If “Make more sales” is on your New Year’s Resolutions list (and I’m betting that it is), the question becomes “How, exactly?”
The good news is that there are lots of ways. Here are nine simple ones you can implement immediately:
1. Do more prospecting
If you want more sales, you need more prospects. Whether that means going to more networking events, spending more time on LinkedIn, joining a leads group, or just picking up the phone and making more calls, what can you do to put yourself in touch with more people?
2. Position yourself as an expert
People prefer to buy from an authority in the field. So demonstrate your authority. Write blog posts and LinkedIn articles. Tweet useful information. Deliver speeches and workshops. Post videos on YouTube.
3. Learn more about your customers
Sure, you know your product. But do you know your customers? Most salespeople don’t ask anywhere near enough questions. As a result, they don’t fully understand the prospect’s needs, issues, concerns, values, and priorities. That can lead to delays, missed opportunities, and lost sales. Ask more questions.
4. Polish your presentation skills
A great presentation arouses a prospect’s interest, provides them the information they need, and makes them want to buy now. A poor—or even mediocre—presentation costs you the sale. Read up on what makes a compelling presentation. Join Toastmasters to practice your presentation skills. Or work with a presentations coach to get better in every aspect of presenting.
5. Conduct better follow up
Most buyers take time to make a decision. But too many salespeople give up on a prospect too soon. Which means they often lose sales they could have made if they had just been a little more persistent. Follow up with every prospect consistently for as long as it takes.
6. Check in with your existing customers
Your best source of new sales is your existing customer base. They already know you, like you, and trust you. Find out if and how their needs have changed. Would they be better off upgrading to a new or better product or service? Do they have needs you never know about that you could solve? Do you have products and services they were unaware of? There are opportunities galore among your existing customers if you look for them.
7. Ask for more referrals
While you’re on the phone—or at lunch—with your customers, ask them for referrals. If you’ve taken good care of your customers and they’re happy with your product or service, they want to refer you. You just have to ask.
All of these strategies require time, which you only have a finite supply of. So if you’re going to add something to your plate, you need to subtract something. Delegate whatever you can to free up time for the activities that only you can do.
9. Sharpen your sales skills
The sale doesn’t usually go the best product or service. It doesn’t usually go the cheapest product or service. The sales usually goes to the best salesperson. And if you want that person to be you, you need to invest in yourself. Buy every sales book you can get your hands on. Watch videos and webinars. Attend training seminars and workshops. Hire a sales coach. One single idea, one simple tweak, one crucial insight, can make a huge difference in your sales.
There you go—nine things you can do to boost your sales this year. Pick a few of these strategies and start right now. Make a plan and implement it. Get your sales manager or a colleague to hold you accountable. And adjust as needed.
Make this your best year ever!