Lean Canvas: What is it and how to create it?

Imagine this: You want to launch a new product. You don’t have a clear strategy, but you need to present it. So you take some materials and try to make a PowerPoint presentation.
The presentation turns out to be quite messy. Your team and business investors don’t understand your idea. As a result, the new product launch is not going to happen. Unfortunately, such situations happen sometimes. And even the most bright ideas cannot be implemented without a well-structured plan.

So, is there a way out? Yes, there is! Have you heard of the Lean Canvas Business Model? No? Then read our article

What is Lean Canvas (Definition)

Lean Canvas is a one-page business plan template created by Ash Maurya. He adapted Alex Osterwalder’s Business Model Canvas and optimized it for Lean Startups. With a Lean Canvas Model, you can arrange your ideas into key assumptions.

If you do not want to write long business plans, you can always turn to Lean Canvas. It can help you document your plan and replace long & boring business plans with a one-page business model.

Some more advantages: you get a bird’s eye view on many different aspects. It takes only the crucial parts and helps to make your model consistent. Plus, you can concentrate on one thing at a time and detect discrepancies quickly.

Construct a comprehensive blueprint for your business

The secret to creating Lean Canvas

Everything starts with ideas. Try to imagine what you want to do and what results you will get. This task seems easiest, but in fact, it is the hardest one. When you come up with your project image, fill in the following blocks to complete the one-page business plan template.

Customer segments ‍‍ ‍‍‍

Describe your audience. Try to define each segment of it in detail: gender, age, interests, education, and so on. You also need to separate your audience into two groups — those who buy the product and those who use it. There are cases when the buyer is the company or a manager, and the users are employees. Think about the product from these two perspectives and fill in points for each of them with a separate color. This will help you navigate your business plan.


Define the problem you want to solve for your audience. Create a list of at least 2-3 main pains you want to deal with. Pay attention to all details you mentioned in a Customer segment block. Try to be as specific as possible.

Existing alternatives

It’s crucial to write down a list of existing solutions that your Customer segment uses to deal with the problems you described. Look at them from different sides. Try to analyze what is lacking in these alternatives.

Revenue streams

It’s always a good idea to compare your problem with existing alternatives. Find out about the demand for existing alternatives. Define whether your problem would have the same rates. Capture how much, how often, and in what ways customers would be willing to pay and note it down in the revenue streams block of the Business Model Canvas.

Early adopters

Early adopters are customers who are going to try your product first. List the characteristics of your ideal customers and choose candidates. They will share with you product feedback. It is necessary for validating the significance of the problem and the business potential.


You’ve listed the problems of your audience and analyzed existing alternatives. The next step is to describe your ideas on how to solve these problems. Write down your thoughts on each problem. Pay attention to possible revenue streams and early adopters.

Unique value proposition

When you come up with a solution, think about why it is unique and how it differs from existing alternatives. Focus on the benefits you want to deliver and make a list of them.


You’ve already discovered your unique value proposition for your customers. Now it is time to think about channels to the market where you will sell your product. Refer to existing alternatives, analyze their channels and look at their weak points. Write down your own channels, taking into account alternatives.

Key metrics

Measure your performance and monitor progress. List current numbers that describe how your business is doing today. You can also define indicators for future success. For example, how many units of a product need to be sold in order to earn a profit?

Cost structure

Estimate how much you are going to spend on your business project. This includes technical implementation, marketing, design development, etc. Sort these things out and determine fixed and variable costs of the planned expenses.

Unfair advantage

When you launch your product, there is a high possibility that it will be copied. Ask yourself what would prevent someone from copying your business model, even if they have access to a full copy of it, and write your answers in this block. (Examples of what can go in this block include: a team of domain experts, ready buyers or an extensive network.)

High-level concept

Here you should include a summary of your Lean Canvas Business Model. Try to describe it in one sentence. For example, if you were Airbnb you could say ”We are Uber for Hotels“. Use such comparisons when you want to describe your product in a few words. To give more details for business investors, look at the unfair advantage and uniquevalue proposition blocks.

Wrapping Up

Let’s compare creating & launching a product to building a house. Your house will not stand without a solid foundation; the same goes for projects without business plans. The Lean Canvas Model can serve as the solid foundation you need.

Don’t worry about looking for a business plan sample when you have Nimbus. We have created a
Lean Canvas Business Model template especially for you. Just add your content in blocks.

Use Nimbus to create Lean Canvas Business Model

If you need various templates for your work and business, try Nimbus. We have numerous templates for all your needs, including the Lean Canvas Business Model template. The templates are completely customizable and can be used to organize all your projects, meetings, goals, strategies and more.

Nimbus Note is a perfect solution for collaborating with your clients & teams and storing information. Create workspaces and work with super documents that include various content: texts, tables, images, video, audio and embeds. You can further share these documents with clients, partners, agencies and so on—even if they are not members of your workspace.

Nimbus Clarity is a visual messaging tool that creates personalized videos and screenshots. You can visually demonstrate what should be done, rather than describing it with words.

Nimbus Clipper organizes information by saving only relevant content from web pages, PDFs and emails. Select pertinent paragraphs and/or images, eliminate all unnecessary elements like ads or links and manage content from the start to keep only the essentials!

Boost the efficiency of your business with ease!

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