All About Women’s Startup Business Grants

For most business owners, including women entrepreneurs, it is crucial to obtain the right amount of funding to get their startup operations up and running. There are several ways in which you might finance your business, including getting a business loan and applying for a business grant. Let us find out more about getting business grants for women startups.

Business grants for women startups

Given a choice, it makes more business sense to apply for a grant rather than a loan. A loan application process can be lengthy, requiring detailed documents and collateral, and you must repay the loan with interest. On the other hand, with grants, while you do need to provide detailed documentation and business plans, you don’t have to pay back the grant money.

That means, with a business grant, you won’t be pawning your future and shouldering the financial burden of future repayments. However, the agency or company offering the grant may ask you to keep them updated about your business progress towards any previously agreed-upon business goals.

Finding business grants for women startups

When it comes to getting free monetary resources for your business, there are several private organizations, state organizations, and government agencies that offer startup business grants specifically for profit-driven small businesses. Running an online search for “business grants for women startups” can point you toward plenty of promising leads, including the official U.S, government grants site, and online databases like Candid. You will, however, need to sift through them to find grants that give preferential treatment to women entrepreneurs.

Here are a few things you can do:

• Look up the official website of the agency or company offering grants.

• Find out the amount and number of grants they offer every year.

• Check what their submission dates are for sending in grant applications.

• Find out about entry requirements.

• Find out if, in addition to funding, they offer other things like a free trip, a workshop, business training, networking opportunities, and a Pitch Day event to pitch the startup idea directly to investors.

The U.S, government reserves a percentage of its federal contracts for women-owned small businesses. These grants are generally for those businesses whose owners are from the economically disadvantaged bracket or which are from industries in which women are under-represented. For instance, women-run businesses in forestry, manufacturing, construction, HVAC, solar energy, research, and so on.

Eligibility for women startup business grants

Your startup may qualify for a business grant if it meets certain ownership requirements like being minority or women run or if it supports specific government initiatives.

To improve your chances of getting a small business grant, you need to do the following:

• Come up with a pre-revenue startup idea.

• Put together a detailed business plan for your startup.

• Explain what your product or service is and highlight if it is simply something you enjoy or something that the market urgently needs.

• Describe your largest target market in specific detail.

• Prepare a list of your competitors and find out what they are doing right to meet market demand.

• Explain the exclusivity of your products and services.

You will enhance your chances of getting a grant if you can show that your business is likely to enable social welfare.

To facilitate the grant application process, it will help to list all the documents you will need to submit and familiarize yourself with grant writing. If you qualify for a grant, the agency let you know and inform you about their reporting and accountability details. If you agree to their terms, they will give you the funding.

Alternative methods for raising funds

Applying for a business grant can be time-consuming and there is no guarantee that you will receive approval for the funding. In that case, if you find that your startup is not eligible for a grant, you might want to consider alternative methods for raising funds such as crowdfunding. You will find plenty of reliable crowdfunding platforms online. In return for the funding, you will need to offer your backers gifts, product samples, or business equity. There are also some platforms that can raise money without any strings attached.