How to Create a Business Model Canvas in Google Docs

David J BlandAbout the Author: David has enjoyed success using lean and agile techniques at several companies in San Francisco and Washington DC. He joined his first dot com startup in 1999 and helped lead it to a 13 million dollar acquisition in 2006.

David’s current focus is bringing startup thinking into large organizations to foster corporate entrepreneurship. He can usually be found writing, speaking and coaching around lean startup, business model generation and kanban.

David’s homepage can be found at http://www.davidjbland.com/

A Business Model Canvas is an easy to use, lightweight and powerful tool for anyone looking to sketch out business models. It is quickly becoming the preferred strategic management tool for start-up organizations.

While it is available in .pdf form from Alex Osterwalder’s site, I couldn’t help but feel that companies could benefit from an online, collaborative version of his template.

So, I asked him…

David J Bland Alex Osterwalder Twitter

It only takes a Google Account, a few minutes of your spare time and best of all it’s free.

Create a Google Drawing
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Give your drawing a background color
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Select the rectangle tool
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Draw a large rectangle
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Select the line tool and slice the rectangle up into 9 sections
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Use the text tool to add in each section label
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Include the help text for each section in a lighter gray font color (optional)
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Fill in the background color and create the header & footer
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Create sticky images in photo editing software
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Import the sticky images into the Google Drawing
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Drag the images off to the gutter so they do not get in your way
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Use the text tool to overlay text onto your sticky
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Drag the sticky over to your business canvas
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

Copy, paste and move the stickies around as needed
Business Model Canvas in Google Drawing

I’ve shared the Business Model Canvas I created in this demo if you wish to get a better idea of how it is structured. It is only a guide, and you can customize it in many different ways if you like.

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21 Responses to How to Create a Business Model Canvas in Google Docs

  1. codenutz February 4, 2014 at 1:52 am #

    I really like lean stack for creating the lean canvas – something I’ve been using when planning apps. Balsamiq also works pretty well for sketching out a canvas (not free) – I created a lean canvas template on there that balsamiq users can use for free (there is also a business model canvas template on there).

  2. davidjbland October 9, 2013 at 10:50 am #

    nramirez

  3. nramirez September 14, 2013 at 8:32 am #

    It is very cool, is there anyway to link text contents in each of the nine blocks to a Spreadsheet (like a DataBase) ?

  4. AhmetKayhan August 11, 2013 at 2:59 am #

    Check this one out – really useful and free: https://bmfiddle.com

  5. Tjerk April 28, 2013 at 5:00 am #

    Thanks! That really helped!

  6. Leonardo Moreno April 15, 2013 at 9:10 am #

    My own version a couple months old http://imgur.com/gUwgpNd

  7. @Jeremy_Hayes April 13, 2013 at 4:50 am #

    How to Create a Business Model Canvas in Google Docs http://t.co/3VpZe0Hzti #MScDataBiz

  8. @ShirlyRonenRL April 12, 2013 at 10:34 pm #

    How to Create a Business Model Canvas in Google Docs http://t.co/FXUynFoiCA

  9. @LeanStartupBCN April 12, 2013 at 9:35 pm #

    The Online Business Model Canvas in Google Docs http://t.co/0yzRSsezFC by @davidjbland via @jrhuerta #bmgen #bmtools #bmgame

  10. @jrhuerta April 12, 2013 at 12:01 pm #

    Save some trees! Use the GDocs version of the Business Model Canvas! http://t.co/gHQCmHIMha #leanstartup cc: @LeanStartupBCN

  11. @jmpnadeau April 12, 2013 at 8:48 am #

    How to Create a Business Model Canvas in Google Docs http://t.co/fnvLR8IXnm

  12. @tpyamamoto April 12, 2013 at 2:00 am #

    ビジネスモデルキャンバスをGoogleDocsで書く方法 / How to Create a Business Model Canvas in Google Docs http://t.co/U3l0cUGL0K

  13. @SYeganegi April 11, 2013 at 4:25 pm #

    How to Create a Business Model Canvas in Google Docs http://t.co/gU02AoS3uo

  14. @scrumology April 11, 2013 at 1:53 pm #

    How to Create a Business Model Canvas in Google Docs http://t.co/GaVbbL4d7v #Agile #Scrum

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