7 Ways to Increase Your Number of Transactions
Your number of transactions is the number of times customers buy from you. Some of your customers will buy from you weekly, others monthly, others on the odd occasion, and others just once in a lifetime. What you want to focus on is the average. Increasing your average number of transactions can be a treasure-trove for your business.
Most businesspeople never collect a database of their past customers, let alone write to them or call them and ask them to come back. This is a missed opportunity. Once you’ve made a sale, you need to make another, and another, and another—to the same person. The well-known statistic is true: It costs six to seven times more to get a new customer than it does to sell to an old one.
Here are 7 ways to boost your number of transactions:
- Keep in regular contact
You should be in contact with your customers at least once every three months. Ideally, mail something to your customers every three months, even if it’s just a postcard or e-mail with a funny message. A phone call with a special offer is also an excellent idea. Remember, your business is probably one of the lowest priorities in your customers’ lives—they will forget about you if you don’t keep in contact.
- Inform customers of your entire range
Often, people only know part of your range. If you introduce them to another part, the results can be huge. You’ll be surprised how many customers say, “Oh, you mean I can buy my [X] here too?” or “Yeah, I wouldn’t mind trying that.” They already trust you and your main product; now introduce them to the rest of your products/services. Far too many business owners assume their customers know about everything they sell.
- Offer service contracts
Don’t just sell to a customer once. Build in long-term sales with a service contract up front. Offer a five-year, a two-year, and a one-year contract. People will generally take the one-year contract. And, if you’re constantly servicing your customers’ purchase, you’ll know when it needs replacing. You’ll also have the direct opportunity to sell them accessories or get referrals. Make the service contracts very attractively priced—it’s as much an investment in your future earnings as it is a service.
- Ask them to come back
Sounds silly, right? Wrong. It’s something most businesses overlook. Ask before they leave, “Shall we make an appointment for next time, or should I call you in a few weeks to make the booking?” Remember to word it carefully so people don’t feel you’re being too pushy. Make it sound as though you are doing them a favor.
- Send out a newsletter
This is essential for businesses where people only buy once every few months or more. You must keep in regular contact, and a newsletter is an ideal way. Not only can you advertise any product you want, but you can also include tips, articles, and more. Try to stick to the 80/20 rule: Make 80% of the information practical/helpful, and only 20% a sales pitch. If you include enough good information, people will read it, and more importantly, they will buy.
- Offer free trials
When you have a new product (or even an old one), why not let your customers take it home and try it for free? Not only will you get plenty of feedback on it (and a handful of testimonials), you’re likely to sell tons. Your customers are naturally predisposed to buying from you, and letting them try something free is usually all the bait they need.
- Keep good data on clients
Why stop at their name, address, and phone number? If you ask, you’re likely to get their birthdays, spouse’s name, mobile number, favorite restaurant, number of children, income, and more. You can use this information to better target your special offers. A good way to get this information is to ask your customers to complete a survey and offer them a gift voucher as a token of appreciation.
People that already do business with you represent a gold mine of opportunity. You must collect their details, get to know them, treat them as special, keep in constant contact, and regularly invite them back as members of the family. Increasing your average number of transactions even slightly can have a significant impact on your profitability.