It’s a tough old climate out there right now – banks aren’t falling over themselves to lend money and clients aren’t always rushing to pay invoices. Likewise, it’s hard for start-ups and small businesses to find decent investment, so it’s scrimping and bootstrapping all the way for the foreseeable future. Here are some great ideas to help you to save your all-important capital.
Bring freelancers on board
If you need particular expertise for a project, hire a freelancer for the duration, rather than creating a new job title and hiring someone for a year.
Hot desking can save you serious money on office space – your staff members take turns at working from home and then at the office to save on the amount of space you need to rent.
Search your own talent pool
Explore your own networks for new recruits – look at recent graduates, friends of existing staff members and so on – this saves money on recruitment companies.
Work on the cheap when you’re on the move
Work in coffee shops, client’s offices, hotel foyers and similar spaces when you’re traveling.
Spend the minimum on office space
Look at areas where the business rates are relatively low, rent the smallest space you can sensibly use and don’t be drawn into paying over the odds for the “right” postcode.
Keep your phone bills low
You can get telephone and broadband packages for a few tens of pounds a month of you shop around – head to woav.co.uk if you’re looking for a decent telecoms bundle.
Take all the breaks you can
Tax breaks, that is – look for National Insurance holidays for new businesses, as well as subsidies for apprentices and as many employment grants as you can handle.
Hit up eBay
Sites like eBay and Gumtree can help you to find cheap, gently-loved office equipment and furniture – and maybe even gently-loved staff!
Cut corners on paper
Head on over to cheap online stores for paper, toner and ink rather than shopping “in person”; you’ll be surprised how much you’ll save over a year.
Use a virtual beancounter
There are loads of online accounting services, as well as pay-as-you-go finance directors, which can keep your finances on track while saving you loads of money each month.
Never stop learning
There are countless business information and education websites out there, as well as the government’s own information resource – use them, that’s what they’re there for!
Use social media – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and so on – to reach out to customers old and new. Talk, make announcements, have competitions, network, grab people’s attention and grow.
Don’t be scared of long-distance relationships
There are many free phone services like Skype that offer subscribers free international phone calls – Skype-to-Skype – as well as cheaper international calls to landlines. You can also use these apps to send instant messages to clients and colleagues, wherever they are.
If you have any great ideas for saving money as a small business, let us know in the comments!
This post is in association with WOAV