Sales tactics are strategies that can help sales professionals sign more customers and sell more products. When using a sales tactic, your focus is to inform and persuade the customer to buy your product or service. Becoming familiar with different types of sales tactics can help you develop an approach that works best for you.
In this article, we explain nine of the most effective tactics used in sales and how they work.
Why are sales tactics important?
Sales tactics are important because they improve your performance as a salesperson and increase your company’s revenue. They are the actions you take to move the sales process forward. Bringing in more sales usually means you can earn higher commissions. Effective sales tactics can also help you develop stronger relationships with customers and increase word-of-mouth referrals.
Some sales tactics are more useful at the start of your interaction with your customer while others are best used at the end of your sale. For each sale, it’s important to recognize which tactic will best serve you and your company. Try to notice which ones are easier for you to use than others. Also, depending on the customer you have or the product you are selling, you might use one tactic over another.
9 effective sales tactics to try
Professionals from all types of industries use sales tactics to deliver messages to customers or consumers. Here are nine tactics that work and why:
1. Network with others
Networking is a useful tool when you want to effectively market your company to the public. When you network, you engage with professionals and their business communities to find potential new customers or clients. Some ways to network include using professional networking sites or attending networking events where you represent your company.
Trade shows are events you go to on behalf of your company to market your products or services to potential customers. Attendees browse your products as well as those of other businesses. Trade shows are a great way to gain exposure to other companies and what they are selling to develop competitive strategies.
2. Ask for referrals
Referrals are potential new clients obtained from current customers who recommended your services. It is an indirect way to receive additional customers through suggestions from your current clients. The best time to ask for referrals is after your customer has directly benefited from your product or service. Referrals also help your company develop a strong and positive reputation that new customers rely on when making their purchasing decisions.
3. Develop a relationship with your customers
Having a relationship means you know enough about your customers to tailor your sales pitch to their needs. It’s not enough to hear what your customer wants. You have to actively listen, reading between the lines with their answers to your questions as well as their nonverbal cues. When they think you care about their wants and needs, they are more likely to listen to your suggestions.
Personalized conversations are a great way to learn more about your customers and what products they might need. Ask plenty of questions and take note of what they are looking for. Provide them with information about your company and its products or services to familiarize them.
It’s also good to follow up after your meeting or sales call. This tactic makes you seem friendlier and more committed to the customer. Also, it’s a good practice to check in and ask if there’s anything else you can do or if they have any questions or concerns you can address. In return, the customer will think of you when it’s time to make their next purchase.
4. Do what you say
Just as a customer will remember a good experience with your product, they’ll remember the same about you. If you say a product will be delivered by a certain time or perform a specific function, do your best to make the delivery on time or that the product lives up to your hype.
If something goes wrong, proactively notify the customer with an email, call or text message. This lets them know you’re working on their behalf. When you do what you say, it builds trust—and likely repeat sales—with your customers.
5. Make a good first impression
In many cases, you may be contacting a potential customer for the first time without meeting in person. Being overly assertive, vague or using poor grammar will quickly turn a potential customer into a “not interested” one. When you reach out, you may use several “cold” tactics to seek customers out instead of them coming to you.
Cold calling means directly calling prospective customers to see if they are interested in your product or service. In many cases, you may contact prospects from a curated list of people who match a specific demographic or who already expressed interest in your company.
Cold emailing is when you send an email to a prospective customer to tell them about your products or services. Emailing is a good way to create a record of your communication with the person and keep track of your conversations. Cold emails provide lots of information to the customer while also giving them the chance to read it whenever they like.
Direct mail involves sending a letter directly to your customer’s home or business. This conventional approach provides potential customers with tangible information about your company like brochures and catalogs.
6. Leverage social media
An organic way to positively interact with your customers and sell your product or service is through social media. When you post on social media, you can gain a following of potential customers and create a large network of people familiar with your company. You can also post product demonstrations and positive customer testimonials, to engage your following. Use social media to show “before” and “after” results—with customer permission—and answer questions, respond to comments, update product images, etc.
7. Tell a story
Telling a story usually involves describing a narrative to your customer about their life with your product or service. Relate a case or example of how your product or service has benefitted other customers and provide specific details. Take advantage of any quantitative data you have available, using case studies and metrics to illustrate your point. For example, explain how Customer A had a 33% increase in web traffic using your service or how Customer B saved X number of dollars using your product.
8. Try other sales techniques
Once you know your customer’s needs, you may find out opportunities to upsell or cross-sell your products or services. Be sure you suggest, not push, other items that might benefit your customer.
Upselling is when you offer the customer an opportunity to upgrade or add another product to their purchase. They spend more money overall than they would originally, increasing sales revenue. This technique focuses on selling more to one customer rather than selling one item to many customers.
Cross-selling is when you offer your customer a different selection of items unrelated to the initial service or product you introduced. It is an efficient approach to familiarize your customers with the variety of your company’s merchandise. By using this technique, you acknowledge a customer’s disinterest in one set of items and offer a new set of items in their place.
9. Use technology to your advantage
If your company has a customer relationship management (CRM) system or app, put it to work for you. A CRM system is a set of applications used to store, organize, and process customer information, interactions, and services. It will help you track a customer’s previous encounters with your company such as what they bought, when, and if they had any issues with their purchase. Instead of keeping paper records, you can access customer information, check service tickets, and view market trends in seconds.
I hope you find this article helpful.