Once you get people through the door, or onto your website, you must make the most out of every opportunity. You must turn those prospects into sales.
Conversion rates are often given little thought by the average business owner, and invariably when I ask someone out of the blue, they take a guess. That’s not good enough - you have to start measuring it NOW.
Regularly business owners massively overestimate the percentages. I remember one who guessed they sold to 80 - 85 percent of people who called or came into their business. After some serous testing and measuring we discovered it was nearer 35 percent. It was a huge shock to the owner, but it also represents a tremendous opportunity.
Think of the bottom line difference you can make by significantly boosting your conversion rate. If you can take your conversion rate from 30 percent to 60 percent, bam, you’ve just doubled your turnover.
It’s possible, and here are the ways to make it happen….
Set Sales Targets
Give your salespeople a clear idea of what you need them to achieve. Explain the exact reasons why they need to achieve it, and outline your financial situation. Offer bonuses if they meet the targets. People want to succeed, but they can only do so if they know by what measure they will be judged.
Measure Conversion Rates
When you do, you’ll find almost invariably that your conversion rate improves. Of course, you won’t know for sure, because you’ve never measured it before, but you’ll start to focus on selling to the people who come in the door.
This is where you write a guarantee addressing the customer’s key frustration in buying from you.
Pick out the thing that people are scared of when buying from you, and guarantee that it won’t be a problem. If it is, offer to refund their money, or put things right. Once you’ve finalized it, make sure you tell people, and advertise it.
Define Your Uniqueness
If there is nothing different about you, people will only buy from you because of convenience, or price, nothing more. Added to that, you’ll never be able to raise your prices; if there’s anyone doing it cheaper, people will buy from them. You need to work out what is special about you, then make a big deal about it. And don’t just say ‘price’ or ‘quality’ - these are empty terms. Make it very specific, and meaningful.
Print a Benefits and Testimonial List
Include this page on your website or on your brochures. It contains the four most important things about your product, or seven reasons yours is a better choice for them. Alternatively, include testimonials - that is, direct quotes from your past customers about how good you are. A mix of both can work very well.
If you can demonstrate the product first hand, or via video clip on your website, do it. People like to see with their eyes, and experience the product before they buy. If you can’t demonstrate think of a way you can do something similar - what about before and after photos? Or what about samples to give the person to try?
To seal the deal, throw in something they didn’t expect - something that gives them the perception that they are getting a great deal. Then place a time limit on it, which pressures them into making a decision. Make sure it’s something that they will value highly which doesn’t cost you very much. I know of a car yard for instance that offers buyers a ‘full tank of gas’ if they sign today. You’d be amazed at how many people are swung to buy a $50,000 car because of $30 worth of free petrol.
Display Awards and Certificates
The funny thing about certificates and awards is that it doesn’t matter what they are, or what they were for. When people see framed awards or certificates, they feel reassured. The only real relevant detail is the year. Displaying something with 1989 prominently showing may damage your chances of making the sale.
If you don’t have any awards yet, start entering!
Reprint Press Articles
If you’ve had anything printed about you (well, anything positive anyway), include these on your website. This shows that other people know about you, and that you have a degree of ‘celebrity’. As weird as it may seem, people are attracted to this ’star power’. It also builds credibility, because it seems as though someone objective is saying something nice about you.
Originally published in Her Business magazine. By Brad Sugars
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