How to increase sales for your manufacturing business
Manufacturers are often struggling with long and complex sales processes, making it hard to increase sales. This has to do with the complex nature of the goods, but also with the fact that B2B sales requires various stakeholders to work together. On top of that, the manufacturing market has had some intrusive changes: increasingly demanding B2B buyers and global competition continue to impact companies. Increasing sales in manufacturing is therefore not as straightforward as it often is in other industries. We are bundling some tips to increase your sales again. Read along!
Increase manufacturing sales with these tips
1. Invest in your online presence
In today’s digital world, increasing sales begins with online marketing. The online presence is often overlooked by manufacturers, but customers need to be able to easily find you and your products online. This is a great way to generate new leads, and to guide existing customers to your sales platform. Some things to consider here are: Is your website on-brand and up to date? Is it user-friendly? Do you appear in the top results on Google when people are looking for the type of products you sell?
If your answers to these questions were negative, you need to invest more in your online presence. Online marketing takes time, but the benefits are great. Keep in mind that your website should also seamlessly guide users to your web shop or e-commerce platform in order to increase your sales even further.
2. Become easy to buy from
Your customers’ buying experience should be your main priority when designing your sales process. Customers may find it difficult to buy from you, resulting in lower sales volumes. By removing obstacles in the process, you can make it easy for customers to buy from you, setting you apart from your competitors, and creating brand loyalty.
Obstacles appear in nearly every step of the buying process. One of the main frustrations for buyers is finding the right products and the respective product information. We recommend you ditch your paper product catalogs and replace them with an online buying platform that is tailored to your customers’ needs. Use guided selling to help customers find the product they’re looking for and provide all product information in multiple languages and currencies, according to your target audience.
Another obstacle for customers is having to wait for days or even weeks on a quotation. This gives them too much time to reconsider and look into your competitors’ offerings. A study by Forbes (2019) has shown that manufacturers who are the first to produce an accurate quotation, win the deal 60% of the time or more. Be fast and make it easy for your customers to place an order. That’s how you improve the customer experience, resulting in more sales!
3. Automate your sales process
A third way to increase manufacturing sales, is by automating your sales tasks and processes. To understand why automation is so crucial, you need to understand time management for sales representatives. They only spend one third of their time selling and the other share of their time is dominated by administrative tasks (Forbes, 2018). Now imagine how much more time you could spend on selling if you automated these tasks…
That’s why automation is pivotal to the success of your manufacturing sales. Automating things like lead generation, email blasts, quoting, and invoicing frees up your sales representatives’ time for building long-term relationships and helping customers out with more complex projects. This sets your business up for more sales and a sustainable growth.
4. Increase the order size by improving product knowledge
Another way to increase your sales is by increasing the order size. An important factor here is product knowledge. Product knowledge leads to a higher willingness to pay and creates the perfect opportunity for cross-selling or upselling. Being able to see all the available options or materials and being able to look into similar products or matching parts, encourages customers to buy.
However, when you’re selling on an online self-service platform, it might not be easy to educate your customers on the products they’re buying. We recommend making your complex products easy to understand by using interactive 3D models and a set of predetermined questions to guide customers in the right direction. Improving the product knowledge like this will boost your sales significantly!
5. Prioritize a good customer service
It is much easier to retain an existing customer than it is to find a new one. Taking that into account, it is necessary to invest in long-term relationships with your customers by offering them an outstanding buyer experience and an excellent customer service. The latter has become increasingly important in today’s world dominated by e-commerce. Customers do not just want a good customer service; they are expecting it.
Prioritizing the quality of your customer service is therefore a crucial step in the retention of your existing customers. An excellent service builds trust and encourages people to buy from you again. Make sure you equip your service team with the tools needed to provide customers with accurate answers quickly and to communicate clearly about prices, order updates and shipping schedules. This will keep your customers satisfied and attract new ones!
These are five ways to increase your sales taking the customers’ behavior into account. These tips will not just increase the volume but will also help you to build and maintain your long-term relationships with customers.
Need help increasing manufacturing sales? Have you thought about an online sales platform yet? Get in touch and let’s see what Hive can do for you!
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