Are you looking for simple and effective ways to boost sales for your business?
In this article we will discuss a few easy to implement techniques that can help you start boosting your sales as quickly as possible.
In today's current economy where the cost of living is increasing rapidly, and consumers are spending less while trying to make ends meet, many small business owners are struggling to survive. Their profit margins are getting smaller and they are constantly looking for simple and effective ways to attract more customers and close more sales.[optin-monster-shortcode id=”vtgs3rsomamaru13″]
With the decrease in profits they are faced with another problem, they have less money to spend on customer acquisition and marketing. This is causing them to look for more creative, cost effective ways to generate leads and boost sales.
This isn't necessarily a bad thing as a matter of fact many small businesses and privately owned companies are doing better in today's marketplace than their larger competitors, simply because they're learning how to be more innovative when it comes to perfecting their sales process.
Now let’s go over a few quick things that you can do to start making more sales for your business. While you may be familiar with some of these methods, we have included them because they are tried, tested and proven to help boost sales.
Unique value position (UVP)
Before you can begin planning a strategy to boost your sales, it’s important to understand what your business has to offer that your competitors don’t. That way you can tailor your marketing campaign for maximum exposure. If your product or service provides customer with specific benefits make sure you emphasize them in your sales materials.
Ask yourself these questions about your online business:
- What does your business offer that your competitors don’t?
- Why should customers buy from you instead of the competition?
- What guarantee can you make that the competition can’t?
When you can answer these questions then you will be better able to create a marketing campaign that will reach your ideal target audience.
Before launching a new campaign, make sure you have a clear and solid plan for converting leads into paying customers. Having a good sales funnel is necessary if you want to increase your profits. Think about it this way; you are going to be spending your hard-earned profits on advertising if you don’t have a plan to capture the contact information of people who seed your ads so you can follow up with them and convert them to customers your just wasting your money.
When your budget is tight it is even more important to make sure that your time and money is spent on things that are going to achieve results. When it comes to qualifying prospects, the faster you can determine if you've got a real (potential) customer or just a tyre kicker the better.
This is one of the most overlooked but most essential stages of the sales process. When it comes to qualifying leads here are a few questions for you to consider that may help.
- Authority – is the lead the decision maker?
- Need – are your products or services a good fit for their needs?
- Urgency – are they ready to buy now? If not, when?
- Money – can they afford you?
Once you have a solid, understanding of the challenges that your potential customers are facing and their spending power you will be better able to target your marketing efforts and create a sales funnel that pre-qualifies them. This way you won’t waste time and money on campaigns that don’t work.
While, price and product benefits are obvious buying factors, the less obvious ones are intuition, impressions, and relationships. It's important to keep in mind that prospects are just as likely to buy for emotional reasons as for practical ones.
Part of your job is to show them that you’re sincere, honest and that you value your business arrangement. You can do this by offering top-notch products, providing great customer service and by never making a promise that you can’t keep. For instance, if you tell them their shipment will arrive on Tuesday make sure you can deliver.
While all of the things mentioned so far may seem too simple and obvious to be effective, don’t take them for granted. Just because they are easy doesn’t mean they won’t work. They have been proven effective and time tested, so why not give them a try to see if they will work for your business.
Customer experience, communication and benefits.
When it comes to boosting sales there are so many strategies to choose from it can be confusing. In fact, if you do a search online for the term “boost sales” you will find hundreds of thousands of results filled with tips and information that can help you reach your goals, which most of the time only leads to more confusion.
Make the consumers buying experience as easy and painless as possible. Don't make your customer jump through hoops to buy your products. They'll only get frustrated and walk away! While there may be a lot of information that you want to collect from your new customer it’s important not to ask for too much information up front.
Instead, ask for the bare minimum from the customer, so they can complete their purchase as quickly as possible. If you want to gather more demographics from them later on, follow-up by sending a thank you note, asking them to fill out warranty information or take a quick customer survey. I know this may not seem like a big deal to you but you may be surprised to find out how many sales you are losing because your checkout process is too complicated.
Good communication is the key to closing more sales. It is important to follow-up with new prospects and customers in a timely manner. Keeping the lines of communication open allows you gain more trust and credibility, which will turn into more sales of your product or service! Encourage your customers to ask questions.
Always do your best to put them at ease and let them know that they're not bothering you or wasting your time to ask you a question. Answer each question honestly and promptly. Remember, most customers can tell when you're being untruthful. If you don't know the answer to one of their questions, don't make something up simply tell them you'll find out for them as soon as possible and let them know.
One of the best ways to find out what is on the mind of your customers is to create a survey. This can help you find out what motivates them to buy and provide you with valuable insight into their wants and needs. This will help you learn how to reach your target market more effectively. If you find that people aren’t very interested in taking your survey try offering an incentive, a free gift or discount for giving you their feedback.
When it comes to finding out what your customers want there are many free and affordable services the make surveying fast and easy. Most of them will even help you track your results.
Here are a few places you can start:
When it comes to closing the sale, it's important that you talk about the benefits of your product or service. Sure features and specs are important but save them for later. Your customers don't want to know the all the technical details about your product or service; they just want to know what it can do for them!
Benefits show off the value of your product much better than features. Let your prospect know exactly what your product can do for them. Will it help them make more money, have more time, reduce their stress, give them energy, help them live longer, etc. This is what they want to know and this is what will help boost your sales. Again, these are only a few simple things you can do. But, they are all tried, tested and proven effective when it comes to boosting sales.
Put yourself in your customers shoes
Most people have a built in instinct when it comes to sales pitches. It’s like they can feel it when you want to sell them something. It makes them feel uncomfortable and puts them on guard almost instantly. It’s your job to put their mind at ease and alleviate any doubt they may have about your product or service.
One way you can do that is to put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Don’t assume that just because something is important to you that it is important for them. Take some time and try to look at what your business has to offer from your customer’s point of view. Keep this general rule in mind, “take care of your customer and he'll take care of your business”.
When you offer customers useful products and services that will make a difference in their lives, they will reward you with repeat business and lifelong loyalty.
Did you know that people often associate premium products with higher prices? So it only stands to reason that raising prices will boost sales. Now I know that may seem a bit crazy especially if you are barely making enough sales to reach your quotas but in most cases, a price increase will set you apart from the competition and implies that your product is better. However, do take special care that the customer must see the value of the higher price.
When it comes to boosting sales public perception of your business brand is what will put you ahead of the competition. According to most experts, it’s extremely important for small businesses to brand themselves. Conveying a solid brand message in everything you do from your logo to your marketing materials can have a huge impact on your profits. It makes your business recognizable and more memorable.
This sales tactic has been used for decades and it still hasn’t gone out of style. The next time you are planning on running a sale, try adding a time limit to your promotional materials. Setting up time limited offers causes people to take action right away. They don’t have time to think about your offer, change their minds or wait to make a purchase. If they want to take advantage of it, they are forced to act fast, which means more sales for you.
The fear or pain of loss is another very powerful sales-boosting tool that has been around for a long time. The emotions associated with pain and loss can trigger a consumer’s response to your product or service. If you offer, a product or service that can keep them from feeling those emotions make sure you use that to your advantage.
Design your promotions in a way that makes your potential customer feel like if they don’t get your product or service right now, they will be missing out on something that can help them avoid those feelings.
What motivates people to buy?
Every business owner wants to know the answer to this question. After all, if you know how to motivate people to buy, then you should have no trouble boosting your sales, which is the ultimate goal.
Once upon a time, the golden rule was give people what they need, because that is what they will spend their money on. While that may well have been the case a few decades ago, things are a little bit different now.
Statistics show that in today's media driven society people are actually spending more money on the things that they want like, smart TV's, High Tech Electronics and leisure activities than they are on the necessities like food and shelter!
That’s why it only stands to reason if you have a product or service to sell you need to present it to your prospects as something they want. Focus on what is in it for them, stress the benefits and make them feel like it is something they absolutely must have. Make them feel like they can't live without it.
People buy because they get pleasure from their purchase. They don't walk into a car dealership and buy the latest model because they need it they do it because it makes them feel good to drive it.
Whether it is the comfort of the plush leather seats, the power windows, or the symbol of status, they just love driving their new car! Whatever their reason, you can rest assured that their decision was based on want, not need.
Want isn’t the only thing that motivates people to make a purchase. While it is the leading factor, many other triggers can motivate them to whip out their wallets. For instance, if you can connect your product or service to consumers in a way that can helps them:
- Make more money
- Save more time
- Be more comfortable
- Be happier and healthier
- Be more popular
- Increase their enjoyment
- Attract the opposite sex
- Escape pain and sadness
- Avoid trouble
- Make life easier
Or take advantage of opportunities that will benefit them in a positive way then you can motivate them to take action. Once you find out what they want and present your product or service to the in a way that makes them feel like they can't live without it, you should have no trouble boosting sales for your business.
The Power of Testimonials
If you shop online or if you've ever made a purchase from a website like Amazon then chances are testimonials probably played a big part in your decision making process.
Customer testimonials have the power to boost your sales substantially and they do it without spending and extra money on advertising. They are excellent emotional triggers. A glowing recommendation from happy customer can create a level of trust and provide potential customers with the ability to imagine what it would be like to purchase your products or services.
Typically, when someone begins shopping for a new product and service, one of the first things they take into consideration is the recommendation of others. They seek advice from family, friends, strangers and testimonials. They do this because they want to make an informed choice. Testimonials give them insight into how other people feel about the product or service as well as a good idea of what can do for them.
One of the best ways to get people to make a purchase is to introduce them to other satisfied customers. Since taking your (happy) customers with you to every business meeting or sales call isn’t practical you should set up a process for collecting their testimonies this way you can share them with your new prospects as social proof that you provide great products or services.
While this is an easy step to take, many businesses ignore it and they end up losing sales! The process is simple; all you have to do is ask your current customers to share the experience they have had with your business, product or service. You can ask them to write it down or record it with their permission.
It’s important to let them know how you’re planning to use the information they share with you. This will help avoid any potential legal issues that could arise due to copyright laws or FTC (Federal Trade Commission) regulations.
Try to collect several different testimonials relating to different aspects of your business, products or services. This way you can use the one that best fits the new customer you are working with. Once you have several testimonials you can add them to your print advertising, your website or create a presentation to share at meetings or online.
Remember, nothing sells better than truth and you can't get any closer to the truth than when it comes from someone who’s had a real life experience with your business, products or services.
Whenever possible, show pictures of customers using your product or service. Combine them with a glowing testimonial and you will be amazed at how fast it will help boost sales.
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If you would like more advice on how to boost sales for your online business please don’t hesitate to contact us. We have helped many businesses just like yours. Can you really afford not to?