How to Get the Tech You Need for Your Startup

December 30, 2015

7:00 pm

You’ve probably heard inspiring stories about people who launched businesses, initially barely scraping together enough to make ends meet, and eventually finding enough success to enjoy a comfortable and profitable existence. However, it’s sometimes hard to locate practical information about how to get through those lean times during the early stages.

No matter what your startup does, you can almost be certain you’ll need to purchase tech items such as computers, printers and maybe even tablets. The tips below can help you make progress with your list.

Start a Crowdfunding Campaign

If your service or idea is imaginative or needed enough to capture the hearts and minds of a target audience and make them fully willing to support it, consider launching a crowdfunding campaign where people can pledge money in return for getting a reward, or just use crowdfunding to contribute capital. In some cases, the perks of pledging can be offered without very much cost to you. For example, you could mention anyone who pledges $30 or more will get their name listed on a special card included with every shipped or purchased item.

It’s also worth noting some people are more likely to give money toward very specific things. If you take time to say the cash generated from the campaign will be used to buy a MacBook Pro that includes the latest version of Adobe Photoshop so you can more easily design marketing materials, it’s clear you already know a good way to spend the money.

Buy Refurbished Instead of New

It’s surprisingly simple to purchase refurbished technology equipment instead of buying new. Understandably, that’s a little-known fact manufacturers may not want you to know, in the interest of keeping their profits high.

Fortunately for people who want reliable tech at prices below retail values, the secondary market is well worth a look. It’s often possible to get equipment from dozens of well-known brands. Furthermore, it often has to go through rigorous in-house testing before it is released for sale. Because full-warranty hardware from the secondary market is commonly available, you can feel confident the refurbished items will be good investments, because you’re protected if problems arise.

Think About Leasing the Equipment

You might already have firsthand experience with leasing an automobile. Why not do the same with equipment for your startup? Equipment leasing can be a very attractive option for startups on a budget.

One of the advantages of this approach is it allows you to avoid the frustration of realizing your equipment has become obsolete. Obsolescence is very common in the world of technology, since advancements are made so quickly.

Normally, you can enter into a contractual agreement for a relatively short span of time, such as two years. Once it expires, you will usually be able to renew the contract, or decide you’d rather start leasing a newer model. Sometimes, there are programs in place that allow you to begin leasing equipment and then transition into ownership.

Apply for Grants

Putting your startup in the running for possibly being awarded a grant might take a lot of determination, not to mention paperwork. However, it could really pay off in terms of helping you secure funding for tech items, not to mention anything else that would help your business run more smoothly.

Plan to spend time doing research about available grants that are most appropriate for your company’s industry or goals. The White House even has initiatives that support small businesses available for people who are willing to educate themselves about potential financial resources.

By using these ideas, along with some you may have already thought of, it should start to become clear financing your tech equipment isn’t a goal too far out of reach. Think creatively, and don’t be afraid to pursue possibilities that may be slightly outside the box. Your steadfastness should soon pay off.

Image by Antoine Beauvillain

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Kayla Matthews is a tech productivity blogger who writes for MakeUseOf and The Gadget Flow. Follow Kayla on Google+ and Twitter, or read her latest posts on her blog, Productivity Bytes.