If one thing is for certain it's that small business owners don't mind saving money. After all, when you're running your on shop, every cent counts. While some expenditures are absolutely vital to success, there are plenty of areas in which small business owners can cinch the belt. Here are five:
If your business fields a lot of inbound phone calls, you likely need to have a robust phone system in place. But if your phone goes days without ringing, consider alternative services like VOIP (voice of internet provider), Google Voice, or Skype. Or if you're a one man/woman band, use your mobile phone for work and personal—just be sure to itemize how much you're using for business so that you can claim it in your tax filings.
Combo Office Equipment
If you need a printer, a scanner, a fax machine and a copier, you could buy all four separately. Or, you could buy a printer/scanner/fax/copier combo machine. Not only will you save space, but you'll likely save money. Better yet, buy used—just make sure it's certified by the manufacturer or the retailer.
Do you know the standard mileage rate in your jurisdiction? It usually changes annually, so look it up on your federal tax agency's website to make sure you're tracking accordingly.
What does your bank charge you for? Bill pay? Cash transfers? Paper statements? Banks have gotten very creative in developing new ways to make a buck here and there. Regardless of how you feel about that, you should know exactly what your bank charges you for. And then you should evaluate competing banks to see how they stack up. If a better option exists, switch. It may feel like a lot of work (sort of like switching from your legacy accounting system to some simple cloud accounting!), but a few minutes of work will save you time and money in the long run.
If you have employees that need computers or tablets, set a BYOD (bring your own device) policy. Of course, you'll need to consider performance and security requirements, but taking the time to create a formal BYOD policy means you're not shelling out hundreds of dollars to outfit employees with tech gear.
So there you go. Five quick ways for small business owners to save money—and we know there are hundreds more. How else do you save money? Tweet it at us.