Some money-saving questions to ask before you invest in your business
Are you tired of investing in your business with little or no result? Wondering what you are doing wrong or how to make better investment decisions? You are not alone!
Every year, many small business owners invest huge sums of money into their business because they know the importance of investing, however, many end up feeling disappointed because their investment yielded little or no result.
The result is that many entrepreneurs are burned out and discouraged, and some have become very cynical. But the problem is that they know the only way to keep growing is to invest in their business.
So, how do you navigate this problem? How do you make smart investment decisions that will help you grow your business? How do you decide what to invest in without feeling ripped off?
That my friend is what I want to help you figure out.
When I started my current business, I didn’t have a lot of money, so I was determined to DIY as many things as possible. But here’s the problem with trying to do everything yourself or using Google to find all the answers.
It takes forever.
You will spend a lot of time trying to use free resources, and you can’t always be sure the information is reliable. That time is better spent on more important tasks. You need to find a good balance between using free resources and investing in your business.
Okay, so I have told you why you need to invest in your business, now, let me show you how to invest in your business using a series of questions.
Before you make another business investment, ask yourself the following questions.
Please note that this post may contain affiliate links. You can read my full disclosure at the top of the page.
1. DO I REALLY NEED THIS THING?
All too often, we make buying decisions based on our emotions and not because we need that particular item.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s okay to buy things because we want them or we can afford them. But when you are an entrepreneur, your business investments should make sense. And by that, I mean your investments should add something to your business.
Yes, I know it is possible to talk yourself into buying something you don’t really need, but that is not really smart at the end of the day. So you want to be completely honest with yourself.
Some things are good to have, but if you don’t really need them, your money would be better spent on something else.
Running a business can be expensive, so it’s important to keep your spending as low as possible.
Keeping your expenses low will increase your profit margin, so, think about that the next time you have an urge to make a random or impulsive purchase.
2. DO I NEED IT RIGHT NOW?
So, let’s pretend that you really need to make that purchase. Perhaps, it’s an essential tool for your business, it will help you grow your business or something along those lines. Now, the next question is, do you really need it right now or can it wait?
As a blogger and business owner, I can’t tell you how many resources I have bought and never used. At the time, they looked like good deals but it turned out that wasn’t the case. As a result, I have courses, eBooks, guides, and other stuff that I never started or completed.
And, I know I am not the only one because I see it all the time in some groups I belong to.
So, how do you prevent this from happening over and over?
Easy. Buy only what you need and plan to use right now!
I will be the first to admit that this is very hard to do. How do you say no to that sweet deal or sale? What if this deal is not around when you need it? What if you miss out on a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity?
Do you know how I know this?
It’s because there will always be another deal or another sale for you to take advantage of. Don’t put yourself under unnecessary pressure. If you don’t need something right now, the chances that you will actually use it are quite low.
So, save yourself the money and invest in something else you need right now.
3. WHAT DOES IT ADD TO MY BUSINESS?
Like I said at the beginning, your business investments should add something to your business. In other words, anything you buy should have a specific purpose or add something specific to your business.
If you don’t know what a particular investment or purchase adds to your business, then it’s probably not going to be very useful to you. Additionally, it means it is not the best use of your money.
Before you make a new purchase, ask yourself the following questions.
- What does this thing add to my business?
- Will it help me make money or more money?
- Will it save me time or increase productivity?
- Is it going to help me become a better business owner?
- Am I going to learn a new skill that I can use in my business?
- Does it help me advance my business goals?
If you can’t answer most of these questions in the affirmative, then why are you even thinking of making this investment?
Sure, it’s okay to make some investments outside of these parameters. For example, investing in something to help your mental health or to help you stay fit. Things like these will add some benefits to your business because your health is important.
But, the bottom line is that your business investments should have a specific purpose or solve a problem that you have. You should be able to look back and point to something specific you gained from an investment.
Want a handy checklist you can use over and over? I got you!
4. IS THERE A CHEAPER ALTERNATIVE?
One of the best things about being a business owner in the 21st century is that there are too many options. And, we all know that sometimes too many options can be a problem.
I appreciate the fact that I can always find something within my price range. Yes, I may have to spend a little more time finding it, but I know there’s always a cheaper alternative if that’s what I want.
Before you make a purchase, start by looking at your budget. Do you have a budget for this item? Can you afford it? Even if you have a budget and can afford it, is there a cheaper alternative?
The fact you can afford something doesn’t mean that you should buy it. There’s nothing wrong with saving some money.
Now, let me say that there are some things that you shouldn’t skimp on. They are just not worth it and may end up costing you more down the road. But, for a lot of things, especially educational materials, you can always find cheaper alternatives.
For example, maybe instead of spending a thousand bucks to learn SEO, you may find a course or ebook that’s way cheaper. And, you can find lots of examples like this.
I am not telling you to always go for the cheapest option because at the end of the day, you get what you pay for. But, on the flip side, we also know that the most expensive options are not always the best.
It all comes down to using our best judgment, and doing some research before we make some big investments.
I will end this by saying that no matter what you do, it is important to invest in yourself and your business. The only way to grow your business or grow faster is to make smart and strategic investments.
Don’t believe anyone who tells you you can skimp your way to business success. If you don’t invest, you will become stagnant and won’t achieve your business goals.
So, invest, but invest wisely!
5. AM I WILLING TO TAKE THE RISK EVEN IF I DON’T GET MY DESIRED OUTCOME?
This last question is very important and will save you from lots of disappointments (especially when you are thinking of buying high-ticket items).
Before you whip out your credit or debit card, pause for a moment to think about how you will feel if the product you want to buy doesn’t meet your expectation.
Will you feel angry, disappointed, or ripped off? Will you demand a refund? What if you can’t get a refund? Can you afford the risk?
Obviously, you don’t need to do this for every single thing you plan to buy. For products under $50 or so, it’s easy to just shrug it off and look for something better. But for more expensive products, you need to think about the risk and whether you can afford to lose a large amount of money.
I have bought products I wasn’t happy with and some that blew my socks off. I guess it’s the nature of business, but I try to do my due diligence before I make any purchase.
A good way to mitigate your risk is to ask for recommendations from people you trust. And, whenever possible, take advantage of free trials before you commit yourself.
Making business investments comes with some risks, so as long as you know that and you are willing to accept the risks, you should be fine.
Final thoughts on How to Invest in Your Business
Investing in your business is not optional unless you want to remain stagnant.
While some businesses are low-cost, you still have to make some investments to keep growing. Don’t try to skimp your way to success. And, don’t listen to anyone who says you can run a serious business without investing in yourself or your business.
What you need to invest in will depend on your type of business and your goals. So, before you make any investment, think about your goals and what the investment you are considering will add to your business.
Try to make smart buying decisions, so you can save some money and have more money to invest.
Have you made some business investments you regretted? How do you decide what to invest in?