Running a business is far from easy, and it can be even more difficult when the service or product that you offer is seasonal in nature. These five tips will help you weather the offseason storm and ensure the survival of your business. Pay close attention to each tip, especially #5— it could be a game changer!
Store Up Your Cash
Cash is king. No truer words have ever been spoken when it comes to a small business especially. Manage your cash flow well during your busy season so that you have enough set aside for the offseason.
Get in the habit of setting a specific percentage of all income aside for the offseason and it’ll become so automatic that you won’t even notice after doing it for awhile.
Having cash on hand is important, but regardless of how much cash you have set aside for slow seasons, you’ll want to make sure your expenses are as minimal as possible.
Cancel subscriptions and any recurring costs that you don’t need during offseason, and if you can, hire your employees as seasonal staff rather than permanent.
Make The Banker A Friend
No matter how well you follow tips #1 and #2, you’ll likely need at some point to take advantage of credit arrangements. That’s not necessarily a bad thing if you can pay it all off during the busy season, but it’s to your advantage to have a good relationship with the bank and establish a line of credit at the best interest rate possible.
Maintain Your Customer Relationships
Even though your service or product might be seasonal, your customers exist year-round. Stay in touch with them using newsletters and other contact methods so that you’re first in their mind when it comes time to buy again.
The offseason is a great time to improve customer relationships and build new marketing campaigns for when things pick up again.
Make Your Business Four Season Functional
If you have a venue such as a bed-and-breakfast in a popular seasonal location, maybe it could be repurposed for things such as seminars, classes, and networking groups during the slow season. You could also promote alternative activities to customers such as cross-country skiing or ice skating.