What is the best way to keep a startup afloat? It’s to save and conserve money as and when it’s possible. In this article we explore 3 ways in which startups in Singapore can save money.
• Don’t Rent an Office Space
Renting an office space can be a very expensive affair for early stage startups. As much as possible, try to work out of coffee shops and your house or a co-founders house. When meetings with clients have to happen then it’s a different picture. It would not be appropriate to be meeting a client in a coffee shop, it shows that you as a company are not big enough even for renting an office. In this case, you can book meeting rooms for a few hours in co-working spaces like Hub Singapore, Our Workhouse and Coworking Singapore. Many of these co-working spaces offer a virtual office service, where you could mention their address as your official address, as well as any packages or letters will be collected by them.
• Hire Virtual Assistants
This has gained in popularity over the years and we can see why. Virtual Assistants are basically people who work remotely from countries such as Philippines where they perform different set of tasks for you for a period of time for a particular price. This is different from freelancers because freelancers are restricted to just doing one kind of service like building an application or a website and it’s for a short period of time. The advantage with Virtual Assistants is you can take their help for customer service, where you can make them take calls. They can also help you with reaching out to potential partners or clients through Linkedin, some of them do content work or send e-mails on your behalf. For $300 a month, you can get a lot of work done that you would have to do normally. If you have a bunch of different set of work that needs to be done, then you can consider a virtual assistant, instead of hiring full time employees.
• Negotiate for Price Discounts
A lot of startups do not do this, but being a bit honest and shameless can actually help you save a lot of money. As a startup we need tools, software that will help us on a day-to-day basis. You’ll need tools for e-mail marketing, landing page tools, plugins for your blog, SEO tools and so on. When you add the cost of all these tools, it comes to a sizable amount. What if you could get discounts on each software? This is what I’ve tried and it has successfully worked for me. Software companies, unlike hardware companies make a product one and they sell it to many people. Giving discounts for a software product is much easier than for a hardware product.
Here is an example I used to get a discount where I just told the company that I don’t have enough money to buy their premium product and as you can see in the e-mail they gave me a huge 50% off.
It never hurts to ask. And if you are able to save close to $100 from all the software you use, you could use that money for other important things as well!