You’re a small business owner in Colorado, and the economic downturn is taking its toll. Your company has been affected by the budget cuts, and you don’t know what to do next. You have some ideas, but they have failed to help your business grow. What are your options?
#1 Create a Refined Budget
Make a list of all expenses and add them up. That will also include fixed expenses and variable expenses, as well as discretionary ones. You can use this as your starting point for creating your budget.
Create a realistic budget, one that takes into account the likelihood that some things may go wrong or increase in cost over time (such as property taxes). Your goal should be to set aside enough money each month so that you don’t end up spending more than you make at the end of the month or year.
Any new budget must be sustainable—you want it to work without requiring you to cut back on essential business activities such as marketing activities aimed at growing sales.
#2 Cut Where You Can
Now that you’ve taken a closer look at your business’s finances, it’s time to put some of your findings into action. The first step is to go through all the income and expense categories on your financial statements and make sure they’re accurate.
Look for ways to cut expenses by making changes in the way you do things. This could mean anything from switching providers for your office cleaning service or consulting firm billing services to asking employees for input on how their jobs could be streamlined or automated.
One way to cut expenses is by letting go of full-timers with high salaries, like a CFO – Chief Financial Officer. An experienced CFO can cost your company around $100,000 a year. Your business cannot keep up with the finances after the budget cut if that goes on.
So, get in touch with professional CFO services to hire a part-time CFO. CFOshare, a Colorado-based fractional CFO service provider, can help you in that regard. Here, you only have to pay $100 to $500 an hour for their services. That way, you can save money and do not have to worry about the budget cut.
#3 Consider Pitching in Yourself
Consider pitching in yourself. Work for free. Working overtime and longer hours are part of the job, but you can also take on more responsibility or additional projects that will help your company grow. Do more of the tasks you enjoy or do a better job at them to show your value to the company.
#4 Be Creative and Innovate
Use social media to your advantage. Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter are free, but they can also be very effective in reaching a wider audience or building brand recognition. If you have a small marketing budget, social media is worth looking into.
If you’ve been relying on traditional advertising for your business, consider trying something different that won’t cost as much money (or at least not as much upfront). Try Google AdWords or Facebook Ads for starters—they are both highly effective ways of reaching potential customers. You can also target specific groups or users based on their interests and demographics by using Google Analytics or other similar tools to help drive traffic towards relevant content pages on your website.
#5 Try New Marketing Tactics
To increase your visibility and attract new customers, try:
- Add a website to your marketing efforts. A website is a vital tool for any business, especially in today’s digital world. It allows you to post information about your products and services and more.
- Send out regular email newsletters with helpful tips and advice on how to improve their businesses—or just general news about what’s happening in the industry. A regular newsletter can help establish trust between the reader and the sender. It also gives them plenty of opportunities to interact with one another by sharing comments or asking questions about topics that were covered in previous issues of these newsletters.
#6 Seek Professional Help
There are many reasons why professional advice is worth paying for. An accountant can help you plan your taxes and make sure you’re not paying more than required, while a CPA can guide you through the maze of requirements to keep your business up to date with the law. The same goes for financial consultants, who will help you create a budget and stick to it; business coaches, who will facilitate your growth as an entrepreneur; or even just business advisors who are there to consult with when needed.
The good news is that, as a small business owner, you have many options for saving money. The more you can diversify your revenue streams and reduce expenses through cost-saving measures like cutting back on office supplies and adopting more environmentally friendly practices, the less impact budget cuts will have on your business. Use these tips to make the most out of what you’ve got.