Getting a handle on your cash flow is vital for business success. A great product won’t succeed if you can’t make a profit and keep money in the bank after making the sale.
Unfortunately, money is one of the most common reasons that businesses fail.
If you’re a small business, you can’t afford to let expenses get out of control. Keep reading to learn 12 frugal money saver tips you can use to cut costs and increase profits.
1. Plan Your Finances
It’s hard to manage business finances without a plan. You have money coming in and expenses to pay, but without knowing where that money goes, you’ll spend it on things you don’t need and struggle to save as much as you should.
Develop a financial plan for your business that gives you a roadmap for profit. Decide how much cash to save from sales and the optimal amount to invest in growth.
This information will offer a roadmap for investing money in your business without overextending yourself.
2. Lease Instead of Buying
If you have a small budget, you may be unable to afford more expensive purchases. Despite that, some small businesses use credit to purchase and get into trouble.
The good news is that many vendors offer leasing programs to companies that don’t want to purchase equipment and other items with cash. You can send a smaller monthly payment to an equipment company to use a product.
Because of that, you can spend the money you would have otherwise used on large purchases on other growth projects. Over time, you may be able to buy a product instead of leasing once you grow enough.
3. Think About Free Tools
There are a lot of amazing paid apps available for businesses. They help you manage finances, automate tasks, manage inventory, and other tasks.
But if you start your business by purchasing every tool available, you’ll find yourself spending much of your budget on software fees. Most software today requires a monthly fee to run the application.
For instance, you can save money on contact management and other data storage tasks using Google Sheets for free.
You can update to more powerful tools over time. But until you have a larger budget, you need to make the most of the budget you have.
4. Negotiate With Vendors
You won’t be able to get around some monthly costs. You have rent, utilities, required software, salaries, product purchases, and other expenses.
But you may have other vendor options. For instance, if you have multiple internet providers in your area, you may be able to negotiate with your internet company to get a lower rate. If not, call their competitor to see if they can offer a deal.
Repeat this task with the other monthly fees you have. Even if you can only save a little on each expense, it can lead to larger savings if you can do it across several vendors. Reading online reviews can help you find alternate vendors.
5. Manage Spending
Depending on how much responsibility you give your team, you may allow them to make purchases on their own. You have company credit cards and give them to the people in different departments.
But if you don’t have a plan to control spending, you may find that some employees spend cash on purchases they don’t need. Because of that, you lose a lot of your cash reserves to unneeded items.
Control spending by putting limits on those cards. Give employees in different departments a budget and ensure they keep in line with it.
6. Avoid Paper
Some companies still use paper to handle their administrative work. They keep paper records, send invoices by mail, and mail checks. Although paper and postage costs aren’t large in isolation, they can add up if you send a lot of mail and use a lot of paper.
Go paperless to avoid all these costs. You can digitize your entire operation and cut paper from your company. You can also use digital services to send invoices to customers and take payment over the internet.
Over time, this will lead to many cost savings and reduce the size of the office you need to store all your paper documents and equipment.
7. Track Smaller Expenses
It’s tempting to buy a few small items here and there as a small business. A product appears to be a great fit and will help your business. But once you purchase it, you never use it again.
The same isn’t true with larger purchases. You scrutinize the purchase carefully to ensure you don’t waste money.
Take time to review every purchase you make. Small purchases don’t seem like much on their own. But once you add them up, they can take up a lot of your budget.
It also pays to look for small expenses on your charges. For instance, you may have a payment processor experience that charges junk fees when customers perform chargebacks and do other things. View a payment processor website to look for these fees and look for different options for payment processors to find alternatives.
If possible, remove the products that include these surcharges or use a premier surcharging program to get help.
8. Buy in Bulk Where Possible
In some cases, you’ll know how much product you’ll use over some time. It’s a common item in the office, so employees regularly grab it and purchase more when they run out.
If you’re in this situation, see if you can buy in bulk. You pay the most expensive price when you buy products in small quantities. But if you make larger orders, that isn’t the case.
Some office suppliers will offer bulk discounts if you commit to larger purchases. Buy all your products for an extended time to pay more today, but save money in the long run.
9. Outsource Tasks
You may hesitate to outsource tasks because you want to retain control over your business functions. You hire an employee full-time to handle this type of work. These are tasks that include anything from accounting to IT.
The problem is that you then have a full-time employee to pay and the benefits that go along with that. The question is, do you have enough work for those people?
Many companies will save money by outsourcing some of those tasks. For instance, you may only need to call for IT help a few times monthly when your computers don’t work. Hiring an IT specialist for a few hours at a time is much less expensive than hiring full-time IT specialists.
10. Go Virtual
In some cases, there’s no real reason for your business to operate in an office. You offer digital services like web design, software development, and other tasks.
There’s no reason to be in the office for those tasks. You and your employees can handle your tasks just as well from home.
Although there are some benefits to collaborating in person, the cost of an office may not make it worth doing. When you can save so much money by removing your rent payment, developing a remote workflow that keeps your team productive is worth it.
Of course, that doesn’t mean your team can’t meet up. You can rent coworking spaces and do other in-person meetups to get together with employees.
11. Look for Early Payment Discounts
If you have cash in the bank, you may be able to reduce some of your monthly expenses. Some vendors work on a contract basis, offering a flat monthly rate for a fixed time. These terms typically last a year.
However, those vendors prefer to collect all of that cash upfront. It provides an influx of cash that they can use for other purposes.
Because of that, those vendors offer cash discounts if you pay for a year upfront. See if this is possible and how much you can save.
12. Clear Out Unused Items
You won’t use everything in your office forever. Products that once served a purpose may eventually sit in the office and never be used.
That’s extra cash you have lying around. If you want money for other purposes, find those items and look for somewhere to sell them.
You can do this by looking for other businesses searching for deals on used products. If consumers commonly use the item, you can also post it on marketplace websites.
Become a Frugal Money Saver Today
You can’t underestimate the importance of saving money as a small business. Yes, you’ll need to invest cash to keep growing. But if you put that money in the wrong places, you won’t see results or have money available to invest in better opportunities.
That’s why it pays to become a frugal money saver. You track where your money goes, ensure you pay for the things your business really needs, and save for events that fuel growth. Follow the tips above today to improve your company’s bottom line.
Did you find this guide helpful and want to read more tips for small businesses? Check out the blog to find more helpful small business advice.
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