In this article I want to share something that I have set up as a regular recurring task in my Asana task management software that has helped me ensure that I am not leaving ANY money or profits on the table in my current online business OR my indoor playground business.
Today we are talking about 5 places where money might be hiding in YOUR business, and I want you to add checking these places to YOUR task list– wherever you might keep it— either monthly or even more often at first if that works for you.
And if you’re looking for one easy place to keep all of your tasks organized so you don’t feel overwhelmed with everything bouncing around in your head 24/7– check out Asana– it is absolutely free and\ I cannot recommend it enough (and no, this article is NOT sponsored and that’s NOT even an affiliate link!)– it is simply the only way I am able to prevent any balls from getting dropped in both my business and my personal life.
In a future Profitable Play podcast episode I’m going to be talking about hidden money opportunities in your business ( i.e. ways you COULD be bringing in revenue but likely aren’t)– but that’s not what this particular article is about. This article is about finding money that is ALREADY readily available to you once you find it– using only your current offerings, products, and services.
I just wanted to make that quick distinction before we dive in– but make sure you’re subscribed because that episode coming up is a GOOD one.
Alright, where are 5 places you might want to check for hidden money in your business!
This is always where I find the MOST lost money so this is actually on my weekly list to check. I’m lucky in that the payment system I use keeps track of any failed recurring payments or open invoices for me and keeps them organized in a dashboard– but if you use one of the simpler tools, you may need to do some digging on your end to find any payments that have not gone through.
These are customers who you have already converted– but just haven’t collected on, so this is really low hanging fruit for you. You’ve already done the hard part– so don’t let this extra cash flow evade you and cause you to lose customers and profits.
And this will be especially important obviously for businesses who have a lot of members who have recurring payments set up or for businesses who work with other local businesses and charge them on a recurring basis– maybe for advertising space or shelf space in their retail section.
So if your current POS or booking system does NOT make it easy for you to check which payments have failed or alert you proactively– check inside your payment processor. We use stripe as our 3rd party processor– but some might use square or cardknock or something similar.
In Stripe, I can easily pull any failed transactions to the top and it will even state the reason for the failed payment– whether a card expired, had insufficient funds, if a charge was disputed– anything like that.
So the key here when recovering failed payments is to reach out assuming good intentions. It’s rare that a customer will have an outstanding invoice on purpose.
I created a template with a series of 3 emails inside of my google drive for when one of my customers' payments fails– and this is in addition to the alert they get from our automated system.
These emails are super friendly and always contain 4 things:
I usually give my customers a few days grace period, but putting a deadline kind of forces them to acknowledge it sooner rather than later and prioritize updating their card rather than saying, “eh, I’ll take care of that next week”.
And again, showing kindness is always a priority here and it will result in a higher percentage of payments recovered if you lead with compassion and understanding.
This is one I am guilty of– I ALWAYS forget to cash in my credit card rewards! Now, this isn’t an episode about which business credit card you should get– I personally love my amazon credit card since I get double cash back on amazon purchases and that’s where I buy a ton of supplies for my business.
But whether you chose a card that gives cash back on your purchases or a card that gives you airline miles– make sure you are actually redeeming these rewards!
Every single month now I go into my credit card account and redeem my cash back rewards– so if this is something you haven’t done in a while– it’s time. Who knows, maybe there are enough rewards there for you to buy that new toy or piece of equipment you’ve been eying to reinvigorate your customers’ interest.
Every single time I check my instagram message requests and my facebook message request folder– there is a customer looking for more information on one of my products or services.
And the quicker I can find them and respond- the more likely they are to convert into a customer. Just this week I dug into all of my message requests and answered a ton of specific questions about my programs– and just doing that resulted in over $700 collected.
Again, these are customers who have already seen your stuff and maybe just have a question or need reassurance before booking– you’ve already done the HARD part and made them interested enough to reach out– so get in that message request folder and simply close the sale.
This is similar to your social media message requests folder– but DON'T forget to check the spam folder of your email. I can’t tell you how many legitimate emails I get from potential and current customers that somehow get filtered into spam.
And I always kick myself when I forget to check this folder because again, the longer the time period is between inquiry and response, the less likely that customer will be to buy.
So if this is a place you haven’t checked in a while, this is your sign to do it today and make sure there aren’t any customers in there who have not yet been served.
Depending on your insurance company, they may automatically do audits of your insurance policy every year. But for me, I had to request an audit most years– and it almost always resulted in around $1,000 getting returned to me.
I have talked about this on my YouTube channel before– but your insurance rates are based on many factors including size of space, location, type of play, number of employees– all of that. But it’s also largely based on your revenue. Now I always recommend overestimating your yearly business revenue when working to get your quote– because I don’t know about you but I’d rather have a rebate waiting for me at the end of each year than a big bill I have to pay or risk losing coverage.
So let’s say I’d estimate that my business would do $500k in a given year. If I ended up making $400k, that gap in revenue would mean that I was OVERCHARGED by my insurance company.
SO if you reach out to your agent and explain this in an email, they will typically do an audit and cut you a check for the amount which you were overcharged.
Lots of times these agents aren’t checking your tax returns to know how much you actually brought in- you need to be proactive about it and reach out. And there’s usually a timeline for requesting an audit– it’s likely in the fine print of your policy. So if you’ve never requested an audit, reach out as soon as possible to make sure you won’t be left overcharged and losing out on that extra cash.
And if there are any other fees or bills you’re paying based on estimated numbers, make sure you’re regularly checking those as well.
Have YOU found money hiding in your indoor playground or play cafe business before? Was it in one of these 5 places? Feel free to leave a comment below in case I left out any opportunities to find hidden cash!
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