Creditors will likely need to have access to all of your documentation, but more casual readers, who might just want a bit of information about your business, don’t need to see the appendix at all, or at most, just a few select items.
Because the documents substantiate the information presented in your business plan, it’s best to keep them in the same order as they are referred to in the plan.
If you have more than a few pages of documentation in the appendix, start with a table of contents page that lists each section of the business plan, broken up with letters or Roman numerals; then list each item you’ve included in the appendix for that particular section.
This will make it easier to refer to the items as you need to in the plan.
Again, not everything might need to be shown to everyone who reads your plan, but here is a full list of items you might want to prepare for your appendix: The appendix will be the final section of your business plan, and just as with every other part, take the time to meticulously prepare these supporting materials, especially if you’re presenting the information to a potential lender or investor.
The care and thoroughness you put into your backup documents will be a big clue to your readers about your general approach to business, and could help sway opinion one way or the other.The appendix fleshes things out with details that help corroborate and support the plan you have presented.Maybe you’re wondering why, if each of the preceding sections is covered so thoroughly, you even need an appendix.For example, when you talk about your planned advertising campaign in the Sales and Marketing section, you can refer to “Appendix, Section IV” for copies of what the ads may look like.If the appendix contains a lot of material, you can also consider using tabs to break it up, which will make it even easier to locate things.It does take a lot of time and effort to research and write a solid plan, but it will come back to you in spades.A business plan follows a specific format, so follow the guidelines we’ve set out for you in the following articles: Business Plans 101 Section 1 Business Plan Executive Summary Section 2 Business Plan Company Description Section 3 Business Plan Organization and Management Section 4 Business Plan Products and Services Section 5 Business Plan Market Analysis Section 6 Business Plan Sales and Marketing Section 7 Business Plan Funding Request Section 8 Business Plan Financial Plan Section 9 Business Plan Appendix If you’ve already read the series, you’ve heard this before: it’s imperative to always keep your audience in mind.The Small Business Administration suggests keeping a record of who has copies of your plan and what items you’ve included in the appendix. Do keep tight control over who you distribute it to.You may want to consider having your readers sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement, or NDA, to help protect the confidentiality of your information.SCORE, the Service Corps of Retired Executives, has a free template on its website.And again, because of the highly privileged nature of some of what you’re providing, be very particular who you share what with.