Sales slumps, quiet periods, business lulls, call them what you will, but they can still be a serious threat to your business, and in some cases will even bring the business down completely. There are ways to overcome these sales slumps, but they may mean taking some time during your busier periods to prepare for them. We have compiled our 5 quick tips to help you beat sales slumps and profit all year round with your business.
1: Build a mailing list. Online or offline, all business owners should be building a list not only of their customers, but also people who may be interested in their products or services. it's obvious that your customers already know you, and trust you, and that they buy what you sell, but there are other people too who may be interested but haven't bought from you yet. Online you can add a subscription form to your website, and capture emails and even mailing addresses of your potential customers who didn't buy. Offline, offer something free which interested parties can get by giving you their mailing address. Contacting your customers and other interested people during your quiet periods can give you sales when your business most needs them.
2: Have a sale. Having a big discount sale will bring in customers, and while they are there you can offer an upsell. If you sell a lower cost item at a discount for your sale promotion, it will bring in people for you to offer higher ticket items. Even small discounts can attract people to your business.
3: Cross promote with other businesses. Quite often you can find another business with products which will complement yours, and are a natural fit for cross promoting each other. Search out these other businesses and trade with them for advertising space, or referrals. If you sell yoga mats, then find yoga training classes, offer the training school attendees a discount on mats, and/or the trainers a small incentive for selling the mats for you. Maybe get them to hand out coupons to their trainees which enables you to track the sale back to them, and give their clients the discount. You can do the same for them, when someone buys a mat they may need training, and you could get the incentive fees for referring to the school in the same way.
4: Offer something new. During the slow periods, it can help to offer something new, a new products or service. Don't always throw out new products in the busy periods, save them to entice people to your business during the sales slump periods. New products and services hold a mystery, and demand attention, so offering them when it's slow is a great way to bring back people with the curiosity factor. It's also a good way to add another upsell opportunity, see tip 2.
5: Use the Quiet Period Wisely. OK this may not bring in extra money right away, but while your business is quiet you can take the time to make plans. You also have time to investigate new products or services to your business, and to plan new ways to promote your business. The sales slump may be a great time to do some re-organisation, and to reflect on the ways to improve your service, or products.
Whatever time of year your sales slump arrives, you don't have to sit back and accept it. Get up, and get busy, there's a whole heap of things you can do to increase your business anytime of the year, just take some action, and turn those slumps into peaks.