Additional Washington State Small Business Financial Resources
In addition to small business loans, Washington-based entrepreneurs are welcome to apply to a range of small business grants that don’t need to be paid back. Some of these grants are designed specifically for local businesses, while others are nation-wide opportunities, for which Washington-based businesses can qualify.
The State Trade Expansion Program is dedicated to providing awards for territory and state governments across the United States with the goal of assisting small businesses with export development. While this is a nation-wide program, the Washington State Department of Commerce has received an award of $1.35 million to provide funding to small businesses on a local level.
Through STEP, Washington small businesses can receive financial support to:
- Participate in foreign trade missions
- Learn to export
- Support e-commerce capabilities and website globalization
- Design international marketing campaigns and products
- Participate in export training workshops and trade show exhibits
- And more
The Washington State offers Public Participation Grants to individuals and non-profit public organizations with the goal of increasing public awareness about the issues related to recycling, waste management, and cleaning up of contaminated sites. The PPG awards can range up to $120,000 for funding larger, two-year projects.
So, if your small business falls within this small niche category, it is well-worth applying for a PPG grant.
USDA Rural Business Development Grant is available on a national level, meaning that those located in rural areas within Washington State are eligible to apply. The goal of the grant is to provide technical training and assistance for small rural businesses. In that context, “small” means that the business has less than $1 million in gross revenue and less than 50 new workers.
While small businesses cannot apply for the grant directly, rural towns, communities, nonprofit corporations, and institutions of higher education are welcome to apply. These organizations must then use the funding on projects that will benefit emerging and small businesses in rural areas, such as providing technical training, assistance with project planning, help with land acquisition or development, and more.
Small businesses across the United States, including those in Washington State, can receive up to $4,000 from the National Association for the Self-Employed. Keep in mind, however, that in order to qualify for the grant, you must be an active member of the organization for at least three months and demonstrate financial need.
In order to apply, you would need to provide your professional resume, your company’s business plan, and the outline of how this grant would contribute to your company’s growth.
Other Resources for Small Businesses in Washington State
In addition to financial support, various organizations within the State of Washington offer valuable non-financial services, such as business training and mentorship, professional guidance and advice, and more. Should you need any help with starting or running your business, make sure to check out the following Washington-based organizations:
SCORE is a volunteer-run organization with separate chapters in each state of the country. The organization is dedicated to providing support to small businesses in the form of free mentorship and education on how to start, grow, and manage a successful company.
The mentors at SCORE are experienced corporate managers, entrepreneurs, and executives from a wide range of industries. They are willing to share their experience and professional advice to help young entrepreneurs start and develop their own businesses. These mentorship sessions are free of charge and can take the form of a telephone or virtual meeting, or an in-person meeting at your place of business or an agreed location.
Furthermore, SCORE conducts regular educational workshops and training sessions related to establishing and running a small business.
The Washington Small Business Development Center (SBDC) gives you the advice you need at no cost. More than 30 expert business advisors work in communities across the state to help entrepreneurs or small business owners start a business. They also give valuable advice on growing your business and how to buy or sell a business.