If you own a small business, chances are you've probably looked into the myriad of financing options available to you. In today's online and digitally connected world, nearly all small business owners have 'shopped' banks, loan brokers, online lenders, loan platforms, affiliate websites, etc., simply to see what kind of financing options are available. Heck, you don't even have to go out and search for financing anymore, it's practically being thrown at you from every angle. From nonstop auto-dial telemarketer solicitations (we get over 10 per day into our office), loan brokers harassing you, social media posts flood your news-feeds, postcards arriving in the mail, flyers landing on your desk, banner ads overtaking your search engines, pop ups - popping up from all angles on every webpage you visit, emails overloading your inbox; all promising the lowest rates, best terms, instant pre-approvals and millions of dollars in funding within minutes, simply for owning a business and having a pulse. These days, you can't get away from all the small business loan offers if you tried.
With literally thousands of online lenders, affiliate websites, bloggers and millions of other sources offering financial advice for small businesses, coupled with the constant barrage of loan offers being thrown at anyone who has ever searched for a loan online, it may seem like the best option is to shop around. With the non-stop promotion of "free quotes," gift cards being offered as bribery to fill out loan applications, and web platforms being created for the purpose of having lenders fight for your business; small business owners have been led to believe that the more they shop for money, the better "deal" they will find. Nothing could be further from the truth. Not to mention, the shady business of pushing cookie cutter, one-size-fits-all loan solutions onto small businesses with varying needs could be more damaging than anything else.
In the end, the trend of shopping for fast small business loans may have inadvertently lead to small business owners doing more harm than good. Small business loan lending platforms, affiliate websites, and small business loan bloggers are all looking to gain big money by steering small business owners into loans that may or may not be an appropriate fit for their business, and often times offering all sorts of inaccurate small business lending advice from so-called 'experts' in order to sell these loans. Tons of small business owners are shopping rates & terms that often times don't even exist, clicking on banner ads for loan products they'll never qualify for, and committing to fake funding offers that they'll never get; sometimes passing up legitimate and obtainable funding offers in the mean time.
Every single day, we hear stories of people who refused to listen to reason and only heard what they wanted to hear. Today, many are either days away from closing their doors, or out of business. Additionally, we are seeing multiple MCA's stacked on top of each-other (up to 11) that many small business owners are literally creating a ponzi scheme upon themselves; taking out more MCA's just to pay for the ones underneath. Remember, one bad loan can take down your business.
Finally, it's important to point out that small business financing is meant to be an individual solution that fits your specific business, business model and goals. If you are being pitched loan products by someone who knows nothing about your business, cash flow model or goals, RUN! Business loans are NOT meant to be bought, sold, or haggled over. So, before you start filling out countless applications and forwarding your financial information to anyone and everyone promising a "better rate," consider your business' complete financial standing, the purpose of the loan and just how 'shopping' for the best rate could negatively affect your credit standing and the future of your business.