How Your Business Can Save Money on an Office Supplies List

how your business can save money office supplies list workplace equipment

Ordering pens and paper may not seem like a big deal in the grand scheme of a business day. But have you stopped to calculate how much that is costing you?

Little things add up over time, and it could be hitting your budget where it hurts.

Whether your business is big or small, you can’t afford to overlook how you order your office supplies. To help keep your budget on track, let’s look at ways you can save money on an office supplies list.


Know Your Must-Have Items

To set your office supply budget, you need to focus in on what your must-haves are. That way you’ll be sure to always save money and get what you need before using any of your budget for splurges.

Do you need the nicer pens, or will the cheaper ones do? Is supplying two printers necessary or can you get away with only using one? Are you willing to buy the fancy coffee to keep your employees happy and energized?

By evaluating the necessity of each item and looking at cheaper alternatives, you can stretch your budget further.


Do Your Homework

Buying office supplies from the first retailer you see may save time, but it could be costing you more money. Doing your research and shopping around will help you land the bigger money-saving deals.

Get online and look at each vendor you have to choose from. Compare the price of items you buy the most. And don’t forget to factor in the cost of shipping.

You can also talk to other business owners to find out where they order their supplies. They may have insight into a cost-saving vendor you didn’t know about.


Buy Generic

Name brand doesn’t always mean the best choice. Many times you’re paying more for the name when the quality is the same as lesser-priced versions.

Buying generic can save you money without sacrificing the quality you count on.

Consider buying generic on the items you buy frequently, such as staples and sticky notes. If you’re unsure, check out reviews on generic items to see what others think.

This approach may require some experimenting. Yet, it’s worth it in the end when you find products you love at a cheaper price.


Shop Online

Taking your office supplies list to the store down the street may seem like the easiest option, but it might not be the cost-effective option. Before you head to the store, check how much you could save by shopping online.

Many suppliers only sell online. Without having to pay for store overhead, the savings get passed down to the consumer. That means they could sell the exact same thing as the store down the street, but for much less.

Plus, shopping online is more convenient for you. You don’t have to disrupt your business day and many times, shipping is free.


Buy in Bulk

You know you’re always going to need copy paper. And there’s not a day that goes by without using cleaner from the janitorial supplies store. For supplies you know you’ll always need, consider buying in bulk.

Many suppliers give discounts when you buy in bulk. The price may be a bit more at first, but when the supplies last longer, the savings add up over time. Just be sure you have the space to store extra supplies until you need them.

The only time buying in bulk isn’t a good idea is for items you use sparingly. You’ll waste space storing them and may not ever use up the entire bulk, which is a waste of money.


Corporate Account

An advantage business owners have is the ability to get corporate accounts with their favorite vendors. This lets you save money on your office supplies list in more ways than one.

Most vendors will let you negotiate the terms and prices of your corporate account. That way you can tailor your account to fit your business needs and budget.

Plus, many suppliers offer loyalty programs. This gives you special discounts, free shipping, and cashback perks not offered to the general public.


Have a Supplies Gatekeeper

Do you find supplies are disappearing faster than necessary? An open supply closet may be convenient, but it could be costing you more money. Employees can take more than they need, or even take items for their personal use.

To keep a better watch over your office supplies, consider assigning an office manager or assistant as the gatekeeper. They will help keep employees accountable for the supplies they take and prevent overuse.

If a gatekeeper isn’t possible, you can limit the supplies you keep in the open. Lock the rest away until it’s needed.


Reuse and Recycle

It’s no secret that going green will help you save some green. Reusing office supplies you already have is a smart way to save from unnecessary supply orders.

Create a space where employees can store items they no longer use but are in good condition, such as binders and staplers. Other employees can take what they need without having to buy brand new versions.

You can also do this with scrap copy paper. Set it in a box where employees can come by and take paper for notes or phone messages. This saves from having to order brand new notepads.


Plan Ahead

One of the worst, and pricier, times to buy office supplies is when you run out of something you need right away. Buying on the fly will likely send you to the big stores, where you’ll spend more money than you would if you had ordered ahead of time.

To prevent this mistake, keep track of your office supply inventory. Set a regular schedule to re-order, well in advance of when you’ll run out. To help with this, have someone regularly check the inventory in case you’re running low on something faster than usual.


Budget Your Office Supplies List like a Pro

Office supplies are what keeps your business moving from day to day. And now that you know how to budget your office supplies list, you can keep your budget and business on track.

For more money-saving tips, check out the articles on our Finance blog!

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