Six ways small businesses can cut costs

Any business not trying to cut costs is doing something wrong. Take a tip from big companies who dominate their market and still can’t turn a profit. All efforts to promote your business and sell more product go to waste if you haven’t first achieved a healthy margin, so here are six ways to widen it.

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Eliminate paper

The real overhead for paper-based businesses isn’t the stationery bill – it’s inefficiency. Paper procedures don’t give close control, up-to-date intelligence, or automated audits. When you need to update business operations, everything takes more time and money.

Look at archiving and the acres of boxes that are never opened. Around 60% per cent of office space is devoted to handling paper. How much is 60 per cent of your rent and rates? Calculate your losses at

Adopt VoIP

There are bill savings when you move from landlines to VoIP, but the real savings lie elsewhere. VoIP creates opportunities to control and streamline business operations.

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Calls are easily forwarded to key personnel wherever they are. Voice messages can be recorded and emailed. You can dial automatically from Outlook or a CRM. You can blacklist nuisance callers and automatically restrict premium numbers with a wholesale VoIP termination provider like

Home working

Businesses suffer manpower shortages and lost expertise because of employee pregnancy and family commitments. Do you really need workers in an office you provide, equip and heat if they can work at home? Cheaper phones, video conferencing and email make decentralised offices more practical than ever before.

Digital marketing

Rich website content, SEO and social media marketing require expertise to do well. Social media in particular requires audience engagement that doesn’t gel at all well with other activities in a time-managed office. Don’t pay for employees to be distracted by tweets – outsource!


Standing orders proliferate on bank accounts like flies on flypaper. Directory entries, journal subscriptions, TV licenses, IT middlemen… you probably don’t recall what half of them were for. If you don’t need it, kill it!


Travel arrangements are a hefty overhead. Extravagant abuses aside, travel simply isn’t needed like it used to be. Think of what you can save by embracing modern communications. Stay in your office and video call, or go the whole hog and conference from bed!

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