Pitch deck templates: 10 slides every startup must include

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You have a promising business model with massive growth potential. But when you're pitching your business, you must ensure your potential investors know this, too. Whether you're raising money from venture capitalists, angel investors, or anyone else, getting the startup funding you need is all about showing why your team deserves it. Pitch deck templates can help set you up for success.

When you understand what information to include in your startup pitch deck, you can effectively show why your business is a smart investment. You can also demonstrate that you have the right team to make your business idea a success.

In this guide, you’ll learn what you need to include in your pitch deck. You’ll also discover a few pitch deck templates you can use to build the most persuasive presentation possible.

What's a pitch deck?

A pitch deck is a presentation that summarizes your business plan, key metrics, and other factors to show why you deserve funding and how you'll use it. Its role is to inform and intrigue investors, so you can continue the conversation to secure funds for your startup.

Pitch decks aren't meant to be extremely robust. While facts should drive the information you provide, your deck as a whole should be a clear and concise overview of your business. A pitch deck is your foray into the right meetings — where you and your potential investors will dive deeper into your company’s strengths — not the ultimate deciding factor.

Hundreds of startups create business pitch decks to lure in investors each day. To stand out from the crowd, you'll need a compelling presentation to make it to the next step and start building relationships with the people who matter most.

10 must-have slides for every startup pitch deck

A typical pitch deck has about 18 slides, and the average investor will spend less than four minutes reviewing all of them. Not only does this demonstrate the importance of a concise deck, but it also shows how crucial it is to narrow down the right information to include in your presentation template.

Here are 10 slides you need to include in your pitch deck template to impress even the stingiest startup investors:

1. Value proposition

Investors get numerous pitches, so differentiating yourself from the start is always a good idea. Many companies can provide the same product or service, or solve the same problem, but a value proposition slide gives you the chance to lead with what makes your business idea unique.

Just like an elevator pitch or a tagline, your value proposition should be short and sweet. For example, Slack sums up its special value with a simple phrase: "All your tools in one place."

2. Problem

Every successful company is solving some sort of problem in the world. Whether you're a life sciences company tackling diseases or a productivity app tackling inefficiency, your potential investors want to know that you've identified exactly what problem you're targeting.

This pitch deck slide is your opportunity to engage investors by walking them through what your audience is struggling with. Use a bit of storytelling to help investors empathize with your target consumers, and prove to them that your "problem" is one worth solving.

3. Solution

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Your solutions slide is the point in your pitch deck template to insert your product or service into the story. Describe how your product works or what service you provide. Then, walk your investors through what your customers should experience when they purchase it from you. How are you eliminating or alleviating their problem? How will they feel after choosing your brand?

Breaking down your solution into clear bullet points or with an infographic can make your offering as clear as possible for potential investors. If relevant and possible, include pictures of your product, screenshots of your mobile app, or similar imagery, so investors get a better sense of what your business has to offer.

4. Market opportunity

Including a market opportunity slide in your pitch deck presentation template allows you to further illustrate that your problem is actually a problem. Outline for your investors the characteristics of the target market you're trying to reach, using specific (but not overly narrow) defining factors.

The best pitch decks always include numbers that back up market opportunity statements. At minimum, you should share your market size. But you may also consider including facts, such as what percentage of that market is untapped or how much spending power your target consumers have.

5. Business model

No professional pitch deck is complete without at least one slide about your business model or financial model. This slide is where you'll describe how you make money, so investors can gauge the feasibility and viability of this approach. You can further break down your pricing strategy and why it's effective for your target consumers.

6. Traction

You've shared your revenue model. Now you need to prove to consumers that it works.

Create a slide that showcases your current growth trends and where you project you'll be in the future. How many active customers have you gained? How has your revenue increased over time? You can use a visual, like a line graph, to further emphasize the fact that your business is gaining traction.

You'll also want to include relevant key performance indicators (KPIs), which may include your customer acquisition cost, current churn rate, or even your website traffic.

If you're pitching before your official launch — for example, if your app is in beta mode or you only have a product prototype — you can share information like the level of interest you've gained or the number of people who have preordered your product. Take time to do your research for this slide. You want to present clear, hard data to prove that your business has the potential to succeed.

7. Marketing strategy

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A great investor pitch deck should share how you plan to get the word out about your business. Share current and future strategies you plan on using to capture and convert quality leads.

If you're honing in on social media or investing more in Google ads, include the strategy in your slide. You may also want to include how much you plan to invest in each marketing or sales channel, and what results you expect. Show investors that you know how to spend money wisely and keep your customer acquisition costs as low as possible.

8. Competition

You may think that putting the spotlight on your competitors is a bad thing. But adding one concise slide about who you're up against can prove your smarts. Investors expect every business to have competition, which may include brands with a similar target market or a similar product. This part of your slide deck gives you a chance to explain why they're not a problem.

Expand on your unique value proposition and show why consumers still need you, or why they'll switch to your brand instead. You can also further highlight your market’s opportunities by clearly defining who your competitors aren't reaching.

9. Team members

Your team slide is one of the most important parts of your pitch deck. The experience of your executives can impact your company's ability to survive in the long run.

Use this part of your pitch deck template to explain who your leadership team is, their experience, and what proven successes they've led in the past. Emphasize the value and special qualities that each person brings to the table. If any team members have done significant work at any well-known startups or former startups, like Uber or Airbnb, feel free to name-drop those companies.

If you still have open positions, explain what type of person you plan to place in each leadership role.

10. Ask

A perfect pitch deck always closes with a call to action (CTA). Be clear about how much money you're asking for and how you plan to use it. You can once again use a graph or infographic to help investors visualize how your spending plan aligns with your growth.

You can also include your contact information in this slide or in the following slide to make the ask even more actionable.

3 sites for free pitch deck templates

When you're ready to put your pitch deck together, you don't have to build it from scratch. You can use pre-designed pitch deck templates on the web, then adjust the content, color scheme, and other details to make your brand stand out.

Three of the best platforms for finding effective investor presentation templates are:

  1. Prezi
  2. Canva
  3. Slidesgo

Prezi and Canva allow you to edit pitch decks straight on their platforms, while Slidesgo offers Google Slides and Powerpoint templates to copy and customize.

Build a pitch deck to impress

A great pitch deck can be the reason your startup moves forward in its pursuit of funding. By including the right types of slides in your template, you'll offer investors the information they want to see, and inspire them to continue the conversation with you.

As you're completing your pitch deck, you may find that one of the toughest — but most important — parts of the process is figuring out exactly how much funding to request. To ensure you're closing with a strategic, data-backed ask, learn about eight startup valuation methods you can use to determine how much your business is worth today.

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