Published March 24, 2008

How to Increase Retail Sales

Every small business owner with a retail location knows how difficult it can be to stay in the black. Even if your store is in a great location, you still have to know how to appeal to customers to keep the cash flowing.

Here are a few steps that will help you to increase sales in your retail store.

Honesty is Still the Best Policy

Maintain transparency in all your dealings, pass on product and service discounts honestly to your customers and always deal in genuine products.

This policy will pay off in the long run, and you will notice a steady increase in your business as your loyal customers refer you to new clientele.

Keep On Advertising

In this fast paced world, customers can be attracted to new products and stores in no time. That's why you need to keep advertising regularly, even if your business is well established.

Keep your budget in mind when you're developing your advertising strategy. If you have good cash flow, you may consider advertising in newspapers on the radio. If your budget is more limited, that's OK - you can still advertise effectively on the Internet, or by sending out flyers in your neighborhood.

No matter what type of advertising you use, make sure that any new products, special prices or sale items are prominently displayed.

Use the Powers of the Internet

Build an interactive and attractive website, where your loyal customers and prospects can not only see your entire product range, but also place orders.

This method is highly effective and is proven to work. The biggest supermarket chains have recorded a record number of online sales over the years - and so can you.

Develop Innovative Pricing and Discounts

When it comes to increasing retail sales, it pays to be creative. Try mixing two or more products to make an attractive package, and price it accordingly.

Customers are always on the lookout to save some money, and package deals are a good way to appeal to them, make more money and move more products at the same time.

Devise a Customer Loyalty Program

Supermarkets have used loyalty cards with great success, and you should try to duplicate their methods.

Design a special card that allows customers to get a certain number of points for every purchase, corresponding to the amount of money they spend. Your customers could then utilize these cards to get free gifts or additional discounts on subsequent purchases.

This will make your existing customers happy, and provide an incentive for new customers to stick with you for a long time.

Keep Your Retail Store Clean and Presentable

You should always ensure that your retail store is kept extremely clean, and your staff should be taught to do the same. Your display area should display the latest offers and you should change displays at regular intervals.

There's nothing worse to a customer than to visit their favorite store and find that it's dirty, or that nothing has changed in months.

Keep Track Of Your Inventory

In retail sales, the key to success lies in managing your inventory. These days, you can't do this effectively if you're still using a manual system. There are lots of new software packages on the market that can help you with inventory matters.

By keeping track of your inventory, you can easily plan re-ordering schedules, thus improving turnover of your products - and saving more money in the process. By using a financial accounting software package, you can also keep track of your finances, as saving money is just as important as earning it.

Use the above methods to generate increased sales for your retail store. They won't cost much, and the returns will be well worth the effort.