Strategies to Access More Money for Your Business

by

With the economic environment and changes in technology, you must look at new strategies and some twists on old strategies to access more money for your business. Cash flow is king and it is a must.

Let’s start with the easiest and fastest way in which is to raise your prices. That by itself is not a new idea but how you go about raising prices, the reasons for such is new. You already know that if you want to bring 10% more to the bottom line raise your prices by 10%, if you do the opposite (which many do in this economy) you will lower your bottom line by 10%. That can be very bad if you are already losing money. One part is to be very clear on your cost of goods sold and your profit margins on different products and which products or services will lead to upsells and more customers.

The key is how you go about raising your prices and how that is presented. Here are some tips to do it effectively:

  • Bundle other services together (especially one with a higher perceived value and low cost) and come up with a new compelling name for that new bundle of services and package. That is a clever way of raising prices.
  • Emphasize a new improvement in your product or service, which could be speed (people will pay a premium for that) or performance or service advantage. Perhaps you are already doing things fast but maybe you create an actual service for “express service” vs. regular service and give your customers an option for speed. I have always suggested this to my CPA to charge an “expedited tax service” especially those who wait the last night to get all their tax information to them. It is a clever way to raise prices.
  • Change the “Who” you are selling to so that the market may be thinking your prices are a bargain. This works well when you start selling to the affluent market. Search Dan Kennedy, “No BS, Marketing to the Affluent”. If you only have “cheap” customers it is most likely because that is who you are marketing to and your marketing materials and sales copy may be leading people to believe that your products and services are lower priced and that may be the reason you are having an issue raising your prices. Just model some of the products or services in your industry that are higher end and look at their copy, websites and marketing materials and see where you can improve.

Master up selling at the point of sale is a must (the key is how you go about it). I would guesstimate 90% of small business still don’t do it. Big businesses get this! You can’t go to a Walgreens to get gum, a birthday card, or some cough drops to go through the checkout counter only to be asked if you would like a candy bar with your cough drops (which makes no sense). An improvement would be a better matched upsell based on what is being purchased, like a vitamin C packet with the cough drops. But at least they are doing it. McDonald’s does it, banks do it, and almost every major company will ask you for a small upsell at the point of sale! That small upsell ad up and you need to figure out that every product you offer what small or large upsell can you offer either on your website or when your clients or customers call you. You must train and MEASURE (otherwise nothing will happen) with your staff and this is now mandatory! You may give rewards for the most upsells in a month (a great way to start the momentum). You may need to actually script this out for your staff, for a couple of reasons, one to be consistent, and second to test what is working or not!

Better bundling will lead to more profits! You can offer one product with another. You have to work on bundling and ways of positioning complimentary products together. I would recommend you come up with a new creative name for the new bundled package that gives an implied greater benefit vs. the standalone product or service. You can also use Amazon’s model of when someone buys a book or product they share the most common other books or products bought by someone who made the first purchase. They are testing to see how often that triggers someone to buy a second or third product. Did you ever buy a domain on GoDaddy®? You are presented with so many upsells and bundle options. This is very similar if you buy a plane ticket on Orbtiz®, there are several packages and bundled options. But are you doing this in your own business? If you are, congrats! Now, what can you do to improve what you already have working? Are you testing names, combinations, copy, graphics? You may be not doing this and this is a must to maximize your results. You must test and see what will work better to make those improvements. We started doing this again on one of our websites and tested three different landing pages and one
out pulled the other by 4x the amount! That is huge over time.

JV creatively. If you are not getting many companies to promote you to their list at no cost to you then look for a smaller win. Perhaps you can trade a banner post on each other’s blog. Perhaps you can trade a “P.S.” in an email blast you are both doing to help cross promote. If you each have a loyal following and valuable list why not cross promote! You have to be the one suggesting new and simpler methods to JV. You may even hire someone to make JV calls on your behalf to set appointments. If you have someone doing that now for new clients or customers why not have them spend 1/5 of their time making calls for JV opportunities for your business. That is what we do at NCP.

read more