Rule #2: More Connections = More Conversions
Once you have a solid portfolio, you’ll need to make sure your customers are aware of it.
Typically, most partners focus their attention on one or two sales channels, as they reason that 90% of sales to new and existing customers come from inbound/outbound call centers and account teams. However, don’t underestimate the importance of connecting with your customers more often across multiple channels. You will increase your conversion rate by increasing your contact points per customer.
Building a multi-channel plan will support your ability to serve clients at the moment they need you, whether that’s to clarify goals or assist with decision making. Consider each of your customer segments separately, identify their most promising points of contact, and determine which channels are likely to play a role in advancing and closing the sale.
A couple generations ago, a multi-channel sales approach meant you were selling through two options: a brick-and-mortar storefront and a mail-order catalog. Today, the number of sales channels has increased dramatically, and so have the opportunities for communicating your offerings to potential customers.
We recommend viewing your customer’s buying process as a journey, and design a multi-channel plan to best align with their path from awareness to sale to advocate and ideally, to the next sale.
- Demand generation: A buyer generally won’t consider a sale unless they’re aware and interested in your company’s services, or perhaps when they need to fix a problem immediately. When promoting your services, focus on the value they bring to the customer. Answer the customer’s questions of, “Why should I care?” and “How will this service further my business goals?”
- Conversion/purchase: Get your customer’s foot in the door by closing an initial sale or securing their intent to purchase. Offline channels that can help maximize conversion include web chat, live chat, requesting a call back, and face-to-face appointments.
- Relationship management: Once you begin a relationship with a customer, the majority of add-on sales will result from cross-sell and/or upsell through your account teams or inbound call centers – both sales and support. However, while these two channels typically account for 70% of sales volume, there is still a sizeable opportunity to take advantage of outbound campaigns (usually 20% of sales volume) or online sales (less than 10%). Outbound campaigns to existing customers have the ability to target vertical and individual customer segments. And even though an online storefront typically has the lowest conversion rates, it still has potential to make an impact on offline sales and can help drive leads.
- Propagation: As you manage the relationship with your customer, it’s important to continue to keep them loyal and engaged. Not only will this keep your current customer happy, it will also lead to more referrals and increased demand generation of new customers.
By taking an all-channels-on-deck approach, your sales goals will benefit as you increase connections – and conversion rates – with your customers.