When you own a small business, proper money management is one of the most important practices you can implement. Unlike with larger brands, the misuse of funds or a few slow months can easily put your company in a financial hole that is hard to climb out of.
That being said, until your small business can stand on its own two legs, you need to be carefully analyzing all of your spending and figuring out where you can cut costs. In this article, we’ve covered a few simple tricks you can use to save money with your small business and lay the foundation for a brighter financial future.
8 Ways to Save Money with Your Small Business
1. Avoid Office Space When Possible
Though the thought of having your own flashy office space for your team to work out of every day may sound appealing, it’s also very costly. Not only do you have to pay for the rent month after month, but you also have to stock it full of desks, computers, chairs, and whatever else you need to get work done.
We live in an increasingly online world, which is why many small businesses start out with teams that work remotely while communicating over a platform like Slack. Rather than worry about additional overhead, consider letting your employees work remotely. If you absolutely need some kind of office, coworking spaces are great options that cost considerably less than having your own private space.
2. Use a Business Credit Card
No matter what kind of small business you run, you’re always going to need supplies. Rather than using cash, a debit card, or checks, a business credit card can help you rack up substantial cashback savings for every purchase made. Even though a few points every day may not seem like much at the time, when you step back and take a look at how much you’re spending on a monthly basis, the points really start to add up.
There are a variety of business credit cards out there that offer specific perks depending on your industry and the places you typically source supplies from. Many business credit cards even offer generous introductory rewards for spending a certain amount within a set timeframe.
3. Outsource Some of Your Tasks
For small businesses of any kind, employees are one of the most costly expenses. This is especially true if you’re just starting out or experiencing growing pains with limited capital and sporadic work.
Freelancers and contractors are a great alternative to employees because you can hire them on an as-needed basis. Instead of onboarding an entire roster of employees and training them (both of which cost time and money), you can hire experienced freelancers or even a virtual assistant to knock out the tactical stuff. Nowadays, there are freelancers for pretty much anything you can imagine, and it’s never been easier to find them. Use platforms like Upwork to find freelancers depending on what kind of work you need done.
4. Bring Marketing In-House
One of the biggest expenses small businesses face is the cost of outsourced marketing. Whether going through an independent consultant or a full marketing firm, these services can easily rack up monthly fees that climb into the high thousands.
Contrary to popular belief, marketing isn’t all that complicated, you just need to invest time and energy into learning the basics. When you remove marketing from the expense list, you can then assign the task to one of your existing employees or even yourself and try the self-education route. You’re not going to be hitting grand slams right away, but with a little practice and patience, you’ll be able to gain some exposure until you can afford outsourced marketing services.
5. Bartering is Smart Not Cheap
Just because we live in a world that revolves around money doesn’t mean the ancient art of bartering is gone. When you’re strapped for cash, you always have the option of bartering your services to other small businesses.
For instance, if you’re a marketing company in need of accounting services, you could offer to help an accounting firm with their marketing in exchange for their services. This is a great way to get what you need without having to spend capital. Always be looking for ways to form symbiotic relationships with other small businesses that could potentially benefit from your services. Though it’s not always going to work, it never hurts to try.
6. Shop Around When Getting Quotes
Shopping prices is a time-tested tactic that will help you save on almost any purchase. No matter how good something may sound up front, if it’s the first or second quote you’ve gotten, shop around to see if it’s really the best offer. This can especially work in your favor when going to competitors that are eager to beat out their competition, increasing the chances that you’ll get a better deal. Of course, you’ll want to make sure you’re not sacrificing quality for price, because that can backfire and end up costing you even more.
7. Focus on Retaining Top Performers
When there’s no getting around the fact that you need to hire a few employees, you’re then going to be faced with the constant risk of turnover. Hiring and training new employees can get costly, so it’s important that you focus on retaining your best performers.
Once you’ve identified them, work on coming up with ways to reward them for their hard work so they feel appreciated and important to the performance of the company. Even though it’s easy to feel like cash is king, the emotional well-being of your employees also plays a large role in whether or not they’ll decide to stick around.