Six tips for making more sales
Not everyone’s a natural salesperson. Most business owners have to build up the confidence to make cold calls or pitch their business. Even if you’re a natural there are lots of improvements you can make to help you get more sales.
We have broken down six simple steps you can think about to help your small business make more sales.
1. Sell through stories
Stories help explain products to potential customers. They convey emotion and context, making them more powerful than a simple description.
It’s useful to remember stories that answer common questions about your business. This can include why you launched, managing client relationships or how your product has benefited a customer.
You won’t explain every feature this way, but it gives you a high impact explanation. This helps build confidence as you’ll know you’re not going to run out of things to say.
It’s worth practising a pitch about your business. You need to explain what you do and why in a concise manner. The 60 second explanation can be used with everyone from a conference contact to your aunt.
2. Improve your website CTAs
Customers enter your website on a variety of different pages, whether they find you through search or social media. This means every page should have a call to action (CTA). This is often a prompt to contact you or to buy a product online.
The contact methods are crucial. Depending on the service offered you might want to think about giving customers an option to call, email and chat to someone online.
Think about how quickly users can understand what you do. It’s common for visitors to spend no more than a few seconds scanning the page. Website designers use the five-second test to measure the impression users get when viewing a site.
Establishing trust, identifying with the customer and letting them know what you do will help increase website sales.
3. Establish a series of touch points
Whether you’re buying a fridge or a firework it’s likely you’ll have multiple touch points with a brand. Online shopping means customers look at a variety of sources of information.
This means it’s important to take a holistic view on how customers find your products. Think about potential purchasing paths and figure out if there's any part of your business's web presence that needs attention.
Think about creative ways that you can interact with your customers if you're selling direct. Cold calling is tough. If you've already had an exchange on social media or met them at a conference, it's a lot easier.
4. Start organising your CRM
Customer relationship management (CRM) systems store data about your customers. This often includes when they've been contacted and why, names, addresses and phone numbers.
The earlier you can start adding data to a CRM the better. Consider how your employees will use the information to help make sales and use this to build requirements for the software you choose.
It's important to include all the functionality you need but try to stay as simple as possible. If people ask for features, challenge them on its day-to-day impact.
Create a clear process for how data is added to the CRM and think about training. This helps ensure data added to the system is valuable.
5. Define your company values and USP
Defining and sharing your company values helps develop a company culture. It's impossible to have processes to dictate everything salespeople do. Building a strong sense of why the business exists and how you operate makes sure they operate in an effective way.
Values help customers to understand why the company exists and what kind of interaction they can expect. This helps build trust and increases sales. Try to include information about your values on your website and marketing material as well as sharing it with the team.
Your unique selling proposition (USP) differentiates your product or service from competitors. Common qualities include cost, quality, choice, speed and design. Choose which you want to focus on and spend time monitoring performance against them.
6. You need to kiss a lot of frogs
Sales can be difficult. Some small business owners struggle to make cold calls. Careful preparation and practice can help overcome nerves and make your calls more effective.
The sales process can be thought of as a funnel. At the top is the total number of potential clients a business interacts with. At each stage in the buying process the number of clients that move forwards decreases. This creates the funnel's unique shape.
Quality is important. But you also need to make sure you are adding enough people to the top of the funnel, whether you're an online business that sells a simple product or a complicated B2B sale.
Think about setting yourself targets for the number of people you talk to. Booking out time in the diary to make calls can be a useful motivator. Think about when it would make the most sense for your mood and the people you're contacting.