7 Simple Ways Small Business Owners Can Save Time & Money
“A simple fact that is hard to learn is that the time to save money is when you have some.” —Joe Moore
Starting and running a business is not cheap. Sometimes just when you think you're all caught up, something goes out of stock and the credit card comes back out. Good business owners learn how to cut costs and save money where they can. Below are 7 easy ways you can save time and money for your small business.
Whatever help or service you currently need for your business I encourage you to try searching "free and affordable xyz", and multiple options will appear. There are several free and low cost tools/apps readily available to anyone. Many small business owners believe they need to pay top dollar for training programs, marketing, accounting, etc. when first starting out. However, by simply using your resources like Google or referrals, you'll come to find many money saving posibilities.
When I was first starting out I remember having sticker shock at how expensive shipping proces could be. Sometimes it's even more expensive than the product itself. But, it's how many of us are able to run successful businesses! So how do we save money? It's important to know your shipping strategy. For example, are you going to ship internationally or only domestically. Also, many businesses will either charge their customers a flat rate or have them pay the full cost of shipping entirely.
Another thing you could do to save is take some time to look at different multi-carrier shipping softwares. I know Shopify comes with their own built in, and Shippo is another great option. You'll notice right away the cheaper shipping rates!
Understanding bookkeeping and your tax obligations, or hiring a professional who does, will save you a lot of time and money in the longrun. Some can take a look at accounting or tax laws and regulations and understand completely. If you're anything like me, on the otherhand, you get a headache just thinking about it. So, if this is something you want to take on by yourself, by all means go for it! Any new learning experience is a valuable one. However, if you start to see that it's taking up way too much time (time that you could be spending on other important aspects of the business), or if doing it on your own has caused you some costly mistakes, I definitely recommend hiring an experienced accountant.
To find the best accountant for your business, check out my quick read Tips For Finding A Great Accountant.
Having and learning negotiation skills can save you money in both business and in your personal life! Often in business you can negotiate items such as time, terms, and prices. Vendors and wholesalers are running a business just as you are. So, if the economy is tough on you chances are it could be tough on your vendor, too. Most would rather negotiate on price than lose a valued customer. Please be sure not to take advantage of this fact or present anyone with extremely lowball offers. That's not good business.
Review & Track Expenses
No, not in your head. Open a business checking account with your bank and track all of your business expenses. You can do this by finding a weekly/monthly log book cheap on Amazon, or there are several websites available if you'd rather go the paperless route. Tracking your expenses will not only help you when it comes time for taxes, but it'll help you analyze certain things you don't need to be spending on and where you may be able to save. It might seem like an annoying task, but once you get the hang of it it'll become an essential one.
Buy In Bulk
When you're reviewing your expenses, see what's costing you the most. Buying in bulk can save you on both your product cost and shipping costs. There are several companies and suppliers who sell wholesale items, white label, and private label. Many are located domestically, or you can outsource from international companies such as DHL, Alibaba, and Aliexpress.
Turn It Off
Decided to keep this last one simple. A small but big change you could make is to remember to power things off when no longer in use (even if you're working from home). Lights, computers, printers, etc. Electric bills can add up pretty quickly, therefore adding an extra expense. Saving energy will save you and your business money!
Thanks for reading.