Skip to content

Five Top Tips on Reducing Overheads for SMEs

If you’re a small business owner here in the UK you’ll be aware that the shock Brexit vote returned by the electorate on the EU Referendum has changed the commercial landscape and some economists are full of doom and gloom, predicting a downturn in the economy that will see many companies going out of business. We’ve stressed in the past how important maintaining a steady cash flow is, especially for SMEs which make up the bulk of businesses here in Britain. Today we’re going to take a look at some ways that business owners can reduce their overheads, whatever industry they operate in, which will go a long way towards helping keep your cash flow steady, even in the most turbulent of times.

1. Go Green - Making sure that your business premises are more energy efficient will reduce your utility costs by a surprising amount. Try keeping office equipment on a power strip so that you can turn off everything at the touch of a button when not in use. Print for in-house use on both sides to reduce the amount of paper you use (and end up recycling). Make sure you have no dripping taps to save on water costs. There are so many small things you can do to achieve energy efficiency and save on expenses. Going Green is also a great PR move – environmentally-aware customers often prefer to buy from an eco-friendly source.

2. Choose Used - When buying office furniture and equipment, look for used products that are functional but still smart enough to use. You can save a significant amount of money by evaluating which equipment needs to be brand new and which equipment just needs to be functional and get the job done.

3. Negotiation, Negotiation, Negotiation - When negotiating with suppliers, manufacturers, distributors or wholesalers, make sure you always ask for a discount (don’t ask = don’t get, so it’s always worth a try). Your suppliers have the same aim as you do – to stay in business. This means that many are willing to negotiate lower prices or offer discounts rather than lose a regular customer.

4. Cloud Computing - There’s no need to buy expensive servers and office software when you can use cloud-based software to host your data for presentation, book-keeping and even word processing. This will save you money on hardware, installations costs and regular upgrade and support expenses.

5. Smarten Up on Social Media - Traditional methods of advertising in the print media are pretty expensive, as are some contemporary digital advertising services. Social media advertising is very cost effective and has the added benefit of reaching a much wider audience than has ever been possible through traditional methods. Use social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. to boost traffic to your website. If you don’t know where to start it’s possible to hire a freelance social media manager who will work on a remote basis (from just about anywhere in the world) for a set number of hours every week, making sure you’re in full control of what you spend on social media advertising at all times.