Maximising cash flow

Business loans to help grow your business

There are many different ways to fund your business plans. You could use find an investor, apply for a business grant, tap into your savings, or use crowdfunding.

However, one of the most common methods for financing a current or existing business is to use business loans for growth. Let's take a closer look at business loans and how to use them when starting a business.

What are business loans?

Business loans are specifically used to start or grow your business. These are agreements made between a business owner and a lender, such as a bank or a dedicated business loan company. All business loans require the business owner to make repayments on the amount borrowed, as well as paying interest on the amount, so it pays to shop around to compare interest rates, terms and conditions. 

Advantages of using business loans

Business loans can provide benefits, particularly if you're a startup. 

Here's how you may benefit:

  • Loans are convenient and easily accessible, either through your bank or a private lender.

  • They provide a fast injection of cash, which can be much needed if your business requires a significant amount of startup capital.

  • Unlike investors, your lender does not have a say in how you spend your money. You have greater control over your plans and execution.

  • All the profits go back to you.

How to achieve growth with a business loan

Invest in the essentials first: While it’s tempting to spend your newly acquired funds on a large-scale marketing campaign, it’s important to focus on the basics. Ensure you have all the equipment you need, build your website, and secure enough inventory if you’re selling a physical product.

Plan your budget: Some SMEs receive a business loan then proceed to spend that money quickly. This can lead to problems in the future – an opportunity may arise, but you may not have the funds to take advantage of it. Put together a budget and review how you're tracking on a monthly or quarterly basis. 

Have a clear cash flow plan, and always look for opportunities to cut costs. Don’t forget to add a buffer for any unexpected situations that may arise.

Spread the word with marketing: Marketing is a key part of promoting your business. Once people know about your business, they’ll be more likely to consider using your services or buying your product in the future. Focus on cost-effective actions that will have a lasting impact, such as content marketing or participating in local events. A big advertising campaign may make a bang in the short term, but isn’t sustainable in the long run.

Reinvest profits back into your business: Once you have money coming in, it’s a good idea to reinvest that money into growing your business. Use the profits to increase your marketing spend, hire new employees, or expand your operations to keep up with demand.  

Managing business loan risk: While there are many advantages to using loans as part of your business growth strategies, they also come with more risk. To help manage the risks of a business loan:

  • Schedule your repayments and set up calendar reminders so you don’t forget.

  • Put your money in a separate account.

  • Don’t borrow more than you need. Ask for enough to fund your business growth, and focus on paying that loan back.

Free Business Grant Finder

Looking for funding to grow your business? Find out in just 10 minutes what grants you could be eligible for from a range of over 1500 government grants worth almost $40 billion. To start browsing, simply join Business Australia as a free member.

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