When it comes to starting a new business, the chances are you will be heavily crunching the numbers to make sure everything works for you, and you can make sure everything you need can get up and running.
Regardless of the sector, you are going into. Be it a digital company, retail, construction etc., making sure the numbers add up is vital to help you to make a success from day one and also make sure everything is running as it should be. There is no denying that costs are continuing to rise year after year, and only time will tell what the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic will be on business costs in the future.
Before you take the plunge and start your business, there are a few areas you should be focussing on to help you reign in your expenditure as a small business.
Opening up a new retail outlet means you need a physical store. Not all shops need a customer orientated store, just like not all companies need a physical office to work from. Can you set up an online store to allow your employees to work remotely? Of course, this isn’t always possible, but remote working and running an online store has enormous benefits when it comes to saving money on your expenses.
Allowing staff to work remotely has proven to have many benefits not only for the employees but also for the company too. Many employees have stated that they work longer and harder when working remotely as they feel happier in their work environment, and they thrive on the flexibility it can bring them. While you don’t want your team to be working as and when they please, you can work with them to create a more flexible schedule for them that works for both of you. And now commuting is off the cards; more people are likely to work through previously taken sick days due to minor colds and other illnesses that would otherwise force them from the office or workplace.
So not only will you be getting more at work time from your staff but also benefit from fewer sick days in the long run and cutting out all the costs associated with renting an office space too.
The same can be said for opening an online store if you don’t need physical shop premises. For now, at least, you can build an online store and market yourself via social media, you can save money on the costs of hiring staff members, rent and rates along with any licenses, insurances and permits you will need too. Factor this into your long term plan, but first, it is worth navigating an online store if you can to help you as you start out.
Being strict with yourself over what exactly is classed as an expense is essential at this stage. Of course, you need to have a good idea of what you will reasonably be expected to pay out but sometimes, the unknown or problems arise that you didn’t factor for and can cause havoc with a tight budget. Look for ways your company can cut back on expenses even before you have set up.
If you know, you will be driving along with any employees, who will need to claim expenses for mileage. Looking at fuel cards for small business usage can help you to control how much you and your staff are spending on mileage and cut down on the chance of people paying and claiming for more than they should be.
Look at going fully digital to remove the need for stationery but make sure you have a system in place that is secure and backs up all your data regularly to avoid any issues. One step further is utilising remote working as above as it reduces the need to use an office completely. Look at your lighting needs in any offices or buildings you use and install motion-sensor lighting that comes on when someone enters the room and turns off when they leave, or no movement is detected.
Get creative with exactly what you need to get started, have many business meetings planned? Use video conference calls or Zoom meetings to reduce the need to travel so much. Get your green credentials by cutting down on your paper and printer and utility bills. Look at collecting rainwater to use for your toilet systems and reuse any packaging materials you have.
Many places offer discounts when it comes to making purchases. The more stock you can buy at once can lead to lower costs. If you can reasonably store more significant quantities of stock, then buy up as much as you can to take advantage of bulk purchase discounts and free shipping options if they are available.
Cut out the middleman and try to deal with as many suppliers directly as you can to avoid paying more than you need to for supplies.
Another good tip is to see if you can barter for certain services. Can you do a deal with other companies to exchange services, saving you both having to pay out for what each other offers? Keeping the lines of communication open and building a good reputation with suppliers and other local firms in your industry will serve you well in the long run and help you take advantage of your good relationships to reduce costs further.
Advertising your company and getting your name out there is essential to getting your company up and running. But many people are unaware of who to effectively market their company and thus end up spending much more than they need to on overpriced marketing campaigns or promotions that fail to thrive.
Sure outsourcing your marketing needs can be a massive advantage to your company, but if budgets are tight, then you need to put your thinking cap on and look for more cost-effective ways to market your company.
Social media is an excellent marketing tool when used correctly. You can even launch a massive campaign for little to no budget if you know what you are doing! Create an effective social media strategy by using free SaaS (software as a service) trial offers to schedule and automate all your social media posts. The beauty of social media is it hits people in real-time meaning you can have instant success with a great marketing strategy almost immediately. You can even get this p and running yourself before your business is one to garner interest and build up your client base.
Of course, traditional methods of marketing work well hand in hand with more modern approaches. Business cards left with suppliers, calling cards and gifts to your previous clients or those you are looking to get on board along with pens, uniforms, car detailing and stickers and much more. There is no one size fits advertising campaign, and you need to use your voice and authenticity to help grow your business and hone your marketing campaign from even before your company is open for business.
In conclusion; making cutbacks on your expenses from day one can make all the difference, especially if you are working to tight budgets. Implementing savings and cost-effective methods from the beginning will help you to control how much you are spending before it becomes an issue. This way you can make sure your money is working just as hard as you are when your new company is up and running.