Business isn’t only just about making money. It’s about spending it too.
Investing in your business can be a sticky spot for freelancers and service providers. How do you know which investments will bring in the highest ROI? Spend in the right areas, your business grows, you scale, or other positive shifts happen. Spend on the wrong ones, you’ve cut into your profit margins for no reason.
So how do you know where and what to invest in? For me, that knowledge has come from years of trial and error and learning to spot the good investments and the BS ones. But overall, I’ve made some pretty good decisions considering how much crap there is out there.
The best investments I’ve ever made? The ones that are TRUE investments.
The Oxford Dictionary defines an investment as: “The action or process of investing money for profit or material result.”
Meaning that you actually get something BACK. You spend resources (time, money, energy)… But you also GAIN.
That’s something I think most people get wrong in the online biz world these days. The word “investment” is thrown around willy-nilly and the result is you potentially wasting resources on something that doesn’t promise a return.
In reality, most things people are selling you are just expenses, and that return never comes. But if you prioritize these areas and sift through for what will work best for you, you’ll be in good shape.
Ultimately, you should spend money on your business on things that really make a positive difference. The best investments I’ve ever made have turned out to be the best decisions for me because they cover the bases of…
✨ Creating a solid foundation for the business. Something that will bring in revenue consistently without needing to stress.
✨ Continuously learning and growing as an entrepreneur. Specifically from people who are where I want to be or can teach skills that I’ve identified I need.
✨ And surrounding myself with others who are in a similar spot as me. Learning by osmosis, motivating each other, and honestly just doing the damn thing.
By focusing on each of these, I’m almost guaranteed to make a smart choice that truly is an investment. The only WRONG decision I could have made in relation to the above would be trusting the wrong person to work with, learn from, or join the community of…
Let’s get into the specifics though. Here are the best investments you can make for your business, and how they impacted my own business.
I will never NOT say this: You NEED a sales pipeline. Without one you’re just (as I like to say) throwing spaghetti at the wall hoping something sticks. That means you lose out on sales. So when it comes to investing, this is the ideal place to start.
For me, investing in my pipeline included both dollars and my personal time/effort. That’s things like: Custom branding, professional photos, strategic messaging, and copy that shows off my personality to attract the right people and repel the rest. All used on a custom designed, high-converting website.
The month after my first proper website went live, my revenue doubled. And when I refreshed all these pieces again to realign with my growth, I hit my first $20k month.
Both times, I made more than my investment back after launching.
Sure, you could recreate the wheel every time and manually keep track of all the things. Or you could save hours each week by implementing a solid CRM and workflows to match. I swear by Dubsado.
If I’ve been on your radar for a while now, you know how much I love systemizing everything. And that means having the right tech to keep things smooth behind the scenes.
Technically, the tech itself is a cost of doing business. HOWEVER, the investment of your time to set these things up NOW so that in the future, you can benefit—that’s an investment in my books.
Things like Dubsado are an annual fee. But when you break down your hourly vs the cost of these tools, you’ll definitely make back the cost.
If your business keeps growing, there will come a day when you can’t do all the things solo. It’s inevitable! Hiring good people has helped my business continue to grow… And helped me maintain my sanity through the process.
We’re getting into the nitty gritty with this disclaimer, but it’s important! Yes, technically team members (regardless of how you pay them) supporting you with client work isn’t classified as an investment in your books. BUT I consider choosing, training, and growing with the RIGHT team an investment in you and them. And doesn’t that feel nice?
But learn from the GOOD people… There’s fantastic courses out there and not so great ones. There’s amazing coaches and consultants, and kinda sketchy ones. I’ve spent tens of thousands on support and education since going full time in my biz.
When I choose wisely, I always gain back that investment. Almost always immediately.
By far the best investment that I’ve made in my business to hit, sustain, and grow from the sweet spot that used to be on my vision board…
I’ve been in 2 so far, each for 1 full year. Both were very different and beneficial in their own special way.
For both that I’ve joined, I made my investment for the entire year back within 2 months.
Make strategic choices for investments.
What’s not strategic: The choices that suck your resources and don’t bring you anything in return. Those are just expenses. Like the 17th office plant you bought at Homesense because you *needed* it for aesthetics. I’m sure you can think of 1 expense right now that didn’t even give you the aesthetic goals.
We’ve all been there.
Just my two cents and something to think about as you’re figuring out where to invest your energy.
Something that might be a good decision for you? The Inner Circle. I’m so excited to be able to offer this and help more people just like you and me hit all the buzzy milestones we want… But actually live your life outside of work too. Because you don’t need to work more or push harder to scale. You can learn more and apply here.
If you have more time to spend than anything right now, 4 Steps to Profit is a great place to start investing in yourself. It’s totally free, but you have to do the work to see results.
Leave your info below to join.