Seasonal Sale Swings
I'm pretty far along with the business plan - but when it comes to plotting out my financial plan, what can anyone tell me about seasonal market fluctuations?
In other words, typically when do customers buy more or less beer? My hunch is January through March would be the low point for sales swings.
I'm going to be running a distribution only brewery in Upstate New York - bottle conditioned ales.
If anyone has some real world experience on this and wants to share, that would be pretty swell.
Are you in a tourist driven market or more conventional city setting? If you're in a tourist area expect big peaks and valleys throughout the year with the ebb and flow tourist.
If you're in a typical city setting I wouldn't expect there to be much fluctuation in volume.
We're retail/restaurant serving only craft beer and the only seasonal fluctuation we see is during the holidays when we have an explosion of gift card sales. Our peak months for sales excluding December are June, July, August and October for some reason. The total fluctuation in gross sales is between 5% and 15%.
Thanks for the reply, Brewtopian. My brewery will be located in the country - and a tiny bit of my sales will happen out of the brewery - however, I'll be distributing the vast majority of my bottle conditioned beer to an urban area (Albany, NY).
In my brewpub, as with many restaurants, Feb. was always the slowest month. Factor in that is also the shortest month, and you have to expect lower revenues.
My theory was that people would see their credit card statements in late January, and then slow down in Feb so they could pay them down. Combine that with Start of the Year diets.
But as March got going, and especially St. Patty's Day, people forgot all about credit cards and diets, and got back into the swing of things.