4 Creative Funding Ideas for Your Startup
For early stage startups, funding is essential to not only help you get started but also to grow your business down the road. However, it can be difficult to figure out which...
For early stage startups, funding is essential to not only help you get started but also to grow your business down the road. However, it can be difficult to figure out which funding method works best for your startup’s needs when you’re just getting started.
Fortunately, there are many ways to fund your startup. Every founder needs something different out of an investor or funding method. Some are looking for ways to save money, others need the quickest way to get their hands on capital.
Below, we’ve provided a few funding ideas that can help lead you in the direction you’re looking for.
Peer-to-peer lending, also known as P2P, is a form of borrowing money from other individuals. P2P websites, such as Lending Tree and Credible, directly connect borrowers to investors and give borrowers information on rates, terms, and transactions. Depending on interest rates, these P2P websites select the right investors that will accommodate the borrower the best.
How exactly do peer-to-peer lending websites work for startups? If an investor is interested in loaning money to a business, they will first create an account with a P2P website and deposit whatever amount of money they wish to distribute into loans. The borrower (your startup) will then post a financial profile and is assigned a risk category that will determine the interest rate that will be used on the loan amount to determine total amount paid back.
Once a startup accepts an offer, the money will be transferred to them. Since the money has to be paid back to the investor, the monthly payments are all handled through the website.
Although business credit cards are quite similar to personal credit cards, there are a few things you should know before considering this as a form of funding for your startup. According to Fundera, small business credit cards are one of the easier forms of qualifying for loans. Like any other credit card, you still need to have a good credit score and strong revenue, however, this process requires fewer qualifications and can be done within a few minutes. Other benefits that come with getting a business credit card are: some credit cards won’t affect your credit score, your employees have access to the credit card, and rewards are provided that will benefit your business in the long run.
Even though business credit cards come with lots of benefits, of course, there are going to be some negatives. A downside of business credit cards is that they don’t provide as much protection as a personal credit card would. Let’s say your account has made significant changes to the terms and conditions you initially applied for. Like personal credit cards, you can opt-out of some of these changes, however, business credit cards do not give users that easy of an option. They also often come with higher interest rates, meaning that if you carry a balance from month to month your cost of borrowing will be higher than some more conventional financing.
As a startup founder, you need to be smart about what you should or shouldn’t be spending your money on. When getting your startup off the ground, not only are you going to be making decisions on who or what should be funding your business, but you’re also going to be making major financial decisions around product development, office space, employees’ salaries, and so much more.
You’ll most likely have a list of items or objectives that need to be bought or done once you’ve received funding. It’s essential to prioritize what’s most important and see where you may be able to cut costs. For instance, if you need an office to operate your startup from, consider a coworking space instead of your own private office. This not only saves money, but coworking spaces offer additional benefits such as networking opportunities and access to talent.
Ultimately, it’s important to track your cash flow. It can be hard to remember all fees and expenses that need to be paid back by a certain deadline. Tracking when money needs to be paid back can save you from paying late fees that could easily be avoided.
The objective of crowdfunding is to raise money for your startup through a large number of people. These community investors invest a small amount of money in your business, and eventually, you accumulate the sufficient funds needed to help your business grow. This process can be as short as just a couple of months. Some reliable crowdfunding websites include GoFundMe, Kickstarter, and Indiegogo.
There are two main types of crowdfunding: donation-based and investment crowdfunding. Donation-based funding is where investors donate the total amount of money needed to fund and start a new project. Although the business isn’t required to pay back the donors, in return, the donors expect to receive the product or service that was created through funding. In investment crowdfunding, investors become owners or shareholders of the company they’re funding.
About Michelle Vernaza: Michelle is a Business Development Associate Intern for Swyft, which is a tech PR firm in Austin and Houston and a top digital marketing and PR agency in Denver since its founding in 2011. Swyft recently opened a satellite office where it offers tech PR in San Francisco. Swyft was also listed as one of the top tech PR agencies in Texas by the B2B services review site, Clutch.co.