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Retail Business Loans: Best Financing Options in 2023

Whether you have an ecommerce retail business, a brick-and-mortar store, or both, you have countless expenses. With retail business loans, you can get the funds you need to cover them and stay ahead of the competition.

Retail Business Loan
Anna Baluch
Written by:Anna Baluch
Freelance Copywriter

Reviewed by: Jen Hubley Luckwaldt, Finance Content Writer and Editor


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No matter what types of goods you sell, you are prone to ebbs and flows in your cash flow. In addition, you likely have high overhead expenses and may find it a real challenge to maintain the correct inventory levels.

Retail business loans can provide you with capital that will steer you toward success, even when the competition is fierce and business is slower than usual. Below, our experts dive deep into the various small business loans available so you can choose the best options for your unique venture.

Retail Business Loans: Best Financing Options in 2022

Top Picks for Retail Business Loans

If you shop around, you’ll find plenty of retail business loans. That’s why it’s a good idea to explore all of your options. In this review, we highlight the terms, rates and fees of each lender and explain what makes them a good option. We also share potential downsides of each lender, and provide a rating methodology you can use to select the best option for your needs.


Best Retail Business Loans for 2023 - Full Overview

Best Overall
Lendzi logo

Lendzi: Best for Retail Businesses With High Revenue

Factor Rate
Starting at 1.10
Loan Amounts
Up to $4 million
Min. Annual Revenue
Key Features
  • Borrow up to $4 million in working capital
  • Min. credit score: at least 500
  • Min. time in business: 6 months
  • Equipment financing up to $2 million
  • Business line of credit up to $250,000
  • See your options without hurting your credit
  • Flexible terms: 3 to 15 months
  • Excellent customer reviews on independent review sites
  • Get funding in as little as 24 hours
Pros & Cons
  • Easy online application
  • Multiple loans to choose from
  • Bad credit accepted
  • Fast funding times
  • Excellent customer satisfaction ratings
  • May require high annual income
  • May require high annual income

Lendzi was founded in 2020 and is both a direct lender and a lending marketplace. This gives you access to more than 75 lenders, increasing your chances of qualifying for a loan. Not only that, but Lendzi offers incredible customer service. They currently have 2,000 5-star reviews on sites like Google, TrustPilot, and Better Business Bureau.


Main Features

Lendzi offers three different types of loans to retail business owners with bad credit: Merchant cash advances, working capital loans, and equipment financing. Merchant cash advances require a credit score of 525 and range from $5,000 to $400,000. Working capital loans require a credit score of 500 and go up to $400,000. Equipment financing requires a 550 or higher credit score, but those loans can go up to $2 million.

To increase your chances of qualifying, Lendzi recommends six months of business history and an annual income of $180,000 or more. Once you apply, a representative will be in touch to discuss your retail business and review your loan options.

Lendzi offers many different types of loans to both borrowers with poor credit and borrowers with excellent credit. Customer service is top-notch, rates are competitive, and borrowing amounts are high. If you are in need of a loan to help grow your retail business, we highly recommend giving Lendzi a chance to meet your funding needs.
Backd business loans

Backd: Best for Cheapest Interest Rates

Factor Rate
Starting at 1.10
Loan Amounts
Up to $2 million
Min. Annual Revenue
Key Features
  • Borrow up to $2 million
  • Min. Credit Score: 640
  • Min. Time in Business: 2 years
  • Industry best factor rate for MCA - as low as 1.10
  • APR for the Line of credit product starts at 35%
  • Flexible repayment terms up to 16 months
  • Get funding in as little as 24 hours
  • Check your rate with a soft credit pull
Pros & Cons
  • Fast lending decisions
  • Funds available in 24-48 hours of loan approval
  • Large loan amounts
  • Flexible payment options
  • No collateral required
  • Startups will not qualify
  • Rates not disclosed upfront

Retail businesses aren’t always consistent, and that’s where Backd comes in. Backd was created in 2018 to get small businesses more access to the funding they need. They tailor their loans to fit your business, not the other way around. Retail businesses are unique in that sales will ebb and flow depending on the season. You shouldn’t be disqualified for a loan because of that. If you’ve been denied elsewhere, see what Backd has to offer.


Main Features

Backd offers two types of retail business loans - a working capital loan and a business line of credit. Working capital loans have terms up to 16 months and range from $10,000 to $2 million. Payments are flexible and can be made daily, weekly, or semi-monthly depending on your business needs. Business lines of credit have unlimited terms and range from $10,000 to $750,000. You draw on the line, pay it back, and can draw on it again. This type of loan works well for retail businesses since you can use them again and again.

To qualify for either type of loan, you need to be in business for two years, have a minimum of $300,000 in annual revenue, and 640 or higher FICO score.

If you’ve been denied for a loan elsewhere, look into Backd. The application takes a few minutes to fill out and won’t affect your credit. Once you receive a decision, you can review the rates and fees and decide if you want to move forward. The process is made simple so you can focus on your actual retail business rather than your finances.

National Funding: Best for Equipment Financing

Factor Rate
Starting at 1.10
Loan Amounts
Up to $500,000
Min. Annual Revenue
Key Features
  • Min. Time in Business: 6 months
  • Min. Credit Score 600
  • Borrow up to $500,000 in working capital
  • Equipment financing up to $150,000
  • Factor rate From 1.10
  • Fast funding
  • Early payment discounts
  • Equipment financing repayment 2-5 years
  • Working capital repayment 4 months - 2 years
Pros & Cons
  • Fast funding
  • Bad credit accepted
  • Early payment discount
  • National Funding may charge you an origination fee.
  • Daily or weekly payments
  • Rates can be expensive

National Funding provides small business loans for those with bad credit. If you need to buy or lease equipment for your retail business, you may benefit from its equipment financing. Since your loan will be secured to your equipment, you may be able to land a lower interest rate and more favorable terms.


Main Features

With National Funding’s equipment financing, you borrow up to $150,000 with terms of 2 to 5 years. To take out this loan, you’ll need a minimum credit score of 600, at least $100,000 in annual revenue, and a business track record of one year or more.

Equipment financing from National Funding can come in handy if you need funds to pay for cash registers, shopping carts, computers, POS systems, and other equipment for your retail venture.

Credibly: Best for Working Capital Loans

Interest Rate
Loan Amounts
Up $250,000
Min. Annual Revenue
Key Features
  • Min. Credit Score: 550+
  • Min. Time in Business: 6 months
  • Borrow up to Up to $250,000 in term loans
  • Borrow up to $400,000 in working capital
  • Term loan rates range between 8-25%
  • Working capital factor rate starts at 1.09
  • Simple application process
  • As soon as same day funding
  • Open to high-risk industries
Pros & Cons
  • Apply online quickly in about 10 minutes.
  • Bad credit accepted
  • High borrowing limits
  • High interest rates
  • You may owe origination fees
  • Daily or weekly payments

Credibly is a Michigan-based online lender that provides working capital loans. These loans can help you cover the everyday expenses of your retail business, such as inventory and payroll. You can borrow up to $400,000 and repay your loan daily or weekly. 


Main Features

Credibly requires you to have a minimum credit score of 500, $180,000 in annual revenue, and a business history of at least 6 months. The factor rate starts at 1.15 and you can secure up to $400,000 in funding with repayment terms between 6 to 18 months. These requirements are lenient, compared to those of other lenders.

For a large working capital loan with flexible repayment terms, Credibly can be a strong option even if you don’t have the best credit.

Bluevine: Best for Lines of Credit

Interest rates
Starting at 6.2%
Loan Amounts
Up to $250,000
Min. Annual Revenue
Key Features
  • Funding up to $250,000
  • Min. credit score: 625
  • Min. time in business: 6 months
  • Interest rates as low as 6.2%
  • Loan Repayment 6-12 months terms
  • Quick and simple application
Pros & Cons
  • Lenient credit requirements
  • Competitive rates
  • Fast funding
  • Not available in every state
  • Short repayment terms

Bluevine is a financial technology company with lines of credit. With a line of credit, you can pull funds as much or as little as you’d like up to a set credit limit. Compared to other loan options, it’s very flexible and convenient, especially if you’d like easy access to cash.


Main Features

Lines of credit from Bluevine range from $5,000 to $250,000 with a starting APR of 4.8%. Bluevine eligibility criteria includes a minimum credit score of 600, at least $120,000 in annual revenue, and a business history of 6 months or more.

If you don’t know exactly how much money you need to borrow or want to reduce the risk of cash flow shortages in your retail business, a Bluevine line of credit can be a solid choice.
SMB Compass

SMB Compass: Best Variety of Retail Business Loans

Interest Rates
Starting at 7.99%
Loan Amounts
$10K - $10 million
Min. Monthly Revenue
Key Features
  • Loans up to $10 million
  • Min. credit score: can go as low as 550 for certain loans
  • Min. time in business: 1+ years in business, no startups
  • Funding times: 5 to 7 days for term loans and 24 - 48 hours for line of credit
  • Flexible terms: 2 – 10 years for term loans
  • Interest Rates: starting at 8.99% for term loans
  • Applying does not impact credit score
  • Nine loan products to choose from
Pros & Cons
  • Low, competitive rates
  • Large loan amounts
  • Loan terms up to 25 years
  • Excellent customer service
  • Poor credit not accepted
  • Not available in all states
  • Must be in business at least one year
  • High revenue requirements

Running a retail business can be challenging and expensive, and SMB Compass understands that. The lender offers a variety of loan products to retail businesses to help them succeed, including business lines of credit, SBA loans, business term loans, equipment financing, and more. If you know you need a loan but aren’t sure which product would be best for you, SMB Compass representatives can help you decide. To qualify for a loan from SMB Compass, you’ll need to have a credit score of 650 or higher, be in business for at least one year, and have $20,000 or more in monthly revenue.


Main Features

SMB Compass offers nine different types of retail business loans to borrowers. Their mission is to make loans more accessible to small business borrowers by providing cost-effective and flexible lending solutions. SMB Compass business loans range from $10,000 to $10 million with terms up to 25 years. Rates start at 7.99% for qualified borrowers. The lender has currently provided more than 1,200 U.S. businesses with more than $250 million in financing. To apply, simply fill out their easy online application. It takes just a few minutes and will not impact your credit score. If approved, funding can be dispersed within 24 hours.

The requirements for a retail business loan from SMB Compass are strict, but the products are worth it if you qualify. Loan amounts are large, terms are flexible, funding times are fast, and customer service is rated “excellent.” To get started, fill out an online application or contact a representative from SMB Compass today!

Main Features of The Best Retail Business Loans

  • Min. Credit Score - 640
  • Min. Time in Business - 2 years
  • Min. Annual Revenue - $300,000
  • Loan Amount - $10,000 to $750,000
  • Interest Rate - Starting at 1.1

What Are Retail Business Loans?

A retail business loan provides you with cash to pay for a wide array of expenses for your retail business. Expenses such as equipment, inventory, marketing, and more.There are several different loans available, each with its pros and cons. Most of these loans are offered by banks, credit unions, and online lenders and are available to most retail ventures, regardless of the types of goods served.


How Do Retail Business Loans Work?

Oftentimes, retail business loans provide you with large sums of money at one time. You then repay them plus interest and fees over an agreed-upon term, which can range from several months to several years or even longer.

Other retail business loans, like business lines of credit and credit cards are revolving lines of credit, meaning you can withdraw funds whenever you’d like, up to a set credit limit, which is usually based on your credit score and other factors. You’ll only pay interest on the amount you borrow.

There are also loans like merchant cash advances and invoice factoring, which you’ll repay with a percentage of your future card sales or customer invoices. These typically offer quick approvals and fast funding.

When you do your research on various retail business loans, you’ll find that some of them are easier to qualify for than others. Merchant cash advances and equipment financing, for example, are more lenient than traditional term loans and lines of credit.


How to Choose The Best Retail Business Loan

  • Loan features: Loan features refer to loan amounts, terms, and repayment plans, which vary greatly. If you hope to run a retail store, large amounts, lengthy terms, and flexible repayments are ideal.
  • Application process: Fortunately, many lenders offer fast, online applications that you can complete within minutes. As the owner of a retail business, you may also benefit from a prequalification tool that lets you check your offers without hurting your credit.
  • Interest rates and fees: Since it’s expensive to launch and operate a retail business, loans with low interest rates and minimum to no fees are preferred as they can potentially save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
  • Qualification process: Some loans are designed for retail startups that haven’t been around for very long while others are intended for more established ventures with strong credit and high revenue. 
  • Customer support: High customer service ratings can give you the peace of mind you deserve. Depending on the lender, you may receive the loan assistance you need via phone, email, live chat, or resources on the lender’s website.
  • Online user reviews: Third-party reviews and ratings on sites like Trustpilot and Better Business Bureau (BBB) uncover the reputation of a lender, which should be important to you as a retail business owner.
  • Perks and bonuses: Perks can make any retail business loan more attractive. These might include a robust mobile app, hardship assistance, and mentoring.


How Can You Use Retail Business Loans?

Retail business loans are flexible so you can use them to cover virtually any expense to start or run your retail store, including:

  • Inventory: The right amount of inventory for your target audience is vital. Retail business loans can help you ensure you always have enough on hand.
  • Expansion: If your retail store is a real hit and you’re pleased with your profits, you might want to open new locations. You can use a retail business loan to assist with your expansion costs.
  • Equipment: Even if you run your retail business loan online, you’ll need to invest in equipment, which is often very expensive. Equipment financing offers a great way to buy or lease equipment.
  • Technology: Advanced technology can help your store stand out from the crowd. You may want to take out a retail business loan to pay for an intuitive mobile app, cutting-edge CRM system, or payment services, such as Apple Pay and Google Pay.
  • Interior Updates: If you have a brick-and-mortar location, you want to ensure it's inviting and attractive. A retail business loan may help you finance renovations.
  • Marketing: Even if you’ve been around for years and have a loyal customer base, you can’t go wrong with marketing. With a retail business loan, you can fund social media ads, direct mail, email marketing, radio spots, and other marketing initiatives that may take your retail store to the next level.


How To Qualify for Retail Business Loan?

Each lender has its own unique qualification requirements. In most cases, however, they will consider the following factors:

  • Financial history: Most lenders like to see at least several months of financial history to prove that you can repay what you borrow. Rest assured if you’re a startup, they may still approve you.
  • Business plan: A well-written business plan can show lenders what you intend to do with the funds. It should include descriptions of all of your major expenses, including startup costs, working capital costs, and expansion costs.
  • Credit scores: Lenders will look at your personal and business credit scores to determine how creditworthy you are as a borrower. Of course, the higher your scores are, the more likely you are to get approved with favorable rates and terms.
  • Business history: A business history is often just as important as financial history. The longer you’ve been around, the more comfortable a lender will be with lending you money.

How Much Does It Cost To Finance a Retail Business?

The costs to open a retail business depend on the type of goods you sell, the size of your store, and your location. Whether it’s brick-and-mortar, e-commerce, or both will make a difference as well. On average, however, you can expect to pay around $48,000 for a brick-and-mortar store and a bit less for a solely online venture. You’ll likely have to pay these startup costs:

  • Permitting and licensing fees: These vary from state to state and must be obtained before you open your retail store.
  • Business entity formation: Once you decide what kind of entity you want to be, you’ll need to pay anywhere from $150 to $300.
  • Insurance: At the very least, you’ll need worker’s compensation, general business, and liability insurance, which may run you between $500 to $2,000 per year.
  • Commercial property: The amount it will cost you to lease or buy a storefront will depend on location.


How To Improve Your Chances of Getting a Retail Business Loan?

There are many ways you can increase your likelihood of getting approved for a retail business loan, including:

  • Choose a realistic amount: Be sure to ask for the right amount of funding. While you don’t want to overestimate this figure, you also want to ensure it’s large enough to meet your needs. Consult a CPA or a financial professional for guidance.
  • Find the right type of loan: Not all retail business loans are created. Apply for the financing options that make sense for your unique situation.
  • Offer collateral: If you’re a startup or newer business, you may have greater success with secured loans that require collateral or an asset that you own. This may be commercial property, a company vehicle, or equipment.
  • Be professional: While this may seem obvious, it’s important to remember to be professional any time you communicate with a potential lender via phone or email. In addition, be honest and transparent.



Retail business loans can make your life easier if your goal is to start or expand any type of retail store. Before you sign on the dotted line, however, make sure you understand the loan terms and feel confident that you’ll be able to repay what you borrow. Best of luck with your retail venture.

Anna Baluch

Written by: Anna Baluch

Freelance Copywriter

Freelance copywriter who enjoys writing for large publications as well as startups, small to medium sized businesses. Anna Baluch is a personal finance writer with over 7 years of experience covering topics related to mortgages, debt management, student loans, personal loans, and more.

More about me
Jen Hubley Luckwaldt

Reviewed by: Jen Hubley Luckwaldt

Finance Content Writer and Editor

Jen Hubley Luckwaldt is an editor, writer, and content strategist with a focus on personal finance, careers, and DEI. A small business owner for over a decade, Jen helps publications and brands create and optimize B2B and B2C content.

More about me

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