Learn more about what is needed to qualify and apply for small business grants—even for specialty and minority-led businesses run by women, veterans, and first-time business owners.
Boast specializes in tax credit automation and has experts that can advise on grants and other forms of funding for small businesses, SBIR and STTR programs, and small business innovation research program eligibility.
Over $400 billion USD was given to businesses in the form of government grants and stimulus in 2021. Small businesses are particularly vulnerable to rapidly changing economic conditions, and governments want to support small businesses with grants, loans, funding, and mentorship to help them stabilize and grow.
Grants for Small Business
Billions of dollars are being provided by government entities globally to help stimulate and support the growth of small businesses, including $10,000.00 or more for small business grants, grants for minority business owners, COVID relief, and grants for women and other minority owners.
Typical business grant opportunities:
- New business grants
- Small business grants
- Technology and innovation grants
- Economic stimulus grants
- Employee retention and credit grants
- Hardware and software investment grants
- COVID relief grants
- Business development program
How to Apply for Small Business Grants
The best source of grants for your small business is your local or regional government, then your district or state government, then the federal or national government. Local programs are the quickest to fund and most accurate when considering minority qualification. In the U.S., the federal Small Business Association offers funding and grant programs that span both national and regional (State) elements.
The U.S. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) fund will specify what is needed, state-by-state, for applying for small business grants.
Canadian government regional programs like Canada’s Southern Ontario grant program will supply links and information to apply for grants in Canada.
The 2022 announcement said, “Start-up businesses and entrepreneurs are vital to our communities and our economy, yet many find challenges raising the capital they need to grow and scale their businesses. These challenges have only been increased by the economic impact of COVID-19. With many start-ups needing support, angel investor networks work to mobilize angel capital for entrepreneurs and prepare angel investors to help businesses recover, grow and build a profitable future.”
To apply for small business grants, locate the best website pages and grant submission forms for your local government or private entities, then complete and submit the forms.
How to Get Business Grants and Grant Money For Small Business
The process to obtain grant funding after application submission is similar in most regions or countries. The submission review committee or governing body will review the application, check company status and location to verify the accuracy, and may ask for additional information, such as financials, proof of expenditures, payroll or investments, etc. Learn more about U.S.-based grant funding for 2022 from the Economic Development Administration.
Government Small Business Grant Programs for the Small Disadvantaged Business
“Each year, the Federal Government awards about 10% of all federal contract dollars, or roughly $50 billion in contracts, to Small Disadvantaged Businesses. SBA’s Office of Government Contracting and Business Development monitors the progress of 24 Executive Branch agencies in contracting with Small Disadvantaged Businesses.
“You may register your business as a Small Disadvantaged Business if you meet the following criteria set by the Code of Federal Regulations:
- The firm must be 51% or more owned and controlled by one or more disadvantaged persons
- The disadvantaged person or persons must be socially disadvantaged and economically disadvantaged
- The firm must be small, according to SBA’s size standards
“You can find the full qualification criteria in this Code issued by SBA.” https://www.sba.gov/federal-contracting/contracting-assistance-programs/small-disadvantaged-business
To get grant money for small businesses, ensure that you follow up on application submissions, promptly respond to any inquiries, and supply recommended information.
Tax Credit Grants for Small Business
Tax credits for research and development or experimental design can also be a source of non-dilutive funding. These are part of the U.S. R&D Tax Credit Program or the Canadian Government Scientific Research or Experimental Design (SR&ED) Program. These are simple programs that are easy to understand and calculate, both for R&D and SR&ED. Other countries also offer generous tax credits and tax incentive programs.
Since every business needs capital for innovation and growth, claiming R&D tax credits is one of the cheapest ways to maximize capital and reduce tax liabilities.
In some situations, the R&D tax credits come back to a business in the form of cash-back, and in other cases, the tax credits come as a payroll offset or other form of tax liability dilution. In any event, businesses that are inventing something new, taking risks, or investing in the development of technology, usually qualify. For technology, hardware, gaming, utility, or medical companies, government tax credits are a fantastic way to get a chunk of your R&D or SR&ED investment back.
Governments made many of these programs permanent in 2015-2016 because they realized that supporting innovation is supporting job growth. But what does it take to qualify and claim these credits?
As part of a yearly tax claim submission, SaaS businesses may be required to provide reports outlining the time and costs attributed to new innovations over the past year. These records are found in GitHub, Jira, or other project management systems. Costs are tracked through payroll systems because the main R&D costs for SaaS businesses are the salaries of their developers.
What Will I Be Asked to Share When Applying for a Small Business Grant—Including Applying for $10,000 Small Business Grants
Typically, the small business grant submission process involves an online application that asks for the following information:
- The founder(s) full name
- Founder(s) address and biographical information
- Founder(s) ethnicity and/or gender
- Business founding information such as location, date, investment amount, business type
- Business purpose, mission, values, products, services, differentiators
- Use of funds—a simple statement of how small business grants funds would be used
Joint Venture Small Business Grants
According to the U.S., Small Business Joint Ventures website, “A mentor and its protégé can joint venture as a small business for any small business contract, provided the protégé individually qualifies as small. The joint venture may also pursue any type of set-aside contract for which the protégé qualifies, including contracts set aside for 8(a), service-disabled veteran-owned, woman-owned, and HUBZone businesses.”
What About Other Kinds of Small Business Grant Programs?
The small business grant helps existing businesses in many ways:
- It provides financial assistance to further the growth of your eligible small business
- Grants, even local grants, can help private companies and veteran-owned businesses grow
- Grants for small businesses, and women-owned businesses, help further innovation research programs and encourage entrepreneurship
- For-profit business owners can take advantage of an eligible paycheck protection program, federal small business grants, corporate small business grants, and grants from federal agencies
- Federal agencies offer business grants and small business loans to minority-owned businesses, and business loans, funding opportunities, and small business development acceleration to help local small businesses
Getting The Small Business Grant Help You Need
Government resources are the best way to determine eligibility. Some specialty firms can help, especially when it comes to optimizing your application in specific areas.
If you have an eligible small business, your grant application for a federal government grant program should focus on meeting the criteria for federal grants, which is often free money for eligible businesses that are provided by the federal economic development administration.
Technical assistance is available for each program but may take some time for agency staff to respond to your requests for help. Grant proposal teams and business plan mentoring are often available too.
For many, the best option may be private grants for small businesses. This could include grants from educational institutions for scientific research and development, nonprofit organizations, and other business development programs. For private small business grants, you may be asked to share national associations, private corporations other data to help determine your eligibility for small business grant opportunities.
Boast Partners can offer grant proposals from a comprehensive database of award grants, state business incentives database, federal government grants, government agencies’ business development programs, and more.