By Steve Noe
As I write this column on Groundhog Day (February 2), I certainly hope that you’ve made the most of your off-season by following all of the excellent spring preparation advice in the past few issues of OPE. After all, Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow this morning, so spring is due to arrive early this year.
In the past two issues alone, we let you know what to expect in 2016 from 13 top executives in our annual two-part “Industry Forecasts” series, so you could plan your year accordingly. Jeff Sheets of OPE Consulting Services provided best practice articles on “Creating a service department to be a rose — not a thorn” in January and his “Top 10 marketing and sales tips” in February, so you could ramp up your service department and fine-tune your marketing and sales efforts. ARI’s Colleen Malloy provided additional marketing advice with two easy-to-execute digital marketing campaigns in her “Spring Marketing Jumpstart Guide” in January and her “In-store marketing makeover” article in February. We also published a pair of wealth management articles, including a timely article on “7 things every business owner should do in 2016” in the February issue.
And if that wasn’t enough spring prep help, we’re offering plenty more of it in this issue of OPE. To make sure you’re keeping up with the latest technology trends to maximize your efficiency and profitability this spring, we bring you the results of our fourth annual “Business Management Software Systems and Website Services survey.” Colleen Malloy, who was one of the survey’s five gracious participants, also provided a “Website Audit Checklist” article to make sure your website is meeting today’s tough standards before the spring rush. In his monthly best practices article, Jeff Sheets provides you with tips on how to manage your parts and equipment inventory “just right.” And with the April 15 tax-filing deadline just around the corner, Barry Edelstein, CPA, of Warady & Davis LLP, provides you with an overview of the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 (PATH Act) and some of its major provisions.
If you no longer have your January or February 2016 issues of OPE — or any of your recent back issues for that matter — you’re in luck because you can simply go to our website at outdoorpowerequipment.com and access our “Digital Edition Archives” in two ways. One, you can go to the left navigation bar, and below the “Multimedia” section, click on “Digital Edition Archives.” Two, you can go to the top navigation bar, click on the “Resources” tab, drop down and click on the “Back Issues” tab, and then click on “Digital Edition Archives.”
Well, I hope that Punxsutawney Phil is correct with his prediction for an early spring and that you find we’ve prepared you well for its arrival. I also hope the weather cooperates, and you enjoy a successful spring and prosperous 2016!
OPE Editor Steve Noe