Every business owner wants to increase their profits, but as you’re probably aware, this is easier said than done. Reducing the overall outgoings of your business can be an easier solution, provided you make smart choices. Here, we’ll go through four easy ways any business can cut costs without sacrificing the quality of your service.
1. Move into a serviced office
Office space can be incredibly costly, especially if you’re renting and even more so if you’re based in a major city like London, New York or Berlin. With space at a premium in such cities, the competition for occupancy has driven office prices sky high. This has led to more businesses adopting flexible working arrangements or opting to work from serviced offices. Figures from Savills UK reported that the number of serviced offices increased by more than 150% in 2017 alone.
Serviced offices have a financial advantage over traditional leased offices because of their flexibility. Growing businesses often have to rent offices that are larger than they need them to be in order to be ready for expansion. With a serviced office, you can rent a space that is exactly the size you need, and then easily move to a larger office once you expand because you’ll have no long-term commitment.
All serviced workspaces offer basic features as part of the package. Most come with high speed internet access, and some, such as the serviced offices offered by the likes of Landmark, Leo and Regus, come fully furnished, allowing you to get straight to work, instead of spending time setting up.
2. Improve your time management
Wasted time simply means wasted money, which is not what any business wants or needs. Improving your time management could be as simple as implementing techniques to help keep staff focused and motivated, such as minimizing distractions, or ensuring that they get plenty of breaks to keep productivity levels up.
You may choose to invest in software that tracks employee time usage, which can be especially helpful if you’re working on billable hours for clients. Some of these apps, such as Toggl, can even send you reports, breaking down hours based on projects, clients, and tasks, so you can clearly see where your time, and therefore money, is going. This lets you decide how to proceed in order to get the most out of the time you have.
For businesses that rely on a fleet of vehicles, such as delivery or collection services, fleet tracking software can be hugely beneficial. These programs work with GPS and offer drivers live traffic updates, ensuring that they take the most efficient route in order to avoid traffic, saving as much time as possible. Being more time-efficient allows drivers to fit more deliveries into a day, improving the overall efficiency of your business. Some fleet tracking software programs, such as Movolytics, also offer driver behaviour reports, tracking inefficient driving which can increase fuel usage. By simply driving more efficiently, drivers can use less fuel and reduce the wear and tear on vehicles, saving money in the long run for your business.
3. Switch to the cloud and go paperless
For many businesses, cloud computing is an excellent way to cut back on costs and ongoing expenses. By switching to the cloud, you won’t need to spend money on purchasing, upgrading, and maintaining expensive servers to house all your documents and files. Instead, you can simply create folders on cloud storage systems such as Google Drive, which all employees will be able to access regardless of where they are. Cloud service providers will usually also take the responsibility of ensuring that all software and programs are kept up to date and maintained.
Having everything saved on the cloud also makes it much easier to go paperless, and minimal paper ensures you don’t have to spend money on printer paper, ink, and maintenance. This can drastically reduce your outgoing costs, and speeds things up, as you won’t have to waste time on printing, scanning, or posting documents, unless you absolutely need to.
4. Refine your marketing strategy
Marketing is likely one of your biggest expenditures, with the average firm allocating 41% of its marketing budget to online efforts. However, by simply refining your social media strategy, you can cut this cost right down, reducing your expenditure. With an estimated 3.196 billion social media users in 2018, businesses have the chance to engage with customers, and potential customers, for free by simply utilising social media channels. According to Marketing Sherpa, 95% of 18-34 year olds are likely to follow brands on social media, and are therefore more likely to interact with your brand on a daily basis.
By shifting your marketing focus to free social media channels, you can increase the amount of inbound traffic to your website. Every new post to your website encourages users to visit your website, providing you with the opportunity to convert them to a customer once they’re on the webpage. You should ensure that posts are consistent in terms of theme and style, and that you only post content your customers want to engage with. This could take some experimenting to see what works best, is worth it to cut your business costs.