Industry sector: Leisure

Pool hall: Cash sales

'Cash sales' means all income from your main business activity which is received at the time of sale. While a large percentage of your takings is likely to be in cash particularly if you are using coin-operated machines and/or table lights, remember that Cash sales can also include:

  • debit and credit card payments
  • cheques, if you decide to accept them - for example, you are likely to accept cheques from any account customers you have, from people booking the hall for an event or competition and for annual subscriptions from club members if you operate in this way

To prepare your cash flow, you need to estimate how much income you will receive over the next twelve months from your snooker and pool tables, including VAT. You will also need to decide on the services you will offer and what you will charge for them. If you're going to operate as a members club you'll need to decide if you'll charge an annual subscription fee and how much will it be.

There are a number of things to consider when you make your estimates:

Level of demand

You need to decide whether there is room for your business in the area you want to set up in. Try to find out how many direct competitors you will have, check out the level of service they offer and then try to identify reasons why customers will choose your club rather than your competitors. If there aren't many - or any - local competitors, try to establish why that is. It may be that there is genuinely a gap in the market or alternatively it may be that there is simply no demand for a pool and snooker club - try to find out if any clubs have closed down in recent years.

Your services

The level of services you offer can affect how easily you are able to attract and retain members. You may decide to branch out from the core areas of snooker and pool to provide your customers with a full leisure experience, including food and drink, music, videos, gaming and amusement machines.

Your prices

The prices you are able to charge may depend on what your competitors charge. To attract custom during quiet times, you may decide to introduce a sliding scale of charges for playing snooker and pool or to reduce bar and restaurant prices.

To help with your decisions, click on the checkpoints for guidance. Once you have worked out a Cash sales figure add it to the relevant field in your cash flow forecast.