Small Business Loan Alternatives

Merchant Cash Advances

In the market for a good small business loan alternative? You may want to learn more about merchant cash advances. Sometimes referred to as "business cash advances," these loans are an excellent alternative to traditional small business loans.

What do you do if you are a small business owner who needs cash? Perhaps the bank said they would not give you a small business loan or you don't have time to chase after an elusive small business loan?

Merchant cash advances, or business cash advances as they are often called, are the right answer. It's not a new phenomenon – the concept has been around forever, but it's getting easier to get a business cash advance because of the amazing power of the Internet.

Take for example. It's owned by Instant Capital Solutions, LLC., an independent consulting firm and a nationally recognized expert in helping small and mid sized companies effectively acquire working capital for the growth, emergency or expansion of their business.

We recently evaluated their site as part of a paid review. The site lets you complete a simple online application, and then they quickly let you know if you are eligible for a business cash advance.

If you've got decent credit cards sales, you can use a site like this to turn future sales into cash. Business cash advance companies give you a cash advance and then collect the repayment directly from you by taking a percentage of your Visa and MasterCard credit card sales. For them, it's relatively low risk because they will take a look at your historical sales figures before giving you the advance.

In effect, the folks who make merchant cash advances are simply purchasing your future credit card sales at a discount. The downside is that you'll have less cash coming out of your sales in the future, which can exacerbate future cash flow problems.

However, although it will decrease the amount of cash coming out of future revenues, a business cash advance is more cash-flow-friendly than any other type of financing. Payment is a percentage of sales, not a fixed monthly amount like a bank loan. So if your business has a bad month, your outlay against the advance is lower.

Unlike a traditional loan, there aren't any late fees. You also don't have to personally guarantee the loan in most instances.

The biggest downside to a business cash advance is the cost of the capital. They are more expensive than a bank loan.

You have to think carefully about whether a business cash advance is the right way to go. If you need cash for inventory purchases, business expansion, remodeling, acquisition, advertising or any other needs you have for your business, it's worth taking a look at business cash advances.

Once you decide it's the right way to go, a site like can streamline the process. In their case, most applications are processed in 24-48 hours. Once approved, you receive your cash advance directly into your bank account within five to ten business days.

According to the folks at, over 15,000 small businesses have received over $600 million in business capital advances over the past several years and all signs point to continued growth in this industry. It's definitely something to keep on your radar, and if you need cash soon, it's worth pursuing all your options now.

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We greatly appreciate any advice you can provide on this topic. Please contribute your insights on this topic so others can benefit.

  • Sean Murray posted on 6/24/2010
    Sean Murray
    I like this article because it keeps the explanation of a Merchant Cash Advance simple. As for the estimate on the reach of this product, it is grossly understated. In independent studies conducted last year, there are some parties that conclude over a Billion dollars had been injected to small businesses through merchant cash advances a year ago. It is more prevalent and used than most might think. Sean Murray. Sure Payment Solutions --

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