Published May 6, 2008

How to Make Money in a Recession: How to Entice Customers to Spend

You're probably having a tough time just maintaining your existing sales levels, let alone increasing them. But take heart! Here are few ways that you can entice your customers to reach into their pockets and spend more with your small business during a recession.

Offer Freebies With Select Purchases

Everybody loves freebies - and so will your customers. When times are tight, it is more difficult to attract customers into your store (online or otherwise) but once you do, then the chance that they will make a purchase or two is quite high.

By offering customers freebies on purchase of select products, or on purchases over a certain dollar amount, you can lure customers into your store. And if your offer is very good, then this will definitely result in increased sales.

Position Your Best Offers At the Entrance of Each Section

Arrange your products and services in such a manner that your best offers are visible at the entrance of each section. If your business has a physical location, and your store is small, then display your best offers in your main window.

If you have an online store, consider putting up a landing page highlighting your best offers. A landing page is the first page visitors see before they enter into your website to make a purchase.

This will entice your customers to at least check out those offers - and they could even end up buying other items in that section.

Use words such as "Save" and "Limited Time Offer" to entice customers to buy your products during a recession - because all customers want to get the most for their money.

Conduct a Survey

Since every business is different, you should conduct a survey of your customers to find out what they really think. Find out their likes and dislikes, and what attracted them to any particular product or service.

Ask them what they would like to see on your shelves and whether your services need to be improved in any way. Makes changes based on that survey.

Your customers will not only appreciate the fact that you value their views, but this would also enable you to fine tune your marketing strategy, leading to more sales.

Convert a Corner of Your Store into a Coffee Shop

If your store has a physical location and is of a decent size, then you could convert a corner of your store into a coffee shop with a few tables and chairs, and some magazines including a brochure of your best offers.

The longer customers stay in your store, the higher the chances of them remembering something that they forgot to buy. You can either run the coffee shop yourself or hire someone else to do it. You can also include sandwiches, muffins, drinks and other fast food items on the menu.

This will not only turn into additional revenue for your store, but also make your customers linger longer - and increase the chances of additional sales.

It's also a well-known fact that when customers are relaxed, they tend to spend more.

Offer Additional Warranties and Easy Return Policies

You can offer additional warranties on your products, which could be double than that offered by the manufacturer. You can also offer easy return policies on your products. If you remove the risk, your customers will have the additional confidence that they need to make that purchase, without having to think twice about it.

Over a period of time, this trust factor will entice new customers automatically into your store.

A recession calls for additional effort from your side to attract new customers, hold on to existing ones and increase the dollar amount that those customers spend. The above pointers will enable you to entice your customers to spend more with your small business during the tough times.