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Updated: Feb 5, 2020
Most businesses have seasonal highs and lows. If you’re in retail, the highs are typically around popular holidays. If you’re a ski resort for instance, the highs probably occur in the winter season. No matter what type of business you run, it’s important for you identify when your seasonal peaks are so you can adequately prepare. Here are a few things you may need before your busy seasons ramps up to full capacity and how a small business loan may be exactly what you need to sail through it without a hitch.
Have you ever had a day where there are 10x as many people than usual who enter your store and you feel like you’re running around like a chicken with its head cut off? Now imagine operating at that capacity for weeks or months? No one wants to do that.
This is where a small business loan can come in very handy. A lot of times, it may feel like you are stuck in this never ending cycle of wanting to hire more hands but not having the money to do so. But what if you were able to acquire the funds needed to hire those hands and in turn build your profits to far more than the cost of the loan itself! If you anticipate needing more employees during your busy season this year, a small business loan could give your business that extra boost you’ve been looking for.
There is nothing worse than having a product sell like hot cakes only to discover that you didn’t order nearly enough and have to turn away dozens of customers. Do you have a rough idea of what you expect to be popular? Do you know how to make sure you have enough inventory of what will be most popular? The best place to start is with last year’s sales and inventory. Are there a few particular products that you know will go quickly? How quickly? Did your inventory that was planned to last a month only last a week?
The most important thing to do is to make sure you’ve utilized the data that you already have to make the best estimations possible. If your business is too new to have a year or more of data, try looking at industry averages month over month. A good place to start would be data trends that the U.S. Census Bureau has provided.
Once you know what you need the most of, you may realize that in order to be fully stocked for the busy season, it will put you way over budget. If this is the case, this is the perfect opportunity to seek out a small business loan. In doing so, you will finally have the necessary funds ahead of the busy season and you can purchase all the inventory you anticipate needing to keep you fully stocked.
Does your small business depend on certain pieces of equipment to operate? Are there ever times where you wish you had a second or third piece of equipment to help you keep up in the busy times? Or maybe you’re considering upgrading for the first time to help you keep your sanity. Say you’ve been a cash-only small business for as long as you can remember, but last year’s busy season was a nightmare and you want to upgrade to a POS system that can process credit cards and other forms of payment quickly to minimize cash handling and line delays.
No matter what the piece of equipment is, there very well could be something you have been eyeing for months or even years, trying to figure out how you can finally make the plunge. A small business loan can help you take your business to the next level by finally allowing you the freedom to upgrade and bring in even more revenue!
The most important thing for your business is to make sure you are fully prepared for your industry’s busy season. Planning is absolutely key. Evaluate your business’s anticipated needs, current expenses, and possible shortcomings. You may very possibly come to the realization that a small business loan may be exactly what your small business needs to handle your busy season with ease.
Paige Smith is a Content Marketing Writer and Senior Contributing Writer at Funding Circle. She has a bachelor's degree in English Literature from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, and specializes in writing about the intersection of business, finance, and tech. Paige has written for a number of B2B industry leaders, including fintech companies, small business lenders, and business credit resource sites.