Depending on where you live, industries like painting and landscaping are seasonal. For many seasonal businesses, moving into the winter months means gearing up for a slower period. As a seasonal business owner you have to carefully plan and budget for the year to make it through your slow season. So what can you do to prepare and how do you keep yourself busy during those months?
Budget, Budget, Budget
Financially speaking, businesses have both fixed costs that stay the same throughout the year (rent, insurance, etc.) and variable costs that change depending on the amount of work you’re doing (salaries, materials, etc.). You’ll have to cover your fixed costs, but you should adjust your monthly budget to keep those variable costs down during your slow period. It’s important for you to conserve money and build up a cash reserve during your busy time so you enter the slower season with a cushion. Once work slows down, execute your budget adjustments.
Discounts and Promotions
To keep some business moving during your slow season, try offering discounts or promotions to your customers. PEP makes it easy to include a discount on proposals for the materials, the labor cost, or both. Check out this video to learn how!
Focus on Your Business
Put extra time to good use during your slow period by catching up on work that is often pushed to the side during the throws of a busy season. Document the processes you use in your business. Give your website need a face-lift. Start a newsletter or blog. Increase your social media presence. Your slow season is a perfect time to catch up on all of that! Use email and social media to push interesting and timely content to your customers that encourages their response and interaction.
For many seasonal business owners the winter months bring a slow down in work, which requires a lot of planning and budgeting throughout the year in order to compensate. While some may use the time to “holiday”, it’s a good idea to take advantage of the slower period and evaluate your business and marketing strategies so you can pick up stronger than ever during your busy season.