Posts Tagged ‘sale’

Use This Easy And Proven Tip To Supercharge Sales

July 19, 2010

by Doug Smith, President, The Woodhaven Group

Are you a retailer?  Worried about whether you will  have enough cash flow from your business to buy inventory for the all important Christmas season?

Do this now with the fall merchandise coming into your stores and create the cash needed for fourth quarter. 

Hold a one day private pre-season Fall sale.

Follow these proven tips to make it a huge success:

  1. Send out a personalized letter only to your customer’s announcing that the sale will be for one day only.  Do not extend beyond this one day.  It creates a sense of urgency.
  2. Discount 40% on any merchandise purchased on this one day only.  This will especially work if you are a retailer that does not have your inventory on sale 24/7.
  3. Include in the letter a coupon at the bottom that must physically be presented at the time of purchase.
  4. Do not email this announcement.  Sometimes it is better to get something in hand that has to be brought to the store.  Save the online coupons for another time.
  5. If you sell apparel, offer free alterations for anything bought on this one day only.
  6. Personally sign the letter with your direct phone number listed.  Advise them that if they are going to be out-of-town that day to call and you will ring up the sale for them.
  7. No holds for a later decision.  At the end of this day the sale is over.
  8. Have all sales staff call their personal accounts and set an appointment to meet their customers in the store. Again, this creates a sense of urgency and shows that the sales staff cares about their customers.   
  9. Make the day a major in store event.  Maybe have wine, appetizers, live music. You get the idea.   

This sale can turn into an annual event that only you and your regular customers will know about.  It’s your own little secret. About the third year you do this event you will see some customers taking a vacation day from work just to be there early when the doors open.

A side benefit will be that you can get an early read on what  styles, colors, and fabrics the shopper is really going to be interested in for this fall and holiday season.  Now you have direction on what to buy for November delivery.

Also, don’t be surprised when your customer comes back  the week after the sale and pays full price for that item she chose not to buy the day of the sale.

Oh!……and one other benefit.  You have just supercharged your cash flow early in the shopping season.

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A Fool Proof Way To Generate Business Cash Flow Now!

July 11, 2010

by Doug Smith, President, The Woodhaven Group

Do you have customers who purchase from you daily, weekly or monthly?

Would you like to have those customers help you with your business cash flow?

No problem.

Here is what you can do.

Let’s say you are a chiropractor who charges $50 per visit and your average customer comes to you for 2 visits per month.  Offer your customer a discounted package of 12 visits, 30 visits or 52 visits if they pay upfront.

Impossible to do, you say.  It is happening everyday across America.  Currently, the average person earns maybe  1-3% at most on their cash if they invest in Treasurys or CDs.  The chiropractor might offer a discount of 10-15% for a package of visits.  It is a great deal for his customer (patient) and he gets use of the cash immediately.

Here is a sampling of businesses that could benefit from this pricing strategy:

  • Hair salons or barber shops
  • Massage therapists
  • Yard maintenance companies
  • Physical Therapists
  • Oil change companies
  • Car Washes
  • Commercial window washers
  • Residential cleaning services

An added advantage to using this approach is that it takes your customer out of the market.  If your customer has “prepurchased” from you, then chances are they will not be going to your competitor.  The only caveat to remember is that you have received your cash upfront.  It may be smart not to spend all this cash at once as this future cash flow will not be coming in as it has in the past.  A good cash flow forecast would be in order to assure there will be  no short falls.

Discounted packages are a core pricing and sales strategy for many small business owners.  You may want to test this program to see if it is right for your company.

The Personal Value System Of A Salesperson Can Quickly Kill Your Business Cash Flow

June 20, 2010

by Doug Smith, President, The Woodhaven Group

One mistake many sales people make when selling to a consumer is to project their own personal value system into the selling process.

That is a major mistake that can be the difference between closing the sale or being disappointed with the outcome.  The result is no sale and no addition to your business cash flow.  The prospect ends up buying  from the competition and your company needlessly lost revenue.

I have seen many salespersons not want to build the sale because they personally believed the total price would be too much.  In other cases where financing the transaction is an important option, I have seen salespersons not quote monthly payments because they never personally finance any purchases and do not believe anyone else should either.  Others don’t offer the product in a certain color because they personally do not like that color.  One retail salesperson I knew did not present one line of clothing to customers because she personally did not like the designer.

This happens in sales forces of all kinds and can be a cancer that will kill sales and valuable cash flow.

Sales managers need to train their sales forces to ask questions and gather plenty of information from the prospect about what the prospect wants and needs.  Then tailor the product or service offering based upon that information only.

The next time you see the sales volume of a sales person drop consider that one option may be that they are projecting their own personal value system into their selling process. Correct it and  both your sales and cash flow will increase.

Increase Sales And Business Cash Flow by Simply Asking For The Sale

June 19, 2010

by Doug Smith, President, The Woodhaven Group

As CEOs, owners, and senior managers we often spend countless hours analyzing why a sale did not occur. 

Was the price too high?  Is it poor advertising?  Was our product the wrong design? Are we marketing to the wrong customer?

Many times I have found the reason is very simple. 

No one asked for the sale.  You may be thinking that no way does that happen in my company.  You have a selling methodology in place and your sales manager  reviews it weekly in sales meetings.  Well, it happens.  And it can occur in retail stores,  with in home sales persons and in business to business selling situations.

In a business to consumer company I was involved with, we would follow-up the sales visit with a “quality control” phone call to the prospect that did not buy.  Our conversation asked if our sales person was on time, explained the benefits of our product and answered all their questions.  Invariably the feedback was extremely positive on our sales person and many times when we questioned why the prospect did not buy, the feedback would be that they were not asked to buy.  The call would conclude by asking if they were ready to purchase, the prospect often said yes and we would schedule a manager to go write the sale.

Why do sales people fail to ask for the sale?  I have found many sales people do not ask because they are afraid the answer will be “no.”  It is easier to report back that the prospect wanted to “think it over.”

When asking for the sale everyone wants to hear a “yes.”  However, a “no” answer is not bad because now the sales person can identify the objection and overcome it.  If no one asks for the sale then there is no chance to overcome an objection and close the deal.

How can an owner or CEO prevent this problem  from happening?  The best way to identify which sales persons have this problem is for the sales manager to observe the interaction with the prospect at the point of sale.  By doing this the manager can then coach the sales person on what to say the next time he or she is on a sales call.

Failure to ask for the sale is a problem that is never discussed enough with sales forces.

In my opinion, if you don’t ask for the sale then all that took place was a nice conversation. 

That won’t help revenue, cash flow, or profit.