How to “Fix” Your Sales Challenges: Fix This Next Series

The best way to identify your Next Vital Need (what to fix next) is to take the assessment. And if the assessment tells you that you need to fix your sales, read on!

Unpredictable sales are frustrating, especially when that rollercoaster cycle leads to unpredictable profits. After all, operations expenses are usually relatively stable. So when you’re not bringing in enough revenue to cover expenses (after your profit and owner’s pay allocations, of course), you blame sales.

That’s a fair assumption. But there’s more to establishing predictable sales than simply making sales month over month.

If you feel like you’re experiencing a challenge with your sales or you’re finding that you just don’t seem to have much left in your OPEX account each month, it’s time to “fix” that sales challenge.

But again, it’s not about making more sales. It’s about making the right sales from the right people so that you can live the lifestyle you want.

Do You Know Your Lifestyle?

Being able to support yourself and your family is important, right? We’re all for paying yourself a living wage, but do you know what that looks like for you? It looks different for everyone depending on where you live and what lifestyle you want to maintain. Figure out how much you need to live comfortably while also eliminating debt and putting some cash away for savings. Then reverse engineer the numbers to determine what you’ll need in sales to make that happen. Consistently.

Of course, more sales isn’t necessarily the answer if you’re not selling enough to take home what you want. There are a lot of factors to consider here, including reducing expenses. And when you’re looking at your numbers on a regular basis, you can easily calculate exactly how much you need to make in sales in order to fund your owner’s pay account appropriately.

Are You Attracting the Right People?

You’ve likely heard of the ideal client and the importance of knowing who that is. Once you know who that person is, are you doing the things you need to do, in the right places, to get them interested in your services?

It’s not enough to advertise or create content for your audience. You need to show up in the places where your ideal clients show up so you can provide value and grab their attention. That means being an active participant, like guesting on podcasts your people listen to or commenting on social media content, responding to your subscribers’ emails, etc. And not just half-hazardly either, but with intention and in the places where you know your “right people” are hanging out. You don’t need just anyone to join your gym or visit your studio; you need the right people to do that.

Are You Converting Those Prospects?

Once you attract the right people, you need to convert them into customers–and repeat customers if that’s your business model. It’s not about making the sale at any expense; it’s about selling with integrity to the right customers.

It’s not your responsibility to be the hero of your customers’ challenges; it’s your job to make them the hero and guide them along the way. This allows you to focus on the potential customer, not on making the sale–thereby eliminating the pressure on you or your salesperson to make the sale. After all, you may not be the best solution for everyone. And wouldn’t you rather convert the people for whom you are the best solution?

Do You Deliver on Your Commitments?

No one likes to feel let down, and sometimes clients aren’t happy–but they won’t tell you that. There are a lot of reasons why you may not deliver on the promises you gave during the sales process, not the least of which being overextending yourself (which we often do in an effort to make more sales).

Depending on your business model, the goal should be to delight your customers so they’ll continue buying from you. If they’re not happy they will likely take their business elsewhere. But the reality is that it’s much easier to retain a customer you already have than it is to find a new customer.

Are Your Clients Delivering?

A sale isn’t really final until both sides have delivered on their promises, and sometimes a sale remains incomplete indefinitely. This includes the client paying in full for the delivered product or service. You’re a business, not a charity, and clients need to fulfill their obligations to you.

If your business is a retainer model, you’ll notice that some clients will pay later and later as time goes on if they’re not on an auto-pay system. And if you don’t have a delinquent collection system in place, you’ll want to get something set up.

Looking at your own business from a different perspective can be difficult. If you’re struggling to determine where your sales breakdown is, let’s talk! We have experience helping clients like you get on the right sales path so they can live the lifestyle they want. Contact us today!

Shannon Simmons

Shannon has been consulting with small businesses for over 10 years. After 2 years in public accounting she saw a need to work for small business owners to teach them how to grow financially healthy businesses. She has built on her Master of Accountancy degree from Manchester University by becoming a Certified Profit First Professional and a Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor. When she’s not meeting with entrepreneurs or assessing their businesses, she enjoys time with her husband and 2 children serving in their community, playing and watching sports, marveling at nature or reading a good book.

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