Summer is the perfect time as a small business to test different methods of increasing profits. Consumers tend to spend more, and they are willing to try new things. There is also a chance to gain new customers who come to the area for a visit. If you’re in the market for new money saving techniques, try the following ideas to take advantage of summer spending while it lasts.
Take the time to update the business website and review how people are connecting on social media. It may be appropriate to delete a social media account that isn’t reaching a wide audience or try a different way of reaching followers. One option is trying a contest where followers can share a hashtag related to the business for a simple giveaway. Businesses can also make a plan for updating accounts regularly with new content that people can engage with.
2. Improve the relationship with clients
Every business should work to establish repeat clients. Studies have shown regular clients spend twice as much as first-time clients, and they are more likely to buy upsells. Repeat clients are also nearly 6 times as likely to try new products. One way to improve the relationship with a client is offering a subscription. Grocery stores, pharmacies and beauty stores have found much success by offering a points-based system to frequent shoppers.
For certain services, consider long-term billing. Offering a customer a slightly lower price per day, instead of a certain price per hour is an easy way to lock them into a longer commitment. Online buyers flock to free or discounted shipping. This incentive leads to repeat purchases, without lowering a customer’s opinion of a product.
3. Encourage referrals
No matter how much a business spends on advertising, the best way to get dedicated clients is still through word-of-mouth. In fact, research shows that 87 percent of people make buying decisions based on peer recommendations, compared to 27 percent from online advertising.
With social media in mind, consider how buying a product can become an experience. For example, people formed long lines for foods such as rainbow bagels and glitter ice cream because they also wanted to share a photo of what they consumed on social media. Businesses can also offer customers points for referrals. These points can be transferred into gifts or discounts.
4. Reduce costs
This may seem like an obvious tip, but some businesses will find they are unnecessarily spending in ways they didn’t expect. For example, it may be time to switch gas providers to something less expensive like natural gas. Businesses should also consider changing insurance providers if prices really jump. Another tip is doing an audit on how the business functions. The audit may reveal new ways to save money, such as outsourcing certain tasks or hiring part-time instead of keeping a full-time employee.
5. Cut down on product
Take the time to calculate the profits and expenses for each of your products or services and drop the lowest performers. Before dropping products consider a few vital characteristics. First, will dropping the product truly get rid of the expense, or will the expense be passed to something else? Second, will dropping a product negatively affect the sales of other products? Some businesses could suffer overall if they get rid of a product that is loved by longtime customers.
6. Review employee happiness
The most effective employees are ones that are satisfied with their jobs. Try to boost employee morale by having a company outing or picnic. Businesses can also organize team-building events, such as booking an escape room. Using an employee of the month system with a small reward is also another way to improving motivation, as long as the goals are not set too high. Lastly, ask employees for ideas on how to improve. They intimately know what customers are looking for on a regular basis.
7. Work on expanding to a larger market
Businesses can expand their markets both geographically and demographically. One way is by adjusting the current products to appeal to new customers. For example, Facebook originally appealed to younger audiences, but it has now become popular among those aged 40 and above who spend more time on the website. It’s best to understand the market and the competing businesses as much as possible. This can help identify an underserved area, or help your business carve out its own niche appeal.
8. Analyze the sales process
View your business from the consumer’s point of view and learn what makes them decide to buy or go somewhere else. Some people lose interest when they look at the final price. Other consumers are turned off by their customer service experience. And some people go through a sample period and decide not to commit. All of these reasons should be looked at and improved upon if necessary.
Jayson is a recent graduate from Arizona State University who lives in Phoenix. Being a lover of entrepreneurship and travel, he’s always ready to bust out a business laptop and visit new places. He started writing in hope of sharing his experiences with fellow entrepreneurs and travel bugs. You can connect with him on LinkedIn: and Instagram