Whether your small business has just one or 499 employees (anything less than 500 still qualifies), office supplies are more than likely going to be necessary. Printing materials are more than commonly used, as are postage. Both of these things quickly becoming inconvenient and time consuming when not readily available. In hopes of saving our fellow small business owners time and money, we’ve included a few suggestions for businesses to consider when stocking their company with necessary supplies.
- Office Supply Memberships: These can include large names as Staples.com or Amazon.com, or be smaller, local businesses themselves. The benefit of being part of a loyalty program typically involves free, 1-2 day shipping, auto-shipping during requested time-frames, ease of ordering supplies online whenever it’s convenient for you, and built in discounts or rewards points that can be attributed to future orders. This prevents you from having to spend time visiting office supply stores and being subject to store hours. Most of these programs are free to join as well!
- Check out Stamps.com. Is mailing items and packages a commonality for you? Do you find yourself visiting the post office on a regular basis? If so, look into a stamps.com membership. The exact postage you need for any item can be printed instantly from your computer down to the cent. You will no longer be at the mercy of the typical 9-5 USPS office hours or the markup prices of stores like FedEx. The sheer convenience can be a true lifesaver and well worth the small initial investment.
- Buy generic. For most things, generic is great and will do the job just as well. No one will ever know you stock your printer with discount paper or that your employees scribble notes on off-brand post-its. The savings are significant overtime. Most loyalty programs listed above will have these options available to you, and will stay in your “recent purchases” forevermore to locate quickly and easily upon reordering.
- Set your printer to “ecofont” or “fast draft.” If you’re printing out emails or notes, there’s no reason to use full high quality ink; you’ll likely not even notice the difference. The lettering has very small holes in each character. They are hardly detectable, still legible, and can save you a fortune on expensive ink.
- Buy in bulk. This is a commonly known tip for household use, but even more significant when it comes to office supplies. For example, buying reams of paper by the case, rather than per ream alone is significant. It also reduces the chances that you’ll run out during a time crunch project. Put someone in charge of keeping tabs on said supplies. Unless you’re working out of a shoe-box, this is by far the best way to go whenever possible.
- Do your work from a satellite office. At Denver Virtual Offices, we offer small business owners so much more in their memberships than just our professional address or affordable conference room use. We keep our workrooms stocked with commonly used office supplies so you don’t have to. Many of our locations allow members 24/7 access. We also offer staff on-hand during business hours who are happy to assist with all of your project needs.
With a little planning and research, you can reduce costs without reducing much needed efficiency. Take the time to allocate your finances wisely so your money can be spent elsewhere on what really counts! For a map of our DVO locations, visit here.