It seems like every business has a base of operations, like an office building where employees can congregate or a brick-and-mortar storefront where customers can walk in and browse the merchandise. But your small business doesn’t have to have a base of operations at all. You can conduct all of your business needs remotely.
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Read ahead to find out how you can tackle tasks like administrative work, storing inventory and selling merchandise remotely.
How Can You Tackle Administrative Work?
You need a spot to tackle your administrative work, from answering client emails to filling out accounting spreadsheets. Where can you do this?
Do you have a spare room in your home? Then, you can convert it into a fully functional home office. A home office is a convenient spot where you can tackle your administrative work and contact clients throughout the day without having to worry about obstacles like commuting. Your workstation will only be a few steps away from your bedroom.
It’s possible that your home isn’t the best place to conduct your administrative tasks. Maybe you don’t have a spare room to convert into an office. Maybe you already live with someone who works from home, and you want to avoid clashing schedules. Or maybe you’re afraid that you have too many distractions sitting around your home, which could draw you away from all of the bullet points on your to-do list.
If your backyard has plenty of space, you should consider building your office there. One simple way to accomplish this is to purchase a shipping container. Add openings for doors and windows, insulate the walls and install electrical connections to convert your container into a practical office. Then, you can bring all of your essential furnishings and equipment inside. Then, you’ll be ready to move in and manage your business!
So, are you thinking where can I buy a shipping container near me for a backyard office? The easiest way to purchase one is through an online shipping container portal. The portal will have access to top-quality units close to your location. Once you pick the right container, you can purchase it and have it delivered to your yard.
If you can’t put together a home or backyard office, you can always turn to a coworking space as an alternative solution. Coworking spaces are designed to give remote workers quiet spaces to complete their tasks amongst other professionals. Some coworking spaces require that you sign up for a membership to frequent their locations, while some will allow you to drop in at any time for a fee.
How Can You Store Your Inventory?
Without a base of operations, you may be wondering where you can stash your inventory. You don’t want to keep boxes and boxes of products sitting in your house. You might not have enough space for them, and they will be a considerable challenge to organize.
So, look into these storage alternatives for your small business.
A Shipping Container
Instead of converting a shipping container into a backyard office, you can use it as a convenient storage space. Pick a shipping container that’s in good condition. You’ll want it to be wind and water-tight — this means that rain, humidity and other weather-related problems won’t leak into your storage space and ruin the products inside.
This is an ideal option when you work out of your home office. Your products will be nearby, but not so near that they’re cluttering up your personal space. You can easily go into your backyard to fetch whatever products you need and keep the rest tucked away in an organized space.
A Public Warehouse
A public warehouse is a warehouse space designed for multiple clients, each taking a portion of the storage space and operational costs. This is an ideal option for small businesses that don’t need (and can’t afford) to use a warehouse all on their own.
Public warehouses typically offer more than storage. You can access 3PL services like assembly and packaging through your membership. You can take these tasks off of your hands, which will free your time for other responsibilities, like contacting customers and marketing your business on social media.
How Can You Sell Your Products?
Brick-and-mortar stores can be difficult to operate. Why? They have high overhead costs, including rent and utilities. If the store isn’t in top condition from the moment that you sign the lease, you will have to spend money renovating and redecorating it. And then, you will have to invest a good portion of your budget to maintain the storefront, paying staff to run it during opening hours and paying cleaning staff to tidy it during closing hours.
As a small business owner, you might not be able to take on these steep overhead costs. So, how can you get your products to customers? These are some more budget-friendly selling options you could try.
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Online stores are much more affordable and can be managed remotely. You don’t have to worry about high overhead costs, and you don’t need a large staff to keep it up and running. You could technically manage the online store all on your own.
If a full-time storefront requires too much funding and commitment, then a temporary storefront might be a better option for you. You could set up a pop-up shop. This is a sale space that only operates for a short amount of time, from a single day to a few weeks. It’s a limited-time retail experience meant to garner in-person sales and build up the store’s brand. With a pop-up, you can reach customers without having to invest in a permanent location.
Another option is to join seasonal marketplaces as a vendor. The marketplace will give you the opportunity to reach customers in person — all you have to do is set up a table and bring your products with you.
You don’t need a traditional storefront or office to run your business. These alternatives can let you tackle all of your business needs remotely. Pick the alternatives that work for you.