While many web retailers and big box stores will choose to compete on price, smaller retailers who are unable to operate on such slim margins have to focus their energy on providing great customer service and expertise. However, they can still often face situations where price becomes a major factor in a customer’s buying decision. So in an effort to keep your prices looking sharp, here are five tips for offering more value without killing your profits.
- Bundling. Offering a number of related products bundled together at a special price can give your sales a quick boost while providing better value. Restaurants do this all the time by offering an entrée, dessert, and drink at a slightly lower price than what it would cost to purchase every item separately. The result is an increase in dessert sales and higher overall sales and profits.
- Limited availability. Carrying products that are only available for a limited time or in limited quantity can help build buzz and keep customers coming back to see what’s new. Many independent retailers do this well by stocking a rotating line of handmade products by local suppliers.
- Unique product lines. While most retailers choose to carry products that are proven sellers, the disadvantage is that many of these products are likely sold everywhere, lowering their perceived value. Instead, seek out unique products. This can be a totally new product line, or an existing category supplied by a new, innovative manufacturer.
- Additional services. Offering additional services, either at no charge or for a fee, can give your business the edge. Free delivery, free assembly, unlimited technical support, or offering a how-to workshop can help increase both sales and customer loyalty.
- Warranty. Depending on your industry, product warranties offered by manufacturers may be minimal or non existent. So take charge by offering your own warranty over and above. In most cases, it will have little or no impact on your costs, but a significant one on your sales.
Marc Gordon is a recognized marketing expert, speaker and strategist. His articles appear in over 200 publications worldwide. Visit marcgordon.ca or his online show at marctv.net for more business tips.