Sarah Brooks

Sarah Brooks is a freelance writer living in Glendale, AZ. She writes on small businesses, personal finance and travel.

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Where Will Extra Revenue Come From?

Sarah Brooks

March 10, 2014

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Nearly all small business owners are on a budget at some point or another.

Whether the economy is down or your business is in its' slow season, it's important to find creative ways to save money. And hey, even if times are great, saving money is always a good thing - after all, the more money you can save, the higher your profit margins will be.

Here, we're looking at how to find money when there isn't enough - simply by learning to cut costs and get creative.


10 Creative ways to save

  • Learn (and love) social media - Social media is the game-changer when it comes to running a business. Create a company Facebook page, Twitter account, Google+ account and LinkedIn profile, at a minimum. With more than 1 billion people using social media (Facebook being the most popular), this will be the greatest tool in growing your business and gaining customers - for free.
  • Get good at negotiating - Whether you're leasing equipment, renting an office, or have a work-related credit card, call these vendors and ask for a deal. Banks especially are often willing to work with you and meet your needs in order to keep your business. Ask for ways to save, and you may be very surprised with the results.
  • Allow employees to work from home - Depending on your type of business, you may be able to allow employees to telecommute. This can save thousands on overhead - including a smaller office space and less employee equipment expenses, such as computers.
  • Always buy in bulk - Buying in bulk is cheaper - whether you need toilet paper or printer cartridges. With technology devices, be willing to ask for an even bigger discount on your bulk items.
  • Treat your employees well - Happy employees equal more productive employees. Reward the hard-workers of your group by offering to buy them lunch, possibly having a quarterly bonus for meeting goals, or allowing extra paid time-off. Employees that are motivated by rewards tend to do better than those that aren't.
  • Buy used (and sell old) - If you're in need of new office furniture or computers, always look to buy used. Buying used can save hundreds of dollars and you won't be lacking in quality (think about it - is last year's computer model really all that different than this years?). Also, sell older equipment that you're no longer using.
  • Ditch the desktop - Desktop computers use almost double the amount of energy as laptops do. Give your employees, and yourself, a laptop instead of a desktop (and again, look for used ones).
  • Install motion sensors in bathrooms and break rooms - Electricity bills can cost you a fortune. Use as little as possible by getting motion sensors for the rooms that aren't always in use, such as the restroom or break room. This prevents employees from forgetting to turn off the lights, which happens to the best of us.
  • Hire interns - Interns work for significantly less money than a full-time employee (sometimes they even work for free). Hire an intern or two during busy times to help get all the work done and meet the needs of your clients. If you like them and there's room in your budget, you can always hire them on full-time.
  • Ask for referrals - A great way of getting the word out is by asking satisfied customers for referral business. Between referrals and social media, advertising expenses are relatively nothing.


As a small business owner, how do you go about finding ways to budget for your company?


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