How Can You Increase Sales To Current Customers?

If you want to increase sales, you can either get your current customers to buy more, or find new people to sell to (or perhaps do both).   Start by looking at your current customers to see what potential there is for increasing sales. Ask yourself:
  • What proportion of your customers make repeat purchases?
  • How frequently do these people make repeat purchases?
  • How much effort do you spend on retaining current customers compared to finding new ones?

Key Point:   It is generally much cheaper to retain existing customers than it is to find and win new customers. This means that you should consider how to increase sales to existing customers before looking for new customers.
When you are thinking about the value of a customer to your business, think of them as an ‘income stream’ rather than as a series of individual sales. So, for example, if a customer buys a coffee every week, think of them as someone who contributes $5 per week or even $260 per year to sales revenue. Instead of thinking about what you can do to make an individual sale, think about what you can do to keep this person coming back – to keep the income stream flowing.

Ideas to Increase Sales to Current Customers

There are many ways to increase sales to current customers. Here are some ideas:
  • Develop your sales process beyond the sale. Always remember that an effective sales process goes well beyond the payment stage. Focus your attention on managing your overall relationship with the customer: they will keep coming back as long as you meet their needs at every step of the sales process – including their experience past the point of purchase.
  • Use social media to maintain interest. Try to get your customers to follow you on social media. Once they are there, don’t use your social media page to push sales. Instead, keep it social – post interesting content, and engage and interact with your followers. This will maintain awareness of your business and help build an ongoing relationship.
  • Look for opportunities to offer more to your customers. This could involve selling a ‘package deal’ instead of a single item, offering add-ons, complementary products, better versions of products, or even signing them up to a plan.
  • Offer sales incentives to staff. Motivate your sales staff by offering them incentives. However, be careful – their focus should be on maintaining customers. Pushing a customer to buy something they don’t really want, will drive customers away.
  • Give customers incentives. Give customers an incentive for buying more than they usually would. Consider loyalty plans where the amount of the customer discount increases once they have purchased above a certain sales volume, offer a free gift with some purchases, or offer a prize draw.
  • Hold a special event for loyal customers. Reward customers who purchase from you on a regular basis by holding a special event. You can do this even if you have an online business. For example, you could make a sale available to certain customers for a few days before it is made available to the general public.
  • Get to know your customers better. Simply put in the work to really get to know your customers and understand their needs. When you talk to your customers, you may identify that there are products and services they need, which you currently do not offer, but could easily offer.
  • Use targeted promotions. Instead of using the same promotional material for all customers, design your promotions so each customer only receives the promotions which are relevant to them. This could be based on their past buying behaviour, location, or even their personal characteristics. It is easier to do this if you use technology such as automation software, customer relationship management (CRM) systems, and email marketing services.