January 26, 2021  
  Entrepreneurial Resources - Advice for North Dakota Entrepreneurs  
  Grand Forks, North Dakota Resources for Entrepreneurs  
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Starting a Business in Grand Forks, North Dakota

Thinking about starting a business in Grand Forks, North Dakota? This step-by-step guide walks you through the major decisions you should consider before opening a new business in Grand Forks.

What Business to Start

An important decision is what kind of business you want to start. To stir your creative juices on what kind of business to start, take a look at Good Business Ideas.

For in-depth how-to guides on how to start specific businesses, browse our Good Businesses to Start section of our site. For example, you might be interested in our Starting an Experimental Machine Shops Business guide or our Opening a Management Accountants Business guide.

Don't forget that your new startup will be located in Grand Forks. If Grand Forks already has plenty of the kind of business you want to start, you might want to change your plans. Make sure you fully understand Grand Forks demographics before you lock in on your business idea.

Grand Forks, North Dakota Demographic Information

Grand Forks has an active business community that includes small businesses, mid-sized businesses and large businesses.

To give you a better feel for Grand Forks demographics for small businesses, we have tabulated the small business sizes, based on number of employees, for business in Grand Forks.

Business Size# of
1-4 Employees 1979
5-9 Employees 915
10-19 Employees 822
20-49 Employees 561
50-99 Employees 201
100-249 Employees 99
250-499 Employees 30
500-999 Employees 3
1000+ Employees 3
All Grand Forks Businesses 4613

As a new Grand Forks entrepreneur, you may also be interested in the table below. It shows how many businesses there are in Grand Forks for each business category. By looking at this chart, you can get a general sense for how much competition there is in the business niche that you are pursuing.

Business Type # of
Advertising Agencies 4
Amusement Arcades 1
Appliance Repair and Maintenance 2
Architectural Services 7
Armored Car Services 1
Automotive Glass Replacement Shops 4
Automotive Parts and Accessories Stores 14
Automotive Transmission Repair 1
Baked Goods Stores 1
Barber Shops 1
Beauty Salons 24
Beer and Ale Merchant Wholesalers 2
Beer, Wine, and Liquor Stores 8
Blood and Organ Banks 1
Book Stores 6
Bowling Centers 1
Business Associations 5
Cable and Other Program Distribution 2
Cafeterias 3
Camera and Photographic Supplies Stores 1
Canvas and Related Product Mills 1
Car Washes 4
Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning Services 4
Caterers 1
Cemeteries and Crematories 4
Child and Youth Services 2
Child Day Care Services 11
Civic and Social Organizations 9
Claims Adjusting 2
Clothing Accessories Stores 2
Coin-Operated Laundries and Drycleaners 4
Collection Agencies 3
Commercial Lithographic Printing 4
Commercial Screen Printing 1
Commodity Contracts Brokerage 1
Commodity Contracts Dealing 1
Community Food Services 2
Computer and Software Stores 4
Computer Systems Design Services 1
Concrete Pipe Manufacturing 1
Construction Machinery Manufacturing 1
Construction Sand and Gravel Mining 1
Consumer Lending 1
Continuing Care Retirement Communities 4
Convenience Stores 1
Convention and Trade Show Organizers 1
Convention and Visitors Bureaus 1
Cosmetology and Barber Schools 2
Couriers 4
Credit Unions 7
Crop Harvesting, Primarily by Machine 1
Custom Computer Programming Services 9
Diagnostic Imaging Centers 1
Direct Title Insurance Carriers 1
Discount Department Stores 2
Display Advertising 1
Document Preparation Services 2
Dried and Dehydrated Food Manufacturing 1
Drinking Places (Alcoholic Beverages) 18
Drywall and Insulation Contractors 4
Educational Support Services 2
Electric Power Distribution 3
Electrical Contractors 17
Electronic Shopping 2
Elementary and Secondary Schools 1
Employment Placement Agencies 1
Engineering Services 8
Exam Preparation and Tutoring 1
Facilities Support Services 1
Family Clothing Stores 10
Family Planning Centers 2
Farm Product Warehousing and Storage 1
Farm Supplies Merchant Wholesalers 9
Fiber Optic Cable Manufacturing 1
Fine Arts Schools 4
Finish Carpentry Contractors 6
Fitness and Recreational Sports Centers 5
Flight Training 1
Floor Covering Stores 7
Flooring Contractors 4
Florists 3
Fluid Milk Manufacturing 1
Food (Health) Supplement Stores 3
Footwear and Leather Goods Repair 1
Footwear Merchant Wholesalers 1
Formal Wear and Costume Rental 1
Framing Contractors 4
Freight Transportation Arrangement 3
Frozen Specialty Food Manufacturing 1
Full-Service Restaurants 38
Funeral Homes and Funeral Services 2
Furniture Merchant Wholesalers 2
Furniture Stores 5
General Automotive Repair 13
General Freight Trucking, Local 6
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals 1
General Rental Centers 1
General Warehousing and Storage 1
Gift, Novelty, and Souvenir Stores 11
Glass and Glazing Contractors 1
Golf Courses and Country Clubs 1
Grantmaking Foundations 2
Hardware Merchant Wholesalers 2
Hardware Stores 4
Historical Sites 1
Hobby, Toy, and Game Stores 3
Home Centers 2
Home Health Care Services 1
Home Health Equipment Rental 2
Homes for the Elderly 2
Household Appliance Stores 2
Human Rights Organizations 1
Insurance Agencies and Brokerages 31
Interior Design Services 1
Investigation Services 3
Investment Advice 3
Janitorial Services 14
Jewelry (except Costume) Manufacturing 1
Jewelry Stores 8
Kidney Dialysis Centers 1
Land Subdivision 1
Landscaping Services 18
Lessors of Other Real Estate Property 2
Limited-Service Restaurants 44
Local Messengers and Local Delivery 1
Locksmiths 1
Machine Shops 2
Mail-Order Houses 1
Manufactured (Mobile) Home Dealers 2
Marketing Consulting Services 2
Masonry Contractors 7
Mattress Manufacturing 1
Meat Markets 1
Medical Laboratories 1
Men's Clothing Stores 2
Metal Stamping 1
Metal Window and Door Manufacturing 1
Mortgage and Nonmortgage Loan Brokers 1
Motor Vehicle Towing 1
Motorcycle Dealers 2
Museums 1
Musical Groups and Artists 1
Musical Instrument and Supplies Stores 2
Nail Salons 2
New Car Dealers 5
New Housing Operative Builders 2
Newspaper Publishers 2
Office Administrative Services 7
Office Equipment Merchant Wholesalers 4
Office Supplies and Stationery Stores 5
Offices of Bank Holding Companies 1
Offices of Certified Public Accountants 9
Offices of Chiropractors 8
Offices of Dentists 20
Offices of Lawyers 29
Offices of Optometrists 5
Offices of Other Holding Companies 1
Offices of Real Estate Appraisers 4
One-Hour Photofinishing 1
Optical Goods Stores 8
Outdoor Power Equipment Stores 1
Paint and Wallpaper Stores 1
Painting and Wall Covering Contractors 9
Parking Lots and Garages 2
Passenger Car Rental 2
Payroll Services 1
Perishable Prepared Food Manufacturing 1
Pet and Pet Supplies Stores 3
Pet Care (except Veterinary) Services 2
Petroleum Bulk Stations and Terminals 1
Pharmacies and Drug Stores 8
Photography Studios, Portrait 8
Plastics Bag Manufacturing 1
Private Mail Centers 1
Professional Organizations 3
Quick Printing 1
Racetracks 1
Radio Networks 1
Radio Stations 7
Ready-Mix Concrete Manufacturing 1
Real Estate Credit 2
Recreational Vehicle Dealers 2
Refrigerated Warehousing and Storage 1
Remediation Services 1
Residential Property Managers 10
Residential Remodelers 9
Retail Bakeries 1
Roofing Contractors 5
Rooming and Boarding Houses 13
Sales Financing 1
Satellite Telecommunications 1
Savings Institutions 4
Scheduled Freight Air Transportation 1
Scheduled Passenger Air Transportation 1
Securities Brokerage 12
Security Guards and Patrol Services 2
Septic Tank and Related Services 1
Shoe Stores 11
Siding Contractors 5
Sign Manufacturing 1
Site Preparation Contractors 4
Snack and Nonalcoholic Beverage Bars 17
Solid Waste Collection 2
Spice and Extract Manufacturing 1
Sporting Goods Stores 5
Sports and Recreation Instruction 3
Tax Preparation Services 5
Taxi Service 3
Telephone Answering Services 1
Television Broadcasting 3
Temporary Help Services 4
Temporary Shelters 1
Testing Laboratories 3
Theater Companies and Dinner Theaters 3
Tile and Terrazzo Contractors 1
Tire Dealers 7
Title Abstract and Settlement Offices 1
Tobacco Stores 3
Tour Operators 1
Travel Agencies 4
Travel Trailer and Camper Manufacturing 3
Truck Trailer Manufacturing 1
Truss Manufacturing 1
Used Car Dealers 8
Used Household and Office Goods Moving 4
Used Merchandise Stores 5
Vending Machine Operators 2
Veterinary Services 3
Video Tape and Disc Rental 5
Vocational Rehabilitation Services 5
Voluntary Health Organizations 1
Warehouse Clubs and Supercenters 2
Wholesale Trade Agents and Brokers 4
Wineries 1
Wired Telecommunications Carriers 3
Women's Clothing Stores 8
Wood Container and Pallet Manufacturing 1
Wood Office Furniture Manufacturing 1

Should You Franchise?

Browse the Yellow Pages for Grand Forks and it's apparent that franchising has become a very popular way to start a business. Evidently, there must be some significant advantages to purchasing a franchise.

We highly recommend you consider franchising as an option. On our site, you can read many articles about franchising, such as Franchise Marketing Support. Get a thorough education on franchising by browsing all of our Articles on Franchising.

A comprehensive list of franchisors is available via our List of Franchise Opportunities.

Sample franchise opportunities include Slim and Tone and Mighty Distributing System. Alternatively, you can browse franchise categories, such as Auto Repair Franchises and Print and Sign Franchises.

Note on Grand Forks Franchise Opportunities: You will need to contact franchisors directly to see if their franchises are available in Grand Forks.

Is Buying an Existing Grand Forks Business a Good Strategy?

If you have some capital to play with, you may want to Buy a Business in North Dakota. Follow that link and you can assess several good businesses for sale in Grand Forks.

For anybody who wants to buy a business, we recommend reading this useful article: Hold Harmless Agreements When Buying Businesses.

Selecting a Name For Your Venture

A good company name can give a big boost to a new startup. It might seem like an easy thing to do, but there are many things to consider when naming a business.

Company names should be fun to say, and they should help people to understand what you do and how you differentiate yourself in the market.

Numerous company naming issues are discussed in more detail in this article: Naming a Company.

As a final piece of advice, remember that because you are planning on starting a business in Grand Forks, it's critical that you ensure that your company name has not already been claimed by another North Dakota business.

Getting Money to Start a Business

Raising money to fund your new Grand Forks business is not an easy task. The reality is that there is very little funding available for new small businesses, and you have to explore every possible alternative.

To learn about raising money, we recommend you read the fundraising articles on our site, such as 504 Loans.

For Grand Forks entrepreneurs on the hunt for startup funding, check out our List of North Dakota Angel Investors and our List of North Dakota Venture Capital Firms.

Promoting Your New Venture

To rise above the crowd in Grand Forks and build your business, you need a great marketing plan.

You can learn quite a bit about marketing on our site. Elevator Advertising is an article that will stimulate a few thoughts on your marketing plan. That's just a taste of the many useful articles we have on Marketing a Small Business.

Never Give Up

As an entrepreneur in Grand Forks, you won't be working for the boss anymore. You are the boss.

If you choose the right business and love what you do, you will greatly increase your odds of success.

This site is all about helping entrepreneurs in Grand Forks and elsewhere to achieve real success. We believe entrepreneurship is an amazing engine for job creation in Grand Forks, neighborhood development and overall economic health.

More Entrepreneurial Resources for Starting a Business in Grand Forks, North Dakota

Here are more links that we believe will help you be successful in starting a business in Grand Forks.



Additional Resources for Entrepreneurs

Buying a Business

Writing a Business Plan

Raising Money


Small Business Marketing

Advertising Advice

Public Relations -

Customer Service Tips

Entrepreneurial Selling

Workplace Safety