These are some quick and easy money saving tips for small businesses, although many can easily be applied to larger enterprises too.
1. Check your bank statement
This is an obvious one, and something that you should do at least once a month.
- Look for any transactions that you don’t recognise. If you can’t resolve these get in touch with your bank straight away.
- Are there any direct debits (even very small ones) that are for services you don’t use anymore? Get on the phone and cancel them as soon as possible.
2. Inventory your paid-for tools
Ever been enticed into signing up for a service with an amazing offer, only to find that you barely use the system/tool/service? Something can seem like a great idea at the time but if it isn’t implemented and used long term then it could be costing you money.
Before you cancel though, be sure to check out the service and question if it’s something you should be using, but perhaps haven’t implemented as effectively as possible.
3. Look for free alternatives
Paid-for tools often offer additional functionality and options, however, many services have a light-weight free option that could do everything you need.
Once you have your inventory you can check on the service providers website for their other packages – look at the service comparison chart, do you really need the benefits of the paid for system?
4. Read the small print
Whenever you sign up for a new service check the small print for tie-in periods. If they are longer than a few months then ask if these can be changed. Don’t get stuck with one (more expensive) service provider for longer than you have to.
5. Shop around
It’s not just utilities and insurance that are quick to compare using price comparison sites, but how about hotels, travel and more?
Take a look at these websites to get started:
Money saving tips for utilities
Money saving tips for insurance
Money saving tips for hotel stays
A few other tips for saving money on hotel stays.
- Do you really need a 4/5* hotel? If like me you travel, meet clients, eat, sleep, shower, repeat – are you going to have time to use all the hotel services? The bar, restaurant, spa, gym, 9 hole golf course etc. are lovely to have but why pay for them if you don’t have time to use them? I regularly stay in budget hotels, they’re clean, efficient and suit my needs perfectly – and the best part, I save on average £50-90 per stay.
- When you do stay in a beautiful hotel avoid the mini bar – seriously £5 for a little tiny vodka and another £2 for the tonic? No thank you.
- And then there’s the water. I have seen charges on my account for drinking the bottles of water that I thought were complimentary. You can’t drink water from the tap (don’t risk being unwell!) so I recommend grabbing a couple of bottles from the supermarket on your way to the hotel, or better still grab them with you normal groceries and make them part of your packing list!
- If you intend to eat at your hotel, before you book check out the restaurant. If you have a choice of hotels at different prices don’t just opt for the cheapest – sometimes it can end up costing more if the restaurant is expensive.
Money saving tips for travel
A few other tips for saving money on travel
Fly – train – road? There are often many options available but we all have our default. Having been a London commuter for over 15 years I tend to default to train but as I have checked the relative cost and convenience I drive quite a lot more now.
When you are comparing the travel costs between the different methods of transport take into account:
- Waiting times – as a small business owner time can literally be money. If you were in your office for an extra hour how much would you earn?
- Convenience – being late is not an option. It is rude and will damage your reputation. If this means you lose a contract what is the cost to your business? Leaving early is always a good choice but what if you’re taking the first train of the day? Would it be better to drive and ensure you arrive on time? Don’t opt for the train to save £5 and risk costing your business £1,000’s.
- The in-between bits – so the train is cheaper but does the train stop right outside your hotel/meeting room? If not you’ll likely opt for a taxi. I remember mis-calculating on one trip, the train station was a lot further away from the client’s office than I had expected and I sat in a taxi watching the meter roll up past £25, £30… you get the picture!
- Non-transferable tickets. If you are absolutely sure the meeting won’t be moved to another day/time then go ahead and save a few £’s on your ticket, but don’t get caught out with a super saver, one train only ticket. If your plans change the whole ticket price will be lost.
- It’s not all bad on the train – I still love to travel by rail. The biggest benefit for me is being able to work and not losing time whilst driving. If you’re schedule is more fluid or you’re travelling a long distance I definitely recommend the train.
How do you save money in your business?
Do you have some more money saving tips to share? Add your ideas to the comments below.