Monday, July 29, 2013

How To Grow Any Business - Part 6

Monday, July 29, 2013 10:52 AM
In our last post that we made concerning How To Grow Any Business, we focused on increasing the number of transactions our customers do with us. In this post of How To Grow Any Business we are going to focus on:

How To Increase The Average Size Of Transactions Our Customers Do With Us.

In other words, how do we get our customers to buy more, to spend more money with us? This is a great question and extremely valuable.

Before we go any further we need to clear something up. I have heard over the years people say that you should be trying to get people to spend less. This really isn't true; you should do all that you can to take care of your customer’s needs. Sometimes they will spend more and sometimes they will spend less to accomplish  
their goals.

There is so much available business in the world you don’t need to mislead people or try and pack on more than they need, you just need to help them meet their objectives. Our job is to take care of our customers to the best of our abilities and that is what we are going to do.

Back to our subject for today: How do we increase the size of the orders that we get from our customers? In our last post we gave a few clues to how to accomplish this.

First thing that you need to know is your customer, what they do, their needs, their pain, etc. Some of you may be asking yourself why they would tell you their pain. Because they want someone to take it away! They want someone to come in and help them not just try to sell to them.

If we really believe the statement “It’s All About Them, It’s Not About You,” then we will try to see everything from their point of view. Most businesses start out this way but as they grow they begin to think that the marketplace should conform to them. Once we begin to think this way it is the beginning of the end of our business.

Get together with your customers and prospects and ask them what they are going through, what is their biggest pain, what do they need or want changed? These questions can lead to huge amounts of business.

Once you go through this exercise you will begin to see ways to grow that are easy to implement. You may be pushing a particular type of product or service but your customer actually wants something else. Once they learn they can get it from you they will buy from you.

Let’s look at the example we used in an earlier blog post. When someone buys a large amount of computers, the company selling the computers is happy and they are all feeling great about what they have just done. This is good however, there was far more to this sale if they looked a little deeper into it.

What are they hooking the computers up to? How will they get them all installed? Do they need software, cables, furniture to put them on, the software installed, a network configuration, etc.?

You might be thinking that you don’t do all of these things, but someone else does. Find the best people that do this in your area or the area where the customer wants this done, and partner up to get the work. Your customer will love you for this because they don’t have to find and manage all of these people, you can do this for them. We have made millions in sales doing this and we got a piece of all of it from all of our partners because we had the customer.

What about packaging items together? Increase the normal quantity and give them a better price and your sales will go up (think Costco, Home Depot, Sam’s Club, etc.).

Does this work for every business? Absolutely! If you are in business and are taking care of your customer’s needs, you can be sure there are things they are buying that they are not getting from you. Figure out what these things are – how?

Go through all of the items that you sell. Now make a list of all of the other items that would complement them. For instance:

            -Sell carpet? What about the installation, cleaning, removal, etc. Why not get together  with an interior designer to help out and add that as a bonus. What about painting, or cleaning their upholstery? What about partnering with an upholsterer? You can keep  going with this.

            -Are you a hair salon? Why not add all of the hair care products in a bundle and offer a special? What about partnering with an upscale clothing store and get a discount for your customers? Don’t forget that you get a cut of all of the sales they make. How about a local gym, once they get their haircut they will look great and want to feel even better?

            How about going to the gym and offering a discount to all of their members? How about a   special treatment for those that lose the most weight that month? The list goes on and on.

            -Are you an engineering firm? What about offering construction management? How about working out a deal with your suppliers to give your customers a discount and you  get a piece of all of it?

            -Sell computers? Work out something with cable installers, network designers, furniture    companies, electrical suppliers, electricians, fiber optic and copper cable companies.

            -Janitorial business? How about the paper products they use, coffee service, vending machines, office supplies, etc.?

No matter what products or services you sell, there is a lot more that goes with it that you are missing out on right now.

Here are some real life examples:

            -A salesperson at a computer company took our advice and turned a $60,000 order of computers, asked them what they were for and offered to handle the rest of the project and turned it into a $680,000 order – in about 10 minutes!

            -A company that we consulted always shut down in the month of December because of  such low sales and took a loss. When we showed them how to bundle their offerings their December turned in more profit than they had in their entire existence combined!

            -A salesperson at another company was asked for 60 HD T.V.’s. (they didn't sell   televisions but she asked us what to do). We said we would partner her with a company  that does but what are they using them for? It turns out they were for the Army and were   being used for training. They needed computers, networking gear, desks and chairs, someone to install it all, etc. It turned out to be over $1 million that they were going to turn away!

            -In a company that we were working with, they were having an issue with one of their best customers. They couldn't seem to win any more business and were stuck at a certain level. We went with them to their meeting and started asking some probing but friendly  questions. We found where they were having their issues, resolved them and saw their business grow by over $1 million per month, each and every month!

            -A salesperson in another company was working on a large order of computers for about   $60,000 - $80,000. We worked with them right on the actual call and within a few minutes turned it into over $800,000!

Don’t use the excuse that everyone uses “they already have someone that does that” nonsense. Of course they have people that do that, but that is part of their pain. They have to chase everyone down, make sure all is going well, put up with the finger pointing, etc. If you can offer all of these services and do it better, cheaper, faster, they will be interested.

Offer them one-time sales, specials, bundles, etc. Offer “Time of the Year” specials. New Year’s, Valentine’s Day, Customer Appreciation, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Iced Tea Day, Hot Chocolate Day, 4th of July, the list goes on!

Sit down and start to make your list of what other products and services you can offer to increase the size of your transactions. Don’t self-edit as you make your list just list everything that you can. Once you do this set up a plan as to how you are going to carry it out. Who will you need to partner with, what can you do on your own. How will you offer these items to your customers, etc.

We will continue in our next post.

Until then, we wish you all success!

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