Best Business Loans and Financing Options for Retail Businesses 2022

We compared more than 100 different funding options to get our list of the best loans for retail businesses.
Best overall
Lendio
Lendio
4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3
Borrower Requirements:
  • pro
    500 credit score
  • pro
    $50,000/yr. revenue
  • pro
    6 mos. in business
Best for fast funding
BlueVine
Bluevine
3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9
Borrower Requirements:
  • pro
    625 credit score
  • pro
    $120,000/yr. revenue
  • pro
    6 mos. in business
See Loan OffersLoans available via Lendio marketplace
Best for young businesses
Fundbox
Fundbox
3.1 out of 5 stars
3.1
Borrower Requirements:
  • pro
    600 credit score
  • pro
    $100,000/yr. revenue
  • pro
    1 yr. in business
Best for repeat borrowers
OnDeck
OnDeck
3.1 out of 5 stars
3.1
Borrower Requirements:
  • pro
    600 credit score
  • pro
    $100,000/yr. revenue
  • pro
    1 yr. in business
See Loan OffersLoans available via Lendio marketplace
Best personal loan option
Avant
Avant
3 out of 5 stars
3.0
Borrower Requirements:
  • pro
    High 600s credit score
  • pro
    No. min revenue
  • pro
    No min. Time in business

Data as of 6/14/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

We are committed to sharing unbiased reviews. Some of the links on our site are from our partners who compensate us. Read our editorial guidelines and advertising disclosure.

Bottom line: Based on our research, Lendio has the best business financing options for retail businesses. That’s because the Lendio marketplace offers tons of different loan types, meaning you can find the perfect fit for your situation.

We analyzed dozens of lenders to find affordable, accessible loans (and other kinds of funding) that will work for the unique needs of retail businesses. So whether you need to buy inventory, purchase a new point-of-sale system, hire employees, or address any other retail expense, we’ve found business financing options for you.

Not sold just yet? Then let us tell you more about why we love Lendio―and nine other lending companies―for retail businesses.


Our top-rated lender: Lendio

Lendio partners with over 75 lenders, which improves your odds and efficiency to get the funding you need.

Qualifications:

Money Approach

$50k in revenue

Calendar Approach

6 mos. in business

Analysis Approach

560 credit score


Compare the best small business loan providers

Lender
Lowest listed rate*
Min./max loan amount
Repayment terms
Get a loan
Various$500/$5 million1–25 yrs.
4.8% interestUp to $5 million6 or 12 mos.
4.66% draw rateUp to $150,00012 or 24 wks.
$5,000/$250,00012–24 mos.
9.95% APR$2,000/$35,00024–60 mos.

Data as of 6/14/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Financing options for retail businesses

When you think of business financing, you probably think of a term loan. Most people do. But your retail store has plenty of other financing options―and some of them might work better than a term loan for your situation.

These are some of the most popular funding options for retail businesses:

  • Term loans give you a one-time lump sum. You repay your loan, plus interest costs, over a set period of months or years.
  • Lines of credit let you borrow, repay, then borrow more and repay more (much like a credit card).
  • Equipment financing focuses specifically on business equipment. You can get everything from heavy machinery to software with equipment loans.
  • Invoice factoring lets you get cash for your unpaid invoices. You can pay them back when your customers pay you. (This type of financing works best for B2B businesses.)
  • Merchant cash advances offer a one-time payment. Instead of paying a set amount over a term, you pay cash advances back with a percentage of your sales.
  • Real estate loans help you purchase or refinance real estate, like a new business storefront.

You can learn more about all these financing options (and others) in our ultimate guide to small-business loans.

And if you see an option that interests you, good news: you can get all these types of loans from one or more of the lenders below.

Lendio: Best overall financing options for retail businesses

Lendio
Lendio
4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3

Lines of credit, term loans, & more

  • Min. credit score: 560
  • Min. time in business: 6 mos.
  • Min. revenue: $50,000/yr.

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Most retail business owners will find the best financing options at Lendio.

Why? It all comes down to how Lendio works. As a lending marketplace, Lendio doesn’t offer its own business loans. Instead, Lendio works with partner lenders (more than 75 of them, in fact). That means Lendio can connect you with a vast range of funding options. And Lendio will do its best to match you with the best loan and lowest costs for your situation.

Need a short-term loan to take advantage of a big sale on inventory? Want equipment financing to get new computers and point-of-sale software? Have some cash flow issues that could be smoothed over by a line of credit? Eyeing a new retail location and need a real estate loan to buy it? Lendio can help with all that―and more.

Plus, Lendio’s huge lender network means it can work with businesses and business owners from all backgrounds. If you have bad credit, Lendio can still match you with some options. Or if you have a young business, Lendio can find a loan that suits you.

Of course, Lendio can’t deliver the perfect loan to every business owner. You may end up matched with a loan that costs more or gives you a shorter repayment term than you’d like.

And don’t forget that Lendio needs some time to match you with the right loans. That can make Lendio a little bit slower than some other lenders on this list.

But with dozens of lenders and many different funding options, Lendio can help all kinds of retail businesses meet their financing needs.

Strengths
pro Fast application
pro Wide variety of funding and lenders
pro Personalized guidance and expertise
Weaknesses
con High interest rates on some loans
con Reports of hard credit inquiries

Bluevine: Best for fast funding

BlueVine
Bluevine
3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9

Starting at 4.8% interest

  • Lines of credit only
  • Loan amounts up to $250,000
  • Min. credit score: 600
  • Funding as fast as same day

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

In a hurry to get funding? Then go apply with Bluevine, one of the fastest lenders we’ve found.

Bluevine offers exclusively business lines of credit. And when you apply for one of those credit lines, Bluevine usually makes a decision in just a few minutes. At that point, you can either wait for an ACH transfer to appear in your bank account in a day or two, or you can pay a small fee to have a wire transfer sent that very day.

But Bluevine isn’t all speed and no substance. Its lines of credit give you a flexible way to address all sorts of expenses―and they start at under 5% interest, making them pretty affordable. Just understand that Bluevine does have higher revenue requirements than other lenders listed here. Also, Bluevine doesn’t currently lend in Nevada, North Dakota, or South Dakota.

If you operate in any other state, though? Bluevine’s speedy funding process can keep you from missing out on any time-limited opportunities.

Strengths
pro Same-day funding option
pro Low starting interest rates
pro Moderate credit and business age requirements
Weaknesses
con Limited availability in some states
con High revenue requirements

Fundbox: Best for young businesses

Fundbox
Fundbox
3.1 out of 5 stars
3.1

Starting at 4.66% draw rate

  • Lines of credit
  • Loans up to $150,000
  • Min. credit score: 600
  • Funding as fast as next-day

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Even if your retail business hasn’t been around for a whole year, you can still find funding success with Fundbox.

While most online lenders require businesses to be at least one year old (and traditional lenders require even longer), Fundbox has no problem with young startups. It does prefer that your business be at least six months old―but depending on your other qualifications,like credit score and revenue, Fundbox might work with even your two-month-old business.

Plus, Fundbox offers near-instant approval on its lines of credit (and next-day funding). Don’t expect a sky-high credit limit, though. Fundbox credit lines top out at $150,000. They also come with higher fees than traditional credit lines―the cost of accessibility.

All the same, even very young retail businesses have a real shot at financing, thanks to Fundbox.

Strengths
pro Automated application
pro Low approval requirements
pro Fast funding
Weaknesses
con Low maximum loan amounts
con High APR

OnDeck: Best for repeat borrowing

OnDeck
OnDeck
3.1 out of 5 stars
3.1
  • Lines of credit & term loans
  • Min. credit score: 600
  • Min. revenue: $100,000/yr.
  • Min. time in business: 1 yr.

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

If you expect to take out another loan or line of credit in the future, you may want to meet your current financing needs with OnDeck.

OnDeck has a few ways of making things better for repeat borrowers. It reports to credit bureaus, first of all, which lets you improve your personal credit score (and your chances at getting better loans). It also discounts fees for repeat borrowers. And in some cases, OnDeck will even waive any remaining interest on your term loan when you take out another OnDeck loan.

No surprise, then, that borrowers have such nice things to say about OnDeck. And that’s despite its high starting APR, which makes OnDeck a somewhat pricey funding option. Plus, while OnDeck has pretty moderate minimum borrower qualifications, its typical borrower has much higher qualifications―so you might have a harder time getting approved than you think.

OnDeck’s perks for returning customers, though, still make it one of our top lenders for retail businesses.

Strengths
pro Perks for repeat borrowers
pro Reporting to business credit bureaus
pro Excellent reputation with borrowers
Weaknesses
con High starting APR
con High typical qualifications

Avant: Best personal loan for business

Avant
Avant
3 out of 5 stars
3.0

Starting at 9.95% APR

  • Personal loans only
  • Min. credit score: 600
  • Min. revenue: N/A
  • Min. time in business: N/A

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Even if you can’t qualify for a business loan, you might still qualify for a personal loan―like one from Avant.

While using a personal loan for your business isn’t ideal, personal lenders like Avant sometimes help very young businesses without much revenue to get funding. And Avant offers more value than most personal lenders. It gets excellent reviews from borrowers, offers fast funding times, and works with less-than-perfect credit scores.

Of course, you will have to deal with the downsides of a personal loan. You can’t get more than $35,000 from Avant, for example, which may not be enough for your business. And while we’ve seen pricier loans, we wouldn’t call Avant’s personal loans cheap.

But when a business loan isn’t an option, an Avant personal loan may be able to help your small business grow.

Strengths
pro Excellent customer reviews
pro Next-day funding
pro Low borrower requirements
Weaknesses
con Small maximum loan size
con Short repayment terms
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Honorable mentions

Still looking for the right loan? Then let us introduce you to five more lenders that work well for retail businesses.

Honorable mention business loans for retail businesses

Lender
Lowest listed rate*
Min. revenue
Repayment terms
Get a loan
0% interestN/A12–36 mos.
6.75% interest$100,000/yr.10-25 yrs.
5.99% interestUnlisted1-5 yr.
12% factor rate$10,000/mo.N/A
0.5% weekly fee$10,000/mo.N/A

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.
*Does not represent the typical rate for every borrower, and other fees may apply.

Kiva: Best for 0% interest

Kiva
Kiva
3.1 out of 5 stars
3.1

Starting at 0% interest

  • Microloans only
  • Loans amount from $1,000 to $15,000
  • Min. credit score: N/A
  • Funding as fast as 1 month

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Kiva offers the cheapest business loans out there, thanks to its 0% interest rate. (Yes, 0%.) You won’t pay any interest or fees on your Kiva loan, making it work with any budget. And Kiva doesn’t care about your credit score, business age, or revenue.

You see, Kiva offers crowdfunded microloans. So while you do get all the great benefits we just described, you can only get up to $15,000, and the funding process takes more than a month. As you can see, Kiva won’t work for everyone.

But if those details don’t scare you off, you won’t find a better deal on retail financing than a Kiva microloan.

SmartBiz: Best for SBA loans

SmartBiz
SmartBiz
3.1 out of 5 stars
3.1

Starting at 4.75% interest

  • SBA 7(a) loans only
  • Loan amount from $30,000 to $5 million
  • Min. credit score: 640
  • Funding as fast as 1 week

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

How does a competitive interest rate, long loan term, and large maximum loan amount sound? SmartBiz can offer all that through its SBA 7(a) loans. These government-backed and government-regulated loans offer affordability to business owners that don’t quite qualify for traditional bank loans.

SBA loans do have stiffer borrower requirements than many other options listed here, though. Your business has to be at least two years old, for example. And SBA lenders look for a decent (but not perfect) credit score.

Does all that work for you? Then SmartBiz’s SBA marketplace can help you get a competitive long-term loan for your retail business.

Accion Opportunity Fund: Competitive loan rates

Accion
Accion
3.1 out of 5 stars
3.1

Starting at 5.99% interest

  • Term loans only
  • Min. credit score: Unlisted
  • Min. time in business: 1 yr.
  • Min. revenue: $50,000/yr.

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Accion Opportunity Fund is another lender with competitive interest rates. In this case, you can get short- or mid-term loans with rates starting under 6%. Not bad, right? And Accion Opportunity Fund tries to get funding to disadvantaged business owners, meaning it doesn’t care as much about your credit score as other lenders do.

We haven’t seen too many borrower reviews of Accion Opportunity Fund yet, so we don’t know how well this lender follows through on its claims. And since Accion Opportunity Fund tries to take a comprehensive look at your business (rather than just your credit score), expect the application process to take longer than with other online lenders.

But at the end of the process, Accion Opportunity Fund just might get your business a competitively priced term loan.

Lendr: Best for bad credit

Lendr
Lendr
2.8 out of 5 stars
2.8

Starting at 12% factor rate

  • Invoice factoring & merchant cash advances
  • Loan amounts from $5,000 to $500,000
  • Min. credit score: N/A
  • Funding as fast as next-day

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Lendr only offers non-loan types of working capital―invoice factoring and merchant cash advances, to get specific. Those types of funding come with higher costs and shorter repayment terms than traditional loans. But they also come with low credit requirements, making them an important source for some businesses. And Lendr is a better working capital provider than most. It’s got excellent reviews and fair borrower requirements.

Put simply, Lendr’s types of funding aren’t our favorite. But if you need working capital financing, Lendr is one of the better providers we’ve found.

Payability: Best for ecommerce businesses

payability-logo
Kabbage
3.1 out of 5 stars
3.1

Starting at 0.5% weekly fee

  • Cash advances only
  • Min. credit score: N/A
  • Min. time in business: 9 mos.
  • Min. revenue: $50,000/mo.

Data as of 7/27/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Does your retail business operate through online platforms like Amazon, eBay, or Shopify? Then Payability has financing just for you. It offers cash advances only to ecommerce businesses. And like other cash advance providers, Payability looks at your sales―not your credit score.

Again, the usual caveats apply. Expect your cash advance to cost a lot. Make sure it won’t affect your cash flow too badly. And keep in mind that Payability has the highest revenue requirement of any lending company on this list.

Payability does let you save money by repaying your advance early, though―making it a more affordable cash advance for ecommerce retailers.

The takeaway

Lendio has the best business loans and other financing options for retail businesses. With its lending network of over 75 different lenders, Lendio can help small boutiques and large stores meet all kinds of funding needs.

For a faster funding turnaround, you can turn to Bluevine for a same-day line of credit. New businesses with less than a year under their belt can get a credit line from Fundbox. Or for business owners with future borrowing plans, OnDeck has all kinds of perks. And if a business loan isn’t in the cards just yet, an Avant personal loan can still help your retail business.

Happy selling!

When you’ve got a loan offer, make sure it fits in your business budget with our business loan calculator.

Related content

Methodology

We researched more than 100 different loan options from dozens of lenders. After grading each lender and loan on factors like loan costs, loan sizes, customer reviews, we narrowed our picks down to the 10 lending companies most suited to retail businesses.

Business loans for retail businesses FAQ

What type of financing is best for a business?

A basic term loan or a business line of credit is the best type of financing for most businesses. You can use either option for all kinds of business expenses.

What is the best source for small-business loans?

We’ve found that Lendio is the best source of small-business loans. As a lending marketplace, it lets you shop around for loans and other funding options from many lenders.

You can read more about Lendio and our other favorite sources for business loans on our rankings of the best small-business loans.

What is the most common form of financing for a small business?

Term loans are the most common form of financing for a small business.

What are some possible alternatives for financing a small business?

Possible alternatives for financing a small business include self-financing, grants, crowdfunding, investors, and more. Learn more about these and other options on our guide to funding your business without a traditional loan.

Disclaimer

At Business.org, our research is meant to offer general product and service recommendations. We don't guarantee that our suggestions will work best for each individual or business, so consider your unique needs when choosing products and services.

Chloe Goodshore
Written by
Chloe Goodshore
Chloe covers business financing and loans for Business.org. She has worked with many small businesses over the past 10 years, from video game stores to law firms. Those years watching frustrated business owners try to sift through their many options gave her a passion for breaking down complex business topics. She wants to help business owners spend less time agonizing over their businesses so they can spend more time running them.
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