We all know that it is much less expensive to sell more to your existing customers, than get new customers through the door. Existing customers are already in your store, you are paying your team a wage so their time is already covered and apart from the cost of carrying a bit more stock there are no additional costs.
However, selling more to existing customers or as it’s best known as “upselling” or “add on selling”, needs to be done carefully, otherwise you run the risk of losing customers and team members getting bored or hating the process. So how do you do it, so everyone wins? – Customers, the team and the business.
One of my passions is prompting customers for other items. I love this process but unfortunately in my experience I usually see it being done poorly or not at all. In today’s very competitive retail environment, customers have so much choice and for some stores this means flat or declining customer numbers. You have two choices to maintain or hopefully grow your sales. Option 1 is to get more customers through the door which can be an expensive marketing process or option 2 is sell more to your existing customers – therefore increasing the average sale and how many items they buy.
Selling more to your existing customers is directly influenced by you and your team– signs will help but relying on these will only produce small increases. If you are selling on the floor the key is to ask questions to identify the customer’s actual needs. This allows the salesperson to suggest additional items that will complement the original sale.
If your business involves selling off the counter, to obtain sizeable increases in sales, it’s all about informing customers of various offers in a non-pushy way. The key here is to use the right techniques that are informative, not techniques that simply ask the customer to buy. It sounds pretty simple and it is and I’ve seen increases on sales of focus products of over 400%, when staff prompt customers for other items and do it well, and it’s not that hard.
Roger Simpson – CEO, The Retail Solution and Author of “The Ultimate Retail Sales Experience” With over 35 years’ industry experience, Roger Simpson is recognized as Australia’s #1 Authority on customer ROI in the retail industry and as a global expert on staff coaching, customer service, and selling skills.