by Aidan Healy
Keeping the costs of starting a business down doesn’t require a lot of effort. Instead, entrepreneurs are better served by being aware of the multitude of cost cutting opportunities available at every step of the startup process. Below are 5 easy methods to minimize your new startup costs.
1. Take advantage of technology
The technological advancements that have been made in just the past 5 years can have a significant effect on how cheap your startup is. Almost all necessary business software has a comparable open-source application that can save you thousands on pricey software licenses. For the entrepreneurs considering going offshore for their next business, online business training and invoicing services can allow you to run your business from your home, saving you on costly flights to and from your offshore jurisdiction. Some jurisdictions have even updated their company law to allow annual general meetings to be held entirely online through video conferencing software. Taking advantage of this new technology can really make a difference.
2. Set up a virtual office
Virtual offices offer a cost-efficient solution to satisfy office lease requirements when incorporating an offshore company. A virtual office can also help you to save by replacing costly shipping charges with cheaper mail forwarding services. Even more important, having a virtual office can greatly increase the chance of a successful corporate bank account application without the need for a visit to the jurisdiction. Unnecessary business travel is a waste of your startups resources, financial and time resources. Effective use of virtual office services can reduce this wastage.
3. Make your startup paperless
Paper may not seem like a huge business expense, but once you’ve added in the cost of ink, toner, postage, couriers and mailing supplies, going paperless with your business can save you a lot of money. Avoid printing unless necessary to meet legal requirements and move all invoicing and bill payment to digital systems. Storing all of your important documents on a hard drive or in cloud storage can also help you save on filing cabinets and extra storage space. So, go learn about ‘the cloud.’
4. Avoid credit card debt
Credit cards may be the easiest method of paying for immediate business costs, but in the long run, high interest rates make these a poor choice for the frugal investor. There are several corporate financing options; private debt financing, private and public equity, Letters of Credit, financing for acquisitions; that are much better options with lower interest rates than credit cards.
5. Use online marketing
Internet marketing is one of the quickest, easiest, most effective, and cheapest methods of advertising available. Social media marketing, search engine optimization and writing your own business blog are all great ways to market your business that are all significantly cheaper than traditional methods of advertising. Most successful entrepreneurs accept the need to get involved in all aspects of a startup. Learning inbound marketing strategies will minimize your financial outlay but allow you to still promote your company.
Each of these methods, combined with a more frugal mindset, is certain to help you keep your outlay at a minimum on your next business startup.
Aidan Healy is Managing Director of Healy Consultants a corporate services firm, specializing in helping entrepreneurs / startups get their businesses incorporated and operating successfully. Aidan is a chartered accountant, based in Singapore. The Healy Consultants website has information about the firm and the blog will show some other recent articles.