People love to talk about income. The numbers are impressive and easy to focus on. But when was the last time you heard someone brag about increasing their profit margins or improving their business efficiency
But remember that it does not matter how much you earn, but how much you are able to retain and how you decide to use it. Here are three highly effective and, not too obvious, strategies to improve the profitable growth of your business.
Increase your prices
Rising prices can be a scary prospect. As entrepreneurs, we assume that customers will abandon us, sales will dry up, and our business will collapse. But, we tend to exaggerate consequences and underestimate benefits. Especially if you resell an existing product in your ecommerce store, a small increase (even 10%) can work miracles.
When implementing this strategy, keep the following in mind: Make sure to test different price levels. Although raising prices is usually very effective, you must confirm it for your market or business. If you have a large catalog, modifying the prices of thousands of products can be a difficult task. Start by changing prices only on the best-selling products.
This strategy is based on sustaining a unique selling proposition and offering value to your customers. The more price sensitive your customers are, the less effective the strategy will be. If you don’t have a unique proposal, you need to implement one.
Don’t get obsessed with earnings per order
Many companies are unwilling to lose money on an order, even if it means ending their relationship with an unhappy or upset customer. You may have had a similar experience.
This approach doesn’t pay off in the long run, and it’s a terrible way to do business in today’s highly social and connected world. If you don’t consistently spend money on orders to quickly and proactively resolve customer issues, you’re missing out on the opportunity to improve your bottom line.
Scores of customers are so used to mediocre service that when a company strives to proactively resolve their problems without charging them, they are surprised. In addition to the lifetime value of the shocked customer, you’ll receive valuable referral marketing and impossible-to-buy referrals.
If you’re running an ecommerce store, here are four ways you can invest in the future of your business and ultimately your long-term bottom line:
Did something cheap break? Send customers a free replacement right away, no hassle with the return.
If they’re looking to return an expensive item, send them a replacement as soon as they send the return tracking confirmation, rather than waiting until it reaches your warehouse.
If an old customer needs something ASAP, send it free as soon as possible (the next day).
If a customer is not satisfied with a purchase, it proactively issues a partial refund to make up for their disappointment.
Reconsider offering phone support
Would you be willing to cut your workload by 50% if it only meant giving up 15% of your business? Maybe you should! While telephone support is a rarity among many online businesses, it seems that a disproportionate number of e-businesses still see it as indispensable, even if it is not.
After the previous section, this might seem counterintuitive. But great customer service doesn’t mean you should be everything to anyone. It simply means that you take exceptional care of the clients with whom you have chosen to do business. Depending on the product and your market offering, phone sales support may or may not be convenient.
Try to measure the impact of the possible removal of your phone number on conversions. You will probably be surprised that the vast majority of people decide to order online. If you want to offer a sales line, try to make it visible in strategic places such as on the “Contact us” page or in the shopping cart, where only qualified potential customers will locate it.
If you choose to reduce phone support, be sure to:
Be honest with customers and let them know why you don’t include a phone number. Make it clear that you prefer to invest in a quality website and excellent service for existing customers.
Try to have a highly detailed and informative website so that you answer customer questions.
Incorporates quality support by corre or email if customers can’t easily reach you by phone. Using a help desk (such as desk.com or helpjuice) will make your correspondence top-notch and requests won’t go unanswered.
Also, don’t completely discard the phone. If a customer needs to make a callback, or needs to solve problems that require personal attention, you will almost be forced to use it.
Changes are always scary, and you may be reluctant to implement the suggestions for fear of what might happen to your business. But by experimenting with these ideas, the changes will surely go unnoticed by most customers, especially new ones. If, in that case, they are not beneficial, you can always go back to your previous policies and prices.