Are You Making These Mistakes In Your Business?

Written by Jennifer Tripp

You’ve probably heardrepparttar statistic that 95% of small businesses fail inrepparttar 116914 first five years. That’s not a very encouraging number! Although being part ofrepparttar 116915 5% that succeed is not easy, it’s definitely possible. What it takes is a lot of common sense, some marketing and sales skills andrepparttar 116916 ability to learn fromrepparttar 116917 mistakes of others.

To get you started onrepparttar 116918 road to success, here are three ofrepparttar 116919 biggest mistakes small businesses make and some tips to help you avoid them:

Mistake #1: Having a Poorly Defined Sales Process

The key to making money with any business is to stay focused on how you can “sell”, “sell more” and “sell more often”. Unfortunately most businesses don’t consider all ofrepparttar 116920 ways they can make money from customers and end up losing potential revenues.

There are three ways you can make money from your site:

1. Get More New Customers – This isrepparttar 116921 sales activity that most small businesses spend 90% of their efforts on. Although it’s an important element of your sales process, it’s only one of three ways you can make money. Don’t neglectrepparttar 116922 other two because you’re focused on only attracting new customers.

2. Make More Money From Each Transaction – Upselling isrepparttar 116923 process of increasingrepparttar 116924 value of a customer’s order. Offering additional products and services atrepparttar 116925 point of purchase is an effective way to increaserepparttar 116926 value ofrepparttar 116927 transaction.

3. Sell More Often To Existing Customers – Existing customers arerepparttar 116928 least expensive customers to sell to. Why? Because they’ve already purchased from you once so they trust you, you already know what they’re interested in and you know how to reach them. Use these facts to your advantage by following up with existing customers on a regular basis and offering them more products and services. This process is known as backend sales and is one ofrepparttar 116929 most overlooked revenue sources by small businesses.

A well-defined sales process will include all three of these. If you’re missing any of them you need to rethink your strategy fromrepparttar 116930 beginning. Start with your first contact with a customer and walk through step-by-step how you’ll take them from never having heard of you to being a lifelong customer.

Mistake #2: Not Learning What Makes a Website Sell

If you’ve been online longer than five minutes you know thatrepparttar 116931 “build it and they will come” mentality doesn’t work. If you want your business to succeed you need to learn how to make a website that sells.

Company Comparison Worksheet

Written by Diane Drayer

When you start your search forrepparttar perfect Direct Selling or Home Party Line business, here are some valuable questions to ask when comparing companies and opportunities:

1) Start up cost should be minimal.. Start up cost in direct selling and network marketing companies are usually modest and mainly to coverrepparttar 116913 cost ofrepparttar 116914 sales kit. What is their start up cost? What comes inrepparttar 116915 kit?

2) Some companies require a monthly purchase. Is there a monthly minimum purchase requirement and if so, how much isrepparttar 116916 monthly investment?

3) Most companies submitrepparttar 116917 local state sales tax, however, there are a few that do not. Will I be required to submit my own state sales tax?

4) Check with each company regarding their return policy. This will be vital to your business. Can I return unwanted or damaged products and if so, what isrepparttar 116918 return policy?

5) Do you have a "buy-back" policy? Some companies offer to "buy-back" unsold marketable products purchased withinrepparttar 116919 12 months prior, should you decide to quitrepparttar 116920 business for 90% ofrepparttar 116921 price you originally paid. Do they offer a "buy-back" policy?

6) Some companies require Independent Representatives to pay for portions ofrepparttar 116922 Hostess gifts, etc. You should know up front whether part of your commission earned will go to cover these cost. This will reducerepparttar 116923 actual amount of commissions earned. Am I required to cover part ofrepparttar 116924 Hostess Gifts or pay admin fees, etc.?

7) It is always smart to compare catalog and supplies cost as they vary by company. What do your catalogs and paperwork cost?

8) Customer shipping charges are important to your business and can vary greatly from company to company. What arerepparttar 116925 customer shipping charges?

9) It is customary for companies to have a monthly or quarterly sales requirement to stay active and/or receive overrides. What isrepparttar 116926 monthly/quarterly requirements?

10) If you plan to participate in local fairs, festivals or events, you will want to know whetherrepparttar 116927 company allows you to sell "cash & carry." Many will not as they prefer Representatives to provide one on one customer support and book to increase sales. Do you allow Representatives to sell products at local fairs and events?

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