How much do business plan writers cost in South Africa is a question I find with many of the clients I deal with day by day. The same question can be asked asked as “How much does a business plan cost in South Africa”? The answer isn’t a straight forward single answer you are looking for but I would like to clarify what you can expect from each of the companies you would typically find in this industry in terms of service and cost.
In my research I have found that companies range anything from R 3 000 to R 50 000 to do the job, so you may be wondering why there is such a gap within the pricing as much as I was wondering from the first time I ever did my own personal research on this issue. I am going to cite a few websites which happen to be my competitors just for clarity’s sake.
Here are five reasons to consider why the price varies from one person to the next
- Marketing Costs
- Overhead Costs
- Consultant Experience
- Type of plan needed
- Primary and secondary data available about the business
Business plans are not a standard commodity like sugar or rice
The service itself has its own variations from one company to the next. The biggest thing that every customer or client is looking for is value in the service they pay for. So I will classify the three types of pricing I have seen in the industry
Low Pricing (R 1000 to R 3 000)
Sometimes, business plan writers cost so little in South Africa. This is the region where many startup consulting companies find themselves. It is quite a form of aggressive marketing to gain market share but clearly not sustainable to maintain quality work and all costs incurred. Most of these companies use generic templates and have identical business plans not uniquely customized for each business. Since they are only starting, they usually have little experience with investors and funders which is mostly the reason why people need plans. If you just need a document that details your strategy and a few things, you will find yourselves in this region. Unfortunately this is what most people can afford for a business plan. Post business plan consulting and the like will not be ideal from such business plan packages. Most of these guys are found on classifieds sites like gumtree and olx (not that these are bad) but that may be the only way to sustain such low pricing with free advertising.
Medium pricing (R 3 000 – R 8 000)
This is what middle priced companies cost in South Africa. Most companies in this range have vast knowledge in business consulting and planning as per se. You would expect an experienced business plan writer to cost this much in South Africa. This is the region where you find business plan packages that meet the minimum requirements of most funding institutions in South Africa. Most of these companies use Google Adwords and other paid advertising methods including newspaper ads. Just in case you were in the moon for the past few years (excuse the expression) and never knew what Google Adwords advertising is. I will give you a little back ground. When you type a certain search term like “bplans africa” you will find us on top of the organic search results. Adverts will appear next to the organic search results written with some highlighting colours that show that they are ads. Google has charges for that service and as such, companies compete for the keywords at a certain price.
Back to our topic, with such advertising costs, you would expect the charges (of the business plan) to be higher than the low priced solutions. Every cost that a company incurs to get you to buy their product or service is factored into the final cost and although you may find this unfair, it is how businesses operate. Yes… even your daily bread and soap that you use at home has such costs factored into them. Besides advertising costs, business plan writers have overheads in their company like any other. So any serious consultants will probably have a price range that includes this price.
Premium Pricing (R 10 000 to R 50 000)
I have met business plan writers cost in South Africa in the region of around R 10 000 to as much as R 50 000. Trust me I have never used any of these services but from the research I did on them, I found that they each have their own perks. You may want to compare their packages but their usually come with a little more than the ordinary 30 -60 paged document. This is where much management consulting is involved. Entrepreneurs normally go through some sort of training and receive some certificates. Packages may come with company registration options, website design, virtual offices, and many perks that would be needed in the startup of a company.
So what do I choose with so much options that can offer me good value for money?
The truth is that I will be a little bit biased since I am a business plan consultant myself. I would first of all highlight what I need from a business plan consultant. Do I just need a document from them? If that is the case I would take my chances with the low cost options. If I need advice and experienced consultants who will not take chances with my business I would look for the mid market range. If I need something that is a little more than a bit of business coaching plus a business plan, I would then consider the premium market range.
If you need well experienced consultants with a fair pricing and some business plan packages that suit any budget click here
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