Hello, my name is Tony Monisse, I am a Director at Brentnalls WA, and I will be talking to you today about 3 actions which a business can take to grow sales, drawing on various experiences that we have had working with a number of private clients helping them grow their sales.
The first key action that a business needs to do to grow sales is to be clear on its strategy. What this requires is being very clear on your ‘where to play’ – that is your target customer and secondly being very clear on your ‘how to win’ – that is your value proposition or competitive advantage.
In our experience, most businesses are not clear on their target customer or value proposition, and therefore they are engaging in all sorts of other activities that are not going to grow sales in the most efficient manner, and hence there is a lot of waste in the business.
The first action then is to be really clear on your target customer and your value proposition. Once you have that clarity, then the second most important action a business can take is to identify their opportunities.
If you prepare a matrix with segments across the top and products and services down the side, the matrix can be broken into;
- Existing customer segments and new customer segments
- Existing products and services and new products and services
Businesses often miss the low-hanging fruit with the existing customer segments and the existing products and services box. In my experience, a lot of businesses leave money on the table because they are really not working that equation hard enough when they are working with their customers.
There are also other opportunities to go into new market segments or to develop new products and service, and these other opportunities can be explored. Once the business has identified all these opportunities, it is imperative that it assesses these opportunities in terms of how attractive that market is;
- Is there profit in that market?
- Is there sales growth?
Often I see a lot of businesses focusing on markets where there is no sales growth and little opportunity to make money, when instead there are other markets that they could be focusing on where there is growth and the opportunities to make a profit are much greater.
The second thing is to assess with these opportunities is what is the company’s business strength in terms of those opportunities? Does the business have strength in those opportunities or not?
However, just because a business is not strong in those opportunities, does not mean that it cannot still go for those market opportunities that are attractive. It might mean that the business needs to recruit capability in to tackle the opportunity.
The third action that you need to do is measure. What they say is “if you don’t measure you can’t manage it.”
So understand the various parts of your sales equation;
- Your leads
- Your conversion percentage
- Your retention rate
- Your average sales price
- Your frequency
All these factors contribute to total sales, so if you start to measure these things, then you can start planning what you need to do and what key actions you need to take. For example;
- If you are not generating enough leads, it may mean you need to look at new channels.
- If your conversion rate is too low, it may mean that you need to look at your sales process.
- If you are winning all this new business, but losing customers at the other end, maybe you need to look at retention strategies.
- Maybe there are opportunities to increase the average sale price by bundling or getting more sales out of existing customers by increasing frequency.
Also looking at your sales process is really important.
To conclude, in our experience from working with a number of private clients, you must be clear on the strategy you have identified, evaluate your opportunities, measure your KPIs, and take the necessary key actions to grow your sales.