Whether you’re running a company with two or over 100 employees, every business has the same basic concerns regarding finances. In a perfect world, each business quarter would reflect a higher income compared to expenses. Many businesses, however, will operate “in the red” for most of the year. As a solution, consider these savvy tips to save on business expenses. Cutting a few strategic corners can really make a difference in the accounting books.

  1. Encourage Customers to Advertise for You

For any business, traditional advertising is incredibly expensive. In today’s technologically driven world, the consumer is actually the advertising genius. Actively advertise on social media, and ask your customers to write reviews on widespread websites. These reviews can be read by anyone looking for that particular product or service. With stellar online reviews, your business makes a positive name for itself without expensive print or television ads.

  1. Avoid Credit Card Fees

If you run your business on credit cards, you’ll end up with extensive fees and accruing interest. Save on unnecessary business expenses by being smart about what form of payment you use. Pay your bills using bank checks, to prevent credit card fees from being added to your payments.

  1. Use Bulk Shipping Whenever Possible

Shipping costs are a huge part of nearly any business. If you have a large shipment meant for a supplier or other vendor, consider bulk shipping. Place these products on a pallet and ship it in a trailer or train freight car. Dividing out a shipment into smaller pieces will only cost you more in the long run.

  1. Compare Video Chatting Versus Conventional Traveling Costs

In the past, it used to be necessary to travel to conventions or main headquarters for major industry meetings. Traveling costs, including hotels and overtime, can often amount to thousands of dollars over the course of a year. Currently, video chatting offers nearly the same experience without the traveling costs. Work with a small or large group through video chats, and your presence could be almost anywhere in the world.

  1. Hold an Informal Education Class

If you have an office or storefront, holding a simple class for your customers is a smart way to advertise without a high cost. Offer a half- or whole-day class on using your product or other related subject. Attendees will come away from the meeting with a clear view of your business. As a result, they might purchase or suggest your services in the near future.

  1. Consider a Mobile Business

If you’re just beginning your business, any overhead is expensive. Storefront leases, purchasing furniture and other physical items don’t have an immediate return on their investment. Consider a mobile business if your industry has that option. Work from your home and visit clients in a van or SUV, for example. You’ll cut extensive business expenses with this option.

  1. Think Commission Only

For companies with salespeople, these are the employees that bring in the customers and maintain their loyalty. However, salaries are huge business expenses for any company. Offer your salespeople a commission-only paycheck as an alternative. They’re motivated to sell, and the business only pays them when revenue is being generated.

It’s critical to make one or two changes at a time, so that employees aren’t agitated by the alterations. Workers must feel confident about their positions, and radical changes over the course of one week could be too overwhelming. Introduce social media advertising within one quarter, and tackle shipping issues during the next quarter. Your employees will see the changes as an ever-evolving company feature that only encourages them to step up their work ethic in the future.

Marlena Stoddard writes on small business and entrepreneurship. Originally from Senoia, GA, Marlena lives in Santa Rosa, CA with her husband and 2 children. When she isn't spending time with her children or writing, Marlena enjoys hiking and photography. For more on Marlena, you can follow her on Google+.