|Small Business Information|
Practical Money-Saving Tips For Small Businesses
One of the primary concerns all small businesses have is saving money. When it's time to trim the fat, most look for one giant expense to decrease or eliminate in order to stay within budget. More often than not, it doesn't work that way.
Most budgeting experts will tell you that re-evaluating your overall expenses and cutting each by just a bit will actually gain you more ground than doing without something major that you really need. Here are a few ideas of areas to look at and costs to reduce that can have a major impact on your overall profits.
1) Internet Access - Every online business owner must have access to the Web. But consider this. The market is so flooded with ISPs that you have a lot of room to dicker. Start by searching the Internet under keywords like "cheap internet access" or "discount isp" to bring up lists of possibilities. Then, do one of two things.
(a) Try some of these independent ISPs. Smaller companies can have high quality service and support just like the "big boys". One business owner I know recently switched from Prodigy ($21.95/mth) to a smaller ISP that only charges $12.50/mth with no contracts. She actually liked the new provider better and it costs her about half as much. [Savings of $113.40 per year.]
(b) Renegotiate with your existing ISP. Most larger ISPs know you have a choice of a thousand other companies. Because of this, they are normally more than willing to renegotiate your costs. Be honest. Tell them you are a small business owner and you need to cut expenses. Explain that you've been pleased with their service but will be forced to go with someone else if some sort of arrangement isn't worked out. Another friend of mine did this and received 6 months free! Most will offer 2-3 months free and/or a discount with an annual agreement. NOTE: When you approach your ISP, be fully prepared to switch to someone else if your offer is rejected. [Savings of $105.80 per year with 3 months free and reduced, annual rate.]
2) Switch From A Merchant Account To A Payment Service - If you have a low volume of credit card transactions, it might benefit you to switch from a merchant account to some sort of payment service like Pay Pal or ClickBank. Statement fees, monthly fees, discount percentages and the like can all add up to big money.
While payment services normally have reduced fees, they do have higher "per transaction" costs so you'll have to do some math to find out if this is a good idea for your business. Just take an "average" invoice amount from a sale and multiply it times 12 to get a base total to work with. Now, add in your 12 months worth of fees for statement, monthly access, discount percentage, per transaction cost, etc. This is your "example" total. Do the same with several payment services using their costs to see which one, over time, would be less expensive for you.
If you were paying a $15 statement fee, $20 monthly fee, 3% + $.35 per transaction and $25 monthly gateway fee, your annual expenses would be $742.20 for an average transaction of $50.00. Your annual fees for a payment service with 3.5%, $1.00 per transaction and a one-time $50.00 set up charge would only be $83.00 per year. [Savings of $659.20 per year.]
3) Re-evaluate Your Long Distance Costs - Competition is the small business owner's friend! With hundreds of long distance companies out there, you can drastically reduce your charges instantly. Again - use the 'Net to search for inexpensive long distance service. A business owner I know changed from a MCI "program" to one of those 10-10 companies and reduced her per minute charge from $ .07 to $ .05. Depending on the volume of calls you make, some programs offer rates as low as $ .03 per minute. [Estimated savings of $20-$30 per year for 1,000 minutes.]
From just these three little things, we've saved an estimated $802.60 per year. That's enough to make anyone's spreadsheet sing! Go through your list of costs and you will most likely find other expenses that can easily be reduced with a bit of research and a phone call or two.
Diane C. Hughes * ProBizTips.com
FREE Report: Amazingly Simple (Yet Super Powerful) Ways To Skyrocket Your Sales And Build Your Business Into A Tower of Profits! ==>> http://madmarketer.com/diane
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The Federal Trade Commission is upgrading the franchise law and they have made a report. Recently I have been reviewing the FTC's franchise rule report page by page. I have was shocked to learn that after commenting on the first two paragraphs in the first page of information directly following the table of contents, it took me 19 pages. I see now the reason for the 432-page report on franchising; the FTC has put forth a 432-page report and used the mass data approach to BS and Baffle potential commenters. It appears to be working. No one wants to bother to read and understand it all. However one franchisor, one entrepreneur sees this for what it is worth. So on to the next paragraph we go, I wonder how many pages it will take to comment on the next line of malarkey?
Retail Customer Opportunities for Pressure Washing Companies
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Its Spring - Time For A Compensation Program Tune Up
Now that winter has passed, the annual ritual of spring cleaning is in full swing. Spring cleaning is more than cleaning the windows and clearing the cobwebs that hid in the corners during the winter. "Spring is a time to take a serious look at your compensation program and begin planning for the next budget cycle. Depending on your organization's fiscal year, it may also be time to determine appropriate market adjustments and pay increases for the coming year," said Michael Maciekowich, National Director, Astron Solutions.
Provide Affordable Health Care To Employees At Little To No Cost To You
You can provide affordable health care plans to your employees. If you feel overwhelmed by health care plan costs, you may be able to achieve far more than you believe. Here is how.
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It's Monday morning and Connie the Consultant sits in her executive office chair overseeing her business empire. Her desk is strewn with half finished projects, several weeks worth of to do lists (none of them completed), scribbled post it notes, and a permission slip for her daughter's field trip to the Planetarium that should have been turned in last week. Somewhere, buried deep in the rubble is Connie's business plan. The last time she saw it was during the Clinton Administration.
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There is significant competition in auto detailing and car washing. Even more between types of cleaning businesses, as each company attempts to expand into other services which are the mainstay of similar business models. Many times the line blurs between a car wash, oil change business, truck repair, auto accessories business, electronics installers and auto detailing. What can you do? Well first let's talk about what you should not do. You should not start a war against all your competition. Instead you should maintain good relations with them, even if you find them to be somewhat unethical by nature.
Truck Detailing Shop Business Case Study
As an entrepreneur you can learn a lot by following the real life case studies of other entrepreneurs. Often the text books in school leave out the beginning details and the juicy part of how it all comes together and is created out of nothing but a thought. I have an interesting case study for you and it explains how my company got into the truck detailing business. This is a funny story.
There Are No Dumb Business Questions, Not!
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If small business had no important outside audiences, it wouldn't exist.
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