Growing and maintaining a successful online business means you’re constantly looking for ways to drive traffic to your pages and the rate of conversion from visitors into paying customers. In order to do that, you need a clearly defined marketing strategy, one that will nurture your existing customer base while increasing your reach and securing potential customers.
While your business may be ready for upscaling, finding just the right combination of marketing tactics can often be costly and time-consuming, especially for small and medium-sized businesses. The following five are some of the most actionable tactics used by business owners today and when implemented properly will guarantee a fast and stable growth of your customer base.
1. Have you considered up selling
Upselling refers to the practice of persuading customers to purchase something that is otherwise considered to be an addition, or simply more expensive. From a business owner’s perspective, upscaling often refers to the act of asking your customer base whether they are interested in a specific product upgrade marketed as capable of fulfilling their individual needs that haven’t been met by the original product.
As a marketing tactic, up selling has proven to be quite effective. In fact, the statistics have shown that up selling performs up to 20 times better than cross-selling. That said, there are two important things to remember here: always up sell a product or a service that have similar characteristics as the original offer and to be very careful about setting the price range in order to minimize the risk of your products and services getting rejected.
2. Leverage your existing customer base
More often than not, business owners get so caught up in searching for new customers that they end up neglecting one of their most powerful assets – their existing user base. One of the best ways to increase sales is to focus on leveraging your relationship with customers who have already done business with you. You can do this by asking your customers to provide you with feedback and share their experience with your products and services or write up a simple review or testimonial. Additionally, you can issue a survey and identify exactly what it is you’re doing that might be rubbing people the wrong way
3. Work on expanding your reach
The most successful retailers are those who manage to increase their sales year after year. They do this by relying on market expansions as a growth tactic and use loyalty programs, promotions and different pricing strategies to increase how much their existing customers purchase from them. You can also try out new channels as a means of reaching new audiences, focus on updating your current line of products and services or create a brand-new line, develop a more efficient business model or simply outsource the help you need and, let’s say, invest in a professional company to help you handle and streamline appointment setting into a coherent, easy-to-follow timeline.
4. Exchange free products and services for reviews and testimonials
Asking your customers to provide you with a review or a testimonial is admirable, but relying on a social media influencer to handle that job is smart. High-profile influencers and small celebrities with enormous fan bases are often too expensive for small and medium-sized businesses, which is why they often rely on micro-influencers whose following is often counted in the thousands, instead of millions. While micro influencer’s following may be a lot smaller, it is often far more engaging when compared to the millions of people who follow regularly Instagram celebrities, simply due to the fact that it is more narrowly focused on a specific product or a service, and as such, more actionable.
5. Offer free trials to attract new customers
The “free trial” strategy is as old as business itself, but is actually useful by today’s standards? The short answer is yes. Online business that deals with recurring payments systems have the best odds of converting trials into sales, with companies such as Lynda.com being the prime example. This tutorial-oriented company, like many others, requires a credit card information to start the trial and smoothly transitions the trial customer into a paying customer. Although the credit card information will not be used to charge for the trial, it will automatically be used to enroll customers into a monthly subscription, unless, of course, the customer wants to opt out of their subscription.
Whether you’re interested in offering free trials to attract customers, free products and services in exchange for reviews or simply extend your reach while maintaining your current customer base, these tactics should be incorporated into your main advertising strategy one by one until you find the perfect combination that will suit your individual needs. The best method is to use trial and error and see for yourself which tactic will prove itself to be the most effective ones for driving sales to your business.