One of the biggest issues faced by any business, in any industry, whether based on sales, service, or even manufacturing, is the motivation of employees, and the alignment of their goals to the company’s.
One of the best ways to achieve that alignment, and thus in a sales-based business, to increase sales dramatically, is to make sure that employee compensation – the way your sales team gets paid – is very closely linked to the actual strategic and tactical needs of the business. That’s why more and more businesses are adding spiffs to the simpler concept of a single rate of commission on all sales.
After all, it does the business very little good, if its sales team is really, really good at selling low-margin market drivers and loss leaders, but can’t seem to sell high-margin items to go along with them! So here are a couple of techniques that are proven to work to increase sales, and more importantly, the right sales.
UNDERSTAND YOUR BUSINESS – THE COSTS, THE MARKET DRIVERS, AND THE MARGINS
This should go without saying, but when you own or manage a business, you need to understand it. Yes, it takes some work … but believe me, it’ll pay off!
The first thing to find out, is what really drives customers through your doors, or through the doors of your competitors. A lot of businesses assume it to be price, but in my experience, price is rarely the only factor in a customer’s decision of which business to patronize, and often isn’t even the most important! What really matters to most customers is convenience. If you can find a way to give it to them, in a way your competitors aren’t, you’ll earn more business, quite possibly without having to slash prices and lose out on essential profits!
Then you need to have a deep working knowledge of the actual costs of your goods and services, so that you can price them correctly, and so that you can form a comprehensive grasp on the profit margins of each of the items or services your business sells.
CREATE A MENU – MAKE IT SIMPLE FOR YOUR TEAM
Once you understand what your high-margin and low-margin items are, and which items drive business through your doors, you can create a menu for your team, listing items that qualify them for spiffs—or if you’re using, or interested in using, gamification, the items that qualify them to play the game of the day.
Having a menu literally posted in the office or their break room, and distributed to them as a memo allows you to clearly communicate what items you need them to focus on selling. Tying their compensation to those items is then an easy way to make sure they’re motivated to sell exactly the things that you need them to sell in order to remain profitable! The menu is important, because without it, they may not know what they’re supposed to sell, and thus a compensation system based on margins could seem unfair, and actually be demoralizing and demotivating.
You can discover even more about how to increase your sales by clicking here.