How to apply for a small business grant? – To get business grants for your small business, you will need to put some time and effort into researching sources and apply in the right manner to get your funds. Such grants can help your business get access to free money, especially if your business is struggling because of various reasons. Although it can take some time to apply, the payoff your business will get is worth it.
In this article, you will learn about how to apply for a small business grant and how to find the best grantors. We will give you a list of all the various federal, state, and private grants meant for small businesses that will help you get started in the first place. We will also provide you with a step-by-step method on how to apply for a grant for your business. Hence, to learn more, read on through to the end of the article.
What Is A Small Business Grant?
According to Business News Daily,
“Business grants are sums of money given by a foundation, government body or other entity to help businesses get started or grow their operations. Grants typically are desirable because they don’t have the same conditions as other financing options. Specifically, grants don’t need to be paid back like loans do, and business owners don’t need to give up equity in exchange for the grant.”
When it comes to business grants, you will basically get free money from a big institution. In this case, you will not need to repay your money. However, the process of applying for the business grant and acquiring it will often be challenging and time-consuming.
Getting a business grant can also help you in tough times, as many grants helped many businesses recover after the pandemic. Grants can help you when you are looking to take up a new project but are lacking finances. Hence, business grants help small businesses to grow.
However, there are various conditions for acquiring a grant. The institutions that offer small business grants often put certain conditions which your business will need to qualify. For example, some government grants are for ethnic minorities starting a business in an area where businesses are lacking.
Some Major Grantors To Look Out For
One of the best places to look for grants is federal government agencies. According to Nedwallet,
“Government agencies are among the biggest distributors of business grants, supporting a range of enterprises from environmental conservation to child care services. Applying may seem intimidating, but federal grants are great opportunities for small-business owners looking to grow.”
Apart from federal grants, there are state-government grants and corporate grants as well. Choose the one where you are fully eligible.
The following are some of the major grants to look out for:
- USDA (US Department of Agriculture) Rural Business Development Grant
- Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs (SBIR or STTR)
- Program for Investors in Microentrepreneurs
- The U.S. Economic Development Administration
- Minority Business Development Agency centers
- The local Small Business Development Center (SBDC)
- State Trade Expansion Program (STEP)
- The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Top Small Business Awards
- Small Business Growth Fund by Global Entrepreneur Fund and Hello Alice
- National Association for the Self-Employed Growth Grant
- FedEx Small Business Grant Contest
- Verizon’s Digital Ready program for small businesses
- Amazon Small Business Grant Program
- Venmo Small Business Grant Program
- Visa Everywhere Initiative
- Lenovo Evolve small-business grant
Grants For Small Business Hardships
- State and local small-business recovery grants
- Small Business Readiness for Resiliency (R4R) Program
- DoorDash Restaurant Disaster Relief Fund
- Etsy Emergency Relief Fund by CERF+
Grants For Startups
- Incfile Fresh Start Business Grant
- SubSummit Pitch Competition
- Hello Alice Grant Platform
- Amber Grant for Women by WomensNet
How To Apply For A Small Business Grant?
According to Investopedia,
“Financial grants that can help your small business grow and succeed are available from a variety of sources—the federal government, state and city governments, and a wide range of philanthropic organizations and corporations. Applying for these grants can be time-consuming, but they have several significant advantages over small business loans if you can get one. Most importantly, grants don’t need to be repaid.”
The following are the steps you will need to take to apply for a small business grant:
Step 1: Determine Your Eligibility
As already discussed, there are different eligibility requirements for different business grants. This will help you save a lot of time, as you will not apply for a grant for which you are not eligible. Based on the goal of the grant, your business needs to comply with a set of requirements that the grantor organization needs.
Step 2: Backup Your Documents
No matter where you apply for a business grant, you will have to show some necessary documents. Hence, make sure you have the following information documented:
- EIN (Employer Identification Number)
- Business Plan
- Business revenue history
- Financial statements
- Tax statements
- Business organizational chart
- DUNS number
Step 3: Take Time To File The Application
Depending on the granting institution, the time you spend on your business grant application and the application’s complexity changes. For example, if you are looking for a federal grant, it might take some time, and you will have to go through many steps.
How to apply for a small business grant? I hope this article was helpful for you in getting a better idea of how to acquire a business grant through proper application. The best thing about a business grant is that you will not need to pay it back, and there are no interest charges as well. However, acquiring business grants can be challenging. Hence, research is essential.
By following the application steps mentioned above, you will be able to maximize your odds of acquiring a business grant. Make sure you devote serious time to researching the best business grant opportunities. Do you have any more suggestions regarding how to apply for a small business grant? Share your ideas with us in the comments section below.