Today, we are here to help you find grants for your business – basically free money that does not have to be paid back.
There are many places to look for grants. But they often overly priced, overly confusing to navigate, or extremely outdated.
So, we’ve compiled a list of the best grants and places to find grants to save you time and money.
In this post, you’ll learn the different types of grants.
As well as the best websites to find grants, the best grants to apply for right now, and tips to help you get the grants you apply for.
Let’s not waste another second and dive right in.
List of Small Business Grants: 2 Main Types
The first thing to know is that there are two main types of grants – government grants and private grants.
Government grants are provided by your federal and state governments.
On the other hand, private grants are provided by corporations and foundations.
We’ll be revealing a list of small business grants from both types starting with 7 private grants.
List of Small Business Grants: 7 Private Grants
1. The Barstool Fund
The first private grant on our list is The Barstool Fund which is a fund by the CEO of the famous Barstool Sports media company and aims to help small businesses impacted by the pandemic.
It has raised over 20 million dollars so far and is an ongoing crowdfund to help businesses in need that apply. Just visit the Barstool website to apply.
2. Nav’s “Legitify Your Small Business” Grant
Nav, a company that provides free help with business financing offers a $10,000 small business grant to help small businesses grow.
Nav recently announced Upcycle Hawaii as the latest winner of the quarterly grant and the next round of grant application are open right now.
Applications close again on May 31. So be sure to visit their website and apply now if you have not already.
3. FedEx Small Business Grant Contest
Next is the Small Business Grant Contest. Since 2013, FedEx has provided eligible businesses with grants of up to 50,000.
Your window to apply happens on a yearly basis so be ready for the next opening if you missed it this year.
Winners also receive a credit to use FedEx services. And at least one winner will be a Veteran Business based on the company’s commitment to supporting U.S. military veterans.
4. National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) Growth Grants
If you are self-employed, be sure to look into NASE. The NASE Growth Grants are offered to members and are worth up to $4,000.
Grant applications are reviewed quarterly and you must be able to demonstrate how you plan to use the grant money to help your business grow.
5. Google Ad Grant
Did you know that Google provides a grant for non-profits? That’s right.
Google provides up to $10,000 per month in search ads shown on Google.com to qualifying non-profits.
So if you are a non-profit, be sure to take the ad grant.
6. The StreetShares Foundation Veteran Business Grant
If you are a veteran, this grant is for you!
The StreetShares Grant was created to provide access to capital opportunities for veterans or active-duty members and their spouses.
The grant amounts range from $4,000 – $15,000 and applications are based on the social impact of the military community, plans for the proceeds, market fit, and more.
7. Wells Fargo Community Investment Grants
Wells Fargo offers non-profits local business grants in almost every state.
The grants are typically awarded to non-profits who align with Wells Fargo’s four focus areas such as:
- financial health,
- housing affordability,
- small business growth,
- sustainability and
- environmental justice
Now, let’s look at a few grants provided by the government.
6 Federal Small Business Grants
1. Small Business Innovation Research Program
The grant program for the SBIR is a grant program by the SBA to encourage businesses to conduct Federal Research and Development for the government.
The grants are not focused on any particular industry so you may be able to find a grant that relates to your business.
The program is structured into three phases with grants awards ranging from $50,000 to over one million dollars depending on the phase you get to.
2. Small Business Technology Transfer Program
The STTR program exists to foster the advance of technology by pairing eligible small businesses with actual research institutions. This is similar to the SBIR program,
The STTR program is not geared toward any specific industry.
And, it is also structured in three phases with grant awards provided in the first two phases up to $150,000 in phase 1 and up to one million dollars in phase 2.
3. National Institute of Health Grants
The National Institute of Health is a part of the Department of Health and Human Services and they offer grants to encourage biomedical research.
In fact, they are the #1 provider of grants that fund biomedical research. At the time of this post, there were over 14 pages worth of grants still available.
4. Department of Justice Grants
The Department of Justice provides grants for programs that help improve state and local law enforcement as well as programs that improve the justice systems.
If that applies to you, at the time of this post, there were over 60 grants still available.
5. Department of the Interior Grants
The Department of the Interior Grants provides small business grants through a number of departments, including the:
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services,
- Indian Affairs, and
- the National Park Service
6. USDA Rural Development Business Grants
The Department of Agriculture offers grants to small rural businesses with fewer than 50 new employees and less than $1 million in gross revenue.
Awarded funds must be used for projects that improve rural areas and towns. Examples include:
- technology development,
- land development,
- pollution control,
- improvements in transportation,
How to Find a Grant for a Small Business
Now that you have a list of small business grants, let’s go over the best ways for you to find grants.
You could try your hand at a Google search but the result is millions of searches and likely confusion.
So to save you the headache, here are the 5 best ways to find grants on your own.
1. Small Business Development Centers
That’s right. Your best chance at finding grants for your business is by contacting your local Small Business Development Center.
In addition to helping you find local and state grants for free, Small Business Development Centers can help you:
- get financing,
- develop your marketing,
- get counseling and training,
…and much more.
Also, they will be able to assist you in applying for the Small Business Innovation and Research (SBIR) grants which we discussed earlier.
So seriously, if you’ve never reached out to a Small Business Development Center, do it asap.
We like GrantWatch because it is an up-to-date database with over 26,000 grants for small businesses, non-profits, and even individuals.
Also, GrantWatch isn’t just a list of federal grants. GrantWatch has:
- corporate grants,
- foundation grants,
- local grants,
- state grants, and
- federal grants
…on their platform for your small business to choose from.
And if that wasn’t enough, this is going to blow your mind guys… They have a customer service line that will help you research and find the perfect grants for you.
Grants.gov is a database managed by the federal government that lists all federal government grants across all agencies.
This makes it extremely easy to research and find federal grant opportunities for your business.
To be a government ran, the database is extremely easy to navigate. You can filter based on:
- status of the grant,
- funding type,
- eligibility type,
- grant category, and
- by government agency
Additionally, grants.gov provides an enormous learning center that can help you understand more about grants.
This includes eligibility, the different program types, how to protect yourself from grant fraud, and more.
If you need help applying for grants or registering to the database, a video series is offered on the site that can walk you through step-by-step.
SCORE is a nonprofit partner of the Small Business Administration that provides workshops, resources, tools, and mentors to aid in the success of small businesses.
While SCORE does not directly provide grants, their small business mentors can help you with finding grants and applying for grants.
They even host webinars all about grants and the grant process.
5. Local Libraries
Last but not least on the list is to check with your local library.
Yes, your local librarian has access to hundreds of databases including those that have grants and are very good at researching as well.
Additionally, librarians can typically point you in the right direction for resources and expert help that can assist you with finding, applying, and maintaining grants.
Grant Tips For Small Businesses
Now, let’s look at 5 quick tips to help you when looking for and applying for grants.
1. When researching, be sure to look for grants from companies and organizations that align with your business values. Don’t take money from anyone.
2. When researching, check eligibility requirements first. Only spend the time applying for grants you know you are eligible for.
3. When researching, start with smaller/local grants. They will likely have less competition and you can improve your grant writing skills before going for very big grants.
4. When applying, focus more on the solution or contribution you will be able to provide if awarded the grant money and less on the problem.
5. When applying, pay attention to details. Some grants have very specific requirements for things such as word count, typeface, and more.
List of Small Business Grants: Final Takeaways
Well, there you have it – the ultimate list of small business grants for 2021.
So, what grants you plan to apply for?
If you have more questions regarding business grants or how you can manage your business finances in general, then consider hiring our CFO services.
Or, you can also contact us today to talk to one of our financial experts.