The past few months have been tough on us all and if you are a business owner it might leave you wondering just how you can save some costs. While the most obvious thing to do might be to lay off staff, this is usually the last thing you wish to do. Not only does this affect the livelihoods of those involved, but can also hinder your business efforts of making more money going forwards. Instead of doing this at the beginning, it is important that you take a look into the different areas of your business and find where else you can make cuts. There are normally quite a few different ways that you can find which can help you out. While cutting costs can seem daunting or like a difficult task, it doesn’t need to be and you will soon reap the benefits of doing this. Here are some top ways you can save money in your business that you can implement straight away….
- Speak to your existing suppliers
If you have been with the same suppliers for a while, it is a good idea to speak to them and see if you can secure or negotiate a deal. Whether they are your phone, internet or paper suppliers, there is a chance that they could reward your loyalty with a discount. Many businesses, if they think that you might cancel or start to shop around, might offer you some money off. If you are also in a business that they might benefit from, why not see if you can offer an exchange of services? If you are a marketing agency for example, why not offer them discounted rates on a marketing and SEO package, in exchange for them offering you a deal on whatever service of theirs it is that you use? This is a simple way to save money for your business.
- Let your employees work from home
While an office culture is good, it can save your business a lot of money by having employees working from home, even if it is just for a couple of days a week. This is beneficial in a myriad of ways and can actually see employees being more productive too. By having them work from home you will save on costs such as for the electricity they will use for powering up their computers and their office phones. You will also save on office space as if you only have a few employees in at once, you will not need so much of a big room to accommodate for them all.
- Shop around
If you need to get some new supplies for your office or for your employees, it is a good idea to shop around to find the best deal. It can be tempting to head straight for the first offer you see, but this might not be the best price. If you are after new printers, for example, shop around to find a choice of best wide format printers that can not only perform the job you want to a high standard, but that also fit within your budget. There are many comparison sites you can use and you can also speak to companies to see if they will price match with other businesses. A lot of companies will be happy to match the price of a competitor or even go a few pounds lower if it means that they will keep your custom.
- Use freelancers
Outsourcing your work to freelancers is another great and easy way for you to save money within your business. If you need a job doing such as building a website or organizing a social media plan, there is often no point in hiring a whole marketing department or full-time staff member to do this, and then have nothing for them to do once these jobs are done. Instead, hire a freelancer to get this done for you. There are many platforms where you can find freelancers, such as People Per Hour or Fiverr. You will then agree on a cost upfront (or an hourly rate) and it is easy to keep track of your expenditure. You will know exactly what you will be spending and know how to account for this in your marketing budget. Once the job has been completed to your satisfaction you don’t need to work with them again until you know you need them. This means that you only pay for the work that is getting done, rather than hiring a team who might end up sitting around with nothing to do.
- Rethink your marketing strategies
Marketing is one area where it is important to analyse your expenditure. If you have a dedicated marketing budget, it is a good idea to have a look at where this is being spent and where it can be improved. Find the area where you are bringing in the most return of investment and the area where you are bringing in the least. Do an analysis and find out just why this is and how you can change it. If print advertising for example is bringing no money in, but costing you a lot, it is a good idea to rejig this. Perhaps your social media campaigns or PPC are working well? Have a play around with where you distribute your funds and see if this helps you to bring in more money while spending less.
- Make staff cuts
While this is the last thing that any employer wants to do, sometimes it is just necessary and has to be a last resort. If you find that you need to make staff cuts, general rules look at who was the last person to be employed. You could also see which department is making the least money but costing you the most. Could this department work with a few less people? If so, then have a think about who brings the least value to the team. Getting rid of staff is never fun, but it is important to do it as considerately and gently as possible. If you can, give them a good amount of warning so that they can try and find other employment, and give them time off to go to interviews.
- Keep an eye on where your budget is going
It is a good idea to always be in the know of exactly where all of your money is being spent. If your employees have staff credit cards to put expenses on, make sure that you check they are spending this legitimately and not just for their personal gain. Sign off purchases before they are made and constantly look at if there is any area that you can spend less on. If you have an accountant make sure that you check in with them regularly and see if there are any irregularities that might be occurring. They will have a good idea of what is going in and out of your business and may be able to advise on where you can cut some costs without creating too big of an impact.
These are just a few ways that you can save money in your business. By implementing these you will find that you soon are saving money and know where your money is going. It is important that you know at all times what is coming into your business and what is going out of it. What is the first top tip that you will implement for your company?