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20 Quick and Easy Ways to Cut Business Costs

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cutcostsRunning a business costs money, there is no doubt about that. The natural ups and downs of any business allow entrepreneurs to spend sometimes and require them to save at other times. Here are some tips on cutting business costs when it’s time to pinch those pennies:

  1. Print less. It’s no secret that ink always has been and always will be expensive. But that’s not the only cost to printing for your business. Printing less saves money on paper, printer maintenance, and electricity. Not to mention less paper to mail.
  2. Hire interns. What could be better than free labor? And who knows, maybe a new intern could end up being the most profitable part of your growing business. You can find more information on starting an internship program here.
  3. Outsource work. Graphic design, accounting (of course we would say that!), payroll, scheduling, customer service SEO, and more! You can outsource it all. That doesn’t mean you should, but figuring out which tasks could save you big time to outsource could also save you big money.
  4. Find ways to advertise for free. While paid reach on social media tends to reach more potential customers, you can still grow your online presence organically and without spending a dime. Utilize Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram, to share the latest happenings of your business with the following you already have. Another way to advertise for free is to solicit referrals from current customers and post them on your website.
  5. Use email when possible. When sending simple messages, like greetings to new clients and requests to vendors, do it electronically. Small costs like stamps, envelopes and paper can add up fast, so cutting the little things can make a big difference.
  6. Negotiate lower prices with suppliers. Most suppliers are open to the idea of negotiating prices rather than losing a customer. Even if they don’t come down in price, it is worth a shot.
  7. Pay invoices in full and early. Many companies offer a discount for paying large invoices in full and early. Ask if the vendor offers any discounts for those payments and then take full advantage of the opportunity to develop a good business relationship.
  8. Allow employees to work from home, if possible. Telecommuting saves on office bills like electricity and other utilities. You may find that having the office completely closed at least one day a week saves you big on company expenses.
  9. Buy used equipment. Used equipment can save you up to 60% of full-priced office equipment. The same goes for software. Buying a program that has only recently been replaced by a newer version can also save you a lot of money.
  10. Hire temporary employees. Know when your busy seasons are and hire temporary employees to fill in during those times. Be upfront when hiring and let the employee know that the work is seasonal, so as to keep up your good reputation as an employer.
  11. Clean up your mailing list. Stamps, ink, and paper add up, so keeping your mailing list to only active and verified names/addresses is one way to save at least a few dollars each month.
  12. Piggyback your advertising. Rather than sending out an advertising mailer separate from your monthly invoices, have the advertisement printed on the back of the invoice, or at least put the two in the same envelope. Not only does this cut the costs of mailing, it saves manpower by completely eliminating the separate tasks of sending advertisements and invoices.
  13. Hire your children. It’s a win-win situation really. Learn more about hiring family members here.
  14. Keep every receipt and record every deduction. Not only does this help you know where you’re at spending-wise, it helps you claim the most deductions and save the most money during tax season. Read this post for a few quick tips on tracking deductions for your business.
  15. Negotiate a lower credit card rate, or shop around for a new credit card.
  16. Form a buying alliance. Join with another business or a trade association for bulk purchasing discounts.
  17. Stretch your budget with barter. If you have the time, there is almost always someone willing to trade what they offer for something you offer. Trade marketing, design, photography, accounting, construction, and more. All you have to do is ask.
  18. Seek multiple bids on everything. While you might feel loyal to a certain contractor, if your budget is tight you may consider shopping around and seeking other bids on the same type of work.
  19. Keep close track of your competitor’s costs. Knowing what your competitors charge will help you set your prices just right. You may find that you can raise your prices a fair amount without losing current clients or slowing your growth.
  20. Reevaluate your insurance coverage. Contact your insurance agent and see what you can do to reduce monthly premiums. It may involve increasing your deductible, but doing so may save you money in the moment.
Ben Sutton

Ben Sutton

Ben Sutton is the founder of Mazuma USA, an accounting firm providing tax, bookkeeping and payroll services to small businesses. Since founding Mazuma, Ben has established himself as an expert in the small business world. He’s still driven by that same desire to provide accounting help to all small businesses – from photographers, bloggers and creatives to lawyers, doctors, and dentists, everyone needs affordable accounting help. Ben is a Certified Public Accountant, and a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. But Ben considers his greatest achievement and credential to be his happy wife and four children.

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