You want to increase your sales fast, but you also don’t want to cheapen your company’s image. Unfortunately, a sales slump can be indicative of major problems in your organization – one that doesn’t have a quick fix. That doesn’t mean that that’s your problem, but just be aware of it. If you’re already doing reasonably well, but need a boost, there are some simple things you can do right now that should bump your conversions up by at least a few percentage points.
Strengthen Your Offer
Weak offers will cause poor sales. You’ve probably heard or read that your headline is the most important part of your marketing message. That’s not exactly true. The headline just sucks people in. What happens next? You have to have something to entice the reader. At some point, you’ll need a call-to-action.
Here’s where the rubber hits the road. If you don’t have a strong offer, you aren’t going to make a lot of sales. For example, let’s say you sell baseball equipment. Your sales pitch is essentially “buy now!” or “30 percent off, buy now!” Snoozer. When it comes to your offer, get people excited about what they’re about to buy.
In this example, people rarely buy baseball equipment because they want the equipment. What they really want is to play baseball. So, tell them how your equipment will help them be a better ball player. Do your bats use old-fashioned wood cores? Do they have some high-tech advantage? Does the ball fly 50 percent farther?
What about your pads and gloves? What benefit does the reader get from using your equipment as versus someone else’s? If you can’t answer that, you don’t have a way to boost sales.
Increase Your Ad Spend
Sometimes, businesses experience lulls. It can be a natural thing. Continuing with the baseball example, would you expect sales to drop during the off-season? Probably. In these cases, what you need is more exposure. People do buy equipment in the off-season, but the market might be smaller.
Increasing your ad spend can sometimes help take the pressure off of meeting quarterly benchmarks when sales have slid. Of course, there’s a point of diminishing returns. If you’re spending more than you’re recouping in sales, then the advertising is wasted money.
Field test things to make sure that your problem is actually low traffic and not low conversion numbers relative to your offer. The way to do this is to increase your ad spend in such a way as to cause a doubling in your site traffic. If your response rate climbs back up to where it was before, your problem might have been too little traffic – you weren’t properly saturating the market with your message.
If the conversion rate remains flat, you could have a conversion problem or you might just be at the bottom of a normal business cycle. As long as you’re making more in sales than you’re spending on advertising, keep ratcheting up the spend. At some point, you’re going to level off and things won’t be profitable anymore. That’s fine. Just back the spending down to a level where you’re making profits again.
Simplify Your Ad Copy
Can your readers understand you copy? It seems intuitive enough. You wrote it. You can read it. Why shouldn’t anyone else be able to? Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. Most people read at a 5th to 8th grade level. Even if you think you’ve simplified your copy, and you’re writing in plain English, you might want to check your text against the Flesch-Kincaid readability tool. It will tell you just how complex your writing is.
About the Author
Guys Asher has extensive experience in marketing and sales. He now consults with businesses on achieving their sales objectives. Visit this contact lens store to see how they market their products online.