Regardless of what banking products you use within your business, chances are you can still negotiate for a better deal. Even a slight decrease in the interest charged on a business overdraft, or a reduction in fees charged for your merchant account, can make a big difference to your net profits in the long run. So, how do you get a better deal from your bank?
Your Bank Manager
Some banks are very proactive about allocating a specific business banking manager to your account. If you have your own business manager, speak to them about potential options to fit your financial needs.
You may have business credit card accounts, plus business bank accounts, a merchant account and EFTPOS facility to accept payments, an overdraft or a business loan in place. Each of these will have interest and fees attached to them that could easily become negotiable with the right incentives.
The key is to offer your business banking manager the right information to help sway their decision.
Before you speak with your bank, be sure you know what else is available on the market. Take a closer look at what other banks might be offering for similar businesses of your size. If you have the time, speak to a business banking representative at those competitor banks for a few minutes.
Take notes of their fees and charges. Ask questions about their rates and whether they’re negotiable. Then, use those notes as part of your overall case with your own bank.
Presenting Your Case
Calling to discuss negotiations for fees or rates, or even alternative products, won’t do you much good if you haven’t first prepared your case for consideration. Remember, banks need your business to stay in business. Though, they do need some persuasion that you’re the type of customer they want to keep before they’ll play ball.
Take the time to sit down and ensure that your business financials are all up to date. You may also want to update your business plan to show any future expansion plans, marketing plans or any other plans you have in place to get your business where you want it to go.
Don’t forget to create a cash flow plan, illustrating exactly how you plan to afford the loan or bank facility you’re aiming for. This shows that you’ve thought carefully about any financial impact and looks great for your case moving forward.
When you have these things prepared, go in fully armed and explain why you believe you deserve a better deal on any of the financial or banking products you currently have. This also holds true for any banking products you’re thinking of applying for as well.
You’ll be surprised at just how willing banks are to negotiate when you have prepared a strong case!