If you’re experiencing a drop in revenue or looking for ways to increase sales for your small business, then this post is for you. Here are 7 sales tips for small business owners.
1. Know your potential audience
To find strategies and tactics for increasing sales, you need to know who your potential customers are. Identify them through website analytics, marketing and advertising activities, or your business social channels.
2. Ask and listen
Asking customers questions will help you figure out where they come from, what they need and want, and how your products/services can solve their problems. Without these useful insights, you can’t offer the value that your target market actually seeks.
But what kinds of questions should you ask? You can’t just ask some random questions and hope for helpful information to come back.
You should prepare some open-ended questions to guide the conversations between you and your potential buyers. Ask them, for example, how they prefer to make purchases, their payment methods, where they plan to use your products, and what they are looking for when buying from you.
3. Point out the “Why-s”
Many salespeople and business people are so eager to talk about “what” they sell, they forget to point out “why” customers should buy from them.
When pitching or writing copy for your product pages, your products/services should appear as “painkillers” for customers’ problems.
4. Better your communication
Every contact point with customers in your sales process should be pleasant enough, or even more than enough, to attract new customers and retain existing ones.
If your sales messages are always ignored, you may need to change their content and how you deliver them. Curate your messages to fit your prospective customers. Reach out to them through the channels they actually use.
You should also apply communication and sales methods that you and your staff haven’t tried before. Prepare sales pitches, welcoming messages, what you say after every transaction, how to make recommendations for upselling purposes, etc.
5. Showcase your potential and stand out
Today’s ultra-competitive market makes it easier than ever for people to find products and services that solve their problems. They simply type what they need on online search engines and social media platforms, and millions of results will pop right in front of their eyes. Your products might just get lost while potential buyers are weighing their options.
So you need to find a way to stand out from the crowd. Showcase your potential and your company image, as well as your offerings, through attractive videos and images. Join local events related to your industry. Collaborate with relevant businesses.
Many businesses also sell solutions—a customized combination of products/services—instead of one single product. Customers love this because they don’t have to suffer from decision fatigue due to the overload of choices.
But before buyers decide to purchase from you, you need to establish trust and credibility first. To do so, you can provide useful information and advice in the form of blog posts, videos, infographics, webinars, etc.
6. Nurture relationships with potential customers
Whether your business is selling in person or selling online, your customers are individual or business customers, you should never overlook customer relationships.
Retaining and building long-term relationships with existing customers is much more cost-effective than acquiring new customers. If you can maintain good relationships with your customers, further purchases will be done faster. They’ll choose your products more often and tell others about you too.
Many small businesses nurture their customers using the smallest gestures. They send a handwritten thank-you or apology card. Or offer a discount voucher after every purchase. Or give some product samples along with the purchased product.
7. Overcome sales objections
Sales objections don’t always mean bad. Sometimes, your product isn’t what some people look for, so they look elsewhere. Sometimes, people have actually considered your products/services, but they hold back because of several reasons. Try to figure out the reasons and make plans to convince those buyers to stay.
For example, if customers think that your products are too expensive, you don’t always have to reduce your prices immediately. Highlight your strengths. Present what makes your product better than your competitors and what unique values that customers can only get from you.
Whether you’re looking to increase your bottom line or survive periods of low revenues, the sales tips for small business owners above can help guide your practices in a way that makes sense.
Get to know your audience, make changes in your approaches, improve your communication, build better relationships with customers. All those efforts will improve your profits eventually.
And don’t forget to check out our post on how to pitch products.