You probably got into the event planning business because you love being organised.
You think that you have everything sorted out to give your customers a great party, therefore allowing you to have the opportunity to calmly sip your coffee in the morning instead of having a meltdown brought on by stress. You might have a good system, but if you haven’t considered getting a mobile barcode scanner, you haven’t yet found a way to make your work so much more hassle free.
With a little investment and creativity, you can cut down the time it takes to figure out what your clients want, smooth out the payment process so there are no surprises on the invoices, and keep track of the things that you need to have in your personal inventory to be a great party planner. Here’s how you can get all of that and more when you invest in a barcode scanner for your event planning business.
Print up and Laminate Pre Made Packages
Once you’ve been in the business for a while, you’ll realise that there are a few basic kinds of party. On the one hand, there are the big events with two cakes, a DJ, and two hundred bargain balloons. While on the other hand, there are birthday parties that call for wine and cheese.
Then there are those birthday parties that call for bounce houses strong enough to hold adults and two hundred water balloons. There are packages that work out for parties of different sizes and it’s a pain to try to get your clients to see what they need up front. One great way to get what you need is to put together some of the most classic party packs that you find yourself using over and over. Get them all on a page with a description and a price tag, and then put together a barcode for each one.
You can also include some fun things that they can add in, like wine (if that’s appropriate), the fun bounce houses, petting zoo visits (for children’s parties), and so on and so forth. These can be handy little ordering forms that you show your clients. They can pick out the things that they like and then they can scan them in themselves. You’ll then have the order automatically appear in your computer so you know exactly what you need to arrange for their big day.
Keep Better Track of Your Inventory
You hire out a lot of your work and business, that’s true, but there are some things that you’re always going to need. Card stock, nice pens, and great penmanship are always in demand. You might have to dig out 200 wine colored envelopes at the last second, and you’re always expected to have sticks and glitter if you typically work with baby showers and kids.
It can be tough to keep yourself well stocked. But with barcodes, you don’t have to remember everything that you’re using, or where you’re using it. The key to getting any new idea to stick is motivating people to change their habits, states Entrepreneur. This means that you’re going to have to force yourself to stick to this change at first. It might feel like slapping a barcode on a box of gold pens is a waste of time, but when you have the inventory reports that show you exactly how you went through that many pens in a month, it’s going to make it easy for you to tighten your belt.
Make Invoicing a Breeze
How many times you have delivered the invoice for a great party to a very happy client only to have them become a very unhappy client? All of a sudden they didn’t know that you charged for balloons (of course you do), or that the caterers charged a fee for bringing extra waiters (of course they do), and they seem to have forgotten how they gushed about the party and how, during the planning phase, they assured you that they were willing to pay for the best.
A good barcode scanner, like the one offered by Shopify, can really cut down on this miscommunication by showing clients an itemized list of your packages right up front. Of course you can’t stop some clients from being irrational, but barcodes are made to hold product information for as long as you like. According to Wired, your best option in barcode type is the 1D codes like UPC. For party planning, you can use that information to show exactly why the “Big Bash Package” costs what it does, line by line.
You Can Go Green, Even as a Party Planner
People are willing to pay for convenience. That’s why tips actually rise when people can add it to their bill with a single touch of a button. Bon Apetit reports that some business experience as much as a 7 to 12 percent increase in tips when customers don’t have to think and can just hand over 20 percent on their cards. Heading the paperless route not only is more organized for you, it’s more convenient for your clients, and they’re going to love that.