Well it’s one thing to get a customer to buy from you, but what strategies do you have in place to maximize the average dollar sale? That is every time a customer buys from you, you’re maximizing the amount of money that each of those customers gives you during each purchase. Now probably most famously known would be, “Would you like fries with that?” You’ve probably heard that term before. Or, “Would you like to upsize?” Now there’s a reason that McDonalds do that. McDonalds do that not because you look hungry, but because a certain percentage of you will say yes. So the same thing rings true for your business. And you’re going to say to yourself, “Well how can I do that in my business? How can I maximize the average dollar sale in my business?”
I’ve got a few ideas, five to be exact, that I’m going to share with you right now.
1. Utilize a Check-list
So the first thing is, use a check-list or a questionnaire. At the checkout in your business, or when somebody’s buying from you, at that point of purchase have a check-list or questionnaire that not only prompts your customer but yourself to ask those questions. You know, “Could you buy something else from me?”
Think about if you were in a hardware store where you bought paint, and have a check-list that goes with it saying, “Do you need any brushes, rollers, drop sheets, paint trays, etc. etc. etc.,” so that you up sell them to all these different other products and services. If I'm selling life insurance, what about income protection or other insurances I might be able to offer or financial planning services? If I'm a mortgage broker, maybe I could increase the amount that I'm lending you by having a check-list that goes through how many credit cards have you got, how many loans, other cars, other things you may have borrowed for.
So using a check-list or a questionnaire enables you to prompt your customer to tell you what else they have got that they could be buying from you. It makes it easier for you and your team, so that you don’t have to think about it on the spot, you've got a check-list that does the work for you.
2. Offer different Payment Plans
Quite often people won’t spend as much with you because they don’t always have the money. You can offer a payment plan at a percentage premium even. So for example, say you sell for $5000. Say it’s 11 payments of $500, which is a 10% increase. Or maybe 12 payments of $500 over a 12 month period, so you’re getting your average dollar sale’s going to be $6000. You’re also going to get your customer to commit because they don’t have to give you the $5000 all at once, they can pay it off over time as they realize the benefit of having your product.
But it means that you’re going to get more, higher sales through your door, which is also great for your business. Increasing that average dollar sale value which is going to mean overall you’re going to make more money, more profit. You’re also going to increase your gross profit on those products because you’re putting a percentage premium on top of the price to allow them to use a payment plan. So payment plans can be a great way for you to get your average dollar sale up.
3. Have packaged deals
The next is bulk or packaged deals, which is sort of like, “Would you like to up-size? Would you like fries with that?” Start thinking about what you can add-on sell.
There’s lots of different terminology for it. Retail often use the words “companion selling”. That makes it sound nice, doesn't it? But really what you want to do is to up-sell your client or customer to buy more from you. And once again you don’t want to force stuff on them that’s not going to be good for them. So think about what’s going to add value to your product or service and bundle that in. If you’re selling a product or service and there’s other products or services that your customer could use at the same time. So for example, say you’re a removalist and when your client move out of their home, they’re probably going to want it cleaned. Maybe you could offer a package deal saying, “Hey, we'll do the removal and a cleaning service. We clean the old house when we've got all the furniture out, and we clean the new one before we put all the furniture in. And it’s an additional x dollars.”
But by offering a package deal, all of a sudden you’re making your products and services more attractive, and you’re going to get more wallet share with that customer. If they’re going to spend money any ways, they may as well spend it with you.
4. Invest in your team
Train your team. Isn't that amazing? Just do a bit of training with your team. I see a lot of businesses that don’t do any training around this stuff. And really this is basic, fundamental stuff in business. If you've got a customer buying from you, why not ask them to buy something else from you? Why not a package deal? Once again, train your team to be comfortable.
If I go back to that McDonalds example, they’re not asking you because you look hungry, “Would you like to up-size,” or “Would you like fries with that?” They’re trained to do that. So you've got to say to yourself, “What have I got to do to train my team to ask the right questions of my customers when they’re buying from me so they'll increase the average dollar spent?” So training is an imperative part.
I know, some of you are thinking, “What if I train them and then they leave?” Well what if you don't train them and they stay? I know I’d rather train them and have them leave than not train them and have them stay. So put some effort into training your team every week. Just one hour of training for sales every week to talk about these things to help them understand how to ask for more sales from your current customers.
5. Offer gifts
The final one which works very effectively for a lot of businesses, is to offer a gift with a certain dollar value of purchase. So for example say the average dollar sale of your business is $50, and you want to increase that by 20% which would mean making it $60, you could offer a gift that you give away at a higher dollar value. So say for example you might have a business where you have musical equipment. If you buy a guitar, you get two pairs of strings if you spend over $500, or something like that. So offer a gift with the purchase.
You have just got to get creative and think, ”What have I got in my business that people like that they would have as a nice value add?” and add that on top if they spend a certain amount. Now the gift doesn't even have to be related to your business. For example, you could partner with a local restaurant. Go to the local restaurant and say, “Hey, I'm going to send new customers your way. I want to get some vouchers, and I want to buy them at 50% of the retail value, so you’re going to give me some $100 vouchers for $50 each.” And when somebody buys a product off you over your average dollar sale, say it’s $500, you can say, “Spend $600 and you'll get a free $100 dinner voucher,” that you've paid $50 for, but the value for them is $100.
So you’re giving a gift away by offering them a gift when they purchase over a certain amount, and that’s going to increase your average dollar sale.
Use these tips to increase your average dollar sale
There’s 5 ways for you to increase your average dollar sales that you get from your current customers. This is one of those areas that is quite often overlooked in small business, medium business and even large business. You need to make sure you’re focusing on how you’re increasing that number, because that’s untapped profitability there waiting just for you.
About the Author
Ben Fewtrell is a sought-after Business Coach, Keynote Speaker and trainer who has featured in Virgin’s Inflight Magazine and Entertainment Portal, SKY Business and “Secrets of Top Business Builders Exposed”. He is also the host of the popular Business Brain Food Podcast where he interviews leading experts on anything and everything business.