How to Handle a Business on a Shoestring BudgetYou do not need to have plenty of money to start your dream business. As long as you are thrifty and smart enough to bootstrap, you will be able to efficiently operate a business with limited capital. Here are some ideas as to how you can run a business on a shoestring budget:
- Launch Your Business Online
It will be best if you can operate your business with a physical shop right from the start but if you do not have enough money yet to pay for rent and renovation, you can start your business by operating an online shop. A lot of successful entrepreneurs started out by offering their goods and services online so there is no reason you cannot make it big if you start by selling your goods online. By launching your business online, you eliminate the expenses associated with renting a brick and mortar store. You won’t need to pay for rent, renovations and people to man your shop. You only need to have access to the internet. You can start selling online by signing up for a seller’s account on eBay. If you want to have your own business website, you may hire a webmaster to set up and design your ecommerce site for you.
- Take Advantage of Free Business Tools
Businesses often spend money on business tools they need for their operation. Computers and software, for example, are crucial for business tasks. You may need accounting software to keep tabs on your income and expenses and word processing software to prepare documents, presentations and tables. You can spend money on premium business software but if you want to make the most of your budget, you should consider using open source software. You can opt for OpenOffice for your word processing needs. This free software provides most of the functionalities you will find in its premium counterpart. You may also want to use GnuCash, which is free accounting software, to monitor your company’s finances.
- Advertise Your Business for Free
It will help if you can advertise your business through print ads and billboard spaces to spread word about your products and services but paying for advertisements can be very costly especially for businesses that are starting out and with a limited capital. You may have to look for alternative ways to promote and market your brand such as use social media. You can set up a Facebook fan page for your business and use this to spread word about your goods and services. Having a Facebook page also makes it easier for you to gain followers that you can convert into customers. You can also tap on word of mouth and referral marketing. You can ask your friends and family to help spread word about your business. You may also want to reward your customers who are able to bring new customers to your business with freebies, discounts and other special treats.
- Use Cost Effective Services
Try to find a cost effective alternative to the business services that you plan to avail of. Instead of getting a landline phone for your business, for example, try to take advantage of web based communication services. Subscribing to a virtual PBX instead of using a landline phone or mobile phone for placing calls is more cost effective because rates of web based phone services are cheaper. You can therefore save and make the most of your communication budget if you tap cloud based phone companies. You may also want to avail of cloud storage services instead of maintaining and upgrading your own systems to keep backups of your business’ data and files.
More Business articles from Business 2 Community: