Grants for SME’s in London

15th February 2024
Bid Writing & Tender Management

Could your business benefit from grant writing support in London?

It can be tough out there for small and medium-sized business owners in London who always have to be on the lookout for new ways to fuel growth, innovate and make an impact in their sector. While there are many tried and tested ways to do this, grants are often an under-utilised source of support for SMEs.

You’d be forgiven for thinking that grants are usually associated with charitable causes or start-ups. The truth is, however, that businesses of all sizes can be eligible for a whole range of different grants. Grants can be a valuable opportunity for SMEs to secure funding that will help them drive their business forward.

In this blog, we’ll explore the world of grants for SMEs in London, looking at who can apply and how they can help and share our tips for navigating the application process successfully.

What exactly are grants?

Grants are commonly linked to philanthropy of some form or another and are financial awards to support specific initiatives or projects. While government bodies, nonprofit organisations and charitable foundations are the primary issuers of grants, businesses and other organisations can also offer funding opportunities.

Grants can cover a wide range of initiatives, from research and development to community development and sustainability. Grants can cover anything from the replacement of physical equipment or the upgrade of facilities to staff training and development programmes.

Who can apply for a grant?

Despite common belief, grants aren’t exclusively reserved for nonprofits or charitable causes. Businesses, regardless of size or industry, can also qualify for grants. Whether you’re a startup looking to innovate, a small business seeking expansion opportunities or a corporation aiming to fund research and development projects, there are grants out there to meet your specific needs.

What are the different types of grants for London SMEs?

Grants are generally split into different functions and areas, with the most relevant for SMEs in London being new business start-ups and growing business funds:

  • Businesses are eligible for new business start-up funds if they’ve been trading for less than two years. Often these grants cover capital expenditure and one-off costs, such as buying equipment, software or hardware.
  • Growing businesses are typically those that have been trading for three to five years and are relatively stable. Grants for these businesses might be to help expand the business, provide training to staff or update property or premises with newer, more sustainable features.

Both these kinds of grants are often available as part of national initiatives to support SME growth and help the UK meet its carbon reduction targets.

How could a grant help your business?

Grants serve as a lifeline for many SMEs in London. By securing grant funding, SMEs can get around financial constraints, invest in research, develop and launch new products or services, expand into new markets and do more to support their local community.

As an extra benefit, grants often also come with non-financial benefits such as networking opportunities, mentorship and access to knowledge and expertise.

Challenges of applying for grants

While the prospect of securing grant funding is enticing, the application process can be daunting. Understanding the typical application process is crucial to increase your chance of success.

Navigating the grant application process comes with its fair share of challenges. From fierce competition to strict eligibility criteria and complex application requirements, SMEs need to be prepared for a decent amount of work. And, of course, securing grant funding isn’t guaranteed and rejection is a common reality. However, viewing rejection as an opportunity for feedback can ultimately help you strengthen future applications.

To find grants in the first place, you’ll have to do some research. Finding the right grant for your business and your goals can be challenging. They’re not always widely advertised or easy to find online. Knowing where to look speeds the entire process up, which is why many SMEs turn to a specialist grant finding and writing service in London for support.

Of course, once you find the right grant for you, you’ll need to be able to write a compelling proposal that meets the grant’s aims and criteria. This can involve a lot of work, gathering the necessary documents and information and bringing it all together into an application that really sets your proposal apart from others. Here’s another reason to seek the support of a specialist service provider who knows exactly how to bring your proposal to life.

Top tips for successful applications

While applying for a grant may seem daunting, there are a few ways you can smooth out the process and increase your chances of success:

  • Research extensively: Find grants that align with your business aims and make sure to tailor your proposals accordingly.
  • Build relationships: Make connections with grant issuers, attend networking events and consider getting a mentor for added guidance.
  • Make your proposal stand out: Clearly explain your project’s goals, aims and potential impact concisely and compellingly.
  • Demonstrate feasibility: Provide evidence of your capacity and capability to deliver the proposed project successfully.
  • Provide a commercial breakdown: List all the elements that you’re seeking funding for and include any ways in which the grant payout value could be reduced, for example by installing new equipment yourself.
  • Follow instructions meticulously: Stick to all the application guidelines, proofread your application thoroughly and submit everything on time. Even if you have someone in your business who can do this, you can dramatically improve your success rate by collaborating with a specialist provider to help you write, review and proofread the application before submission.
  • Seek feedback: If your application is unsuccessful, ask for feedback from the grant issuers to help you refine your approach for the future.

How Tender Response can help

At Tender Response we have a team of expert grant writers who can help you with every step of the process, whether that’s finding suitable grants for businesses in London, writing your proposal or proofreading your work.

Our grant finding service is completely free and helps SMEs find suitable grants for their business and industry. All you need to do is fill in this form and book a call with a member of our team. The results of our search are completely free and are yours to keep with no commitment to use our services for your application.

Our full, expert grant writing service starts from £450 per day and proofreading is from £350 per day. We also offer discounts for charities, not-for-profits, CIC and individual grant applications.

Why not speak to the team today and let us help you find, respond and win the grants you’re eligible for?

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