If you’ve decided to make your money work for you by starting up your own business, first to fall, congratulations for placing your financial future and firmly into your own hands, secondly, you need to know that you are in for some pretty challenging times ahead. Starting your own business is an exciting venture, and it can pay off big time, but it also takes a lot of work and it can swallow a lot of money with no guarantee of success.
That’s why it’s sensible to make savings anywhere you can. By cutting down on costs, you give yourself a bigger buffer and potentially keep your business afloat should times get hard.
With that in mind, here are some very simple things you can do to make savings for your startup and get closer to securing your future success:
Always Shop Around
Whether you’re buying printer ink, looking for a small office space to rent or hiring a freelance web designer to create a decent company website for you, it’s smart to shop around. If you settle on the first, second or even third price that you find, chances are you will be paying more than you really need to, and the more quotes you can collect the better. Of course, your time has value too, so you should not spend too long going to extreme lengths to shop[ around, but spend some time on it and you will have fewer overheads.
Buy Used Equipment
If you need any equipment to run your startup at all, don’t bother buying new unless it is absolutely vital that you do so. Used equipment in good condition will cost your significantly less and work just as well as something that is shiny and new. Just be sure to buy from a reputable reseller and where appropriate test out any equipment to check that it’s working before you make a purchase.
Use Freelancers Instead of Hiring Staff
It can be tempting to hire staff to take some of the weight off your shoulders, but unless you’re going to need them to help you with the running of the business all day every day, it’s probably a better use of your money to hire freelancers. The biggest benefit of having freelancers help you as you build your business is that you only have to pay them as and when you need them, which means no expensive salary, insurance or benefits to pay. As long as you take the time to hire competent freelancers with a good reputation, this should not be a problem and you should receive the same quality of work that you would get from an official employee.
Advertise and Social Media
Although social media is a powerful advertising tool when wielded correctly, it is certainly not the be all and end all of marketing. However,r when you’re first starting out and trying to get on your feet with your business, it makes sense to advertise primarily on social media.
Why? Well because it can be as cheap as free if you simply create your own content and post it on your various platforms, and if you do want to boost your exposure by paying for a little extra, it will only cost you a few dollars to do so. Once you have more money to spare, you can start to think about bigger and broader forms of advertising to bring in even more customers.
Get a Virtual Mailbox
If you’re running your startup from home of hotdesking at the local shared workspace, you’re going to need a dedicated business mail address. The most affordable way of getting one is to spring for a virtual mailbox for your business, which is not only cheaper than PO boxes in many locations but which also saves you time by scanning in your letters and keeping them in digital form where they’re far easier to sift through. Remember, time is money so something as simple as this can make a huge difference.
So Your Own SEO
Search engine optimization is vital if you want your target audience to be able to actually find you and make a purchase, but hiring an SEO expert can be expensive. Luckily, there are lots of free online SEO resources, which if you study them carefully, will enable you to do the job yourself. You just have to weight up time concerns vs the cost of hiring an SEO expert to see which suits you best. More often than not, yo7u’ll find doing it yourself to be the better option.
Ensure Your Financial Records are Highly Accurate
So many things that businesses do are tax deductible that it’s really important you keep immaculate financial records. If you fail to do so, you could miss out on the tax benefits and end up paying way more than you actually need to. So, keep all of those receipts, ensure everything you spend is recorded and if you can stretch to it, hire a decent accountant who will know better than anyone how to make savings when it comes to paying your taxes.
Whether you’re looking to get your business off the ground or you’ve had a great new idea for a product and you need the funding to develop it, crowdfunding websites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo should be your first port of call. Why? Because the fees for raising money via these sites are often lower than credit card interest costs and the costs of repaying bank loans over several years. In fact, their fees are typically deducted from the cash you raise with your pitch, so it won’t cost you a single penny of your own providing you ask for the right amount of money to raise the cash you need and cover their fees.
You may not be able to, or even want to, do all of these things, but if you use what you can when you can, you will save money for your startup, boost your bottom line and give yourself a fighting chance of building something special that will make you money and give you a better way of living, for the rest of your life.