Odds are, you opened a childcare center because you’re passionate about early education.
Not accounting and economics.
But without a good understanding of your business’ financials, your doors probably won’t stay open for long…
That’s why we’ve done some of the heavy lifting for you.
It’s no secret that the new year has brought with it some new concerns about small business owner’s ability to pay their bills, their staff, and themselves.
That’s why we’re sharing 5 ways you can stabilize your revenue during economic unpredictability.
5 Ways to Improve Cash Flow for Your Childcare Business
1) Re-engage lost leads to regain prospective families and easily build enrollment.
Losing Millennial and Gen Z parents (your main parent demographics) because you don’t provide the experience, they want is costly. And one bad experience is all it takes to lose them. More than half of consumers (54%) say they’ll stop using a brand after just one bad experience.
But it’s not always a lost cause.
Job transitions, big moves, and life can change their minds. Check back in to let families know you’re thinking about them. The economy is unpredictable for everyone. And parents and guardians need an extra layer of compassion just as much as the next person.
Use a Lost Opportunities report to see which families fell out of your enrollment pipeline. Then, ask yourself, would these families reconsider your center? Target them with messaging that will grab their attention and get them to engage with your program again.
LineLeader Enroll acts as a virtual assistant – mapping out which families to reconnect with. From there, re-engage parents and guardians with personalized messages from automated drip campaigns. These campaigns share targeted content to build a unique childcare experience for each family, hands-free. You, too, can improve cash flow with ease.
2) Prioritize automation to support staff and save valuable time.
Repetitive tasks kill your cash flow.
Your staff becomes burdened, and families have an inconsistent experience. During a sudden economic downturn, consistency is so important.
Automation can help fill the gaps and eliminate time-consuming, manual tasks. In fact, 74% of businesses said that automation made them feel prepared to handle unexpected crises – without overwhelming their already-exhausted workers.
Economic unpredictability doesn’t mean you have to halt your growth.
Truthfully, the automation software pads your childcare business. And the right solution will reduce the number of staff looking for other employment opportunities. Fill enrollment, with less work.
3) Increase revenue streams and get paid what you’re worth.
Many families are looking for childcare options in the midst of an economic downturn, and it can be challenging to find reliable providers. However, there are several strategies you can use to ensure your business is thriving and earning money.
- Choose an appropriate tuition cost for your services. You want to charge a fair amount, but not so much that it puts you at a disadvantage. You should also consider charging different rates for different age groups or types of care (i.e. full-time vs. part-time). This way, you can make money even if parents are only able to book one day a week or need only occasional care.
- Develop additional revenue streams outside of your typical programs. For example, offering classes or camps for children could give you additional income without requiring additional staff or facilities. Plus, you can charge waitlist, supply, and registration fees (as most childcare businesses do)! This will help offset any rising costs for materials and resources.
- Use technology to automate some processes and reduce costs while increasing efficiency and profitability. With the right software, you can manage scheduling and center operations efficiently, which will minimize the need for human oversight and free up staff resources for other duties.
- Create a strong network of referrals from happy past clients. If you have good relationships with your current clients, they may be willing to share their experiences with new families. This will help you build a more robust database of satisfied parents and increase your revenue stream.
4) Use enrichment programs for additional revenue opportunities.
In a world of economic uncertainty, it can be challenging to predict what the future holds for businesses and their bottom lines.
However, one thing is clear: the cost of childcare is on the rise. This is especially true in many parts of the United States, where high-quality early education programs are becoming more and more popular among families.
But there’s no need to despair! Even in a time of economic uncertainty, there are ways that you can utilize additional programs to help offset your costs.
For example, you could consider offering group classes, after-school programs for children ages 5-12, all-star sports classes, or even a dance camp during the summer! This way, you can use additional programs to create additional revenue opportunities while also providing valuable services to your customers.
5) Monitor family engagement levels.
In our recent survey, we found that equipping staff with resources to retain families is a top business challenge for childcare businesses. And if you don’t give your staff enough training to support families from the get-go, they may look elsewhere for care. You’ll lose out. In fact, it costs 30-50% of your employee’s annual salary to replace them.
Give your staff the tools they need to engage families from the start. Help them monitor family engagement levels at your childcare centers to retain families with ease. Your childcare business can thrive during economic unpredictability if you monitor family engagement levels.
Ensure your centers are providing the best possible care and services for your clients. By keeping a close eye on how engaged families are, you’ll be able to provide a high-quality experience for all families, increasing both family and staff retention.
For example, use intuitive childcare software that has an Activities report – or something similar to track how often your staff is engaging with families (and how families respond)!
6) Gather feedback from enrolled families and share content they actually want to hear/see
It’s crucial to focus on your families.
First, ask what resources they prefer to see. Connect to find out what they need to be properly guided through enrollment. Understand each family’s hesitation, so you can proactively work to solve their problems.
Then, create something that adds value to their decision. Whether it’s content – a parenting blog with tips and tricks – or providing flyers with updated programs, you’ll want to consider every family’s needs. Learn how their attitudes and behaviors have transformed with recent economic changes.
Helpful Hint – One key report you can use to monitor family patterns across locations is a trend tracking report. A trend tracking report examines trends in parent behavior over a specific period to generate valuable insights that help determine proactive enrollment growth strategies.
Based on feedback from parents, change your messaging. Update the tone of your messages to relate to and resolve current issues. Let’s say your prospective families are concerned with how they spend money on childcare. You upgrade your current messaging to highlight what makes your center stand out (adding value to their investment).
Plus, your centers offer a tuition assistance program, so your enrollment team creates a step-by-step guide on how to apply and sends it out in your monthly What’s New email.
Positively modify your messaging to give families a clear direction and a sense of hope.
Simplify your staff and parent experience to improve cash flow despite economic uncertainty.
The economy isn’t what it used to be. You need to transform how your childcare business responds to new and existing families. Have a plan, reassess your brand’s tone, and make use of digital tools to help your business stay ahead of the curve.
LineLeader by ChildcareCRM is your all-in-one solution to manage leads, automate enrollment, manage waitlists, connect with parents to share memorable moments, simplify check-in, and digitize billing.
Improve communications, so your waitlisted and enrolled families (as well as all families in your pipeline) feel attended to. Automate messages and manual tasks to save valuable time and provide a positive parent experience.