The key to running a successful small business is being prepared for the unexpected. With the cyclical nature of the economy and uncertainty of the market, anything can happen. Do not be caught without a plan when the sales drop.
In order for your small business to survive and thrive, plan for the best and worst scenarios. When a slow season does inevitably start rolling around, be sure to follow these tips.
Expand Marketing Techniques
Marketing might seem less crucial when sales are strong, but they are crucial for maintaining your customer base. Follow up with previous customers via email to keep them updated about your business. Rewards programs are another great marketing technique to keep previous and new customers returning. Maintain a strong social media presence to help with advertising and branding. For instance, Foley’s NY Pub & Restaurant, New York’s top sports bar, hosts book signings with authors in the summer when many regular customers go on vacation. Timing these to a normally quiet period helps the authors who want to promote their latest sports books and brings in new customers to Foley’s when things often slow a bit. Test the waters to see what works best for your small business.
Incentivize Customers with Discounts
Everybody loves discounts, and slow seasons are the best times to offer them. Lower prices will help with acquiring customers whom could not afford the product previously. Offer storewide discounts to bring in local residents and develop a connection to keep them returning.
Experiment New Ideas
Slow periods are a great time to test the waters for new products or designs. Maybe a disappointing quarter is due to a decreasing demand in your product. Revamping the inventory will allow you to observe what items are most popular. This allows you to plan the future trajectory of your small business.
Success for a small business lies in its ability to grow and adapt to the ever changing landscape of the market. Learn from your mistakes and develop new methods of expanding your business during a slow season. If you need help managing cash flow during slow times, call (800) 200-5678 or visit Biz2credit.com and ask a small business loan expert for advice.