It doesn't work; it's never worked. Don't waste time cutting your costs - particularly for a service based business - if you're wishing to make money.
From online services to a retail business, I've never seen people jumping on the bandwagon to create a profit for you during a sale. In fact, most of them don't even show up.
Think about it. In retail, you have an item you want to clear out, have a 50% off sale, and your profit is now $3.78. You've sold two this morning. Your retail employee is costing you $8.75 for that hour, so you're now $1.19 in the hole.
Sales are created for another purpose - it's to get people in the door so that you can ultimately sell them something else at full price, or upgrade their initial choice to a product of higher value.
Sale racks aren't there because the company loves you. They're in position because SALE is synonymous with "Oh For Gods' Sakes - Just Try To Get Something Out Of This Before We Have To Toss It and Take A Loss! And don't order any more of these next year - I don't know what we were thinking!"
A service based business is even worse because the mind set you have now established is "if they could do it for 20%, 30%, or 50% off and make a profit, they could be doing that all along. I'll just wait."
I particularly see this among women. For some reason, society tells us that if we give samples of our abilities away for free, throngs of onlookers will happily rush us with money extended. Heck no! They're lining up for a free sample as well.
Here are a few thoughts to ponder as you consider your first or next sale:
- If you've had sales before, how did they work for you?
- Give your talent and product away ONLY if you choose and want nothing in return.
- Giving out of the goodness of your heart because you believe in a cause or another individual is up to you and acceptable. However, it is a charitable act and that's how you'll have to view it.
- If you do opt for a sale, be sure to put a time limit on it. Honor that time limit and take down the For Sale Sign the minute the time is up. Honoring that one decision is respecting your own talent and skill.
- What else will you have to offer if someone does takes advantage of a sale? Do you have a back-up plan or product that could help make up for the profit loss?
- In a service-based business, what can you eliminate from the service yet still provide a good experience? If they wish to have a discount, you have the right to discount all the facets you would provide.