5 Ways To Increase Revenue With Your Existing Customers

Squeezing more out of your existing customersWhen we think about growing our revenue, the first thing we often ask ourselves is how to get more customers for our business.  What about your existing customers?  Looking for ways to increase revenue through your existing customers is not only easier, it can be more profitable than spending time and money to acquire new customers.

While you never want to stop marketing for new customers, take a look at the 5 suggestions below on how you can increase your bottom line with the customers that you have.

Price increases

Most business owners are terrified of raising prices, imagining a mass revolt from their customers at the mere suggestion of it.  It's all in the approach.  The last thing you want to do is to not raise your prices for years, then launch a huge price increase because you realized that you can't be profitable without one.  Offer increases in small amounts, and gradually so the impact is small on your customers.  With each price increase, offer your customers a chance to buy in bulk at the old pricing before it goes into effect.  You may find that your increase results in a temporary spike in sales for your business.

Shorten the buy cycle

If you're average customer purchases from you once every 6 weeks, why not see if you can incentivize them into purchasing every 4 weeks? With an average sale of $50, a 6 week buying cycle would produce a yearly customer value of about $425 a year.  If you shorten that to once every 4 weeks, that same customer is now worth $650 a year for your business.  And that's only for one customer.

Offer upsells

When your customer makes a purchase, do you create additional offers for them at time of checkout?  Offering other products at the time of purchase is a tried and true way to generate additional revenue out of each sale.  The key is that it should be relevant to the original purchase and it shouldn't be a large ticket item, it's an easier sell if they don't have to think too hard about it.  A perfect example of upselling is in fast food when they offer to “supersize” your combo for just $.59 more.  The additional cost is minimal to the business and the price is so low, it's hard to say no.

Give incentives to purchase in bulk

Why not offer your existing customers a discount if they purchase from you in bulk?  A personal trainer I know used to charge on a per session basis.  She still does, but now offers a “10 pack” of sessions at a discount.  Within three months, she was selling 10 session packages more than single sessions.  It also increased her customer retention as she was able to build stronger relationships with the longer time commitment.

Offer a subscription model

Are their opportunities to offer a monthly subscription plan for your products or services.  Consumers are warming to the idea of monthly subscriptions for just about any product or service.  The organic farm up the road from me offers a monthly plan where they will deliver organic meats and in-season vegetables to your home each month.  The owner of the farm told me their average customer would purchase once every 3 months from them, now they purchase 12 times a year, automatically billed each month to their credit cards.

There are lots of ways to get more out of what you already have

What strategies will you implement this year to generate more revenue from your existing customers?

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CEO at 3Bug Media
Gary Shouldis is the founder of 3Bug Media, a web marketing company that helps businesses create 360 Marketing Strategies to dominate their market. His blog is read by over 20 thousand small business owners a month and has been featured in the N.Y. Times Small Business, Business Insider and Yahoo Small Business.
8 replies
  1. H
    H says:

    Gary – These are great set of tips to help increase sales. I would also add that providing suggestions to customers can also help with the sales. Online retailers such as Amazon do a great job at suggesting complementary items. It can also be applied with brick and mortar businesses.

    I had written an article on this topic. Would love to hear your comments. You can find the article here – http://www.smallbizviewpoints.com/2011/09/07/improve-sales-by-25-with-customer-suggestions/

  2. Valentine Belonwu
    Valentine Belonwu says:

    Very informative!!
    Focus on listening to your customers. Take heed of what they say even if it means that you have to change direction – it is better to do so in the long run. There are many companies who create other products or services to enhance their existing products, just to be within the reach of their customers. The longer you retain and satisfy your customers, the longer your business will prosper and thrive.

    Thanks for sharing

  3. Chris Alphen
    Chris Alphen says:

    Great list, great post as usual Gary
    The folks above make some good points too. There are many ways to utilize a customer base and of course referrals, recommendations, and testimonials have been used offline since the first day of commerce.
    Actually, getting more out of what you already have is at the core of the internet since companies have volumes of content stored away in drawers, closets, and files that could be out there doing some work. That’s in addition to basic core data that is already widely disseminated online that a lot of small business owners neglect, if they took control of their online identity they could gain a competitive advantage.

  4. Gary Shouldis
    Gary Shouldis says:

    Thanks for the comments Chris. For a small business to be competitive, they need to get the most out of everything they have, including the value of their content like you mentioned. Cheers!

  5. Gary Shouldis
    Gary Shouldis says:

    Amazon is one of the masters of suggesting additional purchases for consumers. For small business, matching complimentary products and tracking past purchases can easily result in additional sales. Thanks for the comments!

  6. Gary Shouldis
    Gary Shouldis says:

    Great points Valentine, looking for opportunities to add value for their customers is the cornerstone of a great business. Creating enhancement products and services to compliment your core ones is a great way to increase revenue with your existing customers. Cheers!

  7. Heather Stone
    Heather Stone says:

    Hi Gary,
    Of course, the old adage that it is more expensive to acquire new customers than to retain old ones should always be considered here. Most or all of these points deal with getting more money out of the customers you already have and that makes a lot of sense given these are the customers who already know you and value your product or service.

  8. Gary Shouldis
    Gary Shouldis says:

    Finding new customers is important, but figuring out how to increase revenue with your existing customers is just as important, and as you noted, less expensive. Thanks for the comments Heather 🙂

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