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Resource Center » 11 Ways for Your Small Business to Save Money

These essential tips will help you start saving money for your small business today.

Starting and operating a small business is still a big part of the American dream, but it’s not as easy as it sounds. If you are determined to open your small business and become your own boss, then you will find a way to make your dreams a reality. However, just know that it takes a lot of effort and hard work to make a profit from your business and you still need to spend money in order to make money (for example, you’ll have to spend a bit of your budget on promotional items with your logo before you can distribute them to potential customers and generate extra business)!

An existing business owner would probably already be aware of costs and risks involved with a new business; however, there are many lesser-known ways to save money while you build your reputation and your company.

Join a Professional Organization 1) Join a Professional Organization
You’ll instantly help your business if you join a professional organization. First of all, organizations provide professional affiliations that give credibility to any small business, and this makes it easier for clients to build trust in the product or services you offer. How will becoming a member of an organization save you money? Many trade and business associations offer members valuable discounts on necessities like health insurance, air travel, car rental, cellular or land line phone service, and more! This route can definitely provide you with significant rewards, even if some organizations require a membership fee. Sometimes, a minor yearly fee is well worth what you’ll save on pricier products or services!

2) Always Get Three Quotes before Making a Purchase
Make it a habit to shop around for EVERYTHING you need for your small business. You wouldn’t go out and buy a new car without getting several different price quotes, would you? Then don’t settle for an unsatisfactory price tag on your business purchases! If you find the perfect washers and dryers for your new Laundromat but you’re not sure about the cost, then take down the product information and get quotes from at least two other sellers. Many times, if you let a vendor know that a competitor has quoted you a lower rate, then he or she will either meet it or beat it in order to secure your business. It never hurts to ask, and you could end up saving a bundle in the process!
Always Get Three Quotes before Making a Purchase

Barter with Other Businesses

3) Barter with Other Businesses
Have you ever considered swapping products or services with another business? Your company can effectively avoid cash outlays this way and possibly even unload some slow-moving merchandise to make room for other products. Bartering can also increase your customer base because you’d expand your network to include the other company. For example, if you run a hotel chain that often has vacancies during the week and you need new furniture for your lobby, then you may want to consider bartering with a furniture company and offer a few of those rooms in exchange for a new sofa or two! It’s also possible to contact a local barter broker or to join a commercial barter exchange club if you don't have time to directly deal with businesses.

4) Learn to Do it Yourself
How much money do you shell out for everyday tasks? Instead of paying a copywriter every time you need a press release or a designer to build a web site, you could learn to do it yourself. If you’re a skilled electrician or plumber, there’s no sense in hiring someone else to complete a simple task in those areas. You could also consider taking a class or two at a local community college in order to learn the basics. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, and it’s always better to play it safe and hire someone else if you don’t feel comfortable doing certain things for yourself. However, this is a great way to save money if you already possess a skill and you’re qualified to do it for your business.

Learn to Do it Yourself

Query Consultants on a Regular Basis

5) Query Consultants on a Regular Basis
Regularly ask any collaborating professionals—like your accountants or your insurance agents—if there is anything you can do to cut costs for your business. Accountants should be able to tell you where your heaviest expenses lie, and insurance agents may be able to offer a lower rate for certain products or services your company already uses. Your working relationships can be greatly improved if you build a rapport with those professionals and you just never know when a money-saving opportunity will come your way!

6) Practice Careful Preparation When Consulting Attorneys
There’s no need to make any lawyer jokes because you should always be aware of the fine print in any business situation. Be sure to get a written fee agreement from attorneys in order to avoid financial surprises as time passes. The written agreement should include the estimated amount of time that will be spent on your case and the specifics of what the fee does and does not cover; it could come back to haunt you if you proceed without a paper trail.
Careful Preparation When Consulting Attorneys

Take Advantage of Critical Tax Deductions 7) Take Advantage of Critical Tax Deductions
It's always important to be aware of tax deductions, but this is especially true for home-based businesses. Sometimes, if you work from home, a portion of rent or mortgage interest and utilities may be deducted as business expenses. In fact, many home maintenance expenses like house cleaning and lawn care are also deductible! In addition, be sure to also deduct gas and meal expenses if you travel a lot for your business. The cost of an evening spent entertaining a client may also be partially deducted, but you should never go overboard with deductions. Consult an accountant for more details and specifics.

8) Compare Small Business Credit Cards
If your business credit card usually carries unpaid balances at the end of the month, then shop around to find one with the best interest rate. If you always pay your monthly balances in full, then find a card that does not charge an annual fee. This would be an excellent opportunity to get several quotes before you make a decision; it’s sometimes possible to get the credit card issuer to lower rates or waive annual fees by telling them that you've had solicitations from other companies extending such offers.

Compare Small Business Credit Cards

Pick Up Supplies When You Can 9) Pick Up Supplies When You Can
Did you order office supplies? Pick them up yourself if you're going to be in your supplier’s area and you could save money in shipping fees! However, you should only do this if it truly saves you money and it doesn't take you away from important tasks. You may end up spending more money and wasting your time if the delivery fees are minimal or if it takes an hour to drive to your supplier’s location!

10) Hire Your Kids
If you have children who are at least 14 years old, then it may be possible to hire them and take advantage of their lower tax bracket (consult the Department of Labor for specific laws and guidelines). This is beneficial to sons and daughters interested in taking over the business someday and it could give them valuable work experience at an earlier age than most employees. Plus, your kids would probably be happy with more than just a weekly allowance!
Hire Your Kids

Use Independent Contractors

11) Use Independent Contractors
Sometimes you can avoid paying certain withholding taxes if you use the services of a few independent contractors rather than hire traditional employees. Before you consider this tactic, you should check to make sure the independent contractors meet the IRS criteria (to avoid possible penalties against the business). There are other government-related stipulations that you must follow, of course, so make sure you understand all of them prior to adopting this tip as a money saver!

Article By Jill Tooley
Jill Tooley

Jill has been obsessed with words since her fingers could turn the pages of a book. She’s a hopeless bibliophile who recently purchased a Kindle after almost 6 years of radical opposition, and she loves stumbling upon new music on Pandora. Random interests include (but are not limited to) bookstores, movie memorabilia, and adorable rodents. In addition to managing the QLP blog, Jill also manages the content development team, assists with the company’s social media accounts, and writes like a fiend whenever given the chance. You can connect with Jill on Google+.

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