One of the major hurdles of starting a business is the high cost. Well at least the perceived high cost.
When people think business ownership they think raising finance, large expenditure and costly office space.
This is certainly one way of doing business. But not the only one. There are many ways that you can reduce costs and run a business for a lot less than you might think.
This is led by new technology and a shake-up of traditional ideology. Business is no longer about people sitting around a table in suits, negotiating expensive deals.
Business is now much more about being connected and mobile. This new approach to doing business means that cost no longer have to be a barrier.
This blog looks at 5 cost saving tips to help you start a business without the need to raise large sums of money.
Don’t bother with your own office
Office space is one of the greater expenses that you could have as a business. A much more cost-effective way of running a business is to forego the office all together.
Co-working spaces are popping up everywhere and are a great alternative to a traditional office. They are a lot cheaper too as you can usually find a desk for around £15 a day. This can include free coffee and super-fast internet, amongst other benefits.
You can even home your entire team in a co-working space. Many of them allow you to rent a private office within the space. This is something that all businesses should really consider when they are just getting started and want to keep their business costs down.
Work from home
Working from home is a lot easier than you might think, even if you are starting a business with people or wanting to hire employees.
I am not suggesting that you clear out the garage and have the team move in.
It is actually quite simple to set up an online infrastructure for your business. A system that utilises the cloud and gives your team access as long as you have an internet connection. This means your team can be connected 24/7, no matter where they are in the world.
Make sure you use collaboration tools so you can keep in touch and work on projects together. Again, not a high cost and much cheaper than renting an office.
If you start to find you want to get out of the house. Just head down to your local coffee shop or hire a desk at a co-working space for the day.
This is something that people often associate with high costs. If they are comparing hiring a freelancer for the same amount of time as a full-time employee, then they are probably right.
However, this is never the case for a freelancer. You hire and pay them to get a specific job done.
If you compare this with a full-time employee, you are paying them to do the work no matter the outcome. If the job doesn’t get done, you can always fire them right? You can, but it’s not easy. The cost of employee turnover is high!
If you are not in absolute need of a full-time employee for a position, then hire a freelancer. It’s a better deal.
Do it yourself
You might think you have a limited skillset when it comes to everything that is included in the realms of business.
I am here to tell you that you can do a lot more than you think.
This beautiful thing called technology is democratising [M1] many things that we once thought inaccessible.
Take content creation for one. I am willing to bet you that with a little guile [M2] and the right technology, you can create all the content you need for your marketing efforts. Just check out this blog post for some ideas to easily create content for your small business.
Another great way to save money is to avoid those expensive face-to-face meetings. Think about how much you spend on travel, time out of the office and potentially even accommodation.
The costs really rack up!
We are also finding that customers are much less willing to incur these costs if you often bill them on as project expenses.
This is a cost you can easily get rid of. People don’t expect to meet face-to-face anymore. This is the direction business is moving.
Online meetings are a widely-accepted form of meeting attendance. Easy to conduct and inexpensive to host.
A licence for Skype for Business is going to cost you just a few quid per month. This will get you unlimited meetings and your customers don’t need an account. You can set up a meeting for them to join through a link in an email or calendar invite.
Bootstrap your business
It is not necessary to raise large amounts of money to start a business.
A business is not defined by money but by how well you solve a customer’s problem. If you can solve this problem sitting behind a desk in your garage, talking to them over Skype and using your laptop, then that’s all you need to do.
All that matters is that you are effective and can scale when you need to. Some of the methods I have outlined above actually make you more effective and scalable as a business.
The traditional form of business is fast becoming outdated.
By implementing the latest business models, you can stay ahead of the curve, drastically reduce your overheads and become a far more profitable business.
It’s as simple as that.
Let's reduce more business costs!
If you found this useful then share the word. Together we can help more businesses reduce their costs. Click the icons below to share on social media.