One very common challenge that many businessmen might face is crossing seasonal variations in the business or industry. Engagement levels drop, sales decreases and in some cases, it completely shuts off. But just because business is going slow in the off-season, it doesn’t mean you also have to slow down with it. Here are some great ideas to make the off-season months’ work out for you-
-Understand the cycle in your industry
For business owners who are new to an industry, it is not unusual to see the rapid growth of the business. It can disguise itself as a normal seasonal fluctuation, leading business owners to think that the healthy sales will still grow. One should always check base projections about seasonality of the sales based on sales data from last two or three years. As it is going to help in analyzing the sales cycle of your industry.
-Manage your off-season expenses
Every business owner should understand and manage cash flow and expenses. This is especially important for all those business owners who run seasonal businesses. Saving and maintaining cash flows at peak periods can help you survive off-seasons. Find ways to save money. Set financial goals at the start of the off-season and then adjust and improve each year. In no time you’ll see your business grow.
-Using the off-season to strategize and plan for marketing.
Off-seasons are the best when it comes to planning and strategizing about marketing your brand or product for the peak season. In off-season, you get a lot of free time. Utilize that time by providing training to your staff, planning next marketing move, analyzing the market etc.
-Keep in touch with your customers.
Try to stay in touch with your customers even in off-season. Stay in touch by sending them monthly or weekly newsletters; send them promotional codes or vouchers to increase your off-season sales a bit. If you stay in touch with your customers they will be more likely to remember your name and will return next time.
-Assess your business performance and plan for next season
Measure the performance of your business last season and jot down the reasons behind the success of your business, determine the strategies which should be continues and do the same exercise on the things that could have gone better. Take notes and start working on them so you’ll know what things to avoid when business starts to pick up.
-Add more revenue streams
Grow your services and product offering related to your current services or products which your company sells. The more you have to offer, the more elasticity you have to get through down times. This might add some cash to your account, helping you service the off-season.
For seasonal business owners, the off-season is actually the time to review every aspect of the business and to plan for next busy season. Connect with your customers, calculate your business plans. Using your slow season intelligently can help your business grow.