Wasting Less Money as a Small Business Owner


Wasting Less Money as a Small Business Owner

How can your small business reduce waste and save money?

As a small business owner, let’s be real. You are generally always looking for ways to improve profitability by cutting costs. Identifying areas of operations where your business is wasting money is an important step in tightening your budget and improving your financial outlook.

Produce less waste

Coincidentally, one of the ways that your business can waste less money is by producing less waste. Streamlining your business operations to reduce waste can help save you some big bucks.

“In addition to lower removal costs, waste reduction measures help cut costs on raw materials, office supplies and equipment,” United States Small Business Administration (SBA) said.

By working to reduce waste, you can also potentially enhance overall efficiency, productivity and public image.” Who doesn’t like some public perception brownie points?

Below are a few areas to take a further look at.

Packaging and shipping for your small business products or services

The first step for you may be to go back to the drawing board. Look at the design your products currently have. Is there a way to redesign them so they require fewer materials to manufacture and you’re able to reduce the materials used in packaging. Another option may be to make the switch to reusable transport containers.

You can also look into what it would take to set up a program for your customers to return reusable packaging materials for an incentive. One option is to offer a discount on a subsequent purchase if materials are given back for reuse in your own operations. Think of Starbucks for example. If you purchase a reusable cup, then you receive discounts on your daily coffee refills moving forward. Plus, you’re rewarding loyal customers!

Repair, reuse, recycle

If a piece of equipment needs a simple repair or refurbishing that is less than the cost of a brand new piece of equipment why not repair and reuse? Moving forward try to purchase durable materials that will last longer.

Receive a lot of junk mail and catalogs? Be sure to opt out, because that junk is only increasing your cost of recycling them.

Maybe your business can’t reuse materials left over from your products or services, but does another business have a use for them? You may still be able to reduce the cost of having them removed by selling or giving some away to be reused by individuals or other small businesses. Hey, maybe you can even bargain to obtain goods you can use in exchange for products you no longer need.

Where do you find viable candidates for exchanging business materials and resources? A local trade association is a great place to seek out other businesses open to exchange programs.

Review your outsourcing projects

Can any of the projects or needs you currently outsource be moved in house to be completed by an employee that has acquired new training and skills or maybe just has a little extra time lately.

You can also consider the cost of hiring a new part- or full-time employee to take on the projects you outsource, if there is overlap in the subject matter, compared to the cost of keeping it outsourced.

“Not only will the new hire be hand-picked by company management, but he or she will also be completely available to do work for your company instead of splitting time between multiple clients and — here’s the kicker — could save the business big time,” Business Insider said. “In the first year of a salaried worker’s employment, her or she will likely pay for him- or herself several times over.”

Make your marketing efforts count

Do you attend a lot of trade shows and/or conferences selling your product or services? Make the location of the events you attend count. Sticking with shows that are in the area where your business is currently doing business or trying to expand will help save time and money.

Keep track of the little things

Last, keeping track of your small business finances with the help of your financial institution or adviser is critical for saving money. Expenses add up quickly and every penny counts. Know where your money is going and how it is being used.

Questions about how to get back on track and save your business money? Don’t hesitate to call or visit any of our local Banking Center locations.

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