One of the scariest things for any business is to look at their quarterly report and see that they’re in the red. Being in debt is a surefire way to make someone feel uneasy and is a way businesses can quickly go from hanging the first “Open” sign on the front door to “Liquidation: Everything Must Go!” later on.
One way to increase profits is to decrease expenses. That’s often easier said than done, but there are plenty of ways out there for businesses to cut down on their expenditures. Technology can often play a big role in driving down costs while simultaneously increasing growth.
Open a Website
You might have physical space somewhere, whether it be a storefront or offices in your city. You should expand your business to another place: the internet.
Yes, owning and operating a website costs money. You have to buy your domain name, regularly update it and possibly pay someone to manage it. If you’re not paying someone, you’re going to have to take time out of your day to make sure it’s up and running.
But having a website on the first page of any search engine is a surefire way to drive up profits. People usually find what they’re looking for on the first page of results and are unlikely to continue. If they’re visiting your website, they’re already halfway there.
But how does this save you money? Organic results are astronomically cheaper than traditional advertising or announcements. If you have a website that’s easily visible for people, then there’s no reason to be spending heaps of money to try and bring people to your business.
Staying on the internet trend, social media is an excellent way to save money, interact with customers and become more visible all at the same time. You’d be hard-pressed to find someone without a social media account and with millions browsing every second, that means there are tons of potential clients waiting on the interwebs.
Making a social media business page is free. You can add links to your products, website, add store hours, advertise promotions and much more. It also gives you a direct line to customers who may leave reviews or have questions.
There are paid options for advertisements, but they are still much cheaper and cost-effective than regular advertising.
Thanks to the power of the internet, affordability of laptops and mobile devices and plenty of different messaging services, working remote is becoming easier and easier for many companies around the world. You might already be familiar with outsourcing, but that usually doesn’t save your company money.
While you may have office space, allowing your workers to telecommute means you’ll be saving on overhead, utilities and transportation costs. It may not be feasible to have your workers out of the office five days of the week, but think about making one day of the week a work from home day.
Not only will you be saving money, but your employees will appreciate the level of trust you display in them as well as being able to stay in the comfort of their own homes.
Make for the Cloud
You may have heard of “the cloud” before, an ambiguous floating…something that stores information…somewhere.
The cloud isn’t one exact place, but instead is a type of technology that allows you to backup your data in data centers on the internet. Cloud services are generally third-party services that store your data cheaply with secure measures.
You have probably used some form of the cloud previously, like backing up your photos from your phone. Making use of the cloud for your business is a way to store important information without investing in your own data centers. While the upfront costs may be a bit higher, over the course of time they will be cheaper. In addition, you won’t have to pay for the electricity or space to maintain your own data.
They are also an easy and a great way to recover anything that could have been lost due to a harddrive failure. There are plenty of services out there, so do your research to determine which option will be the best for you and your business.
Perhaps you’ve noticed when visiting different sites on your own a small chat box will appear at the bottom, asking if you need any assistance or help navigating the site.
Those are never live people, but instead AI chatbots who serve as a quick question and answer service. The customer types in their question and the chatbot will offer some suggestions. If the customer is unsatisfied, eventually they can be directed to a live agent.
These chatbots help save time and take away the need for human input. A simple question can be asked and answered quickly. You might think that people would despise these like they do automated voice messages, but in fact many people prefer talking to these bots instead of live agents.
If you’re looking to go green and save money, going paperless if perhaps the easiest step you can take. It requires little prep time and something you can implement in a week.
While paper isn’t all that expensive, ink can add up pretty quickly. Look to take everything online via shared documents and files. If you have a cloud service, this step is already easier to implement as you’ll have everything neatly backed up.
You can also set up online payment and appointment scheduling, if your business allows it. This takes everything off of paper, streamlines the entire process and makes tracking any changes immediate. You’ll also save by not having to have someone delegated to this task.
Make Your Office a Smart Office
One way that doesn’t necessarily include your working hours is to turn your office into a smart office. Install a smart thermostat in your office area to regulate temperature and set timers on when the heating or AC comes on.
While these changes won’t be immediate, you’ll start to see little price drops in your electric bill over time. Use timed lights as well to make sure lights are being turned off instead of being left on at all times.
It’s one way you can make a change and leave it running in the background, freeing you up for more precious work.