How to use great weather to bring more business
Summer time can be an awful time for businesses. People tend to spend a lot more time outdoors or at the lake, so if you don’t have a store that caters to one of those, you’ll find yourself struggling to pay the electric bill at times.
At the same time, Summer represents a real opportunity to utilize the weather and the availability in order to make it not only survivable, but profitable! You just have to look for the chance to capitalize on what Summer has to offer: long days and lots of sunlight.
Stay open late.
Wait, what? You just said that I’d have a hard time paying the electric bill. No, I get it. I’m not asking you to jeopardize your business when it may or may not happen, but summertime is about the only time (outside of the holidays) you might have a semi-steady flow of traffic after the normal work hours, because it’s still light out and people want to get out and just do stuff. Give them a reason to come do stuff at your place. Offer specials after 5pm. Cater to the late-night crowd that just got out of the movie theater. Look for ways to server the night owls, and they will flock to your store.
Bring it outside.
Two words: sidewalk sales! These are a wonderfully great way to take advantage of the foot-traffic that’s making it’s way around your town right now. Put out more than a sign; put out a pie or two! A lemonade stand! Something creative to just get them to stop and look. As a bonus, you’ll get a tan while you’re making more money.
Events, events, events!
Sapulpa is not really lacking for events. We have the Rt 66. Blowout every June. We have Concert on the Corner on Thursdays. We have volunteer projects (like the one we just finished at the Big Build) and regular, ongoing meetings, outings, movie nights, swimming lessons, etc. Events are everywhere in Sapulpa.
You need to not just attend these events, but you need to make them! Little Bit of Country has at least two Plaster Paint classes they do every month. By teaching others how to use this wonderful product, they are not only bringing awareness to our community, but supporting surrounding businesses, as well! Class attendees will purchase a product from one of our thrift stores and take it to class to get it painted. What a great way to support your town!
In addition to attending and making these events, it helps everyone if we talk about them! Use your Facebook Page or the Shop Sapulpa Group to talk about the last event you were at and how it went. By getting your opinions and ideas in front of a wide audience, we pave the way for spreading the word about it, as well as refining it and making them even better!
Give stuff away!
Summer can be a great time to offload some inventory that’s taking up space. The best way to do this is to find something that people like, but something you have waaay too much of (My wife did this last year with Avon lotions and the year before with bug sprays.) and tie it to some marketing tool as an incentive. Have a contest. Give it away to people who sign up for your email newsletter. Do a drawing in the store and hand out tickets. Whatever it is, use it as an opportunity to create a connection with your customers that you can keep using in the coming months.
Get ready for Fall!
One of the best things we can do is also use the lull in our business to polish some of our marketing materials, or do some prep work for the coming fall season. Hate to say it, but Walgreens is already selling Halloween stuff. Fall will be here before we know it, and then the holidays! Go ahead and begin planning, budgeting and gathering ideas for how you can finish out the year strong!