Drive Those Sales: 12 Small Business Sales Strategies and Tips for 2020

small business sales strategies selling tips

If you're a small business owner, then you know that sales can make or break your company. A good salesperson can master the fine line between being persistent and pushy. 

You want your small business sales to build your enterprise and develop relationships that can carry you into the future.

Follow these small business sales strategies and tips to get you on the right track for 2020.


1. Avoid Several Cold Calls

Cold calls used to be the bread and butter of the life of a salesperson. Those days have passed as technology has allowed you to be more selective.

Target your calls to people you know are interested in the services and products you provide. Cold calling tends to waste a lot of time and energy.

It doesn't hurt to pick up the phone or make an unannounced visit every once in a while, but it shouldn't be your main strategy.

Figure out how your prospective audience prefers to be contacted and go that route.


2. What Kind of Salesperson Are You?

How would you identify the type of salesperson you are? There are three main types that can get the job done.


  • Closer
  • Expert
  • Consultant

Movies tend to portray the closer. She or he is a smooth talker who knows how to shoot down rebuttals and convince you to make an impulse purchase.

The expert is someone who knows all the technical facts and details of the product or service. They can tell you all the strengths and weaknesses of every competitor. 

Consultants build relationships in a gradual manner until the client feels ready to opt-in to a purchase. 

All of these types are successful in various industries they are applied. Don't try to be someone you're not. Decide which of these types makes you most comfortable.


3. Small Business Sales Referrals

Referrals will be one of the quickest ways to build your book of business. The mutual connection will get your foot in the door with a new client.

The best timing to ask for a referral is after you provide a service or send a product. The customer will be happy and more likely to help you.

Do not ask for a referral through an email. This gives them time to generate a negative response or a generic suggestion. 

Offer an incentive to the client who is referring you. Discounts are the most popular way to nurture the partnership. Gift cards for small businesses are perfect to hand out in this situation.

A good tip is to frame your referral as an introduction. Ask your client if they can introduce you to one of their vendors or suppliers who might be interested in the same service.


4. Be Open About Your Perceived Weakness

A larger business is going to pitch a prospective client and discredit your small business size. 

When it's your turn to pitch, let the client know you are aware of your company size, but tell them it will allow you to focus on them more.

If you're a new business, let the client know that as a new business you are built upon the latest trends and technology to assist with their needs.

Large companies tend to struggle with quick shifts in market trends. They have more employees and products to turn than a small company. Smaller companies can comparatively change with the wind.


5. Prestige Pricing

If you want more sales, you might need to raise your prices. It feels like an incorrect decision, but other businesses and customers will look at your product as higher quality.

Prestige pricing automatically puts it in the head of prospects that you offer first-class treatment and merchandise. 

As a small business, you don't want to constantly cut prices and offer discounts. You will find yourself in a rapid race to the bottom with a perceived reputation of having cheap products.

Convince potential customers that buying from your company is a privilege and sign of status.


6. Body Language

Whether you're gathering discovery or making the final pitch, your body language should reflect the customer.

When the customer leans forward in a chair, you should do the same. If they use certain hand gestures, follow along.

Depending on your industry, some people will use more terse language. Feel free to copy in good taste.

Ultimately, your subtle mirroring of their actions should make them relax and relate to you better.

Do not cross your arms and look away when you're trying to listen. Avoid yawning or rapidly changing subjects. You will send negative signals to them about the sale.

You can sell more simply by matching their body language and mannerisms.


7. Follow Up

For a small business, if leads and prospects are making contact every week, your book of business could be expanding rapidly.

Make sure those touchpoints turn into proposals. 

It's pretty rare for customers to make purchases after talking to you once. If that happens, you may be the best salesperson alive.

Follow up with prospects to nurture the relationship. Set a schedule to touch base with your contacts.

If someone gives you a card, call them Tuesday of the next week to get a meeting or take them out to lunch.

For leads that fill out online submission forms, contact them immediately. Your fast response time will impress them, and you may make a sale sooner than later.


8. Custom Marketing

Most companies want to promote or impress with benefits like discount pricing or superb customer service. Clients and consumers don't usually buy items for those reasons.

They are definitely benefits, but not usually the driving force to make a purchase.

Don't compare yourself to the competition. You don't want people researching your direct competitors.

Make your marketing campaign about how to make their life easier. What does a consumer get to do because they used your service or product? Do they save thousands of dollars in a year?

Can the person you're pitching to get your service and benefits anywhere else? If the answer is no, then focus on that in your marketing campaign.

The main focus is to concentrate on your offerings, the customer's needs, and how no one should be able to live correctly without you.


9. Partnerships

You don't have to try and grow your business alone. Form partnerships with companies in different verticals to help each other develop.

Maybe the partner includes you in one of their service packages. In return, they get to use your company for promotional services and you get business.

The partnerships you form as a small business can carry over to when your company experiences growth. They will become more strategic and complex the bigger the companies get.

Spend time researching a business you think would fit your culture and vice versa. Both companies should benefit from the partnership whether it's profits or exposure.


10. Increase the Suite

Do you have a loyal and strong customer base? The next step to increasing your sales is by offering new services or products.

When you increase your suite of services, you open yourself up to new potential audiences. 

It's important to make sure you have a steady stream of loyal customers before making this decision. If a new product fails, you still want to have regular revenue coming into the business.

Identify products or services that aren't selling and replace them with the new ones for a few months to gather feedback.

Offer the new product to your loyal customers first to get authentic comments and marketing data.


11. Franchise

One of the best ways to more small business sales is by having more than one location. This isn't always a financially feasible move.

Franchising may be the best way to expand without a huge financial commitment. 

Let a business owner or investor open your store in another location. They will pay you a start-up fee, and you will offer support, training, and products. 

This gets your name into other locations and allows you to make some extra profit from the cut of the revenue.

The franchise model will cost you significantly more in your marketing budget since you'll be catering to multiple locations. Don't use this model to get more sales if you're not ready to grow.


12. Customer Loyalty

You can garner more small business sales through a customer loyalty or reward program. This is a win-win scenario for you and the clients.

People who are constantly purchasing your company's goods should be rewarded with exclusive deals. In return, they'll continue to buy from you.

The initial investment may be a managing software or even gift cards, but the pay off is exponential. Keeping old customers is vastly cheaper than getting new ones.

Reward your loyal customers, and they'll continue to keep growing your business.


Close the Sale

Knowing how to identify, solicit, close, and expand small business sales will carry you through and beyond 2020.

These small business sales strategies and a little practice along with modification will make you a better salesperson and grow your company.

If you're still itching for more about business operations, keep scrolling for more articles. Visit the Sales section of the Bootstrap Business Blog right now!

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