While plenty of small businesses start out with less than $5,000 in the bank, depending on your industry, it’s essential to have as much as possible. Without enough to open an office and hire staff, you’ll be trying to figure out how to get funding soon after opening. Since you should be focused on trying to get more customers rather than keeping the lights on, start off on the right foot.
Here are four ways to get funding that can help your new business idea to soar.
1. Crunch Your Own Numbers
Before you start looking for funding for your new business venture, look at your own funds. If you’ve been working at a high paying job for years and saving up a good amount of money, this could be your chance to invest part of your savings.
When you start looking for money for your business, every dollar you borrow will come at a premium, with interest costs and repayment fees galore. When you can fund the business yourself, you don’t have to pay extra fees or make any additional guarantees.
Many entrepreneurs start out by bootstrapping or using their own money until their business is profitable. Once you’ve got your business up and running, you’ll be able to get outside funding more easily. You’ll have a working model and people will be able to easily imagine the business scaling up.
You’ll also find that you’re more apt to take risks and experiment when you’re working with your own money. When you’re using other people’s money, you might feel pressure to make it back and could miss some opportunities that require some initial risk.
If you’re looking for online funding sources, check out this website.
2. Ask What Family And Friends Can Offer
The people who know you the best, have seen what you can do, and understand how hard you work are the best people to judge how much you should start with. When you have a strong circle of family and friends who want to see you succeed, they’ll do whatever they can to support you. While a few hundred or a thousand dollars might not be a huge loss for them, it can make a big difference to your business.
Also, that initial funding can be shown off to other potential funders to show much people believe in your idea.
One of the hardest things for any business person to do is to ask for money. Even if you’re a brilliant person with great ideas, you might want your ideas to do the talking. Not every genius inventor or entrepreneur is also a great sales person who can convince people to open their wallets.
Before you talk to your friends and family about getting funding, you need to have a solid business plan in place. You never know how seriously your family can get and while you’re trying to have a serious conversation, you need to be prepared for it. Asking for money and then having no plan in place is a surefire way to get them to pass and to lose your credibility.
3. Search For Alternative Funding
If you’ve never considered getting a loan, now might be the time to consider one. If you’ve got a mortgage or a car loan that you’re already paying off on time every month, the financial institution you work with might be a place to start. Ask them about what they can offer you and see if you can talk them down.
Remember, in life, everything is negotiable, even interest rates.
If you have an exciting and hip product that you think will go viral online, you should consider seeking funding via a social platform. Indiegogo and Kickstarter are the most popular platforms for getting a project like a startup or a handmade product off the ground.
The greatest products shine on these platforms and can get a lot of attention without paying to have to promote them. If you’ve got a project or a product that seems to wow everyone you talk to about it, this could be the direction to take your business to get it fully funded.
4. Check With Your Local SBA
Many universities and most major cities have a small business development center or a Small Business Administration that aim to help businesses like yours. If you’re in a local business hub, either ask other business owners or search for your SBA online.
Launching a small company, even one with a unique aim, follows a fairly standard formula for getting off the ground. While you might be the first company like yours to open in your area, you’re not the first small business. Getting some free advice from people who have the goal of expanding a small business can be a big help.
Not only can they hook you up with other entrepreneurs who can mentor you, but they know where to start when you’re looking for funding. They know the best local venues for networking or looking for angel investors for your business.
Your local chamber of commerce is another resource for finding information on how to get money. Most cities have development programs that are based in certain underserved neighborhoods in order to expand the small business presence in that region.
While you’re looking into funding from nearby sources, you’re also getting to know about the local business ecosystem. You’ll get to see what other businesses like yours are out there and can find ways to make sure you take up some undiscovered space.
Figuring Out How To Get Funding Is A Challenge
Probably the first hurdle you’ll face as a business owner is to figure out how to get funding. Once you’ve figured out a steady flow of funding or enough to quit worrying, you can focus on building your business. Building a business means providing great service via clever products and services to an excited client base and that’s what should be your priority.
If you’re looking for the best business resources for your startup, check out our latest guide.