Business tips


Access Small Business Grants in Florida: Funding Opportunities for Florida Small Business Entrepreneurs

11 Minute Read

Top Small Business Grants in Florida: Funding Opportunities for Florida Entrepreneurs



Ever dreamt of launching your own business in Florida's vibrant economy? Maybe you've got a killer idea, or your current business is ready to take the next step. But let's be honest, starting or growing a business can be tough, especially regarding funding.

The good news is the Sunshine State offers a helping hand through a surprising number of small business grant programs. This article is your one-stop shop for navigating the world of Florida grants.

What small business grants are available in Florida?

Advantages of Small Business Grants

Small business grants offer numerous advantages for Florida business owners looking to grow their new businesses. Through grant opportunities like the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs through Enterprise Florida, small business owners can receive grant money to cover business expenses instead of taking out a business loan.

These small business grants not only provide business assistance but also contribute to the economic development of the state of Florida. With grant opportunities like the Florida High Tech Corridor and Florida Export Diversification, business owners can access the best small business grants available to help them achieve their business development goals.

By receiving small business grants through organizations like the University of Central Florida and the University of South Florida, small business owners can access resources and support to enhance their startup or existing business. Programs like the Amber Grant and the National Association for the Self-Employed also offer grant opportunities specifically tailored to meet the unique business needs of small business owners.

Further Reading: How to Get a Startup Business Loan with No Money or Revenue in 2024

Available Funding Opportunities for Small Businesses in Florida

State of Florida:

  • SelectFlorida Trade Grants Program: offered through the state's international trade promotion agency, this program helps with exporting goods and services. Grants can cover website localization, participation in export sales missions, and developing a customized export marketing plan https://lanterncredit.com/.
  • Florida SBDC Network: This network offers free business consulting and low-cost workshops to entrepreneurs and small business owners. They may also have resources to help you find grant opportunities. Find your local SBDC office here: https://floridasbdc.org/

Federal Government:

  • USDA Rural Business Development Grant: This program is for small businesses in rural areas of Florida. Grants can be used for training, technical assistance, land acquisition, and more. There is no maximum grant amount, but smaller requests are prioritized https://www.usda.gov/topics/farming/grants-and-loans.


  • WomensNet Grants: These grants are specifically for women entrepreneurs and small business owners. WomensNet offers a variety of grants, including the Amber Grant ($10,000 or $1,000 monthly and a year-end grant of $25,000), a quarterly Startup Grant ($10,000) and a monthly Business Category Grant ($10,000), and an annual Marketing Grant. To be eligible, your business needs to be at least 50% woman-owned and based in the US or Canada https://ambergrantsforwomen.com/.
  • Gusto Impact Award: This national award offers $100,000 to a small business that is making a positive social impact https://gusto.com/impact-award-contest.

Additional Resources:

  • GrantWatch: This website is a searchable directory of grants for businesses and organizations. While there is a fee to use the service, it can be a helpful tool for finding grants that match your specific needs https://www.grantwatch.com/.
  • USGrants.org: This website lists grants by state and by category. You can search for grants that are available to small businesses in Florida https://www.dosgrants.com/.

How to Apply for Small Business Grants in Florida?

Eligibility criteria for Florida small business grants

Florida small business grants are available for small businesses and startups looking to grow and expand. To be eligible for Florida grants, a business must meet the criteria of a small business as defined by the state. Whether you are seeking a startup grant or a business development grant, these grants can help in prospering small business grants.

Some Florida grants are specifically targeted towards rural business development or conservation innovation. Others, such as pop small business grants or federal grants, are more broad in scope. It is important to understand the eligibility criteria for each grant program, which may vary in terms of the number of new business applications and other factors.

Steps to apply for small business grants in Florida

  1. Identify suitable grant programs: Begin by finding grant programs that apply to your business, such as the Florida Export program offered by Enterprise Florida. This program provides government funding to entrepreneurs in various industries.
  2. Prepare necessary documents: Businesses must gather essential documents, including detailed business plans and research and development projects, to support their grant applications.
  3. Seek assistance from grant writers: Grant writers are professionals who specialize in preparing grant proposals on behalf of organizations or businesses. They can help you navigate the application process and increase your chances of receiving funding.
  4. Explore state and local options: Grants from state and local organizations, such as the City of Orlando, are available to provide funding for professional business growth. Consider all available options to maximize opportunities for financial support.
  5. Utilize awarded funds: Once awarded, businesses can use the grant money to launch their business or expand further. These funds provide crucial financial support to help businesses achieve their goals.
  6. Overall benefits: Applying for small business grants in Florida allows business owners to start or grow their businesses in a competitive market. By leveraging these grants, entrepreneurs can enhance their chances of success and thrive in their respective industries.

Common mistakes to avoid during the grant application process

  1. Thorough research: Start by researching the available types of grants, including federal, state, and private options. Understanding the landscape of grant opportunities will help you identify the most suitable ones for your business.
  2. Review eligibility requirements: Carefully examine the eligibility criteria for each grant to ensure that your business meets all the necessary qualifications. Missing out on any eligibility criteria could result in disqualification or receiving a lower grant amount.
  3. Complete application accurately: When filling out the grant application, ensure accuracy and completeness. Provide all requested information and documentation promptly to avoid delays or rejection of your application.
  4. Attention to detail: Pay close attention to the details of the application process. Double-check all information provided to ensure accuracy and consistency. Mistakes such as incomplete forms or missing documents can hinder your chances of receiving the grant.
  5. Adherence to guidelines: Follow the guidelines provided by the grant issuer carefully. Failure to comply with the specified requirements could result in your application being disqualified.
  6. Timeliness: Submit your grant application before the deadline. Late submissions may not be considered, regardless of the quality of your application.
  7. Professionalism: Present your business and application in a professional manner. This includes clear and concise writing, organized documentation, and professional communication with grant issuers if needed.

Further Reading: Find Free Funding: Small Business Grant Opportunities for Startups

Best Practices for Securing Small Business Grants

Tips for writing a successful grant proposal

Writing a successful grant proposal is crucial for securing funding to support your business growth initiatives. Here are some essential tips:

  1. Clearly Define Goals and Objectives: Clearly outline how your project will contribute to growing your business and benefiting the community. Highlight the potential impact of your proposed activities.
  2. Research Grant Requirements: Thoroughly understand the requirements of the grants offered, particularly through programs like the Florida Export grants. Tailor your proposal to align with the specific goals and priorities of the grant program.
  3. Highlight Track Record and Expertise: Showcase your organization's success and relevant experience in similar projects. Emphasize your expertise and qualifications to demonstrate your capability to execute the proposed project effectively.

Utilizing grant funds effectively for business growth

When a business receives grant funds, it is important to allocate them strategically for growth opportunities. Investing in innovation, product development, marketing, and infrastructure can accelerate expansion and increase competitiveness in the market. Monitoring progress and analyzing the impact of the funds can ensure maximum utilization for sustainable growth.

Creating a detailed budget and timeline for utilizing the grant funds is crucial to track expenditures and measure outcomes. Evaluating the ROI of each investment can help in making informed decisions for future funding opportunities. Effective use of grant funds can propel business growth and drive long-term success.


Grants through the Florida Export program have been available since its inception, offering funding for small businesses to expand their operations and get their business off the ground.

Eligible businesses can apply for these grants, which are specifically designed to help your business grow. With funding tailored for small businesses, these grants provide essential support to expand operations and achieve business objectives.

How can Taxfyle help?

Finding an accountant to manage your bookkeeping and file taxes is a big decision. Luckily, you don't have to handle the search on your own.

At Taxfyle, we connect small businesses with licensed, experienced CPAs or EAs in the US. We handle the hard part of finding the right tax professional by matching you with a Pro who has the right experience to meet your unique needs and will manage your bookkeeping and file taxes for you.

Get started with Taxfyle today, and see how finances can be simplified.

Legal Disclaimer

Tickmark, Inc. and its affiliates do not provide legal, tax or accounting advice. The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal, tax or accounting advice or recommendations. All information prepared on this site is for informational purposes only, and should not be relied on for legal, tax or accounting advice. You should consult your own legal, tax or accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction. The content on this website is provided “as is;” no representations are made that the content is error-free.

We recommend a Pro file your taxes. Click here to file today.Leave your books to professionals. Click to connect with a Pro.
Was this post helpful?
Yes, thanks!
Not really
Thank you for your feedback
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Did you know business owners can spend over 100 hours filing taxes?
Is this article answering your questions?
Do you do your own bookkeeping?
Are you filing your own taxes?
How is your work-life balance?
Is your firm falling behind during the busy season?


April 12, 2024


Richard Laviña, CPA

Richard Laviña, CPA


by this author

Share this article