When you first start growing your business, you’re likely dealing with a small budget and bootstrapping your way to success. While this strategy is smart for your finances, it’s not always smart to get overworked and do everything yourself.
Here’s how to leverage outsourcing, even when you’re on a tight budget.
Why Your Business Needs a Spending Plan
We all know that having a personal budget is vital, but do you have one for your business? A spending plan is just as important for you professionally as it is personally.
How? A business budget helps you see where your hard-earned money is being spent. Having a spending plan in place for your business, you can see what areas are bringing in the most revenue, and which ones aren’t worth the time or effort.
This will help you streamline your business expenses, cut out any non-essential spending and find better ways to save money.
Why waste your precious time and hard work by wasting money on things you don’t really care about, or on stuff that doesn’t give your business the most bang for its buck?
How Delegating Work Helps You Work Smarter Not Harder
As an entrepreneur, running a business of one, there are only two ways you can leverage your time:
- Raise your prices
Outsource work to team members
That’s it. Those are the only two options for ensuring your business grows. Of course you could always work more hours, but then you’d probably have to sacrifice your health, sanity, time and freedom.
I’m pretty sure you didn’t quit your job or turn your back on the daily grind, to not have control of your time and schedule as a small business owner. In order to achieve your dream of creating a life of freedom and a business that funds your dreams, you’ve got to work smarter not harder.
That’s where outsourcing comes in!
Prioritize the Right Tasks to Outsource
When it comes to outsourcing work, or delegating tasks, there’s definitely an art to doing it. As any freelancer and small business owner will attest, you likely don’t have access to unlimited funds to hire help.
The key is to focus on outsourcing tasks that are directly related to bringing in revenue -- or that have the potential to. If you do marketing for a client by prepping email newsletters, a virtual assistant can format the content, or create templates. This will save you time, and help you focus on turning leads into sales for your client.
The more sales your client gets, the happier they will be, which means they’re perfectly primed for hearing your pitch about upping your prices.
Another example would be if you run an ecommerce shop. Having a shop that’s easy to navigate, and has the least amount of clicks for a shopper to complete their purchase, will create more sales. You want to work with a web developer who understands how certain colors or copy can affect sales, so you can see the best return on your investment (ROI).
When working with outside contractors and assistants, it’s vital you choose projects that can create revenue for themselves, so your up-front investment pays off.
Inexpensive Resources to Get Started
Like with any business opportunity, there are freelancers out there that charge a premium for their skills and talents. And that’s great if you really need that kind of help. But what if you just want a small task done, or a daily task completed?
There are lots of inexpensive resources for you to get started, whether you’re looking for someone to work with every month, or just a one-off deal.
Fiverr: Thanks to Fiverr, it’s now easier than ever to find experts who are willing to do random tasks for as little as $5 each. I recently needed several videos transcribed and hired someone from Fiverr. It only cost me $20 in total, but saved me over 3 hours of tedious work, and enabled me to spend my time doing other things -- like closing a new deal with a client.
TaskRabbit: This site is great for both business and personal use. If you’re too busy at work to pick up your dry cleaning or go grocery shopping, you can hire someone from Taskrabbit to do it for you. Likewise, if you need a delivery driver to deliver a load of goods to a vendor, you can hire someone from this site to help you out. No long-term contracts or hassle.
Twitter. If you’re interested in finding a tech-savvy assistant who knows a bit about social media and online publishing, then Twitter is a great place to look. I found both of my VA’s this way and now they are bonafide members of the Careful Cents team. We agreed to only a few tasks that cost less than $100 month, then we increased it as time went on.
Using these types of online tools is where outsourcing work can really be used to your advantage. Even if you don’t have a big budget for hiring a full-time assistant, you can spread work out among other experts and team members. Doing so enables you to use your time for more important things!
So what are you waiting for? Take the first step to outsourcing work today and see how much your business flourishes.
Do you outsource parts of your work? How has it benefitted your business?
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- How to Outsource Parts of Your Business- Even on a Tight Budget - September 19, 2013