Starting out in business can be a challenging time, both emotionally and financially; and nobody knows better than the founders of Mazuma Money, Lucy Cohen and Sophie Hughes who went on to launch a successful accountancy business that has just expanded into America. Here are their tried-and-tested money saving tips for small businesses.
Need a way to get your name known but can’t afford fancy advertising? Trying positioing yourself as an expert and offering advice such as speaking at a networking event, guest-teaching a college class or even writing an article for a local paper for free. It’s a great way of getting your company name out there without any cost to you.
Keep printing costs low by buying recycled printer cartridges. These can be easily found online.
Try out software for free before buying it. Often decent software that does the trick is very cheap so you don’t need to spend large amounts of money on the market leader. They often offer free trial periods too to save you money in the short term.
Kitting out an office can be expensive. Try to use sites such as Gumtree and Ebay to buy second hand equipment rather than buying new.
Don’t scrimp on insurance as it’ll save you money in the long term – just do your research and get plenty of quotes from companies to ensure you are getting the best deal you can.
Be on top of your admin and when you need to put something in the post try and do it promptly so you can send it 2nd rather than 1st class (only if you can’t email it instead though!).
Avoid giving credit. Try to get your customers to pay you immediately rather than giving them credit terms on an invoice. If you have to buy materials to fulfil their order then ask for 50% up front – in our experience those who refuse to do this are highly likely to not pay you at all and you don’t want those customers!
When you deal with a supplier, make sure you have a written quote from them so that you know what you are going to have to pay them, especially if they charge hourly rates! You don’t want to get caught out paying far more than you can afford!
Why not learn something new? Rather than hire a PR agency to write a press release, why not hire one for an hour or go on a course to show you how to do it yourself? You will only have one outlay rather than spending it over and over again.
Get at least 3 quotes for everything you buy, and try to get discounts where possible. If you have a friend in that industry see if they can help you with a discount, or see if your supplier will offer you a discount for paying early or up front.
If your business allows, save office rent by working at home or asking other small business owners if you could borrow a desk at their office for a small fee.
When opening a bank account shop around for one that offers you a good fee-free initial period as this can save you £££s in the early days.
MazumaMoney.co.uk offers hassle free accountancy for small businesses.