A capital-light business is a business that requires relatively little upfront investment to get started, grow and run.
The benefit of a capital-light business is that it can be less risky than a business that requires a lot of money to get started. With less money at risk, you can afford to experiment and fail more without putting your entire business at risk.
A capital-light business can also protect you from inflation. If you have a lot of money tied up in assets, such as inventory or property, or need to spend a lot on materials and wages, then inflation can eat into your profits. But if your business requires relatively little money to run, then you’ll be less affected by inflation.
So how do you create a capital-light business? Let’s take a look.
1. Office Space
One of the biggest expenses for any business is office space. In the past, this was an unavoidable expense for businesses with employees working on computers, but now remote work and coworking spaces are changing the landscape.
If you don’t need a traditional office space, then you can save a lot of money on rent and utilities. You can also reduce your need for office furniture, equipment and supplies.
Even if you encourage your staff to telecommute just 50% of the time, you can move to a smaller office space and introduce hot-desking, which can save you a huge chunk of money without compromising output.
Alternatively, if you only need office space every now and then, co-working spaces offer a flexible and cost-effective solution that can be a game-changer for small businesses.
Another big expense for businesses is inventory. If you’re selling products, then you need to have stock on hand to meet customer demand. But this can tie up a lot of money in inventory that may not sell for months, or even years.
To reduce your need for inventory, consider dropshipping. This is where you sell products that are stored and shipped by a third-party supplier, which can save you a lot of money on warehousing and other costs.
Another way to reduce costs is to automate as much of your business as possible. This can include everything from using accounting software to automate bookkeeping, to using customer relationship management (CRM) software to manage sales and marketing tasks.
By automating repetitive tasks, you can reduce the need for staff. This can save you a lot of money on wages, training, HR and other associated costs.
Outsourcing is another way to save money and reduce costs. Rather than hiring in-house staff, you can outsource tasks to freelancers or contractors. This can be a great way to get the expertise you need without the associated costs.
For example, rather than hiring a full-time marketer, you could outsource your marketing to a freelancer or agency. Or rather than hiring a full-time bookkeeper, you could outsource your bookkeeping to an accountant.
This way, you only pay for the services you need when you need them, which can save you a lot of money in the long run. It also saves time and hassle as you don’t need to manage staff.
Outsourcing is also a scalable solution because you can adjust the level of support you need as your business grows, rather than investing heavily beforehand.
Creating a more capital-light business can help you reduce costs, save money and protect your business from inflation. There are a number of ways to do this, including reducing office space, better inventory management, automation, and outsourcing.
By taking a capital-light approach to business, you can reduce your overhead costs, improve your bottom line and free up more money to reinvest in your business.