When you’re running a small business. Your financial margins will often be very tight and it can be difficult to keep everything together. Many business owners fall into the trap of trying to manage this by avoiding any extra spending. Which makes it very hard to grow a business and get it into a stronger position. Alternatively, managing your overheads more effectively can help you cut back on unnecessary expense. And free up resources to help you progress.
Keep track of your net margin
To keep your business in a healthy financial place. The most important thing you need to watch is your net margin. This is the figure you’re left with when you’ve added up all your operating costs – everything from wages to buying stock to paying rent or a mortgage on your premises – and have subtracted the total from your turnover. Recalculating this on a weekly or monthly basis will help you establish the viability of your pricing structure. And any investments you’re making. If you succeed in reducing your overheads, your net margin will improve.
One of the most difficult costs to handle. In a young business is the tax burden represented by each of your employees. If you need particular people for specialist tasks such as payroll management. But you don’t have enough work of that sort to utilise their talents fully. That tax burden can end up being heavy in comparison to productivity. It often makes more sense to outsource for specialist work at this stage. You may be paying more per hour, but you’ll save overall.
Many small businesses struggle because the quantity of stock or finished products they have varies a lot and it’s expensive to pay on a continuing basis for premises big enough to store it when it’s at maximum. It’s only possible to displace so much into your home, at least if you want your family to keep speaking to you. Renting a storage unit is often the best solution to this problem. As with outsourcing workers, it may not be the cheapest long-term solution but it will save you money because you won’t need it all the time.
The other main area where most businesses can save money is in energy use. The need to build up your credit rating as a business when you’ve just started operating means you may not be offered great deals by energy companies at the outset. That will change as the months pass so it’s worth shopping around at regular intervals to see if you can do better. You can also save by prioritising economic energy ratings when you buy new equipment and by taking the time to fit insulation and energy-saving lighting in your premises.
Although measures like these might not result in big savings immediately, because they affect you on a monthly basis, your savings will soon start adding up. Small changes at this level can make a surprisingly big difference and make reducing your costs much easier.