6 Tips To Save Money When Starting A Business
Tom Church, Co-founder of LatestDeals.co.uk, is sharing his top six tips to save money as a fledgling business.
Latest Deals is a deals community started by Tom in 2016, with the aim to help people save money. Since then, the business has grown to have over 2 million members in the UK, and a team of around 30 people. This organic growth has led to a 7-figure revenue, and that’s without paying for any advertising.
Do everything yourself first
Before hiring someone for a role within the company, I’ll teach myself to do the job first. It allows me to see how long it takes, if it’s profitable for the business, and how much it should cost. For example, PR is something that can be extortionate if you farm it out to an external company. When I looked into it for Latest Deals, I was quoted £100,000 per year – no way was I paying that! It was great motivation to start researching on Google, talking to people in that sector, and trying all sorts of different things to see what worked. Once I’d learnt how to do it and had some success with it, I trained in-house staff to do it. This is a great money-saver, and Latest Deals gets around 2,000 mentions a year in the media; that’s more than 10 times the amount the PR Agency was targeting. PR is just one example, but the principle remains for all sorts of roles, including accounting, data analysis, writing, customer service, and so on.
Stick to Open-Source Software
If you’re building a tech company, I recommend using open-source software. This basically means that it’s free to use, and you can customise it to suit your needs. When starting LatestDeals.co.uk, it was essential that we could adapt quickly to meet our customer’s needs, and an open-source codebase allowed us to do that. It may not have all the fancy features of a pricey paid option, but it’s free and flexible, so it has a lot going for it.
Network, Network, Network
When you’re starting a business, growing your network can be a big help. Whether it’s for advice, a partner, or even a customer, everyone you meet has the potential to be helpful in some way, so making as many connections as possible is a great way of growing your business. The bigger your circle, the easier it becomes to trade on your skills or product, as well. For example, if you sell a product and you need some photography done for your website, perhaps you might know a photographer who’ll accept a product as payment for doing the shoot. You never know who you’ll meet and how you can end up helping each other.
Remote Working Can Save You A Fortune
Working remotely and foregoing office space can save you a small fortune. Pre-Covid, Latest Deals had office space in Central London, and it was expensive – we’re talking £500 per desk, per month! There are benefits to communal working, the social aspects, creativity flow and worker efficiency, but throughout the Covid lockdowns we really saw no change in productivity, and were able to maintain creative flow with weekly, virtual meetings. Since the world has opened up again, we have gotten rid of our office space, and now work remotely full time. As well as saving the company expensive rent, the work-life balance of remote working is a definite plus, and you also widen your hiring pool, so can get quality candidates from all over the UK.
Look Abroad For Freelancers
If you’re hiring freelancers, don’t be scared to look abroad. International freelancers make up a key part of the Latest Deals team, and are a much more affordable option than UK employees. They typically cost around 50% less per year, and that’s still a great wage for them. I’ve found them to be some of the most conscientious and diligent employees. Training is key, and tools like video tutorials, detailed step-by-step documents, and check-in calls are essential. If you’re willing to invest in talent from overseas, you will save money and see quick business growth.
Paid Advertising? It’s Not The Only Way
There’s no question that paid advertising is a money pit. Advertisers such as Google and Facebook charge a hefty sum per click, and tracking the success of that click is a challenge in and of itself. When you start looking into paid advertising, it can start to feel like it’s the only way to grow your business. Don’t be disheartened though, as you can always go old school to save money. Latest Deals has never paid for advertising, and has grown organically to have more than 2 million members. How did we do it? We tried all sorts of things to see what worked. From knocking on doors, calling people, attending events and more. Spread the word and make it your mission to tell as many people about your business as possible – get creative! Don’t forget about email marketing as well. It’s free up to a point, and we all use email.