As a business owner of multiple businesses and an accountant by trade, I would highly recommend any entrepreneur to have a go at this.
Perhaps for most people the first year may be the hardest, trying to figure out how this works within your business, where to spend and on what etc. We were the same. But, if you were to sit on the fence then you will never know. I have met so many business owners that have been in the system for years, 10, 20 years and longer. If the system doesn’t work, why would they stick around for that long? And at any time, if things are not working for that moment, we can always turn it on and off.
As a business owner, this has provided us with extra income when needed as well as exposure. Every business has spare capacity from time to time. We, as business owners, would always work hard, for ourselves, but we also want to make sure our staff always have work to do rather than sitting around doing nothing and still getting paid. This channel has been great for us and many others that we know of.
Bartercard has say around 4-8,000 businesses on its database. Assume each business has an average of three staff. That is about 12-24,000 people that you get access to without doing a thing in marketing. It will come down to then whether you have the right products at the right time for them to consume.
You may hear some complaints about Bartercard from those who don’t know how to spend. We see it as a positive, because we take it that people will come around to use our goods and services not because of need but want. Without extra Trade Dollars, they would not even have thought of spending cash on the item.
For example, we would never need an event centre ever, for our business. But if one was on the system, then we would think about organising a few events for our business i.e. we would have our stock clearance sales once a year there for Tailor Made Suits, or organise some seminars for our accounting business.
From an accountants point of view, I think some accountants may not understand the system, so perhaps finding an accountant that is involved with Bartercard may be a good idea. We have been able to give our clients a lot of unique ideas on how and where to spend their Trade Dollars effectively. On average each year we earn and then effectively spend at least T$50k respectively. These are sales and purchases we would not otherwise have if we were not on board.
As long as you treat this the same way as any other bank account: don’t hide it from the IRD; keep personal expenses separate; don’t claim it for your business (all the usual things other accountant would say), I believe you will have many benefits being a part of the Bartercard network.
I highly recommend that business owners have a close look, do all the home work you want, talk to Bartercard and have a crack at it.
Best Tax Ltd, Auckland
Sumich & Associates, Auckland
Tailor Made Suits, Auckland
I'm relatively new to Bartercard, having joined in October 2016, but wow what an awesome experience I've had so far.
Within a week of becoming a member, I'd received my first order, and within two weeks I'd received an order for a thousand dollars' worth of product - it certainly blew my expectations out of the water as well at that of my Trade Broker!
The Trade Show I attended in December was hugely beneficial. My Trade Broker worked hard for me and my products, ensuring everyone went away with something! And now with the Trade Dollars I've made, I've enjoyed a few luxuries for myself as well as spending them on business expenses such as advertising in Verve magazine.
I've met some really interesting and exciting people via the Bartercard network who have already helped me grow my business beyond what I thought it would be when I started. It's great encouragement when you have a network such as Bartercard supporting you, particularly when you work for yourself, and something I would recommend to any small business owner. It's almost like having a small team of cheerleaders calling me saying "how you going?!" and taking me for lunch! Just being really enthusiastic about my business which is really exciting.
Thank you so much Bartercard!
LoveSkin Ltd, Auckland
We’ve been a member of Bartercard for the past two years, and I can categorically say, it’s been the best thing we could have done. Being a part of the network has really opened up opportunities for the restaurant, and allowed us to realise a dream sooner than expected.
Having an interest free line of credit meant we could use trade dollars to facilitate the building of the restaurant and pay for things such as plumbing services, furnishings, Eftpos terminals, and now we’re open, we use trade for purchasing wine which is a big expense for us (as well as other consumables, products and services).
Being a part of Bartercard has expanded our customer reach into Palmerston North and also further afield to Wanganui – people are prepared to travel because we’re on Bartercard, but in turn they recommend us to cash paying customers which has helped our cash flow.
Purchasing the wine in bulk on trade has significantly increased our cash profit return. One of our goals was to further expand by creating a purpose built function room, and this has been made possible in a relatively short space of time and earlier than planned by using the cash we’ve preserved thanks to trade dollars.
Thank you Bartercard, the power of your network is incredible!
Amayjen Restaurant, Feilding
We’ve been a Bartercard member for just over a year. Where we’re situated, there is a lot of competition but we’ve found being a member it has benefitted us enormously. The regular stream of Bartercard customers has made the café look busier, and as such attracted additional cash business which we wouldn’t necessarily have got if we weren’t part of the network. Better still it’s been achieved with very little effort or expenditure on our part!
It’s easy to use our trade dollars on advertising, security, cleaning and staff rewards meaning we’re freeing up our cash for other business expenses. It’s certainly a worthwhile network to be a part of and I’m looking forward to the continued opportunities it will bring to The Coffee Club.
The Coffee Club, Constellation Drive, Auckland
I joined Bartercard NZ two years ago. I had been a member while I was in the UK so had a good knowledge of how it worked. When I moved back to New Zealand and set up a new business here, it was the ideal opportunity for me join the network - straight away it gave me immediate access to businesses I wouldn’t necessarily have had exposure to in a cash environment. It also helped me preserve cash, which was so important to me in the early days as I was able to purchase many items using trade dollars, i.e. telephone system, accountancy (huge bonus), printer/cartridges, accommodation when visiting new clients/prospecting.
My wife has her own business too and has also become a Bartercard member. We’re both small businesses so it’s highly beneficial that we can preserve cash on business expenses, office supplies, entertaining, as well as personal expenditure (I wanted a kontiki so was fortunate enough to buy one through Bartercard meaning I didn’t have to take it out of the business!). Yes there are fees to pay and you can’t pay GST in trade but we make the system work for us and our circumstances. For example, I invoice her in trade for business development opportunities which I undertake on her behalf, she pays me in trade which I then use to pay a telemarketing company I work with. She then offsets the cost as a business expense and against GST.
I know that people are skeptical about Bartercard and have preconceived ideas so you have to be open-minded to the opportunities when you join the network. You have to understand that you can’t get everything through Bartercard. You do have to make it work for you and get your Trade Broker working for you but with an understanding of how the system operates, the network can be hugely beneficial. It’s good to have an accountant on board who understands Bartercard, and better still be a member, but it’s not difficult - transactions occur the same way as cash purchases.
Working Feedback NZ Ltd
We have been a Bartercard member for 17 years.
As owners of a food/confectionery manufacturing business, a gift basket business and a newly added café, Bartercard is and has been of substantial benefit to our business over those years. Rather than having to spend cash, we were able to utilise our trade dollars on a range of products and services which were usual cash spends, these included tradesmen for R&M, equipment, packaging and packaging supplies, gift baskets and contents for gifts baskets.
Recently we expanded by adding the cafe and Bartercard was a huge benefit in helping with the fit out, we utilised trade dollars to buy kitchen equipment, furniture, crockery, water cooler, as well as other services such as our website, advertising, printing and products for sale in our café like gelato and high end chocolates.
Over the years we have seen a steady increase in customer traffic with very little effort on our behalf – we put this down to being a Bartercard member and being exposed to a network we wouldn’t have had if we were just in a cash business.
We make it work for us, but being in this industry we haven’t found it difficult. Bartercard has allowed not only the business to thrive but it’s allowed us to grow. Our long-standing business had been a food & confectionery factory, manufacturing predominantly fudge and other associated products, with a small factory shop.
The dream had been to grow the business into an integrated factory & café and retail shop with a higher profile, to increase our reach to a direct customer. Without Bartercard, we would not have been able to achieve this, we opened the new premises a few months ago. With the interest free line of credit we were able to pay for a large amount of the expansion costs on Bartercard.
Thank you Bartercard!
Rococo Café/Cottage Fare Ltd
Our company, R J Eager (1989) Ltd, has been Trading with Bartercard for over 14 years. Bartercard trading has increased our business both locally and out of Taranaki Clients.
We have been able to purchase many services for our Business with Bartercard, therefore not having to use up valuable Cash Flow. Bartercard has been very useful for Personal use.
I always encourage all Business Owners to look into Bartercard Trading. Bartercard has been very good all round for our Company.
R J Eagar
Bartercard has opened up new markets to us to sell our product. Businesses use our services for staff function entertainment, gift vouchers as incentives or customer thank yous, or for aerial surveys / photography work.
We also find that domestic and international tourist numbers has increased due to us accepting Bartercard for all our products and services.
Listed are some of our Bartercard Trade Dollar expenses:
* business travel (accommodation, meals)
* staff functions
* vehicle maintenance
* Eftpos products
* personal luxuries (sporting articles, alcoholic beverages, meals, etc)
We have no hesitation in recommending Bartercard as a business tool.
Richard & Jolanda Foale