Proven Tips to Survive Off Season Slow Down
Most businesses may not have a constant cash flow as it depends on the seasonal changes and the peak selling period of the year.
Seasonality creeps in on every business just like the changing seasons and the natural cycles. Summer is almost always a peak period for most industries as people in general are in a mood to splurge more and schedule holidays. Gift shops and other businesses that rely on holidays will hit the peak during the holidays and decline afterwards.
These tips will help you to handle seasonal fluctuations better and be prepared for the lean business seasons. If you are still on fence these tips will help you survive your off season.
Track your seasonality
Get started by understanding how your seasonality works by gathering data of sales versus time because sales are a good indicator of your seasonality. It is applicable to all businesses except start up organizations as it is too early for them to notice any significant effect of seasonality. As a rule of thumb, data of at least 2-3 years has to be analyzed to confirm a seasonal trend.
Save money during peak season
Though it might appear as an obvious tip, it is a valuable lesson for business owners. When the inflow of cash is immense during the peak retail season, make sure to save some part of it and beat the temptation to spend it. Maintaining a business through the slower days can be challenging and keeping some money in reserve will help in cushioning the effect.
Diversify your product line
It will be a smart strategy to look for an alternative source of income or a business that is less influenced by the seasonality factor. It will help you to broaden your customer base and regulate your cash flow all year round. For instance , a business selling cotton apparels and outdoor accessories should sell winter clothing to offset the influence of seasonality. This diversification should support you until your sales pick up again.
Change business hours.
Cut down the business hours during lean season and increase the business hours during the high demand season. The longer your store remains open during the peak season the bigger will be the revenue that you make. You can also include popular promotional gifts in your publicity to spread the word. It will go a long way in compensating for your drop in sales during off season. However, it is recommended to employ these changes only after making sure that the employees of customers are agreeable to the change of time.
Social media promotions
Being active in social media even during the off season will effectively engage your target consumers all round the year while increasing your brand visibility. Though your products may not be in demand, you can still reach out to your customers who are still there. It will create hype for the coming peak season by staying relevant.
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