Find the Right Grantmakers: The Research Process

Before you dive into random searches for grantmakers, review the following steps for conducting efficient and effective research.

Step One: Create one or more Project worksheets on your dashboard. 
These are individual summaries of the projects/programs/initiatives you need to get funded. Each worksheet describes the needs your project will address, a basic outline of the scope of services, an itemized budget, and effective search criteria to find the most appropriate funders. 

Step Two: Conduct primary research using the different search sections. 
Using the criteria you identified in step one, cull through possible funders to identify those that support your areas of interest, geographic scope, target population, and other criteria. 

GrantStation’s databases include:

  • Charitable Grantmakers
    Search for foundations, corporate programs, and other private grantmakers in GrantStation’s search sections for charitable funders who give in the U.S., Canada, or internationally.
  • Federal Grants
    Review the federal funding opportunities that are posted. Be sure to include this step since many charitable grantmakers will want to know if there are government funding sources available for your project.
  • State/Provincial Grants
    Investigate the government opportunities within your own state/province. Support can be in the form of grants, loans, contracts, and more.

Step Three: Conduct secondary research to identify the best matches. 
This process is a deeper dive into the funder to identify funding opportunities with the highest possibilities of success. 

Step Four: Use the Decision Matrix to evaluate your leads on your dashboard. 
You will need to decide which opportunities are worth pursuing. The Decision Matrix is a tool to help you prioritize your leads so that you are focusing on those with the highest possibilities of success and the least amount of effort. The goal is to figure out the potential return on investment.

You can always contact us during your research process. We are happy to answer any questions that you may have.