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Things to Consider before Buying Equipment for Small Business

Things to Consider before Buying Equipment for Small Business

Starting a small business is always exciting, but it also comes with certain expenses, even if you run your company on your own. Making investments from day one, be it in the form of office space, equipment, or your niche-related gadgets, means that your business plan should reflect your financial requirements, too. Buying the right equipment means securing your business growth in the future, but it also sets you up for success today, and helps you grow your reputation.

Since we live in a very customer-centric world, your business will also heavily depend on your equipment in order to provide a better service to your target audience. This is especially essential for fields like healthcare or car maintenance, where the most cutting-edge equipment makes all the difference in whether or not your customers can trust you. To help you set up your business, here are a few considerations to keep in mind as you make your vital business investments to succeed.

Determine Your Business Goals

Are you just starting out, or have you been running your business for a few years? If you’ve been around, then you know the drill, and you already have experience with how often and what kind of equipment you need to buy. For new players in any industry, it’s essential to see how your business goals relate to your purchases.

Are you looking to boost productivity with new equipment? Do you expect to provide a better service to your customers and elevate your prices? What about maintenance? These questions will help you decide when, how often, and what kind of equipment takes priority over other crucial business investments.

Find Reputable Equipment Sellers

Your business reputation is directly linked to the items you use in your trade. For healthcare and medical services, you have all the more reason to be extra careful when choosing your supplier. After all, you cannot blame faulty equipment if something goes awry – the responsibility is ultimately yours to ensure the safety and satisfaction of your clients.

In that sense, a dental practice will take ample time to find a reputable dental equipment provider before they sign the dotted line. Whatever your field of work might be, if you work with sensitive equipment that somehow affects the safety and wellbeing of your clients, make sure that you do the same. Have your suppliers vetted and always find reviews to confirm you’re making a good choice.

When to Buy New or Used

As a business owner, especially in this day and age, you might be inclined to think about the level of sustainability you can ensure for your company with the equipment you’re buying. Many small businesses are going digital, so they rarely use printers, scanners, and similar office tools as much as in the past. However, other options, like chairs, desks, computers, coffee machines, and the like are all still commonly used.

In such instances, which items are safe to be bought pre-used, and which ones should be new? It all depends on your industry and your goals, of course. Some fitness centers, for example, will buy equipment that is second-hand if it comes with some kind of warranty, safety inspection, and other essentials to prove that it’s still perfectly safe for use.

Be Mindful of the Warranty

Every manufacturer in a competitive industry wants to earn the trust of their buyers, so they offer different levels of warranty for their equipment. When you’re about to invest in major machinery, you also need to look into the kind of warranty the manufacturer offers – what kind of repairs and maintenance are covered? Are there specific parts you are expected to buy on a regular basis?

Perhaps your accountant can help you evaluate the full price compared to the value that comes with each piece of machinery you need to buy. Getting the right value for the money invested should be your goal, especially when you are aiming to buy a durable, long-lasting piece of equipment that you don’t intend or expect to replace in the next year or more.

Does it Require Education?

For many industries, new equipment means additional training and requalification for your employees. That alone means that investing in the machine in question isn’t the end of the line, but the beginning, and you’ll need to think about the expenses associated with the licensing, use, maintenance, as well as employee certification that comes with this new piece of equipment.

If you have your own dental clinic or you work as an aesthetic surgeon, you know that medical technology is rapidly advancing. You want to be at the forefront of that field and you want to provide the most cutting-edge opportunities to your clients, but you also need to be able to use the tools safely, and to put your clients at ease by showing your certification.

A small business can be just one person, but it can also be an entire team of fifty people eagerly trying to run a marketing agency or a tech startup. Choosing what kind of equipment you buy is an important decision that will help you set the stage for business success, but it will also become a learning experience for future purchases. Use these tips to guide you in this process, and you’ll not only provide yourself the tools of the trade you and your employees need, but you’ll also ensure that you’re building your reputation with the finest equipment available in your industry.

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by Lilly Miller // Lilly Miller is a freelance writer, who focuses on the latest business trends, commercial design, and environmental issues. Settled in Sydney for the time being, Lilly shares home with two loving dogs and a gecko named Rodney. You can find her hanging out on Twitter.

Opinions expressed by contributors are their own.