Do you want to be able to book more weddings at your venue? If so, then adding weekday wedding options might be a great idea. Might be. This article will explore the pros and cons of this strategy and how it can help increase revenue if done correctly.
Pros of Weekday Options
More Sales for Your Venue
Obviously booking more than just weekends is more sales on your calendar. And if you price it right, a weekday option could be a real value for budget-conscious couples or those who are looking for an elegant option but without all of the fuss.
Shorter Hours but Higher Margin
When you price your weekday options, keep in mind that there are likely noise ordinances to consider. Plus, local guests may be going to work the next day. This means that your offering does not have to be an all-day into the late-night affair. But that doesn't mean you have to heavily discount the venue fee due to fewer hours. You can still charge the same amount per hour as the weekend option but just shorten the window of the rental period.
Get "Last Minute Bookings"
Weekends are in high demand and are a finite resource. And most venues book 12-18 months in advance for the few precious available dates on a calendar. However, if you have a few weekday options available, you will be able to attract couples who have a need to get married sooner than later. This can happen for a variety such as military deployments or a couple who has been married before and the next go-around is a more laid-back affair. I know a venue owner with weekday options that has a calendar that is about 50% advance bookings and 50% last minute (under 3 months between booking and event.)
Get Other Events
There are other events that families are in need of venues and those include things like family reunions, birthday parties, quinceaneras, and memorial services. While some of those events are pre-planned, oftentimes that are not planned as far out as a wedding. So these groups are looking for venue options too.
Con's of Weekday Options
Less Time for Routine Maintenance Between Events
Weddings are wear and tear on your property. Whether it's the lawn or the rental chairs. Having a week to take your time and repair what needs to be repaired (including maybe even yourself) some days doesn't feel long enough. When you start having weekday events, you have less time to turn the property around and keep it in tip-top shape.
Less Alone Time for You and Your Family
If the venue is your home, then having more people on the property will cut into your private life. It's already demanding giving up your weekends to strangers. But when you add in a couple of extra days during the summer on top of that, it can be overwhelming.
Now, if you decide you want to add Weekday options, make sure you do these three things:
Don't underprice yourself
Just because weekday weddings can be less expensive for couples overall, don't discount your prices because you think you need to. It still takes the exact same amount of money to run the wedding on Tuesday as it does on Saturday. In my Financials online course, I go through how to determine your venue's breakeven point and the best ways to determine what to charge. It's important you do that exercise so that you can ensure that whatever you decide to price your weekday options, you are still making enough money to be sustainable and profitable.
Know What You're Offering
This means figure out what your weekday options look like because what you do for the weekends might not work. I suggest having a few choices for people, based on the different types of events you could be booking. For example, if you have a space that's good for corporate events or meetings, then maybe have a weekly hourly rate that has limited use of the facilities (like no changing room access.) On the other hand, if you want to be more efficient and earn a higher margin, you may opt to have minimum time blocks that a group has to rent for, like a four-hour minimum with an hourly add-on for extra time. Whatever it is, make sure it works and you are clear on how to price it since weekday needs are different from weekend events.
Don't Overschedule Yourself
That's right - don't fill your schedule up Monday through Sunday. If you do that, you'll find that something is going to get shortchanged. It will either be your maintenance and repair work or you will be double-booking people's rehearsals. Both of those will leave a bad taste in the customer's mouths if they see an overworked venue owner with a trampled lawn or they find out that they are sharing the ceremony space with another family during their private rehearsal.
In conclusion, it is important to consider the pros and cons of weekday wedding options when developing your venue’s pricing and operating structure. If you have decided on including weekday weddings as a part of your offerings, make sure that these days are priced appropriately so that they don't take away from other days in terms of revenue potential or lose them business entirely. To help with this decision process we offer our course "Wedding Venue Business Financials" where I talk about how to set up all aspects of your venues' financials and pricing structures. The course comes with lifetime access for one low price! Sign up today at https://ameequiriconi.thinkific.com/courses/wedding-venue-financials