Running A Successful Lemonade Stand

Fresh Lemonade.jpg

Ready to make some money this summer? Want to make lemonade out of lemons? Well read on for some great tips on running a successful lemonade stand. It will take some hard work, but the effort will be rewarded. For a great way to get started, check out our Lemonade Stand Entrepreneur Kit

Safety First!

Before you decide on running a lemonade stand, talk to your parents. A responsible adult should always been within eye contact. Also, never go up to a car to deliver lemonade – let the buyer come to you.

Location, Location, Location

It’s an old rule but true. Lemonade stands rely on passersby for business, so you’ll want to choose a spot that has a decent amount of people passing by, whether it’s walkers, cyclists or vehicles. If you’re counting on car traffic, make sure that there is a place for thirsty drivers to pull over and be able to get out.

Also, don’t forget to make signs directing people to your stand – people will go out of there way for a cup of lemonade on a hot day, but only if they know it’s there.

Quick Tip:

Do your market research – not sure of the best spot? Pick a couple of spots and do a count – stay at each spot for certain length of time and count the number of people/cars that pass by. When checking on different spots, try to do it at the same time of day and with the same weather. Pick the most heavily-trafficked spot.

Who’s it for?

Are you doing this for yourself or for charity> If you’re doing a lemonade stand for charity be sure to advertise that fact. If you’re doing it for yourself, then make sure you’re honest about that to – in fact if you’re doing it for something specific, like a new bike, you might want to let people know that you’re raising money for a goal.

Quick Tip:

Combine the 2 – You can run a lemonade stand for good and profit. You can sell lemonade and donate a portion (a percent) of your sales to a charity – make sure you tell people about it and make sure you actually donate some money.

A great charity is Alex’s Lemonade Stand. Started in 2000 by a little girl with cancer named, Alex, the Alex’s Lemonade Stand program has raised millions of dollars to fight pediatric cancer.

Or if you’re feeling a little competitive, check out Inc Magazine’s Lemonade Stand contest.

Professionalism

It doesn’t take much – you don’t have to build a fancy stand – just a card table, a nice tablecloth, some cups & the lemonade. Don’t forget to dress neatly and smile. Also have change on hand (get help from Mom or Dad with this) and have a calculator handy.

Making Money, Honey

You’re running a business, not a charity, even if you’re raising money for a charity. Don’t give your lemonade away for free. You’ll want to determine how much it costs to make a cup of lemonade (including the ice, the cup, etc) and then set your price higher than that. You’ll want to look around and see what other lemonade stands are charging so you’re in line (or competitive). Charge too much and no one will come to you. Charge too little and you won’t make any money.

Want Fries With That?

Notice how they always ask you that at a fast food restaurant? It’s so you’ll buy the fries you didn’t even know you wanted and spend more money. Consider selling some other items with the lemonade. Can you make a great chocolate chip cookie? Or perhaps you have access to one of those warehouse clubs where you could buy pre-packaged snacks (chips, cookies, candy bars, bottled water) and re-sell it.

Juicing the Juice

Sometimes people will pay a lot more for the same thing. You may able to charge more for a cup of homemade (really homemade) lemonade than something made from mix. In fact it could be your stand’s signature – “Authentic, homemade lemonade”. Just be sure you know what it costs and how to price it – and that it really is better than everyone else’s.

Staying in the Game

If you’re committed to running your stand week after were you can make more money than if you just do it once. Why? For one thing, you’ll become a community fixture – people will expect you to be there – if they weren’t thirsty one day they might be the other. If you do a good job and have great lemonade and cookies, then your customers will tell other customers, and so on – you just need to be there.

Lily – Where did all the money go?

So the end of the weekend came and went, and I tried and I really tried not to spend all my money.  But I did and then some.  If $5 hadn’t shown up from Nana, then I’d have been in trouble.   I guess I shouldn’t have gone to the mall, right.  I mean if you’re trying not to spend money, then you shouldn’t go to a place that’s all about getting you to spend more.  Funny how I never noticed it before, but all I could seem to see this weekend were the posters and the flyers and the announcements that seemed to get you to spend $10 instead of the $7 you wanted to in the first place.  Every little place always asked if you wanted to get two instead of one for just a little bit more, or if you wanted the grande size instead of the regular size.  And before you even in know it, the $2.50 is gone, so is the $1 I took from it’s hiding place and promised to use only and only if I really, really needed it., plus the extra $5 nana sent me.
The $8.50 was gone before you knew it.  On headbands (I only meant to buy one, but somehow I wound up with 3 for the price of 2) and a caramel decaf mocha latté.  Grande.  I knew I didn’t need it, any of it, since I have like 20 headbands already
Arggh…
So a full accounting:

In
  Out
What I Spent it On
 $   10.00
 
 Allowance
 
 $    1.00
Savings
 
 $    1.75
pens and pencils
 
 $    3.25
hot chocolate and a cookie
 
 $    1.00
Donation
 $    5.00
 
Gift From Nana
 
 $    8.00
3 headbands and a latte
 $   15.00
 $   15.00
Total In/Out
 Total left over:  
 $        -  
That’s  0 a big, fat 0

Ouch – guess I didn’t do such a good job.  I spend everything I had more.  And I feel bad for even getting the dollar out if it’s super secret safe hiding place.  Guess I need a better hiding place…
Abby and Dr. Smith say I shouldn’t give up.  They said to try maybe just putting .50 cents in my super safe box and see if that makes it easier to forget about it at first.  And Abby said that maybe I should go to the library more, since it’s free, instead of the mall, where I may be tempted.

Day Four – Tracking Expenses

Well it’s almost Friday and I only spent a dollar yesterday. I am not sure where or how, because I forgot to bring my notebook down, but I think I dropped it in one of those collection buckets for the holidays.  I know it’s for a good cause, but I am upset I can’t remember where it went.  And, maybe, just maybe I also bought myself a candy bar…
So technically I have $2.50 left. For the weekend.  Plus that extra dollar I hid away and said I would never, never ever touch….
I can feel it calling to me, in that little box up in the closet, but I suppose at this point, another $1 wouldn’t make that much difference, and I am better off leaving it there, right?
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See ya,
Lils