Financial services are becoming increasingly complex, especially for small businesses. These firms often lack the resources and visibility to access the kind of tailored financial solutions they need to grow their business. In addition, many financial institutions still operate on old models that don’t take into account the digital needs of small businesses.
Financial services for small businesses come in many forms and help you manage your cash flow, invest in growth opportunities, and protect against risk from loss or failure of a third party. The following guide outlines the main types of financial services for small businesses as well as useful resources to help you find what you need.
Types of Financial Services for Small Businesses
There are several types of financial services that small businesses can use. First, you’ll want to focus on financing your working capital needs. This means looking for loans, lines of credit, and other sources of short-term capital that you can repay over two years or less. Once you’ve got the cash you need, you can invest it in growth opportunities such as hiring new employees, expanding your product range, or introducing new services. And lastly, you also need to protect yourself and your business against risk. This includes insuring against the risk of loss or failure of a third party like a supplier or contractor.
Working Capital Loans
Working capital loans are the simplest form of financing for small businesses. It’s a short-term loan used to cover seasonal fluctuations in cash flow, pending the arrival of a payment, or for other short-term needs. The loan is repaid in one lump sum at the end of the term. Unlike a term loan, which is repaid over years, working capital loans are repaid in one go often as soon as the funds are needed. Normally, a working capital loan is unsecured, which means you don’t need to offer collateral to receive the loan.
Equity financing is a type of financial service that offers business owners the chance to sell part of their company. Investors receive an ownership stake in the company and may receive a regular dividend based on the company’s performance. You can also use equity financing to supplement working capital loans. You can approach venture capitalists or angel investors to raise the funds needed. Alternatively, you can also look for a syndicate of private equity investors on an equity crowdfunding platform.
Protection Services for Small Businesses
As a small business owner, one of your main goals is to protect your business from risks. You can do this with insurance coverage such as commercial property insurance, business liability insurance, or product liability coverage. You can also protect against risk with other financial services like working capital financing and factoring. Commercial property insurance protects your company against loss or damage to a commercial building such as a warehouse.
For many small business owners, the first and last word in financial services is “no.” You need to be aware of this and plan accordingly, particularly if your company is new or launching a new product or service. Financial services providers will want to see a track record of success before committing to your company.