Depending on who you talk to, a business is either something you start in your bedroom on $100 or one which needs quite a bit of capital to get things running.
However you started, it has probably become apparent that the day-to-day business operations begin to eat up revenue like a black hole at the center of your galaxy. To combat this crunch you seek ways to improve your revenue stream by reinvesting, optimizing, and increasing your outreach.
When you’re already at a standstill, these items are moot though.
The only way you may see to move forward is to begin cutting expenses and this usually involves cutting back on advertising or in the staffing department of things.
Here’s the good news: you don’t have to.
There are many ways to save on business expenses that you’ve most likely explored to some degree – these new five are ones that may not have been quite so obvious …
1. Ditch the traditional 9-5 & full work week
We live in the digital age, which means that, for some businesses, it’s all being done online – so there’s really no need to adhere to the traditional work schedules if you’re not operating from an office. Even if you have an office, it’s worthwhile to consider an alternate schedule for employees and irregular business hours when you have access to telecommuting, automatic payments, and outsourcing.
2. Work with order fulfillment providers
One of the big issues small businesses have in the logistics department is that they’re confined to their warehouses, which means they’re paying big bucks to send internationally. The business can cut deals with shipping providers, depending on the volume, but they still have to think of the employees that are needed to handle the processing and packaging.
The smart choice in this matter is to look into order fulfillment providers, which allow a business to ship large quantities of their product to the providers’ warehouses. They pay a small fee for that company to process and ship the products. This not only cuts down on the cost of labor for the small business but greatly reduces the cost of shipping to the global market.
3. Reverse engineer legal documents to find better suppliers
Shipments coming into the country generally pass through customs (especially those coming into the U.S.) and so these shipments need to have a bill of lading. These documents not only note the products but the suppliers and manufacturers. Knowing this information – your business can effectively spy on the competition and discover better options when ordering your products.
4. Consider doing B2B bartering
The concept of B2B bartering isn’t entirely new but it’s not something that’s on the minds of small business owners all too frequently. Interestingly enough – it’s a legitimate way to get through tough times or to simply begin moving product in exchange for items (or services) you would have needed in the first place. If you’re sitting on a stockpile of product, consider bartering. There are many websites, communities, and online platforms that can help get you started with this strategy to cut costs.
5. Relocate to corporate housing
When you’re operating out of a big city, let’s say New York City, things are going to be expensive. Doubly so for the employees. A way to cut down on this would be to invest in furnished apartments in NYC that act as corporate housing. This could be for permanent situations or to house employees on business trips to the city. Whatever fits the needs of your company.
This type of living option is much like the hotel experience but it allows for a longer period of stay. This option is great for businesses that use seasonal employees or place a high focus on retaining their star staff due to location conflicts.
What do you think? Not so common, are they? Which of these would you consider to lower the costs of the day-to-day operations?