Even when times were good, money was still hard to come by when a small business needed to ease a cash-flow crunch.
Now that times are tough, bank loans or lines of credit can be nearly impossible for an entrepreneur to secure.
"Right now, banks are being the Scrooge with their money," says Carol Roth, author of the book, "The Entrepreneur Equation." "Banks have plenty of money to lend, but they are incredibly skittish right now ... and they aren't risk takers."
So what's a small-business owner to do, particularly if he or she needs cash now to make payroll or purchase equipment? He or she can do what entrepreneurs do best: Get creative.
Here are some innovative sources of funding that could help your small business when money is tight.