I’ve never met a horse business owner who wouldn’t like to have more income. They think about having more customers, or offering new services or more products to their current customers. Unfortunately, I’ve met many horse people whose businesses are not getting all the income they should be from the services & goods they’re already providing.
Some common problems that prevent horse businesses from maximizing their income include:
Not billing for everything you’re entitled to—this is usually a record-keeping or bookkeeping problem. We all think we’re going to remember, but mostly we get busy and forget. The solution to this problem is to make a note of the activity right away—grab your phone, open the QBO app, and a few taps later it’ll automatically go on the client’s next bill.
Doing a little (lot) bit extra–usually this is a problem of good intentions gone wrong. Weather shifts leave a self-care boarder’s horse sweating in a too-heavy blanket, so you change it. It’s a nice thing to do, but once she figures out you’ll do it, and not charge her extra, she has no incentive to make other arrangements. And if you don’t bring up the subject of her paying you for your time, she certainly won’t.
Not being clear what’s included in a service package—I see this often with ‘full board’ arrangements. The stable based its board price on certain feed amounts, but doesn’t make that clear to boarders, some of whom will insist their horse needs more—or just grab an extra flake of hay for him each time they ride. If your intent is to offer an “all inclusive” package, be sure you price it accordingly. Otherwise, the time spent getting clear about what’s included and what’s extra—and the courage to actually bill and insist on being paid for those extras—could do wonders for your business income.
Not charging enough—often this results from a feeling that lower prices will bring more customers. But as the old joke says, if you lose a little bit on each customer, you can’t make it up on volume. If your prices are below those for comparable goods or services in your area, chances are you can increase your income by raising them. And you may find that you get better quality customers in the process.
Pricing and billing can be very complex subjects, and require serious consideration for any business that wants to succeed and prosper. I love helping owners figure out how to make more money. It’s one of the most satisfying parts of my work.
If you think your business could be generating more income, I’d love to help you make it happen.