Saturday, 6 October 2012

How a Business Address Service / Virtual Office Can Help Your Small Business Grow

Description: A review of the advantages posed by using a virtual office service for a new or expanding business over a traditional office setup. Learn how to save your businesses money and gain better flexibility both financially and in the work environment.

Whether you are choosing to start out on your own or with other partners, starting a new business requires a massive investment of time. Considerations include finding the particular niche or strategy you are aiming to pursue, investigating and analysing the competition, calculating expenses and profit margins and organising your companies’ logistics. This last point is often ill considered, with people not investing the proper preparation into how their business will work together or flow. A business must be a well oiled machine and it is common practice for new start up companies to discover mistakes in their business model after significant financial investment.

Start a Home Business

A great way to keep overheads low is to start a business from home. With the internet and jobs that involve being ‘on location’ an office is often an unneeded necessity anyway. In other circumstances an office may not be needed until the company has progressed to a point requiring a larger number of employees. Working from home allows a small business to ‘test the waters’ before fully committing, avoiding inflexible overheads like lengthy tie-in rental contracts and the expense of other office services.

However, starting a business from home does have its own problems. For instance people are often wary about trusting businesses without professional sounding addresses. Ask yourself who you’d trust more? The business with the city centre address ending in ‘house’ or ‘suite’, or the one with a residential or flat address? Trust is key in business, with many people letting their instincts guide their decisions - residential addresses and PO Boxes often just don't cut it in the corporate world and could be a severe hindrance to gaining new clients. 

po box

Use a Mailbox Rental / Business Address Service

A great way to present a more professional image is with a mailbox rental service. Unlike PO Boxes, Business Mailboxes allow you to present a physical address in a non residential sector or building. This can help give the impression you are already have a large, established and successful business.

Similarly having an address in close proximity to the city centre can help attract new consumers. Common keywords on search engines like Google show that people have a tendency to search for their ‘keyword’ and nearest large town or city when searching for a business. This approach makes perfect sense as you are more likely to find what you are looking for in an area with a larger corporate or commercial sector. By having a rural or residential address you could potentially be missing out on business, especially if the consumers make use of Google Places/ Google Maps and your business is one of the smaller dots in the very outskirts of their search.

Mailboxes vs PO Boxes

Business mailing services are also incredibly cost effective. PO boxes in the UK recently went up in price to £185 per annum from £60 per annum within a few years. In comparison competition means that some UK Mailbox Rental companies are offering record low prices starting from just £5 per month. That’s a saving of £110 pounds every year to invest back into your business with the additional benefit of appearing more trustworthy. The small capital investment means that these services are very affordable for businesses struggling to qualify for bank loans in the current economic climate, or those who are looking for a slow, steady and sustainable model of growth, over one based on rapid and often foolish expansion.

Greater Privacy

Another advantage is the greater privacy these business address services offer to consumers. Ask yourself do you want consumers to know where you live? And how will having your work address as your residential address potentially affect your home life? By investing in a business mailing address you can present a clear barrier to alleviate the spatial tensions between home and work life.

Domain Registration and Registered Office Address

Often people do not realise that a simple ‘whois’ search on a domain can reveal the purchasers address. Business Mailboxes allow you to register your domain to an address that is unlikely to affect your privacy, offering greater protection. They also offer the ability to use the address as your registered office address. In the UK every business registered with Companies House must have a Registered Office at which official documents can be served under the Companies Act of 1985 Section 287(1). A virtual office is a cheap method in which to achieve this requirement.

Working Freedom

Lastly using a business address service allows you the freedom to move around unencumbered. This might be a simple as maintaining an office in a country in which you regularly sell products but are not based. business mailing address offer the convenience of mail collection and mail forwarding. This can take the form of having someone to sign for certified mail or overnight deliveries, or sort through your mail and send you only the mail you really need. UK mail forwarding services will almost always willing to forward mail worldwide. Some even offer fax to email services where you can rent a UK fax line without the expense of toner, paper and machinery – simply having the messages forwarded to your email. Overall Virtual offices are the perfect way to expand into a new country or grow your small business risk free.
business mailing service
Work From Anywhere