As a business owner, you know that cash flow and business capital are critical. If you can’t manage your cash flow effectively, your business will struggle. Read on to learn how to better manage your business cash flow.
Make a Budget and Stick to It
Without a steady inflow of cash, it’s tough to keep the doors open, let alone turn a profit. That’s why it’s so important to create a budget and stick to it. A budget can help you track your expenses, identify areas where you’re overspending, and make adjustments accordingly.
The first step in creating a budget is to track your income and expenses for a month or two. This will give you a good idea of where your money is going and help you identify hidden fees. Once you have regained control of your spending, you can start setting limits. Determine how much you can afford to spend in each category, and then stick to that amount. If you find yourself overspending in one area, cut back in another area to compensate. By creating and following a budget, you can take control of your business cash flow and ensure that your business thrives.
Delay Payments When You Can
One way to improve your business cash flow is by delaying payments. This means paying your suppliers as late as possible without damaging your relationship. It also means taking advantage of any grace periods your creditors may offer. While this may not be an ideal long-term strategy, it can help free up some cash in the short term.
Used carefully, delaying payments can be a helpful tool for managing your business cash flow. Of course, you should only delay payments if you are confident that you will be able to make the payment in full and on time. Otherwise, you may accrue interest or late fees, which will only add to your financial woes.
Negotiate Better Terms With Your Suppliers
Start by carefully looking at your current contracts and see where you may be able to get a better deal. Are there any areas where you could get a discount for paying early? Could you extend your payment terms to give yourself some extra breathing room? If you’re not comfortable negotiating on your own, plenty of resources are available to help you get started.
Collect Past-due Invoices as Quickly as Possible
You can do a few things to collect past-due invoices more quickly.
First, reach out to the customer as soon as the invoice becomes overdue. A quick phone call, email, or text can often prompt them to take action. If you can establish contact and get a commitment for payment, follow up and hold them accountable. You can also offer discounts for early payment or set up a payment plan if the outstanding balance is significant.
Another option is to employ a collection agency. While this will likely cost you a percentage of the total amount owed, getting the money quickly can be worth it. Finally, you can take legal action against the debtor. This should be a last resort, as it can be costly and time-consuming. However, if all other efforts have failed, it may be your best option for getting paid.
Working with a factoring company is an excellent way to manage your business capital. Invoice factoring services can help you get paid faster for the invoices you issue, which can help improve your cash flow situation. Invoice factoring also allows you to get immediate cash for the invoices you issue, which can be helpful in times of financial stress.
By working with an invoice factoring business, you sell your unpaid invoices at a discount. The factoring company assumes all the risk of customers not paying. The factoring company charges a factoring fee in exchange for taking on this risk. The fees can vary depending on the factoring company you work with, but they are typically a percentage of the invoice value.
There are some things to remember when factoring outstanding invoices:
Make sure you understand the fees involved. Factor only the invoices you know will be paid promptly. Factor only as much as you need to get by. To find the best invoice factoring service, shop around and compare rates. Many online resources can help you find the best factoring company for your business. But don’t use invoice factoring companies as a long-term solution to your cash flow problems.
Accounts Receivable Financing
Another option for improving your business cash flow is by taking out a bank loan against your accounts receivable. Accounts receivable financing (also known as invoice financing) allows you to borrow money based on the value of your unpaid invoices.
This can be a helpful solution if you have customers who take a long time to pay their invoices. By taking out a loan against your receivables, you can get the money you need to keep your business running smoothly.
Invest in Short-term Assets That Generate Interest or Dividends
By investing in short-term assets, you can help to ensure that your business has the capital it needs to thrive. For example, certificates of deposit and money market accounts offer relatively low-risk returns that can help pad out your business’s bottom line. In addition, many companies also provide shareholders dividend payments, which can provide a welcome infusion of cash when needed.
Regain Control of Your Cashflow
By following these tips, you can take control of your business cash flow and ensure that your business thrives. With a bit of planning and effort, you can keep your business on track, no matter what the economy throws your way.
For more tips for small business owners, read How to Fund Your Small Business: Seven Key Options to Consider.