For startups, credit is like "experience" for job applicants -- you can't get it if you don't already have it.
Despite a recent push by banks to give more loans to small companies, only the strongest small firms, with cash and collateral, are receiving loans and lines of credit, reports the Wall Street Journal.
Fledgling small businesses looking to land a loan from a bank confront a Catch-22: banks refuse to cut a check until they see evidence of positive cash flow, but startups can't boost sales until they secure capital to launch their products or services.
In the current economic climate, entrepreneurs have to do what they do best: get creative. Now, more than ever, small business owners are looking to non-profits, professional investors, to the government and even to ordinary folks in their community to bootstrap their businesses. Thankfully, an array of organizations and online tools can make this search easier.
Here are 8 ways to fund your business without going to a bank: