With the increasing interest of today’s youth in business and advent of new businesses, many candidates are crowding this lucrative source of income. But the downside is the increase in competition as more and more businesses start to operate in the same sector with the same offerings. Many of these businesses will succumb to competition in near future and to survive this, the businesses must ask themselves the question, “How can we boost our sales and survive in foreseeable future?” So let’s pen down some strategies businesses might adopt to boost their sales.
Proven strategies to boost sales in large businesses:
- Research the competition;
Neither businesses today operate in the vacuum nor is the present customer same to the past customer. While businesses have to face competition, the customer today is smart and does research the offerings of each business before making purchase decision. Being self-centered or myopic will prove to be fatal. Each business not only needs to perform market research to know opinions of its customers about its own products but also of competition. Knowing strengths of competition and weaknesses of yours can help you to provide better offerings.
- Creating value through customer loyalty;
Building loyal customer base is a way to both boosting sales and ensuring longer survival of the business. Apple has got one of the best loyal customers and they are the ones who market its products. When you see a customer of Apple praise their products he is doing marketing free of cost for them. So if you please your customers they will not only be loyal to you but increase sales through ‘passive marketing’. Successful businesses see a customer not worth what he paid for the product but add to that the expected value of purchases he will make in his entire life. For example if a customer eats a meal in your restaurant and pays Rs.300, his value is not of only Rs300 for your business. If you please him he will have thousands of dinners with you so his value is in millions. So you need to serve customers well enough to match their value.
- Get to know the needs of customer;
Sometimes customers make use of your product for purposes which you didn’t mean the product to be used for. For example you may sell them brush to wash clothes while they might use the same to wash their doggies. This is because there is no product in the market for such purposes. If you research these and find such opportunities you can diversify your product-offering to cater to their needs. This will lead to innovation in your products as well as opportunities to bring new products to market.
- Outsourcing tasks;
Outsourcing has attracted attention in businesses in recent times. Businesses need to be smart to know what tasks to outsource and what tasks not to. You may think of outsourcings tasks which;
I. You are not good at producing
II. Someone else produces better
III. You are not cost efficient at
IV. Consume too much time(time efficiency)
V. You do not have skilled labor for.
And there are many more reasons for outsourcing. But the tricky question will be identifying tasks which need to be outsourced which will vary depending on the prevailing circumstances your business is in. Outsourcing not only enables you to be efficient but also attract new customers if the tasks are outsourced to a reliable client who your customers trust.
5) Building Partnerships;
As much as the success of your business depends on your ability to effectively compete with competitors, it depends on your ability to cooperative with them as well. Of course you will not be able to establish a monopoly in the market so you need to know who to compete and who to cooperate with. Often you will compete with other businesses which have the same strengths as does yours and cooperate with those which have different strengths. Taking a restaurant’s example, if the best offering you have is biryani while Mr. A is also known for having best biryani you will compete with him while another restaurant owner Mr. B’s best offering is Pulao so you will cooperate with him. Here again market research comes into play to distinguish who to compete with and who to cooperate with. Cooperating with B will improve the quality of your Pulao and help boost your sales while at the same times loyal customers of Mr. B might prefer your Biryani instead of A’s since you are partnering with B who they trust. Hence cooperation is another means to build customers and boost sales.
Apart from these strategies you will find out there hundreds of other strategies though adopting any one or more strategies is not an easy task. You will need to know well about the market, customers, demographics, competition, your weaknesses and strengths, and much more before choosing a strategy for your business. Similarly the strategies will vary depending on the time and budget constraints. Moreover strategies for boosting sales in small businesses will be different from a large business. So approaching a business expert with a specific case study and target is the best option to choose any strategy.