It is no real surprise!

posted: Friday, October 15, 2010

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It is no real surprise that sales are off target, or even below last year’s figures when you actually go out shopping and look at what’s really happening in the marketplace. Don’t get me wrong. I believe that the general state of the economy is playing a major role in the lackluster sales. However, I also believe that as long as you have competition in your area, there is an opportunity for a sales increase. As long as you have customers coming in your door, there is an opportunity to create a sale, for bump-up sales, for add-on sales, for referral sales, and for repeat customer sales.

When sales get a little bit rough, it certainly isn’t the time to sit back and wait for customers to come to you. Now is the time to go out and produce sales. Again, as I have stated before, as much as 80% of your business comes from 20% of your customer base. Work your customer base. I don’t mean be pushy and aggressive; I mean be effective. Insure customer retention with follow-up and exceptional customer service.

I would challenge each of you to spend a few hours and go shopping. What you will see is frightening. In many companies, you’ll see nonchalant, lackadaisical, ho-hum, who-really-gives-a-darn sales presentations. You’ll see stores where people are actually standing on the sales floor ignoring customers. Other stores you’ll find no one to help you. You’ll see a dreadful lack of appreciation for the customer. You’ll see salespeople qualifying potential buyers based on looks, or their perception of whether they are going to buy or not. You’ll see salespeople unprepared to make a presentation, either lacking product knowledge, sales knowledge or sometimes lacking even a pen or pencil to write an order. Not everyone is this bad; however many are. Take a long hard look at your competition, and then establish yourself as head and shoulders above the majority.

It is no real surprise that selling is difficult. The fact remains that there are tremendous opportunities for a professional sales organization to not only grow, but to flourish. The only thing that separates one company from another is the people that work there. The customer can get the products anywhere; but not with all the love, care, service and appreciation you can give and that a customer deserves.

FINAO - Brad Huisken

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