When it comes to starting up a business, London has itself a new rival. With more and more entrepreneurial spirits being drawn to the North, cities such as Manchester, Leeds and Sheffield have developed strong technology cultures, making them popular locations for tech start-ups.
Of course, while the North can be cheaper than the South when setting up a business, finances can still be tight, so consider these cost-saving tips to make every last penny stretch as far as possible.
Learn from the best
Business ecosystems and tech hubs for businesses can make all the difference when it comes to success, promoting collaboration, learning and – best of all – cost-efficient resource management.
Tech start-ups in the North benefit from ecosystems such as Silicon Drinkabout, Manchester, that bring together entrepreneurs, leveraging technology and learning through networking events.
You could learn valuable industry expertise for little to no cost, as well as gain tried and tested knowledge to help make smart business decisions – it’s a win-win.
Apply for Government grants
Setting up a new business can be costly, with The Telegraph reporting the average UK start-up spends £22,756 in its first year – and this doesn’t include money spent on business-specific activities such as buying stock.
Start-up costs can easily eat away at your available funds, but, with the government’s “Northern Powerhouse” initiative, more grants are available for start-ups in the North.
A government grant can help cover the cost of start-up essentials and avoids the need to invest all of your funds. For government grants in the North, Govgrantshub.uk provides a list of those available in different regions.
Good for the conscience, great for the environment and a blessing to your finances. An eco-friendly business culture can make for great cost-savings when starting up, as well as reduce costs in the long run.
As a tech start-up, you may find it easy to run a digital office with cloud computing to share documents and announcements, which eliminates the need to spend on storage systems. Even simple actions, such as turning off devices when they aren’t in use, will keep energy costs down.
Co-Working office spaces
Setting up office in a city centre holds many benefits for tech start-ups, including access to amenities and easy commutes for staff and visitors with central transport links. But is this budget friendly?
The answer is yes. Co-working involves the sharing of workspaces with other businesses, which equals lower rent – a great cost-saving alternative for start-ups.
For example, Be Office have serviced offices in Manchester providing co-working spaces located in the prime Albert Square area – giving access to tech ecosystems based in the nearby Northern Quarter and MediaCity.
Get social savvy
Digitaldoughnut.com highlights the marketing opportunity of social media for start-ups. Though paid advertising is available on social media sites, creating an account is free on almost all platforms, giving you the foundations to grow your business.
The Onlinemarketinginstitute.org emphasise the importance of organic social media in providing value to your audience, so keep costs low and generate your own content to keep your audience intrigued.
More on promoting your business
ByteStart is packed with help and advice on promoting your small business and reaching more customers. Try these for starters;
- Getting Started with Google AdWords – A Step-by-Step Guide
- How start-ups can get the most from digital marketing
- Turn your ecommerce website into a deadly selling tool with these 5 steps
- How to harness the power of Google for your business
- 5 Ways you can use emotion to connect with customers and get more from your marketing
- PR Tips for StartUps
- 10 Top tips for small businesses starting out with social media
- How to use Facebook to grow your small business
- Marketing your small business through YouTube – The 4 essential steps to success