Working for the man wasn’t for you, so you found your way into the small business world. Congratulations-that’s no easy feat! While not having a boss breathing down your neck 24/7 is a huge benefit, the biggest decisions now land on your shoulders. And keeping the company afloat? That’s on you, too. Don’t panic, but do be prepared and diligent about your business practices and, more importantly, where your money goes. Wondering how to save money with your small business startup? Read on for some ideas.
Do Sweat the Small Stuff
It’s so exciting to start a business that it’s easy to become pie-eyed, even when ordering inventory like ink cartridges and note pads. Don’t order in bulk until you really need to, but be sure to keep track of these things so you’re always stocked. The last thing you need is to run out of critical office supplies and then pay for overnight shipping because you’re desperate. You can eventually loosen the reins but, for now, sweat every penny you’re spending.
Use Social Media In Lieu of Marketing Materials (At Least For Now)
Despite what some might say, print isn’t dead when it comes to promoting your company. However, you might want to hold off on business cards, brochures, and the like until your company gets a bit bigger, as marketing materials can be expensive. Start out small and get only the necessary items, especially since you are probably still figuring out your brand. Make sure this is set before you put out a bunch of print materials. That doesn’t mean you should hold off on starting Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts (and more) for your business; this can be easily done either by yourself or with hired help. Digital marketing will save you money until you’ve nailed down exactly who and what your company is about.
Take advantage of special incentives or programs for entrepreneurs
There are several states which offer special incentives such as tax incentives or other benefits to startups, which could help them save money. For example, Singapore offers many programs aimed to help entrepreneurs and some of them are: the Startup SG program and the Productivity and Innovation Credit. Besides these programs, businessmen can benefit from a low corporate tax and an easy and hassle-free company formation procedure in Singapore. Cyprus is another country which offers a special program, this time for female entrepreneurs, called Women in Business programme. Those who are interested in investing in this country, should know that the company formation procedure in Cyprus isn’t very complicated and the corporate tax of only 12,5% is one of the smallest in Europe.
Barter in the Spirit of Entrepreneurship
You’ve likely been networking like a crazy person, trying to rub elbows with people in your industry and parallel industries. Find like-minded individuals-particularly fellow business owners-and see if you can do some negotiating. Is one of you great at doing taxes while the other is a branding genius? See if you can exchange services without any money changing hands. You don’t have to do this kind of thing forever but it’s a wonderful thing to give a go in the spirit of entrepreneurship and getting your business off the ground.
This might sound like we’re telling you to hire slave labor. Not so! However, plenty of students are seeking internships and are willing to do them either unpaid for the sake of experience or at least for a low fee. You might even think of having one person run an entire intern program. Make sure it’s well organized so you know that these workers are learning a ton and getting the hands-on experience they need. In return, you’re not shelling out top dollar and may even learn a thing or two from their technological know-how.
Avoid Credit Card Debt
Just like with your personal accounts, you want to automate savings and avoid starting your business entirely on credit cards. The latter is a recipe for disaster. Not only should you treat cash as your personal king, you should leverage this with vendors. Many of them will give you a discount for paying in cash versus credit cards.
Reduce Your Overhead
We mean this in the literal sense. Can you work virtually, at least for now? Even if you’ve got 10-20 employees, you can make this work with conference calls, Google hangout sessions, and v-chat meetings. Set up an internal messaging system like Slack so you’re in constant contact with one another. If having an office is your goal, that’s fine. But you don’t necessarily need one to get your business off the ground.
Running a small business startup is no walk in the park, but it’s likely what you’ve been working towards for years. Don’t squander what you’ve achieved by making missteps. Follow these tips on saving money so you can use what you have to launch the business of your dreams.