When you own a seasonal business, you generally have a small amount of time to turn a profit. If you sell patio furniture, the spring and summer are your best months for revenue. If you lease and sell snow plows, it tends to be the opposite.
Running a seasonal business can be tricky. During the off-season, it’s important to continue creating a successful business. But how is that possible when revenue isn’t pouring in…? Here are 4 tips to help you run your seasonal business:
1. Focus on Marketing
You want your customers to stay interested in your product, right? Stay active on social media and keep the email campaigns/newsletters coming! Do you have interesting facts or news to share about the growth of your business or industry?
The off-season is the perfect time to let your customers know that you haven’t disappeared. Create social media contests, blogs, and ways to interact with your customers when business is slower than usual. It is important to continue improving your reach and engage your following. What are other customers tweeting about in your industry? What are they doing that you aren’t? It’s a great time to shift your focus to marketing and building your customer base for when your best revenue months come around!
2. Manage Payroll
When you create a seasonal business, it’s important to reiterate the need for seasonal employees. If your company is not open 12 months out of the year, it is important to explain that during the hiring process. Being transparent with potential employees goes a long way.
College students tend to come home for summer/winter months, so grabbing seasonal help may be easier than you think. They may return for back-to-back summer/winter months, which will help with the learning curve.
3. Plan Ahead
It’s also beneficial to manage expenses and expectations during the off-season. How will you cut costs if possible? Do you have financial goals in place for next year? How will you increase revenue in the new year?
Most businesses hire more/new employees as they head into the busy months. Will you still be making profit? Track and analyze your sales volume accordingly. You can adjust your goals as you head into the season.
4. Find Compatible (and Additional) Revenue Streams
What is something your company provides for the public? Are there pain points you can address as a business within your industry?
Perhaps you own a landscaping company. You can provide property maintenance or snow blowing/plowing services in the winter. Perhaps you own a soup/sandwich shop. You can provide ice cream or juices during the warm months. Find something that is already complementary to your business – and plays to your strengths.
This isn’t the time to completely lose focus of the core of your business – but you might add additional sources of income along the way!
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