Can seasonal offers help your small business thrive? In most cases, the answer is yes. When running a small business for any length of time you will notice an ebb and flow in trade which may be linked to anything from the seasons themselves, weather conditions or simply changes in the market and learning to adapt to these changes can have a huge impact on the success of your business.
This is one thing that businesses operating in tourist locations have become very familiar with. Most tourist resorts in the UK operate during the summer months. For example, seaside towns are a traditional location for taking a holiday in the United Kingdom so they prepare for a busy trade in the summer and either have to shut down or find alternate ways to generate revenue off season.
Food and beverage
Retail catering is one such area in these locations that does so for example a bar or nightclub may introduce offers off season for the locals such as discounted prices or buy-one-get-one-free offers, as consumers love to get (or at least think that they are getting) something free. Although it may be a reduced trade it may be enough to keep the business open instead of shutting down completely until the start of the new season. Another benefit of being able to continue trading off-season is that you can retain good employees rather than having to release them and then rehire new employees the following season.
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Retail shops especially the smaller or independent ones have also had to learn similar tricks for staying open all year round. Discounts and offers during periods which are typically less busy are a way of keeping customers walking through their doors. Ninety-three per cent of shoppers use coupons or discounts throughout the year. Not only does this keep the customers coming in but it is also a great way of selling surplus stock if you either have stock that has a finite shelf life or if your business needs to clear space for new stock.
It may be that they stock the shops carries will change depending on the season. For example, a clothes shop will want to sell summer clothes in summer and conversely winter clothes in winter. It is not uncommon to see seasonal items discounted towards the end of the season or available for a bargain price off season. Consumers are always looking for value so offers such as 50 per cent extra can increase sales of a particular item up to 73 per cent.
Companies that operate in the digital realm often employ seasonal marketing techniques and offers as well. Many small businesses survive through online sales often on the worldwide market so even when they are off season in their native location the can still be making sales in other parts of the world that are still in season. Online businesses can also email discount offers, 75 per cent of consumers will actively look for discounts in their inbox, according to Eradium.
The gambling industry is one that can operate all year round through the power of the world wide web. Many land based casinos are now beginning to operate online, while the number of online-only gambling establishments is constantly on the rise. Fabulous Bingo is an example of how a business in this industry runs both regular, year-round promotions, such as a 300 per cent bingo bonus on first deposit running all year round, but also special monthly promotions to suit the time of the year and keep customers happy.
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Discounts and offers are not the only way that a small business can still operate off season though. Landscaping and Gardening services have their peak seasons during spring and summer often working long hours during the summer especially. During the off season, they have a choice of not working or substituting their business with other means of work.
One popular choice is to offer a removal or transport service using their vehicles which are typically designed for either carrying heavy loads and/ or pulling a large trailer, especially in more rural areas where they tend to have bigger gardens or landscaping projects to manage. They can also take on winter projects such as building or repair work for outdoor furniture as fencing that can be done virtually all year round.
So, whether you are running a small business or a larger one, one of the keys to success is being able to adapt to the conditions that can and will at some point affect your business whether you have seasonal changes, changes in the market or change in the products or services you offer your customers. Having a degree of flexibility in your business can only help it not only survive but give your business the best chance to succeed and grow year on year.