Grants for Small Businesses
Are you a for-profit small business owner looking for a grant? This article by LegalZoom, “Small Business Grants: 21 Options to Apply for Free Funds for Your Business,” updated January 20, 2023, is a great place to start.
Grantors – Government to Corporations
The article lists grant databases and resources, starting with grants.gov. As you explore the article, you will see there are small business grants for women, minority groups, veterans, and sometimes specific industries. Some grants are also geographically-based. In addition to the government resources, here are a few grants they highlight from organizations you might recognize:
- FedEx Small Business Grant
- National Association for the Self-Employed Growth Grant
- Amber Grant Foundation
- Cartier Women’s Initiative Award
- Stacy’s Rise Project
From my experience as Executive Director of a nonprofit for several years, I know some grants are relatively easy and some are very difficult. Make sure you fit the eligibility requirements. Check on use requirements, deadlines, and the grantor’s grant cycle. If you receive a grant, stay in touch with your grantor, keeping your relationship strong. Keeping your grantor updated just…makes…sense, and some grants may require that.
I think my favorite part of the article are the tips they offer when searching for grants:
- Start local
- Research prior winners
- Take your time with applications
- Consider hiring a grant writer.
On that last tip, they admit it is expensive to hire a grant writer, and it can be. There are also free grant writing courses you can take at nonprofitready.org.
Final Tip? It’s a Gem. Listen Up!
This is a direct quote from the article: “Before applying to grant programs, ensure you’ve covered all your business’s legal bases and have a story to tell along with a business plan to show.” Of course, if you read my blog, you know I believe in business planning whether you are applying for a grant or not. Again, it just makes sense.
If you are a small business owner looking for a grant, this article is a great beginning point. I will post a more information in MEG Community (https://www.megcommunity.com/). You can join as a free Leaf member and access the info there for the next few weeks.
If you have any questions about this article, or that pesky business plan, contact me through MEG Community or at email@example.com.
Note: MEG stands for My Entrepreneurial Group. MEG has now grown up to become a community! We hold 104 virtual meetings annually (POWER HOURs and Early Bird Cowork Hours), have several asynchronous focus groups and small business educational resources. We foster inspiration, support, education and collaboration that all lead to you ACTION.
About Robin Suomi, Founder, MEG (My Entrepreneurial Group) Community and Startup to Growth. Robin has worked with thousands of small business owners in industries from A to Z, from solopreneur to 4 employees, and from launch to $5M in sales. MEG Community is where small businesses meet to launch and grow their businesses.
Robin believes that success is rarely accidental and that results require action. That is why MEG embraces inspiration, support, education, collaboration, and ACTION. Small business owners can join as a free Leaf member. They can choose paid monthly Branch, or quarterly or annual premier Tree membership, as they grow.