Running a lemonade stand is a must-do summer childhood activity! Make the most out of your lemonade stand experience with these Top 10 Tips for having the best lemonade stand on the block.
1) Pick a great location - One where you’ll have high visibility, where safety around traffic won’t be an issue, and preferably in the shade for you and the sunshine for your customers! Wherever you pick, be sure to get permission (and permits, if needed).
2) Make it eye-catching - Use color! Dress up your table with a banner and some colorful signage to up your lemonade stand’s curb appeal. (We've made this free printable banner for you to use!)
3) Advertise - A lemonade stand with no customers isn’t nearly as fun as one with constant foot traffic. Hand out door flyers, put up some posters, and have your parents spread the word to their friends via email, text, or social media. This step is especially important if you choose to have your stand in front of your house! (Both of the lemonade supply packs in our shop include fill-in-the-blank flyers and signs.)
4) Offer an outstanding product - Make sure to taste-test your lemonade! If you don’t like it, your customers probably won’t either. Do something to make your lemonade a little special - Country Time lemonade can be just fine on it’s own, but adding some fresh strawberries or raspberries to your pitcher can elevate the whole experience. Or add a bit of lime juice using our favorite recipe: The Best Lemonade on the Block.
5) Offer more than just lemonade - What do people love on a hot summer day? What treats do kids go crazy for? Maybe add a cooler full of popsicles or water balloons, some watermelon slices, or a platter of fresh-baked cookies to your spread. Even a cup full of lollipops can be a simple and attractive way to include an additional item. If you add something messy, be sure to offer plenty of napkins! And don't forget a trash can for when people stick around while they enjoy their treats.
6) Price it right - Most people who come to a lemonade stand are coming because they want to support the kids running it, and are willing to pay more than you might expect. Here are two different ideas you could use to maximize your earnings:
Charge $.50 per cup of lemonade, and then create further opportunities for your customers to spend more by offering extras ($1 for a cupcake, $.50 for a cookie, $.25 for a lollipop, etc.).
Alternatively, you could make your lemonade stand free, asking for donations only. Most people are happy to drop some cash in your donations jar - especially if you advertise that you’ll be donating half of your sales to a particular charity (see tip #7). Of course, if donations are optional, be sure to serve with a smile whether your customers choose to donate or not!
7) Sharing is Caring - Find a charity you would like to support and commit to donating half of your earnings to it. People could get a drink anywhere, but they are coming to your lemonade stand because they want to help and support you - now pay it forward by helping support something you care about.
8) Service with a Smile - Remember that the way you treat your customers is important! They’ll come back year after year and spread the word to their friends if they enjoy your service. Plan out ahead of time what you will say to your customers (a friendly greeting and a sincere thank you are a good start), and consider what jobs need to be filled. Be organized about it - give everyone working at your stand a job to do. Order-taker, drink-pourer, cashier, sign-holder, entertainer… come up with a job for everyone and switch jobs after a while so everyone gets a chance to fill a variety of roles.
9) Set a goal - You’ll feel a real sense of accomplishment when you close your stand for the day if you’ve worked toward a goal! It could be an amount of money you’d like to earn, an amount of time you’d like to run your stand, a number of customers you’d like to serve. At the end of the day, celebrate your efforts no matter how close you got to accomplishing your goal and then make plans for how you’ll achieve even more when you run your lemonade stand again next summer.
10) Have fun! Whether you make it all the way to your goal or just accomplish a portion of it, the most important part of running your stand is to have fun! After all, that’s a kid’s most important job in the summer!