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As a business owner, you know how important it is to keep costs down. You also know how easily not only costs, but also your business in general, can get out of hand. Good news—there are plenty of ways to streamline your operations and expenses at the same time, and many of them are so simple you have no excuse not to implement them. Here are five favorites.
You have enough on your plate already. The more distractions you can eliminate, the better. And bills, although necessary, are a distraction. One very simple thing you can do to streamline your business is to pay those bills in advance. In many cases, you can pay for a service monthly or opt to pay for a certain period all at once (typically six months or a year). If you do this, it frees up your mind to worry about other—probably much more important—things. As a bonus, some subscription services offer discounts when you pay multiple months in advance. If the service is something you know you’re going to stick with, you might as well save some money and pay ahead.
Another way to cut costs is to bundle services. One good example is insurance—with property insurance, liability coverage, auto insurance on company vehicles, and various policies related to employees, the list can get quite long. Consolidate these policies so that as many as possible come from the same agent or company. You can often get a better rate by bundling, and the convenience and ease of renewing and dealing with everything at once can’t be overstated.
Insurance isn’t the only thing you can bundle, of course. Go through all your services and look for opportunities. Another example that likely carries some cost savings is bundling your business phone and internet service. In fact, there are several Frontier Business Edge phone and internet bundles to choose from that can meet the needs of businesses of all sizes.
This little tip is a lifesaver. Whenever possible, automate any tasks that you do repeatedly. Email is a perfect example. There are probably several different email templates that you send frequently, with little variation. If you manually type out these messages, you are wasting an enormous amount of time. There are a variety of ways you can automate email, ranging from basic to advanced. Your needs will determine which is appropriate.
On the basic end, create and save a template of your email. When it comes time to send that message, simply copy and paste the template into your email, add your recipient, make any minor changes you might need, and fire away. For more advanced needs, such as large volumes of marketing email, you can consider a comprehensive solution like MailChimp to handle the whole process for you.
There are a lot of day-to-day tasks involved in running a business that, while necessary, don’t need to be done by you. Consider outsourcing them. Examples include social media posting, website maintenance, and data entry. Having someone else handle these tasks frees you up to focus on the kind of big-picture stuff that moves your business forward.
While outsourcing sounds like the opposite of streamlining, consider that you can probably find someone to do your task for less than you would pay yourself to do it. Start by figuring out your hourly rate. A common method is to take your yearly income and divide by 2,000 (fifty weeks of forty hours each). If you can find someone to do your tasks for less than that hourly rate, you’ll save money.
While many business owners would love to be done with paper completely, that unfortunately isn’t possible in most cases. Even if your organization goes paperless, the other businesses you deal with probably still use at least a little. You can cut back as much as possible, though, and there are several benefits to doing so.
Few changes you can make are so simple yet so significant. You might be surprised at how big the ROI can be.
And that’s it. Simple stuff, but sometimes that’s all it takes to streamline your business and cut costs.
So, business owners—which tip will you implement first?