In the previous post we mentioned that if you are not applying customer suggestion tactics in the small business you are missing out on 25% of current sales. These days customers receive suggestions from businesses and other customers from all kinds of businesses. However, you have to be careful about not turning off customers with your overly aggressive tactics. Customers do like receiving suggestions from their friends and businesses, but they do not want to be bombarded with them every step of the way.
The key to making customers to like your suggestions is to do it in a way such that the customers do not feel as if they are being forced into buying something they do not want to. There are certain things you should keep in mind when working on your customer suggestion plan as described below.
- Be subtle – If there is one advice we can give you about customer suggestion it would be to be subtle. No one likes to be pestered about buying something. However, if you do it in such a way that they don't feel pressured and still get the benefits of suggestions as described in earlier post they will not only like your suggestions, but they will asking for them.
- Train your employees – Your employees are at the front-line of customer contact. We mentioned in an earlier post that every customer contact is an opportunity to sell. That's why it is important to train your employees on doing the marketing for your business.
- Tailor your approach for the physical as well as online world – There are different ways to make customer suggestions in the physical and online world. In the next post we will show you some these approaches. For now keep in mind that one hat doesn't fit all. You should find the approach that works best for your situation.
- Present yourself as expert / authority – In this age of myriad choices customers want help with choosing the right product. They do not have time to cull through large number of options available. If you are perceived as an expert on a particular subject and can provide suggestions with the right intentions the customers will welcome you. Just remember that you have to come out as authentic and someone who has customers' interest in mind to make this work.
- Give customers final say – This goes without saying, but you have to let customers make the final decision about what to buy or not at the end of the day. If you do not provide this option they will be turned off and will not return to your business again.
We hope that you can apply these best practices in framing your customer suggestions and improve sales for your small business.