Two of the key focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy and Money, and Business and Entrepreneurship. No matter what your business idea is, figuring out how run a surplus is critical. Likewise many new businesses don’t last due to the poor management of costs. The following contributed post is thus entitled; Finding The Financial Wiggle Room Your Business Needs.
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Are you feeling the costs starting to bite at your business? Are you risking your profits by letting your expenses go unchecked? Success in business isn’t just about creating the product and service the market needs and selling it to them effectively. You have to make the best use of the resources available to you, money most of all. To help give you more to make use of, we’re going to take a look at ways that you can cut the costs in your business.
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Where does your business do its work? If you’re renting out office space, could it be more economical to downsize? Many teams are moving away from the traditional office space, entirely. For instance, a small team might be able to work just as effectively from home, connecting to one another via the internet in a remote working agreement. Otherwise, you might want to consider sharing your space to cut down in costs, too. Either you can look at the possibility of leasing out existing office space or moving your team into coworking spaces shared with other businesses, as well.
Be economic about your equipment
Every business has to invest in the right equipment to some degree. But you don’t always have to buy it at market value. When it comes to equipment like computers, monitors, printers, keyboards, speakers, and the like, you should look at the potential to lease that equipment. Buying might be more cost-effective in the long-term, but leasing can help you make immediate savings. If you want the best of both worlds, consider buying refurbished office equipment, as well. Second-hand has a bad reputation to some people but refurbished digital equipment is rigorously tested to ensure that it’s fit for purpose before purchase and often comes with a warranty. Otherwise, consider looking at second-hand office furniture, as well, to cut some of those costs.
Switch up your suppliers
Besides the one-time purchases you have to try and get a good deal on, like digital equipment and furniture, there is also the supply of goods that any office needs to keep running smoothly. In most cases, we’re talking about office materials like paper, stationery, printer supplies and the like. Your supplies may differ, but the strategy remains the same: don’t buy them at retail. Instead, getting cost-effective resources like cheap ink cartridges is all about finding the right supplier. You local printing store might be willing to negotiate a deal for a business account but if they’re not, you’re better at looking online and buying in bulk from industry suppliers.
Image Source: Christina Morillo
Rethink your hiring
One of the easiest ways to see your costs climbing way too high is to hire a new member to the team without the necessary consideration. Besides their pay, every employee comes with a lot of added cost. If you get over fifteen employees, for instance, you will find that providing some benefits becomes mandatory. What’s more, too many business owners employ people without really having enough work to justify creating that role. Instead, look at the possibility of outsourcing some of your workload. You get the benefits of hiring a professional, without all the hassle of going through recruitment, and the added pressure on your HR system. What’s more, you can consider making existing roles more streamlined by systemizing processes using things like automating software so that you and your team can get more productive, eliminating the need for another hire in the first place.
Balance your marketing
Almost all businesses are marketing in the digital world these days. It’s undoubtedly the most effective way to reach the largest audience possible. However, it’s not always worth the money. In particular, digital advertising might not be the most cost-effective way to use your advertising budget. Look at the differences between inbound marketing and outbound marketing. Outbound marketing, like advertising, involves paying a lot of money for a lot of short-term gain. If you’re not running a special sale or a launch event, you shouldn’t spend on short-term gain. Rather, inbound marketing, such as content marketing and social media marketing, costs a lot less (it can be entirely free if you’re willing to put the time into it) and lasts a lot longer.
Spend your energy wisely
When is the last time you took a real good look at your utility bill? Besides switching up your internet or electricity suppliers, the most effective way to reduce those bills is to reduce how much energy and water you’re using in the business. If you can handle the short-term expense, consider hiring a team to perform an energy audit. It’s an immediate cost, but it can highlight all the ways that your business is wasting energy and the policies and practices you can put into place to reduce that waste. Besides hiring an energy audit, there’s plenty you can do to reduce energy use yourself, such as installing LED light bulbs, ensuring that all digital equipment is turned off, rather than on standby, at the end of the day and such.
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Take a chunk off your taxes
Most business owners don’t know the full range of tax deductions that they could be entitled to. You can deduct gross receipts tax, payroll tax, sales tax, gasoline tax, and much more. To be eligible for a deduction, expenses have to be solely for the business, however. For instance, a home business owner might not be able to deduct the full cost of a new PC if, for instance, they also use it to stream movies or have other personal uses for it. If you want to make the most deductions without getting the ire of the IRS, it’s recommended to work with a qualified accountant.
A careful balance has to be struck when it comes to cutting costs in the business. You want to free the money you need to reinvest and to grow the business, but if you end up cutting too much, it will impact your services and your customers could turn against you. Scale costs responsibly, starting by reducing instead of cutting and with the most unnecessary costs first.