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Sunday, December 23, 2012

Review, Review and Review

      Here we are at the end of 2012. Did it exceed your expectations? Did you achieve the goals you set out for the year? Did you fall short of them? Did you set any? As this year draws to a close it is the perfect time to reflect on the good the bad and the fugly. One of my August segments was called Plan, do and review. I recently reposted it on my blog because it is vital to your business to implement this process, or something very close to it. January 2012 you were ready to light the world on fire, or at least your business. That's that planning part. The dreaming, the fun. Then somewhere around February, March at the latest, the doing sets in. Do, do and do some more. Not as much fun as the planning is it? Lighting your business on fire takes work, work and more work. A little easier if you have a good plan, but still a whole lot of work. So finally, December, the busiest of times for our industry, it begins the process of review. We have a whole year of numbers and information to sift through and sort out. Only by reviewing the year's history can we get the real story. Here's a few things to think about when you do your yearend review.

      Look close and hard at your yearend expenses. How much did you spend on nail supplies? Were your purchases cost effective? If you calculate how much you will need each year of specific products and buy in bulk, or maybe only on special you can dramatically change your margins. How much can you save? If your product costs average one thousand dollars per year and you can save 20 percent, that's $200 dollars. $2000.00 per year could be a $400 dollar saving. Think about every purchase you make and try to never ever pay full price. If you have nail tech friends in town how about purchasing in bulk, splitting the orders and sharing the expenses? Form your own buying club and save big. Examine all business expenses. Insurance, rent, phone carriers, even credit card merchant services. You need to take time in the slow weeks ahead to dig for the best deals and rack up more savings. Get several estimates for each service and compare costs. Take your findings to current vendors and see it they will match pricing or risk losing your business. I for one am going to encourage all my clients to write checks this year. I know credit and debit cards are convenient for clients, but they end up costing us money. Many ask me if I care which payment they use and in the past I have said it doesn't matter. Well you know what? It does. 2-3 percent on seventy thousand dollars is over 2 thousand dollars. I don't know about you, but I'd rather keep that two grand thank you very much. Or I may introduce a 2 % credit card fee. Looking forward at the fiscal cliff, we've got to build some wings people.
Take a long hard look at your service menu and current pricing. Have your costs started eating away at your margins? If you have not had a price increase last year, don't wait any longer. Think about introducing some express services or mini services clients can alternate in-between the full price services, but make sure they are Mini. Don't just give away the full service because you are worried your clients might cut back. Keep them totally separate protocols. Look at areas that have been super successful and expand on those. Pedicure services on the rise? Look into reflexology services and charge by the minute. What better way to relax and pamper your clients than extended foot massage? Last but not least if you're not sure what your clients will gravitate towards this coming year why not ask? Survey Monkey is a quick and easy way to figure out what areas to invest in for the coming year. A simple survey of your clients will tell you exactly what you need to know and believe me just when you think you know, the results will surprise you. I hope you all had a fantastic year and my tips have helped you this past year. I am looking forward to 2013 with added commitment to expanding my business to helping you grow yours.

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