Updated: Dec 10, 2019
In a world that is slowly being overtaken by the ease and convenience of Amazon two-day delivery, I’m an absolute advocate of keeping it real. Shop small. Locals only.
BUT if I have to put in a good word for the greasy chain restaurants, the mall-variety shopping centers, the mass-produced big box stores, it’s that they’ve mastered their process so they can focus on the service they provide and the products they deliver. And as a small business owner (even if you have no desire to franchise), you HAVE to learn to compile, record and replay your success if you ever want to make progress.
Let’s do it.
Almost every small business owner I know thinks that their customers are loving their tunes, and really engaged with them. But in reality, maybe 50% of those “customers” are actually buying what your business is selling. You don’t have to be good at math to know that this percentage is not an equation for success.
So how do you start to change the solution?
Measure What Matters.
Want better results, get curious about the potential problem. Of the people who contact you, how many turn into customers? What are they buying? How much is their average spend? You don’t need fancy technology to track this, though it certainly helps.
Grab a notepad, use your notes app on your phone and just keep tabs manually to start really tracking how many inquiries you are actually converting into sales. Utilize industry benchmarks and calculate how many purchases you need to get in a week, a day, an hour to be in line with industry standards. Set goals, meet them and then work on surpassing them.
Alright, you have a tracking system in place and you’ve set sales goals for success. Where to from here?
Track the data for 30 days and figure out your strengths and weaknesses.
Maybe you see 0 sales every Wednesday. Is the same person working those days? Do you need to enhance your sales training? Maybe Wednesday is just a bad day for business and you can close shop that day or rent out the space for events to get more bang for your business buck. Look at the numbers and get really curious to figure out what is performing well, what’s reached a stalemate and how you can use your numbers to create action and positive growth in your business.
Systemize those strengths, make a playlist and hit RECORD.
Literally, record your on-boarding, your sales process, and your employee training as you’re doing it. Better yet, have your employees record the process while they are learning - yes, get them to write it down, that way you can SEE their understanding, improve where needed, and it's a fabulous way for them to deepen their understanding. This way you can make sure the next person you hire is even more prepared and has documentation to refer back too. It’s all about systemizing a process so you can pass it on, utilize it, and not have to think twice about it in the future.
Once you start raising your sales numbers and analyzing the shift, it's time to perfect your process. To truly engage your audience and turn them into regular customers, you have to figure out what is encouraging them to purchase your product or service (and better yet, come back for more).
When you can replicate your success model and make it a standardized part of your business, you can grow even further.
Increase the value of each sale! Increase the number of items per purchase! Increase your value, and watch your profits soar. Make the perfect first-date mixtape!
The drive-thru line may not be your literal business goal, but getting to the same level of fast efficiency should.