The only way that a business can continue to run and be alive, whether small or big business, is if they generate sales. Even small businesses become big businesses by just increasing their sales. But the issue for small businesses is whether the sales process is well organized and able to generate more sales in your business.
If there is one mistake that is common with small businesses, it is the fact that they do not work on developing themselves every day. This is what causes famine cash flow and would stress out any entrepreneur or a business owner.
When it comes to convincing your customers about the value of your service or products the best way to do it is by selling. This can be confusing for many people, and that is why they mix up sales and marketing. Marketing is basically passing on information about your company’s product or service and the solutions that it provides. On the other hand, sales require you to take orders for your company’s product or service. Building relationships is extremely important for small businesses because most of the customers, they will make and people they will sell to will be gotten through referrals from other customers. But if you are looking for means to increase your sales, the following tips will be very useful for you.
1. Understand your sales strategy
There is no way you will be successful and make enough sales in your small business if you do not have a solid understanding of who your target audience is. All of your marketing campaigns are aimed at driving sales. But how will you even run successful marketing campaigns if you do not know who your target audience is? Who are you campaigning to?
In order to understand your sales process, you need to know your niche customer or target audience. You should also have a persona for what your ideal customer will look like.
Some of the things that you should define clearly as well are the long-term goal or vision of your business, core values, yearly sales goals, and your core solutions and the value it carries. All of this will help you have successful sales. Selling is more straightforward if you have a well-developed sales strategy.
2. Have a sales process that you are consistent with
There are many factors that will determine the growth of your small business. One such very important factor is the level of productivity in your business and in the growth of your sales process. By developing a sales process, on that is well-outlined, you are able to set sales goals for your business, develop sales funnels, generate leads consistently, track communication, and also decide on how much time you will invest in engaging your target audience and prospective customers.
Being consistent in following a well-developed sales process will give you the chance to reevaluate your sales performance in relation to your sales process. It also allows you to train your sales rep to be more effective and improve in certain areas of sales. One major advantage that you will enjoy is your sales rep being able to add their own unique touch and personality to the selling process. When you are consistent in following the sales process that you developed, it is easier for you to train your sales rep to follow the same processes and be consistent and effective at it.
3. Make use of data and analytics
There are a million and one analytical tools that have been built to help both small and large businesses to measure their sales performance and also work on how to improve sales.
You might not really be able to tell how much you are doing in terms of sales without analytics. With data, you can easily increase your sales communications. You should try to not settle with what you “feel” is the best way to make sales. There are too many options for you to choose from these days if you want programs that can help you automate your marketing process or you want high-quality CRM.
By integrating this software into the sales system of your business, you can easily collect data on your customers and prospective customers, track the open rates of your email, compare buying activities of customers, social media interactions, you also get to understand the different types of customers that you have and decide how best to communicate with them. This way, you will be engaging your customers in the best way they can respond to you. The more understanding of their needs, motives, and preferences that you have, the better you can communicate the value of your solution to them. People will be more than willing to buy a solution if it truly solves their problem.
4. Determine if you need sales help
Because your business is still a small business, there are chances that you are still the only one in charge of sales and market expanding. This, indeed, saves you the cost of hiring a sales rep. But if all goes according to your plan and wish, it will be impossible for you to run the business solely, especially the sales. It is at this point that you determine to get a sales rep. If you get a sales rep before this time, you might just be incurring unnecessary costs for your business.
Whenever you do decide to bring in a sales rep, one important factor that you must consider is the kind of the first impression that your customers will have of them. So, you must be careful when choosing a sales rep because they are truly “represent” you and your brand, and it is assumed that whatever they do is what you would have done. Therefore, your sales rep will always be a factor in determining how much or how little sales you make.
Before you bring in a sales rep, it is important that you, first of all, define your sales goals and sales process. This will serve as a guide to the sales rep. Then you should already know the attributes you have in a sales rep.
5. Create your buyer persona
This is the part of running a small business where your imagination comes into play. As a business owner, you have to be able to fictionally idealize who your ideal customer is. You can internalize your buyer persona so you know the type of customer that you want to attract. This way, you are more real when relating to your customers. You have an upper edge in product development, content creation, and sales follow up, and other things relating to acquisition and retention of customers if you have an in-depth understanding of the persona of your buyers.
You might want to create a document that outlines the buyer persona for your existing customers and prospective customers.
6. Take advantage of your wide network.
When it comes to growing a small business, you need all the help that you can get online and offline, from family, friends, and social media followers. So, you really should not be shy to ask someone for help. For instance, if you know someone who is an expert sales trainer, and you can walk up to them and ask questions, engage them in conversations, and listen to their suggestions and how you can do better in your sales performance.
If you need a sales rep and you do not have an idea how to get one, ask your network. There will always be somebody that knows another person that can help. While trying to leverage on personal networks, it is good that you do the most of it offline but you should as well know that your network extends online too and there are some helps that you need that are more suited for your online network.
If you want recommendations for a sales rep, you can ask people offline but if you want practical tips on how to improve your sales, that is more suited for that salesmen group or business owners group you joined on Facebook or Quora. The point is, you need help to grow your business and you can get it anywhere.
7. Build relationships with an email newsletter
Now you have a list of email subscribers, people who are prospective customers or are already your customers. Email marketing is known as one of the most effective ways to reach out to your prospects. But beyond just reaching out, you can as well build relationships with them so that you can successfully transition them from leads to customers. And the best way to communicate consistently with your prospects is with your email newsletter.
You must, however, be careful not to overdo it. If possible, you can ask them for the frequency with which they receive their newsletter, so it does not appear as spam.