Have you ever wondered if bartering would work for your small business? In today’s competitive economy when everyone is striving to do more with less, bartering is making a big comeback. In fact, it may be just what you need in these challenging economic times.

So, how exactly do you barter with another business? Well, find out what the business does and how it may be able to utilize your products and/or services. Then, discover how that business can help you. Remember, to be effective, bartering has to have mutual benefit for both parties involved. After all, if there is no benefit, why would someone be interested in trading services or products with you?

Here’s an example of how I bartered a few months ago. Someone that I have known for several years contacted me about developing a new resume. She works at a printing company, so instead of charging her my usual fee for writing a resume, she agreed to print 1000 business cards. The bartering system worked perfectly! The mutual benefit in this case equaled a shiny, new resume for the client and 1000 brand-new business cards for the resume-portion of Feather Communications.

That experience proved a great point – sometimes it’s not about the money you make from your services or products – it’s about what you can barter for in return. The irony? I have gathered more clients and compliments based upon those business cards than the money I would have made if I would have just invoiced the client and collected payment.

The next time a situation arises when you think there may be a mutual benefit involved, ask about bartering. You may be surprised at what people are willing to trade if it means a long-term payoff.