The cost of owning and managing a small business isn’t always affordable. From marketing your products and services to paying your employees, keeping your costs low is the best way to ensure you can afford everything your business needs. Unlike major corporations with millions of dollars in revenue, small businesses often have to compete harder with other small businesses in order to stay afloat. When you’re starting a new small business, take a look at seven ways you can save money and increase revenue.
1. Invest in a Business Credit Card
Even though most people hear all their life to shy away from credit cards, for businesses, having an expense account or credit card is essential. Business rewards cards are perfect for getting rewards, cash back on expenses, and for streamlining financial reports and transactions. If you often purchase supplies for your business, a credit card will allow you to build credit on your accounts while making the purchases you need. There are a few credit cards perfect for businesses. Shop around to find the one that fits your unique needs.
2. Opt for Cost-Efficient Advertising
Although print advertising may work in some businesses, finding a company to print your marketing materials affordably isn’t always easy. For most small businesses or startups, creating a marketing plan is key to getting more clients and increased revenue. However, affording that plan can drain accounts and finances. When you need to market your small business, opt for more cost-efficient advertising models. Look to social media for free or inexpensive marketing options and sharing among your clients. This can not only save you money, but can increase your brand awareness.
3. Outsource Any Work You Can
When people hear the word “outsource,” they often think of sending work to other countries. However, that isn’t always the case. If you aren’t tech- or spreadsheet-savvy, don’t hire someone to come into your office to perform the job if you don’t need another full-time employee just yet. Instead, look to job sites UpWork to hire professional clerical workers to handle your office paperwork. Most paperwork can be handled online by freelancers for half the cost of a full-time employee and just as well.
4. Buy Office Supplies in Bulk
If you have employees that work in your office, you’ll go through office supplies quickly. From paper and pens to computers and printer ink, buying each individual piece as you need it will rack up on your expense report. However, shopping in bulk can save your thousands in the long run. Places like Sam’s Club and Costco have some of the same office supplies you’re already buying for your business at wholesale and bulk prices. You’ll pay less per unit for each item you need. Similarly, if you are purchasing computers, opt for laptops and partnerships with computer companies to save money.
5. Use Free Online Office Options
Even though it may sound more practical to buy your employees programs for all their computers, it can really limit your finances and your ability to work. Instead of purchasing costly software from companies that you can only use while at work, opt for online office options. Not only will these solutions use cloud-technology to keep your information safe, but there are a variety of office options online such as calendars, spreadsheets, storage, document editors, and more. Choose online conference calls using Skype to avoid landlines.
6. Sublet or Rent Your Extra Office Space
This may not apply to every small business, but for those who need professional office space, renting an entire floor or office building isn’t always practical. The key is to keep your monthly expenses low and having a hefty rent payment can make that difficult. If you have space left over or that you’re not using, consider renting it out to other businesses. If you don’t need an office all the time, sublet out conference rooms or space during times when you’re not using it.
7. Cut Unnecessary Expenses
Although it may sound easy enough to cut out extra expenses, new small businesses often find it more difficult. For businesses, hosting luncheons, meetings, trade shows, or marketing seminars may seem like the best way to get your products or services out there, but it can actually result in lower revenue and pressed finances. When you’re still in the phase of turning a profit, it’s never resourceful to spend more than you’re bringing in. Eliminate paying for employee lunches or meetings. Instead, reward your employees with work-from-home days or potlucks.