Ask and You Shall Receive

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How to increase your profits and the average dollar spend of every customer – simply by asking.

Asking people to buy

Many salespeople assume that a potential customer knows a salesperson is there to encourage them to buy something. With that, they believe that if the customer wanted to buy, they would tell the salesperson. So, many salespeople simply don’t ask for fear of offending someone, putting them out or interrupting them. If you don’t ask for the order then 9 times out of 10 – usually more – you won’t get the sale.

But asking for the sale is only the first step. Once your sales staff are in the habit of asking people to buy, they then need to develop the habit of asking the customer to buy some more. This is when your revenue and profits will really start to increase.

Asking customers to buy some more

When asking for commitment to purchase, it’s vitally important your salespeople spell out exactly what action they want a customer to take and why – be as specific as you can.

A prime time to ask people to buy some more is when they’re at the register/point of sale and have already chosen an item to purchase. Think of the times when you’ve been at a cash register and the sales assistant has said, “Would you like to purchase a second book today to receive an extra 25% off? or “ Would you like one of our beach towels for $15 today?” Some customers will say “No”, but a high percentage of them will say “Yes”.

Why? Because they’re already in the purchasing mind frame, they have their credit card or wallet out and at the ready. Often, if the extra item has a high perceived value and is of a relatively low cost, they’ll think, ‘Why not? – It’s only an extra $X’.

Tagging on this extra sale is much easier than getting the customer into the purchasing mindset in the first place (with regards to time/money investment), so it’s well worth the reward to ask every customer to purchase another item.

McDonalds is one company that uses this principle to maximum effect. After taking an order of just a burger, staff are trained to ask, “Would you like fries with that?”

Often when you’ve placed an order of multiple items, they’ll finish by asking, “Would you like anything else today?” You’ll dramatically increase your average sales value by integrating some pertinent questions like these into your sales process.

A year’s worth of massively increased average sales

Here’s how you can put this strategy into practice: Over the course of 12 months, choose one product per month and have it at your point of sale. Every time your salespeople ring through a sale, have them ask, as part of a systemised process, “Would you also like an [X] today?”

The REAL value of asking customers to buy more

Asking customers to buy some more doesn’t have to be pushy, in fact, if your salespeople do it as a matter of course in a natural fashion, your customers will feel as if they’re being offered something special that will have a certain benefit to them.

Of course, the offer should be relevant to the customer, be of a high perceived value and be presented in a warm, genuine fashion.

The real value of this process (which costs you absolutely nothing to implement) is as follows: If you have 1000 customers coming in every month and you increase each sale to these 1000 customers by just $30, you’ll have increased your revenue by $30,000. That’s $360,000 a year – an incredible return for just asking one question, which takes less than 10 seconds of the salesperson’s time, per sale.

What to offer when asking people to buy some more

If you want people to buy more from you, you need to give them a good reason. One of the best reasons people will buy more from you is if they receive something free, money off or a special offer (however, if a customer perceives inherent value in a product – e.g. a hard glasses case that will protect their new expensive lens and frames set, the benefit you communicate to them will often be enough. For products like this you can simply state the benefit and ask the customer if they’d like to take
one today).

Here are some other incentives you can tie in with your point of sale prompting, to act as motivators to buy some more:

Loyalty programs
Think of the coffee loyalty cards that are popular with many coffee chains nowadays – e.g. Buy 9 coffees and get your 10th coffee free. How could you incorporate something like this into your sales process to ask customers to buy some more?

Free gifts
Another way to ask people to buy some more might be a promotion whereby customers receive a free gift of high perceived value with purchase.

Money off
Another way to ask people to buy more is to offer money off when they spend a certain amount of money. Many retailers use this trick, e.g. Receive $20 off when you spend $100 or more.

Make it urgent

You can often ask someone to buy some more if you create urgency around the offer. For example, you could explain you only have a small number of products available at a certain price and if they don’t act now they’ll miss out. Or, you could make the offer available for a limited time only.

 

Start increasing your profits today with the handy suggestions above. If you need someone to help and hold you accountable in developing and rolling out new profit- boosting programs, which include strategies such as asking your customers to buy more, contact us now on 1300 856 477.

 

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