Starting a new business is an exciting but daunting task, especially when it comes to financing your plans. Thankfully, there are hundreds of government grants available for small businesses like yours. From saving money to helping your business grow, there are many government opportunities to help your business thrive.
To learn more about all the grants available, head over to the government website or read on to find out how to apply for small business grants.
How to Apply for a Small Business Grant
As every scheme is different, each grant has varied terms and criteria you must meet to be eligible for the assistance. Thankfully, these checks are done early on in the application process, so you won’t find yourself spending hours on an application only to discover it’s the wrong one.
Here are our top six tips to make sure you’re successful in applying for a new business grant.
1. Contact the Grant Body
By talking directly to the grant awards body, they’ll assess your chances of making a successful application.
2. Beware of the Grant Objectives
It’s essential to learn why the grant is being awarded and what it aims to achieve. This could be to develop environmentally-friendly products, for example. When writing your application, make sure you refer to the objectives they want to achieve as closely as possible to give your application the best chance.
3. Make a Professional Business Plan
The grant awards body will be expecting to see a business plan, so make sure it’s in-depth, completed and professional. If you’ve already started trading, you’ll need to provide examples of your business position and balance sheet.
4. Focus on the Grant Use
Most grants tend to be awarded for a specific project, like funding broadband installation, for example. When writing your application, make sure you show how the award will help your business grow and benefit your employees and others, rather than just how it will benefit one area. In this instance, it would be IT equipment.
5. Check Your Funding
For the majority of grants, the government will match the amount you’re willing to invest. So, if you’re hoping to receive a grant of £5,000, you’ll also have to match the amount yourself.
6. Apply Early
Some grants may have a limited amount of money to invest. So when a scheme first launches, you have a greater chance of receiving assistance early on.
To take action and start the process, you can apply here.
What Kinds of New Business Grants Are There?
Usually, government grants come in the form of a direct grant. This is money given to your new business to cover start-up essentials such as training and purchasing equipment. However, most grants expect your business to provide at least 50% of the grant. Depending on your industry, funds of up to £0.5 million are available.
Sometimes, business grants aren’t always the most suitable option for your business. Thankfully, there are alternatives available:
- Equity finance. Equity finance is a method of raising money by selling shares of your company to the public.
- Soft loan. A soft loan usually has no interest or a below-market rate of interest.
Tax codes, VAT registration, government grants - the business world can be a minefield, particularly when you’re just starting. That’s why it’s crucial to have a clear business plan to make the process much smoother. If you’re starting out on your business venture but you need a little help, we’ve created a handy small business starter kit to make navigating the business world that much easier.
Download Our Small Business Starter Kit
Our Small Business Starter Kit is filled with all the best tools and tips to help your business thrive. It includes the best small business tools and tips to help grow your business. Access your starter kit using the button below.