It’s no secret that small businesses are at a greater risk of failure compared to larger companies, especially during their first few years of operation. The number one reason why small businesses fail is because of a lack of funding. Running a business isn’t cheap, and woman-owned businesses are often more underfunded than men’s businesses.
According to MarketWatch, less than 2% of companies founded solely by women receive funding after their first-round compared to 35% of companies founded by men. Businesses that are founded by BIWOC are even more unlikely to receive funding for their companies, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only worsened the situation.
That said, it’s even more important for women-owned businesses to save as much money as possible when starting out. To help you save where you can, here are a few tips you can use to keep your money in your company’s pockets.
Opt for flat-rate shipping
Online shopping has transformed the market for entrepreneurs and other small businesses. Approximately 2,760 packages are shipped every second. Unfortunately, shipping is often one of the most expensive costs small businesses need to worry about. Not only do certain packages become more expensive depending on their weight, but also their destination. For instance, the UK recently established a new 20% VAT rate on goods from outside the UK, making shipping your products to the United Kingdom significantly more expensive. For a direct comparison, the sales tax rate in Oklahoma is only 4.5%. To help save on shipping costs, it’s a good idea to leverage flat-rate shipping.
Invest in a label maker
Packages and envelopes aren’t the only things your small business needs to worry about when it comes to shipping costs. Labels can also be costly, especially when outsourcing. Outsourcing label makers can also put you at risk of expensive mistakes. Just last summer, a mistake with a decimal led entrepreneurs on Etsy to be charged hundreds of thousands of dollars for labels. To help save on costs and speed up fulfillment times, investing in a label maker of your own is ideal. What’s more, you never have to worry about a decimal issue charging you an obscene amount of money.
Use micro solar panels
Green energy is a great way to save on energy costs while you’re operating your business, especially because solar energy can provide power 24 hours a day, seven days a week. However, not everyone has the space, the finances, or even the roof to add solar panels to save a few dollars. Cue micro solar panels.
Micro solar panels are affordable green energy options that can not only help cut down energy costs but can also ensure that you always have the tech you need to run your business like your laptop, phone, iPad, and more. Micro solar panels can recharge devices to ensure power supply so even if your power goes out in a freak winter storm like the one in Texas, you’ll always be prepared.
Surround yourself with like-minded people
One of the coolest things about TikTok is that it’s being used by a wide variety of communities to pass on information in a convenient way. This goes for small businesses, too. Connect with other women-led businesses and entrepreneurs online via social media like TikTok, YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter to find great solutions you may never have thought of before. Don’t fall into the trap of believing that you shouldn’t listen to other entrepreneurs because they’re your competition. It’s important to support each other and help build each other up, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.