re worth exploring. There are tons of services out there with great things to offer entrepreneurs like yourself.That being said, if this doesn’t sound like your perfect fit, check out our Best Business Plan Software review. Cheers!