Tree Lot Yearly Planning Guide
Source: North Carolina Christmas Tree Association website:

http://ncchristmastrees.com/RetailerCalendar.pdf 


Winter
• Review customer demographics for target area
• Review local and state laws (Permits, right-of-ways, signage)
• Identify potential lot sites
• Identify & contact landowners
• Identify possible charity partners

Spring
• Initial contact with tree suppliers
• Sign lease with landowner
• Develop or review business plan
• Secure pre-approval for financing

Summer
• Make a deposit on tree order
• Identify sources for Freight, Liability insurance, Local bank account, Tent rental, Port-a-johns, Fencing if needed, Lodging / camper, Security, Utilities, Telephone

Early Fall
• Touch base with Landowner, Hudler Tree Farm, Charity partner
• Advertise for employees
• Order signs, banners

October
• Finalize all contracts & permits
• Hire employees
• Order uniforms, jackets, or t-shirts
• Order point-of-sale materials

Early November
• Finalize tree delivery
• Set up retail lot, storage, & display
• Review inventory & accounting systems
• Review parking & traffic flow
• Initiate advertising

Mid / Late November
• Train & motivate employees
• Properly store & display trees
• Monitor inventory & cash
• Survey customer satisfaction
• Visit competing lots in target area

December
• Maintain quality of inventory & service
• Cull dry trees
– Do not sell at bargain prices
• Conduct employee exit interviews
• Make deposit on site for next year

Points to Discuss Hudler Tree Farm:

Tree numbers by size & grade
• Height standards?
• Grade standards?
• Presence of handles?

Other products
• Wreaths, roping
• B & B trees

Written contract
• Delivered quality?
• Retail tree care?
• Death of either party?
• Legal venue?
• Arbitration?

Payment
• Certified check?
• Percent down?
• Schedule?

Transportation
• Arranged by?
• Number of deliveries?
• Shipping dates?

Customer Service
• Tree care literature?
• NCCTA retail materials?
• Tree shaking?

Contingencies
• Weather?
• Transportation