7 Proven Retail Sales Strategies For 2024

7 Proven Retail Sales Strategies For 2024

Want to take your retail business to the next level in2024?

Here are seven proven retail sales strategies that can help you do that:

#1. Invest in the Quality of Your Perennial Sellers

Look at your historical sales data.

What products continue to sell well year after year?

These are your perennial sellers that you should invest in:

  1. Look at the customer feedback on these products.
  2. Do competitive research to see how your products compare to similar products that your rivals offer.
  3. Figure out how to significantly improve the quality of these products while maintaining healthy profit margins. 

If your perennial sellers are significantly better than similar products in other retail stores, your customers will start recommending them to their families, friends, and colleagues all on their own!

Example: Women’s Clothing Store

Let’s say that you have a women’s clothing store that primarily caters to professional women between the ages of 25 and 35.

After looking at the data, you realize that office wear is your best-selling category, with classic pencil skirts and classic shirts being your perennial sellers.  

If you then invest in making your pencil skirts and shirts the best in that price range, that quality increase won’t go unnoticed by your customers.

They will probably start recommending your pencil skirts and shirts to other professional women who work office jobs.

Word-of-mouth, whether negative or positive, tends to snowball, so if you can create the best product in that price range, you will likely see a steady increase in sales over time due to word-of-mouth. 

#2. Create Cross-Sells for your Perennial Sellers

Your perennial sellers are the products that continue to sell well year after year.

It makes sense to take advantage of that sales volume and create cross-sells and upsells for them.

A cross-sell is an offer that is complementary to the offer that the potential customer has already accepted.

McDonald’s famous “Would you like fries with that?” is a classic cross-sell example.

Look at each of your perennial sellers and ask yourself: what products would complement this product?

You may already have products that you can use as cross-sells or you may need to add new products to your inventory specifically for that purpose. 

Example: Shoe Store

Let’s say that you have a shoe store.

Depending on the type of shoes that you sell, you could cross-sell socks, shoe care products, wool felt insoles, and so on. 

For example, if you find out that classic black leather shoes are one of your perennial sellers, you can cross-sell shoe polish designed specifically for black leather shoes.

#3. Create Upsells for Your Perennial Sellers

We also recommend creating upsells for your perennial sellers whenever possible. 

An upsell is an offer that is an upgrade on the offer that the potential customer has already accepted.

McDonald’s infamous “Would you like to supersize that?” is a classic upsell example.

Creating upsells can be trickier than creating cross-sells but here are the three most popular approaches to upselling:

  • Upsell more of that product
  • Upsell a better version of that product
  • Upsell a subscription for that product

Note that you also need to offer a better price relative to what they are getting!

Example: Health and Fitness Store

Let’s say that you have a health and fitness store.

You analyze your historical data and realize that organic acerola cherry vitamin C powder is one of your perennial sellers. 

You can:

  1. Upsell more of it at a better price – Say, if your perennial seller is the 500g package, you can upsell a 1kg package at a better price per kilogram.
  2. Upsell a subscription at a better price – Say, if the perennial seller package should last someone three months assuming that they don’t exceed the recommended dose, you can upsell a quarterly subscription at a better price per kilogram. 

Keep in mind that the better the price per kilogram, the more appealing your upsell is going to be!

#4. Create Offers for Your Perennial Sellers and Draw Attention to Them

You shouldn’t only sell products, you also want to create offers. But what’s the difference between the two?

A product is just that, an item that you sell. Meanwhile, an offer is a solution to a specific problem that is packaged in an appealing way.

So think about common problems that your customers are struggling with and see how you can create solutions for them with offers centered around your perennial sellers.

Once you have an offer, you should display it prominently, draw attention to it with poster stands and pitch it to customers directly when it makes sense. 

Example: Travel Store

Let’s say that you have a travel store. 

Backpacks are your perennial sellers and you cross-sell travel accessories like travel belts, tech tool cases, packing cubes, etc. 

If one of your customer segments is newbie travelers who are preparing for their first big trip and come in to buy a backpack, you can create an offer designed specifically for them.

Consider that they may not be aware that all these travel accessories exist. Say, they may not know what packing cubes are so they are not going to seek them out by themselves. 

You can create an offer that includes your best backpack plus travel accessories and is significantly cheaper than buying all of these items separately.

Then, if you see someone looking at backpacks, you can chat with them to learn what kind of trip they are preparing for.

If it’s their first big trip, you can show them the backpack, explain the value of all these accessories, and pitch them your offer.

#5. Create Seasonal Offers and Draw Attention to Them

You also want to create seasonal offers centered around two types of products:

  1. Seasonal perennial sellers that continue to sell well on a particular season year after year.
  2. Trendy items that are in vogue that season but may go out of fashion next year.

Obviously, investing resources in proven products makes more sense, so you should start with seasonal perennial sellers.

But if there’s some craze sweeping your industry, you can capitalize on it by creating an offer centered around it!

Example: Grocery Stores

Let’s say that you have a grocery store in a country with a cold winter.

Ginger-lemon-honey tea is a perennial seasonal hit in northern latitudes as evidenced by its ubiquity in restaurants and coffee shops. 

You could take advantage of this trend by:

  1. Creating a ginger-lemon-honey tea kit that includes one piece of ginger, one lemon, and a few packets of honey.
  2. Prominently displaying this tea kit at the checkout area and using a poster to draw attention to it. 

There are a lot of people who would love to make ginger-lemon-honey tea at home but when they go to the grocery store after work, they may be too exhausted to look for the ingredients. 

But if you create a tea kit and put it in front of them, they might buy it because it’s so easy: all they need to do is put it in their shopping cart. 

Offers like that can have great profit margins because consumers are willing to pay for convenience!

#6. Train Your Store Employees to Upsell and Cross-Sell at the Cash Register

If you want your store employees to be effective at selling, you need to provide sales training. 

Most importantly, you want to teach them how to upsell and cross-sell customers at the cash register.

Create upsell and cross-sell scripts that your employees can use and then instruct them to use these scripts with every customer who wants to buy one of your perennial sellers.

You also want to teach your store employees to be proactive, chat with customers, figure out what problem they are trying to solve, and then help them find a solution. 

Encourage the floor staff to pitch customers upsells, cross-sells, and special offers but only when that makes sense.

Emphasize that they should always put the customer’s needs first. What would they recommend to a family member or a friend in the same situation?

#7. Incentivize Your Store Employees to Proactively Sell Your Products

Let’s be real:

Trying to sell something to someone can feel really awkward if you are new to it. 

This means that if you tell your store employees to be proactive about selling your products, they will probably avoid it as much as possible.

Sure, they might make some performative effort when they know that you are watching, but they probably won’t go beyond that. Why?

Because there’s nothing in it for them: they get all the downside (awkwardness), you get all the upside (extra revenue).

That’s why it’s so important to not just train but also incentivize your employees to sell your products. 

The exact details will vary from business to business but you want to create a system where you either pay them commissions or set up some sort of revenue share arrangement.

It doesn’t have to be anything crazy but it has to provide an opportunity to make extra money every month on top of their base salary. 

Obviously, you need to watch your margins, so make sure that the math works before you announce this reward system!

Bonus: Create a Loyalty Program With Amazing Perks

Loyalty programs can be a great way to increase sales. But simply having one isn’t enough. You need to make sure that it comes with amazing perks.

Here are some ideas:

  • Reward customers for each purchase with store points or store “money” that they can then use towards future purchases. 
  • Offer exclusive deals to your loyalty program members that are not available to anyone else. 
  • Celebrate your loyalty program members’ birthdays by offering them a free product or a service.
  • Host free events for your loyalty program members. This can mean activities, lectures, Q&A sessions with interesting people, etc.
  • Partner with other businesses to get your loyalty program members better deals. Say, if you run a health and fitness store, you can partner with a local gym so that your loyalty program members could get one month for free.

We also recommend investing in setting up a machine learning-based product recommendation system and integrating it with your email marketing software.

That way, you will be able to automatically send your loyalty program members personalized product recommendations based on their purchase history!

Want to Protect Your Business From the “Retail Apocalypse”?

You have probably heard of the so-called “retail apocalypse” that started in the early 2010s and accelerated during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Some researchers have called this narrative into question and argued that this phenomenon has been exaggerated. 

However, there’s no denying that consumers are increasingly favoring online shopping over going to brick-and-mortar stores.

The e-commerce share of retail sales has been steadily increasing for well over a decade now and it’s projected to continue to grow in the foreseeable future: 

E-commerce as a percentage of retail sales continues to grow across regions, chart.

The reality is that no retail company is safe from the retail apocalypse. So how can you protect yourself from it?

You can do that by building an e-commerce business. That way, should you ever need to close all your brick-and-mortar stores, you will have your online store to fall back on. 

And this probably isn’t news to you. Maybe you already have an online store set up. It’s probably safe to say that at this point, most established retail companies do.

But we have noticed that a lot of those companies aren’t taking the e-commerce side of their businesses as seriously as they should. 

It’s not just about having an online store, it’s about growing it and ideally getting it to the point where its revenue exceeds that of your brick-and-mortar stores. 

But how can you do that?

Grow Your Online Store FAST With Sales Funnels!

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He is widely considered to be one of the top sales funnel experts in the world and has taught thousands of entrepreneurs how they can use sales funnels to grow their businesses.

His best-selling book “DotCom Secrets” covers everything you need to know in order to build a sales funnel for your online store. 

You can get this book from Amazon where it currently has over 2,500 customer reviews and a 4.7 star rating. 

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