Small business owners are notorious for keeping an eagle eye on their finances. After all, every penny counts when you’re trying to make enough money to pay both your business expenses and your personal expenses.
And for the most part, bootstrapping a business helps us diversify our skills. We become better at managing, sales, accounting, even coffee-making.
But sometimes we get it wrong. We think we can do everything for our business, and our business suffers as a result. Here are 3 areas you might be tempted to DIY, but do so at your own peril.
Unless you are a graphic artist by trade, or have a latent talent lurking somewhere, you shouldn’t design your own logo and website. It’ll look unprofessional and turn people off. The money you will save in doing it yourself will quickly be lost in revenue when people don’t feel they can trust your website, and thereby, your business.
Not every graphic or web designer is expensive. You can find a college student, freelancer, or even overseas designer at a fraction of what big design agencies charge. As your budget allows, invest more. But do invest, because your visual branding is your shingle, and it’s what will make people either buy from you or go elsewhere.
You might sell dog toys and wonder why you’d need to be a good writer. There’s simply no getting around writing, no matter what type of business you run. You need your product descriptions to sing. Your web copy to shine. Your blog posts and social media updates to attract. And all of it must be completely error-free.
If you don’t have the skills or inclination to do your own writing, find a talented writer to help. The great thing is: you can hire a freelancer to write your web copy one time, and it’s set for years. You don’t have to hire a full-time writer if you don’t have an ongoing need.
You can also hire a freelancer or content marketing agency to handle your blog content and social media. You’ll pay for what you need, such as 10 blog posts a month, or your Twitter stream updated 4 days a week.
Now, for most of you, accounting for your small business is pretty simple, at least in the early days. But as it gets more complex — for example, once you incorporate, or take on business partners — it’s imperative that you manage your finances according to appropriate business laws. If you make a mistake on your taxes, you risk being audited, and no one wants that.
Accountants, just like designers and writers, can work with you on an as-needed basis. Find one specializing in small businesses in your industry who can sit down with you and first review what you’ve got in your accounting software, make recommendations, then determine how many hours a month of help you need.
Trying to save money in the wrong areas can cost you far more than money. You jeopardize your business’ reputation and professionalism when you don’t invest in professional-grade services like these.