Many seasonal businesses rely on seasonal business loans to get the supplies they need to thrive during their peak weeks or months. The right seasonal business loan can set you up for success and give you the cash you need to ensure your target customers have a great time.
Of course, this puts a lot of pressure on you, the business owner or executive, to use your seasonal business loan wisely. If you don’t know how to best spend the cash or credit from a seasonal business loan, read on. We’ll break down five excellent ways to use your seasonal business loan most effectively.
Hire More Staff for Temporary Busyness
Depending on how big your business is, you may need plenty of staff members on hand and ready to go when your first customers arrive for seasonal shopping or activities. However, as a seasonal business, you probably let most of your staff go when you don’t need them during the off-season.
Therefore, it’s a no-brainer to use the money from a seasonal business loan to hire more staff for temporary purposes. You can attract stellar staff members, like waitstaff, ride operators, and salespeople with cash incentives, like sign-on bonuses or just posting attractive salary levels.
Then, once payday rolls around, you can dip into your seasonal business loan funds to make sure they are paid for their hard labor.
Acquire New Equipment
Another great way to use a seasonal business loan is to purchase new equipment that you may not be able to afford at other times of the year. At the end of your busiest season, remember, many of your surplus profits will be needed to pay back your loan.
A seasonal business loan’s immediate injection of cash into your business is the perfect financial opportunity to acquire extra machines, purchase POS software that allows you to accept payments from anywhere, and more.
To maximize the use of your equipment financing, take an inventory of the equipment you currently have and what needs repair. Then decide what new equipment you should invest in now for even more profits in the future.
Double Down on Short-Term Marketing
Of course, seasonal businesses like yours often rely on effective short-term marketing. The more effective your marketing is in the lead-up to your peak season, the more people are likely to come to your business and put your enterprise in the black for the rest of the year.
This is why it’s vitally important for your business to remain in close contact with your customers even during the off-season. One way to accomplish this is to use customer relationship management (CRM) tools that allow you to communicate with customers directly, submit invoices, organize customer data, and keep track of where each customer is in the buying journey.
Businesses and contractors in the home improvement industry often have to work seasonally since there is typically much less work available during the cold winter months and are a prime example of who this applies. But rather than looking for general home improvement CRM tools, contractors working in specific sectors within home improvement can search for specific CRM tools that match the sector they work in. For example, roofers can look for roofing CRM software that is tailored to businesses in the roofing sector specifically, versus looking for more generic home improvement CRM tools instead.
You could also use some of your seasonal business loan money for marketing materials. You could start up a new ad campaign for television stations around your local area to draw local people to your shop, for example. Or you can use a business line of credit to pay for new digital ads, which can be posted on your store website and your social media profiles to draw people from all around.
It’s up to you how you best want to use your marketing cash, but a seasonal business loan could open up additional opportunities for advertisements and marketing experiments in any case.
Stock Up on Inventory
Your business needs its core inventory ready to go and fully stocked when your seasonal customers arrive, ready to buy and splurge. Don’t hesitate to use a seasonal business loan to stock up on key inventory, including:
- Your most popular products
- Perishable products, like food ingredients
- Seasonal products you want to push aggressively throughout your peak season
- And more
Depending on warehousing costs and whether you have the space for it, it might be wise to purchase extra inventory right up front. That way, you’ll know that you have everything you need for the peak season, and you can order additional or surplus inventory if business is even better than expected.
That said, you can also use your seasonal business loan to rent warehouse space temporarily. If you only need a lot of product stored for a few months out of the year, it might be wiser and more cost-effective to do this than it would be to build and maintain a dedicated warehouse you only use once in a while.
Improve Infrastructure for Long-Term Benefits
Your brand may further benefit from using a seasonal business loan to improve its infrastructure. Making infrastructural improvements to the walls, foundations of the building, and more could yield a lot of long-term benefits that you may not normally be able to afford.
As an example, if your seasonal restaurant is looking a little dilapidated, a seasonal business loan could help you give it a facelift. Then, when your seasonal customers arrive, they’ll be dazzled and impressed by the new look of your eatery. They may be more willing to spend more money there, improving your profit margin even more than you projected.
Just make sure any infrastructural improvements are well worth it and will result in more revenue flowing into the business bank account. That way, you can pay down any extra loans or debts you may need to take out to finance such improvements.
Overall, the above five needs are great uses of the financial flexibility a seasonal business loan can provide. Whether you take out a traditional loan, credit card, or business line of credit, use that money on these things, and your enterprise will be more than ready to make the most of it when your customers come calling.