Expenses You Should Pass on to Your Customers

Small business owners are in a stage where they need to get their feet off the ground and thus are in need to gain a considerable amount of profit. Profit, of course, is necessary, and it may be hard to make a profit at first, but there may be a variety of other expenses that small business do not consider that begin to add up in the long run that limit their growth. The catch, though, is that these owners may not be aware that they should pass these expenses on to their customers. Nonetheless, here are a few such expenses that owners of small business should reconsider paying for themselves:

Credit Card Fees

Many customers are unaware that whenever they purchase an item online using a credit card, there is a small fee involved. In most cases, the business itself pays for the fees in the background so that on the outset, it seems as though there was no fee at all. If you are in the process or currently have a small business, re-consider this favor. While it is convenient that the customer need not have to worry about an additional fee for paying with a credit card, those extra fees add up, and you will need as much money as possible to keep your business alive. Perhaps after you have gained enough momentum, you can pay for this. But for now, the customers will do just fine making this payment on their own.

Travel Costs

If you require a customer to travel, or a customer requires that you travel to where they are, then change them for travel related costs. There is no reason why you should not, if you think about it; they desire a service that you can provide, and part of that service implicitly requires you to travel. You should include the expenses with the total charge. If they have to travel to where you are, you may want to think about offering partial assistance at least, but not full payment – it is likely that you cannot afford it.

Additional Work/ Research

When you work, you should get paid. It is as simple as that. Therefore, whenever you need to spend excessive time researching something for a client, you should have them billed for that time as well. The need to have a system where you track your work stems from this fact. Try to keep a time tracker on your computer that will tell you how long you spend researching for a particular client. By doing so, you have accurate information for both yourself and your client to check for future reference.

Even while a majority of your clients will be quick and congenial, there are always solicitous or obnoxious ones that absorb a considerable amount of your time. You know, the ones who send e-mails every day, or talk on the phone for a long time. There will always be a group of clients that will behave this way, so the best way to handle these situations is to either limit the number of clients that you will take in at a time or charge the client for each additional minute spent on them over a certain threshold.

Finance Charge

Stress and disorganization are the two psychological and logistical causes to customers who procrastinate. You should not have a customer permit you to submit a late payment without a late fee. Technically, for the late payment, credit was extended to the customer, and hence, it incurs a finance fee. With the need to have your business thrive, add a late fee for payments to customers. This will cause you not only to be compensated for the late payment, but also for the customer to become discouraged from making an untimely payment again.

Shipping and Handling

Many large companies pass this expense to their customers as well, but it is good practice for small and large businesses to do the same. Having an item shipped to a customers’ home can become expensive, especially if they live in a remote location such as Alaska. Sometimes, the amount of profit that one receives for an item may not even make up for the costs of shipping! Also, since many large companies such as Amazon practice this, your customers will be unlikely to even care. Another thing you could do is to have the customers pay the shipping fee for all purchases that cost under a certain amount. In this manner, you can be assured that you are not losing much money due to these fees.

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SMBReviews is committed to providing small and mid-sized business owners with the information and resources they need to select the best service or product for their company.

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