How to dramatically increase sales revenue for your small business without spending a fortune
Advertising can be a fantastic way to attract new customers to your small business, but it can be very expensive too! So, it's a good idea to try out some free and low-cost sales and marketing strategies and tactics too.
Below, you'll learn how you can create a real buzz for your small business and increase sales revenue through social media, search engine optimization (SEO), blogging, email marketing and much more.
Plus, you'll discover how you can convert far more of the existing sales leads you already get into paying customers who will buy from you time after time, boosting both your sales turnover today and in the future.
Our Free Review gives you expert advice on how your small business can quickly get new customers and significantly increase both sales and profits.
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Blogging generates interest and real sales revenue for small businesses
Starting a blog or reactivating one you started and then stopped, can be a fantastic way to build interest in your small business, leading to actual sales to both new and existing customers.
Make your blog informative, interesting and focus on your customers' specific needs and wants. Write regularly about the topics and subjects where you (and your business) have the most knowledge and expertise.
Always include direct links to what you actually sell, when this is relevant to the blog article, but don't have too many links or promotional adverts, as this can be off-putting and annoying.
A blog allows you to give something valuable (information / advice) to your potential new customers, without asking anything in return. This allows you to build credibility, authority and demonstrate your expertise within a specific sector.
You'll build a relationship with potential and existing customers, making it much easier to sell, as people prefer to buy from businesses they know and trust. Regular blogging can therefore help your small business to grow and sell more.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) drives new customers to your website
If your small business has a website, then you would be wise to embrace Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), as it can greatly increase sales revenue and the reach of your business.
SEO is all about optimising your web pages to improve your ranking in the major search engines results pages for the search terms that you want to rank for. Whatever you sell, if you get on the first page of Google, you'll get a lot of website visitors!
Even small businesses can reach international audiences without having to establish a presence in each country, using a website and proven SEO strategies.
You can sell worldwide from just a base in the UK, selling your services directly to customers and selling goods via international couriers.
Make sure you devote sufficient time to develop and implement a cohesive SEO strategy that integrates with your other sales and marketing strategies, so you maximise your return on investment.
Social media allows you to market to both new and existing customers
Small businesses that use social media well can quickly grow their sales, but for others it can be a complete waste of time. It all depends on the type of business you have and how you use it.
For small businesses, it's normally best to concentrate your efforts on just a few platforms, because social media can take a great deal of your time and you don't want to spread yourself too thinly.
Instagram and Pinterest are great if what you sell is very visual, or if your own sales and marketing is very visual, as both are led by pictures / photographs. YouTube allows you to upload videos, which will be promoted to their own visitors.
You must develop a proactive social media strategy, connecting and interacting with prospective and existing customers. Demonstrate your expertise and build a bond that makes people want to buy from your business.
Email marketing drives sales to your small business and can be automated
Email marketing is one of the most effective strategies for generating both sales leads and actual orders for your small business. Used correctly, it can completely transform your sales revenue at very little cost.
You can send emails directly to customers yourself and you can also use an email marketing system to automatically send out articles, links to your blog and most importantly emails that promote your products / services.
Delivering value every time you send out an email is critical. This could be telling customers about the features and benefits of your product / service or interesting facts and figures that are relevant to their sector.
Failing to provide anything of value will lead both existing and prospective customers to delete your emails, unsubscribe or worse still report your emails as spam, which can damage your email deliverability.
So, as well as marketing messages, send plenty of educational 'How to' articles relevant to your market / sector, because customers really love these and they'll help you make more sales.
Spending more time on sales and marketing will grow your sales revenue
Sounds obvious, but far too few small businesses devote enough time to sales and marketing activities. Literally, the more time you spend on promoting and selling your small business, the more sales revenue you'll generate.
Try to reduce the time your business spends on administration, accounting, social media (personal use and business use that isn't producing results), etc.
Prioritise sales and marketing activities by ensuring time is blocked out in your and your team's diaries / weekly planner, so that you can't put it off.
Don't let co-workers or anyone else interrupt you when you're meant to be spending time on sales and marketing, unless it's really urgent or it's a customer.
How much extra sales revenue could your small business generate if you spent more time on selling and marketing to new and existing customers? Plus, you could develop new revenue streams and markets for your products / services.
Get new sales for your small business from recommendations and referrals
Satisfied customers may recommend your business to friends, family, acquaintances and business colleagues / associates. People are always looking for recommendations, it's much safer than just choosing a business at random!
As well as recommendations, you can actively ask your satisfied customers if there is anyone they could refer to your business that needs your particular product / service.
Most small businesses can expect to get a few recommendations if they do an excellent job. But if you want to get a lot more, then you need to develop a proper strategy / system to proactively encourage your satisfied customers to promote your business.
Prospective customers who are referred or recommended to you are typically more likely to buy from your business, i.e. a higher percentage will convert into paying customers. So, the more you get, the faster your sales will grow.
A referral and recommendation system can be an immensely powerful marketing tool, generating lots of additional sales revenue at minimal cost to your business.
Sales promotions can bring in lots of extra money for small businesses
Having a limited-time sale can rapidly boost your sales revenue, depending on the type of products and services you sell. It isn't for every business, but some businesses make most of their sales turnover from promotional sales.
It's vital any sales promotion has a limited timeframe to stir up interest and force customers to decide whether they want to buy your product / service now, to receive a discount.
The bigger the discount, the more eye-catching it is for customers, typically 20%, 30% or even 40% off. Obviously, it depends on what your margins are, as to how much of a discount you can offer.
Always ensure that what you're discounting is popular. If few customers want it, then you won't stir up any interest or buzz about it or your brand.
You don't have to discount everything you sell, just enough to get your customers' attention. Once you've got it, you can also sell them other items at the same time that aren't in the sale - that's where you can make plenty of extra cash.
Delivering outstanding customer service keeps customers coming back
How good or bad your customer service is determines whether customers order again from you or go straight to your competitors. Plus, satisfied customers recommend your business and dissatisfied customers tell everyone how bad you are.
Make sure you and anyone that comes in contact with customers delivers a great customer experience, to ensure customers continue to buy from your business.
You (or another member of staff) should always follow-up with each customer at a suitable point, to check they're satisfied and to resolve any problems with your product / service.
This shows you care about your customers and allows you to improve your business. It can stop you losing sales by turning dissatisfied customers into satisfied customers, who will buy again from you.
Small businesses often overlook their customer service, but it's vital to be memorable to keep customers. Plus, the longer you keep customers the more you can sell to them and the more your sales revenue will grow.
Reward your loyal customers and they'll keep buying from your business
Give your regular customers preferential treatment to show that you value them and the business they give you. This builds customer loyalty, and loyal customers spend more and buy more frequently, which will increase your sales revenue.
You can offer them limited-time exclusive deals or discounts only available to your loyal customers. Make sure you tell them they are special, for example: 'This offer is only available to our most highly valued customers on a secret part of our website.'
Rewarding your loyal customers who frequently buy from you makes sound business sense. You want to give customers a reason to come back to your business.
You want something that's easy for the customer to understand and very simple for you to administer. A good example of this is the loyalty cards coffee shops give you to get a free coffee, after you've collected a certain number of stamps.
As a small business, you must think about how you can reward your loyal customers, so they don't even think about buying elsewhere. This will definitely boost your sales revenue.
Networking your way to greater sales success
Networking is a fantastic way to quickly boost your sales. When you network with customers directly, it's easy to identify their needs and whether they're right for your business. Check out:
- Trade expos / shows targeting the sectors you sell your products / services to, which works well for both business-to-consumer and business-to-business.
- Associations / institutes in the sectors your customers are active in can also lead to sales; attend events, seminars, presentations, workshops, meetings, trade shows, etc.
- Depending on what you sell, local business groups and local chambers of commerce can also be a major source of potential customers.
- National and local networking groups, including groups focusing on specific types of people, such as young business people or older entrepreneurs.
- Online networking websites such as LinkedIn, which allow you to find and interact with potential customers.
Take massive action now to drastically increase your sales revenue
As you've seen, there are plenty of free or relatively cheap sales and marketing strategies and tactics that can quickly boost your sales revenue. Make sure you allocate sufficient time to develop and apply them within your small business.
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