If you want to grow your business, you need to get more sales. By definition, there are only three ways you can get that:
- Get more customers
- Sell more often to each customer
- Sell more in each transaction
Get More Customers
If you do not want your business to die, you need to acquire new customers all the time. In truth, you lose customers all the time. To grow your business and get more sales, you need to find more new customers than you lose current ones.
Finding new customers is expensive and can be difficult. Many businesses do not earn a profit and even make a loss on their first sale to a new customer, the so called front end sale. They need to go a long way to find a prospect, make him aware of the offer, get his interest, nurture his desire and finally induce him to act on the offer. You need lots of effort and high expenses to guide him through his decision making process.
Sell More Often to Each Customer
It is much easier to get more sales from an existing customer, because you have built already a trustful relationship with him. You can get his attention, and it is easier for him to act on his desire, because his risk to be disappointed or look like a fool is now much lower.
How often you can sell to each customer depends on your product or service, and on your effort. The best scenario you could dream up is a product which needs to be replaced or serviced every couple of months, and you can approach your customer at the right time to remind him about the need. One simple example would be your dentist. He will send you a letter to remind you that it is time for a new checkup and ask you to call for an appointment.
The same system lies behind the riches of Gillette, Procter & Gamble and Coca Cola. In these cases, the body reminds you that you need more razor blades, detergents or drinks. To get more sales the providers of these products need just to be present in your mind as well as in the store.
In internet marketing we use social networks and email to be present in the customers mind. It is a bit more difficult to come up with products which need to be replaced on a regular basis, because we sell typically immaterial products consisting of information. But still, information needs to be up to date, which opens the door for membership sites providing a steady stream of news about a certain topic.
It may also be a good idea to drop feed your information product to your customer. This approach may increase usability in a big way. And every time you deliver the next installment of the product, you have the chance to get more sales by offering him a related product or service. If you deliver too much information at once, the consumer may feel overwhelmed, and your product may end up collecting dust on your customer`s hard disk.
Sell More in Each Transaction
If you have made a sale you have got already your customers attention and interest. He is in the mood to act. The simplest way to get more sales from your existing customers is to offer them another related product, which may increase the usability of the product they just bought. One example would be the sales man for shoes, who will inevitably offer you a shoe polish as soon as you have bought your new boots. This is absolutely legitimate, and your customer has every right to be angry with you, if you do not offer this shoe polish, travel insurance, video tutorial etc. He wants the full value of the product you just sold him, and it is up to you to offer him complementary products and services.