Try one of these tips to ramp up your sales this year.
1. Diversify. Ask your current customers: “What else are you doing?” Then, offer them services to help with that. It’s a strategy that’s worked well for Charlotte T-Shirt, leading the North Carolina-based company to get into embroidery, direct-to-garment printing and much more. “It’s easier to do more business with a client you already have than to go find a new one,” says owner Keith Abrams. For the last decade, Charlotte T-Shirt has grown at least 20% a year thanks to that philosophy. “Every year, I say this has got to be it,” Abrams says, but the company shows no signs of slowing. March saw the shop’s biggest revenues since opening in 2002.
2. Market, market, market. You should reserve time every day to get your shop noticed. It could be something as simple as posting to your company’s Facebook page or leaving comments on a blog. You could put together a newsletter to send out to your audience. Or pick up the phone and work on building your relationship with customers, new and old. “There are just so many things you can do,” says Joyce Jagger, who runs the consulting business The Embroidery Coach.
3. Increase your profit margins. Make it a habit to periodically review your pricing, and make increases where appropriate. “A few percentage points won’t destroy a customer relationship,” says Chris Vanderzyden, sales consultant and author of 7 Steps to Entrepreneurial Victory. You should also review your vendor lists and ensure you’re getting “preferred pricing” whenever possible, she says.