How to Successfully Launch a Startup During a Pandemic

The recent pandemic may hopefully be coming to a close because of the vaccines. However, its effects on public health and businesses are nearly-irreversible.

Despite the impacts of the COVID pandemic, many business owners and entrepreneurs are finding ways to continue to serve consumers’ needs 

Sure, starting a small business in the midst of a health crisis may be deemed risky by some, but it’s definitely doable. A variety of business types can thrive during and beyond a pandemic with enough time, effort, and research.

Here’s how to do it.

Get With the Times

If you want your business to be in-demand, you need to cater your products and services to the needs of your customers during this pandemic. Your enterprise should also offer goods or services that are still going to relevant and helpful beyond the current health crisis.

Business types that attain this balance include:

  • Delivery Services — If you’re looking to create a company that greatly benefits your fellow business owners in your community, start a delivery service. A lot of small to medium enterprises are forced to provide delivery options for their goods. Plus, a lot of logistics companies are backlogged because of COVID-19 restrictions in their workplace. You can build a fleet of bike or motorcycle riders that can provide fast and efficient delivery for restaurants and retail stores. If you want to focus on business-to-business customers, then you may want to switch to a van or truck fleet, as they often need to transport products in bulk.
  • Cleaning Services — The pandemic has seen a rise in demand for cleaning services. Commercial and residential property owners alike are looking for crews that can not only clean up but also disinfect the surfaces in their homes and offices. If you have the knowledge and experience in this field, starting a cleaning business and training employees on the best sanitation practices should be a breeze.
  • Mask Making — Masks are especially helpful during this pandemic, as they minimize the spread of the virus. There’s also a demand for them beyond these unprecedented times, as there are some people whose immune system is sensitive to particles in the air, like pollen and bacteria. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a great guide on how to make sewn cloth masks. If you want to stand out from the competition, print or sew unique graphics and patterns on the masks.

Implement Social Distancing Measures & Explain Them Through Your Value Proposition to Give Your Customers Confidence

The last thing you want is for your business to be closed down after just a couple of days because you violated social distancing orders. Being complicit to the spread of a virus like COVID-19 in your place of business is not a good look, too.

Here are some social distancing guidelines to consider:

  • Keep a distance of six feet from each other. This applies to both employees and customers. The fewer the people in the establishment, the better.
  • Provide handwashing and sanitation stations for employees and customers to wash their hands.
  • Direct employees and customers to wear a mask at all times in your place of business.

Take Your Business Processes Online

Because going outside isn’t always safe, people are starting to prefer buying products and services online. This means your business needs to be on the web, too.

Create an online store using e-commerce platforms, like Shopify and Squarespace. Take cashless payments using online gateways like PayPal, Venmo, and CashApp. Instead of using traditional advertisements like flyers and posters, get your customers’ attention through digital marketing methods. Get your business to the top of search engine results and your customers’ social media timelines, and you’re sure to get more sales or at least inquiries.

Digitizing your business processes also makes it future-proof. After all, over 74 percent of people already buy products online. It’s not only safer because of the pandemic, it’s also easier and more convenient overall.

Probably Yes Can Help Fund Your Startup & Get You the Equipment You Need!

With a business type that fits the needs of people during this health crisis, has solid online business processes, and follows proper social distancing measures, your business is sure to weather this storm and thrive beyond it!

Let Probably help you get the funding you need for your startup. We make small business loans easy. Call us today for details.


Small Businesses & COVID-19: Your Government Funding Options

The safety measures and mandatory closures due to COVID-19 hit plenty of businesses, especially small businesses. The outbreak resulted in many small businesses dealing with unprecedented economic disruption, causing many to stop their operations temporarily or for good.

Outgoing President Donald Trump signed into law the CARES Act last March 27, 2020. The Act allotted $376 billion in relief for small businesses and American workers. Apart from the traditional SBA funding programs, the 2020 CARES Act also established temporary funding programs to assist small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, as we know, the needs typically outweigh the available resources with these government programs. Therefore, it is important to understand all of your financing options, whether government-funded or not.

Paycheck Protection Program

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will grant loans of up to $10 million to eligible small businesses. With the Paycheck Protection Program, the SBA can also provide a direct incentive for small businesses to fund their payrolls.

The SBA can forgive Paycheck Protection Program loans if small businesses meet the employee retention criteria and use the loan for eligible expenses.

Other details about the PPP include:

  • Paycheck Protection Program loans have an interest rate of one percent (1%).
  • Loan payments can be deferred for borrowers who apply for loan forgiveness until the Small Business Administration pays the borrowed amount to the lender. 
  • Loans issued before June 5 can mature in two years. Loans issued after June 5 have a maturity of five years.
  • PPP loans do not require personal guarantees or collateral.
  • Private and government lenders will not charge small businesses any fees.

To apply, approach any SBA 7(a) lender or any federally-insured credit union or depository institution. Once you are successfully enrolled in the program, you gain immediate access to the loans.

Economic Injury Disaster Loans

This loan offers funds to small businesses and non-profit organizations struggling with a temporary loss of revenue. The EIDL assists applicants to meet operating expenses and financial obligations that could have been met had a disaster not occurred.

The loan’s terms include:

  • 30 years maturity
  • 3.75 percent for businesses
  • 2.75 for non-profit organizations
  • No pre-payment fees or penalties

Even if your business is denied, you can still apply for this grant, which can be used to maintain payroll, pay for employees on sick leave, and other relevant expenses.

SBA Debt Relief

As part of the Small Business Administration’s COVID-19 debt relief efforts, the organization will pay six months of interest, fees, and other operational fees that small businesses owe for all Microloans, 7(a) and 504. This relief, however, is unavailable for EIDL or PPP loans.

Borrowers don’t have to apply for this assistance. It automatically provides the following:

  • SBA will make payments with the next payment due on the loan.
  • If your loan is currently on deferment, the SBA will pay within the next payment due to the end of the deferment period.

Alternative Funding Options

Although the U.S. government is working to help small businesses with funds once again, this can take time – lots of time.

At Probably we offer working capital loans and small business loans to small business owners without the wait or snags, up to $500,00 0 in as little as one business day.

If you are in need of quick funding, Probably Yes is at your service. We provide quick and easy small business loans. Benefit from simple processes, flexible options, and immediate access to the funding you need. Apply for a loan today.


Working Capital Loan Considerations: What You Need to Know

Small business owners have plenty of things to manage to keep their business growing. From a budget standpoint, there are many factors to consider in terms of equipment costs, inventory, payroll expenses, and other financial considerations. When you’re caught in the middle of these financial matters, consider applying for a working capital loan.

Working capital ensures that you will have enough cash flow to successfully run your business. Small business loans are often the best solutions if you suddenly find yourself in a tight situation financially.

With that in mind, here are things to consider before applying for a working capital loan.

The Amount of Funding You Need

Some lenders offer a maximum loan amount in the range of $150,000 to $200,000. Before you apply for one, evaluate your available funds, determine the amount you need, and finalize the purpose of the loan.

Borrowing not enough or too much can hurt your business. Instead of dealing with debt or fund shortages in the future, consult with a lender before moving forward. A lender will talk about your business’ needs before recommending loans and rates, as well as help you determine the loan amount that works best for your current financial situation.

When Do You Need the Funds?

If you need immediate funding, perhaps a traditional bank loan or an SBA loan is not the way to go. These loans can take weeks of processing before you receive any funds. The shortest waiting time for these types of loans is three days to a week.

Instead, look for a lender that can give you money within a few days, or even on the same day. These types of loans, however, may require applicants to offer collateral before they get funding.

Settle Unpaid Debt

Having unpaid debt could prevent you from getting approval for a working capital loan. If you have financial concerns like credit card loans or debts, lenders may be hesitant to work with you. Generally, it’s a good idea to pay off your debt first to improve your chances of approval.

Determine Your Lender’s Expectations

Every lender has a different set of requirements. You may work with a traditional bank that prefers bank statements, excellent credit, and a business plan. Other lenders may require you to earn a specific amount of revenue tied to the length of time you’ve been in business. Here are other requirements lenders may ask from you:

  • Invoice history
  • Tax records
  • Credit score
  • Business plan
  • Bank statements
  • Collateral
  • Personal guarantee
  • Annual revenue

Determine the Loan’s Specifics

It’s important to know the length of time you’ll need the funds. Most small business owners need short-term funding to draw a check or to bridge a gap between jobs. Most lenders, however, do not offer short-term financing solutions. If you need a custom solution, get in touch with a lender immediately to discuss your options.

Once you’ve settled these considerations, you can have a good chance of getting that much-needed working capital loan. It’s best to work with a lender who can help determine your needs. They can help you sort through your options, work out a payment plan, and make sure you get the capital you need ASAP.

When you need funds fast, Probably has got your back. We make quick small business loans easy with our flexible options and simple processes.

Get started with your loan today.