You have a killer Amazon FBA product ideas but no capital. Well don’t get disheartened, everything is not lost. Here, we tell you 10 different methods to raise money for your business.
Self-funding is the first and foremost way to start any business. If you have some capital of your own to spare to support your FBA business idea, go for it. However, you should take care that you are not dipping into your pension, children’s education, or any other essential funds. Even if you are 100% sure about the success of your business, using such funds is unadvisable. If your business idea is rock solid, you should be able to raise capital through other means.
The other avenue for self-funding is to leverage equity in your home. If you own your home, you can get credit against your home equity to meet your capital needs. In case you are feeling guilty about putting your house at risk, know that you would not be the first businessperson to do this. Many small businesses are solely built on home equity loans. But you should be very sure that your business idea is solid, otherwise you may end up losing on your business as well as home. Not an exciting proposition for anyone, and least of all for a new businessperson.
2. Thrifting/Home Raiding and Reselling
Say you have a brilliant idea about selling through Amazon FBA, and your cash requirements are also quite low, may be $500, but you don’t even have that much. How do you get the required amount?
Simple. Raid your house and get everything that you don’t need any more – old mobiles, kids’ clothes and toys, car accessories, TV remote, play station. Basically, anything that you can lay your hands on, categorize them, and list on online sites like ebay, craig’s list and OLX to sell them. Just take care to post good photographs and state the exact working condition. You can start with your best items like toys or gadgets and slowly build from there.
You can also get items to sell from thrift shops, garage sales, or simply asks friends and relatives if they have some stuff to discard.
3. Credit cards and loans
If you need small amounts that credit card loans can cover, go for it. However, be warned that they charge higher interest rates, so consult a specialist before opting for it.
If you already have a credit card loan, you also have the option of switching to a provider who can defer payments or give you more time for repayments.
4. Borrow from friends, family
If you have people in your extended family or friends’ group who won’t mind lending, you can ask them. However it may lead to strained relationships so you must tread with caution. Explain your business and its goals to them, and why you need the money. They should know what their liabilities could be in case you fail. Also, be sure that they can take the pinch if things go wrong.
Friends and family are for ever so always repay the loan, even if it’s delayed. That also builds your credibility if a need arises in future. Also remember that they invest in you as a person, not necessarily your idea.
5. Business partner
It’s not only about raising money, it’s also about taking capital risks. If you want to decrease capital risks, you can get yourself a partner. But you need to be cautious while taking a partner. Here are some things you should know about a business partner before making an offer to join forces:
• Business goals should be aligned
• Should be as committed as you are
• Amount of time that he/she can devote
• Maturity level and ability to handle tough situations
Have everything done legally and always include a buy back clause in case there is a fallout later due to any reason.
6. Working capital loans
Most financial institutions have the provision of advancing business or working capital loan against your business accounts with them. These loans need minimum documentation and are processed quickly, often within a couple of hours. If you need short term loans, business advance can be a good idea. Also, some banks may advance the whole amount to you but charge interest only on the amount that you actually withdraw.
7. Online loan sites
Your local bank may be the go-to option for all your financial business needs but more and more online loan aggregator sites are coming up, where you can submit your loan requirements with the necessary documentation. They claim to get your loan processed within 24 hours!!
8. Bridging loans
Bridging loans are short term loans that many banks and financial institutions give for building infrastructure, purchasing machinery, fulfilling taxation requirements, paying insurance premiums etc. They are processed quickly, need minimum documentation, and hence are easier to get.
Crowdfunding is the latest trend in raising capital and funding start-ups. In crowdfunding you raise money from many investors – usually individual citizens – rather than a bank, who think that you have a feasible idea. May online platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo specialize in crowdfunding.
You need to post your finished product or idea on the platform and give something back to your investors – the product, a service, or anything else that you mutually agree upon – in return for their funding. Crowdfunding is a good option for products or ideas that are not suitable for traditional funding.
Getting your idea crowdfunded has these other benefits besides getting the much needed cash:
• Your idea gets vetted before hitting the market
• Backers become your brand ambassadors
• Freedom to create innovative products
10. Invoice factoring
If you are into high priced products, where payments are made slowly in installments, you could be having lots of invoice in your hands that would be paid in the next couple of months. However, as the saying goes, one in hand is better than two in bush. So if you can find someone who can pay you that much amount immediately, after a certain percentage reduction (usually anywhere between 8-12%), you can cash them out.
Invoice factoring may seem a better idea than hunting for loans, completing all the formalities, and then waiting for the actual amount to be credited into your account. In addition, If you have large amounts of inventory at hand, offering discount sales to your customers is a good way of raising immediate cash.
Whatever way you are raising funds, remember that it is not your own money and must be returned. Unless you are thrifting. Even if you are dipping into your own savings, you should replenish it so that you may use when the need arises again. In case of loans remember that you need to pay the interests as well as the principal amount. So go for fund raising only after you have ensured the success of your FBA selling idea.