You didn’t start your company to lose money. However, you don’t want just to break even, either. Ideally, you want the healthiest possible profit margin. And that one way to do that is by growing your revenue streams.
As a refresher, revenue is the cash coming into the business. Typically indicated at the top of your organization’s income statement, revenue is highly variable. Some years it might be up; some years, it might be down. Ideally, you want your revenue to be as strong as possible to offset variable expenses.
Of course, boosting your revenue usually doesn’t happen without a little tinkering. Sure, you might get lucky and enjoy an unexpected spike now and then. But you can’t bank on luck. Instead, you need to put some measures in place to nudge your revenue higher and higher.
1. Reignite former customers.
Chances are good that you have information on your past customers. These were people you spent money to acquire and who spent money on your brand. Rather than accepting that they’re gone for good, why not take steps to reignite their interest?
For instance, think about all the customers who have come back, filled a digital shopping cart, and left. According to Retention.com, seven out of 10 buyers fall into this category. Your objective should be to use the data you already have about them to encourage them to reconsider. You might send texts, emails, or even DMs as reminders. Or, you could try a retargeting campaign.
Although you won’t recapture everyone who leaves, you’ll bring some back into the fold. As a result, your revenue will be stronger than it would have been. Plus, you’ll have the chance to renew your relationship with these “boomerang” buyers.
2. Increase your line of products or services.
Many companies striving for a revenue bump invest in the expansion of their products or services. The trick to making this work is to be sure that the new offerings are relevant. For example, an e-store selling winter recreational merchandise to adult consumers wouldn’t want to add wedding gowns to its lineup. The disconnect would be too vast.
On the other hand, that same company might want to consider adding pet outdoor winter gear and supplies. Many people take their dogs (and some cats) with them on hikes, trails, and other excursions. Consequently, offering customers the chance to keep their four-legged companions comfortable could make sense.
Be certain to conduct research, and don’t just follow your gut instincts if you take this revenue-upping route. You’ll be spending money upfront, after all, and you want to lower your risk as much as possible. The easiest way to do that is to do your homework and expand deliberately.
3. Reduce sales friction points.
A typical sales funnel is inverted for a reason. As leads move deeper down the funnel, some start to trickle out. This is natural, normal, and expected. Nevertheless, it’s not giving your revenue much of a jumpstart.
Sit down with your team and walk through all the customer journeys that make up your sales funnel. Cross-reference those journeys with data. Where do you see areas of major lead drop-off? Those are gaps — and if you fix them, you should see a corresponding spike in bottom-of-funnel conversions.
If you’re not sure how to correct a friction point, consider working with a marketing expert. It’s worth spending money to do things the right way the first time. If you’d rather do everything in-house, make small changes that can be tested in real-time. Don’t attempt to remedy all your gaps at once, because you might not know which strategy is serving up results.
4. Work harder on cross-sells and upsells.
Consumers who have had a good experience statistically spend 140% more in purchases than their dissatisfied counterparts. They won’t automatically know what else to consider buying from your online store or catalog, though. You have to help them by introducing them to items through cross-selling and upselling techniques.
A cross-sell is the sale of something compatible with what a customer’s buying. For instance, a consumer who buys a sofa may want a chair, an ottoman, a side table, or a floor lamp. An upsell is the sale of something more expensive than the customer originally selected. Adding extra cheese or sautéed mushrooms to a burger for a fee is an example of an upsell.
The good news is that there’s a lot of software available to help you automate cross-selling and upselling. The software — usually augmented by predictive AI and ML technologies — can “fetch” cross-sell and upsell options. When done well, cross-selling and upselling can significantly impact your revenue rates.
5. Consider a subscription model.
Another way to give your company a bit of dependable income is through subscriptions. Just about any product or service could have a subscription element. That’s why the average person pays $200+ in monthly subscriptions. The key is making sure that your subscription holds enough value for consumers to keep paying.
Part of the reason that subscriptions produce profits is that most consumers set them and forget them. People rarely use their subscriptions the way they think they will. That’s why no one cancels their gym memberships in February even though they’ve stopped going since mid-January!
You can get as creative as you want with your subscription. Anything goes. Who would have assumed that clothing into a subscriber’s delight? Or that people would want to have men’s grooming products delivered? StitchFix and Harry’s Razors, that’s who. Therefore, be open to trying something out of the ordinary.
6. Explore a different audience.
Chances are strong that you haven’t fully tapped into all the audiences who might be interested in your brand. These could be niche offshoots of your regular audience or a completely different audience than you’ve sold to before. Being able to conquer yet another target market can give new life to your revenue.
Unsure how to come up with new-to-you audiences? Conducting some social listening can be a good way to start. Find out what your customers are saying about your product online. Then, find out what they’re saying about your competitors’ products. You may unearth some hidden audiences that you’ve never marketed to.
Lucky Charms experienced this when the brand realized it wasn’t marketing to a huge segment of buyers. It turns out, adults like the fun marshmallows almost as much as kids do! This is why Lucky Charms has been making its ads more adult-friendly for a decade. No doubt its revenue reflects its sweet revelation.
7. Improve your brand presence.
People can’t give you their hard-earned money if they don’t know you exist. Putting a push on your outbound content marketing and publicity messaging can put your company name in front of consumers. The more common your brand becomes, the more synonymous it will be with the products or services you offer.
A rapid way to establish your brand presence and reputation is through social media. Staying active on the social media sites preferred by your target buyers should give you a little steam. You’ll just need to make sure you’re posting and commenting regularly. Social media is about engagement, not just sales. The more give and take you provide, the more buzz you’ll build.
You can amplify your social media presence through influencer marketing and paid advertising. Used in tandem with organic content deployment, influencer marketing, and ads will strengthen your credibility. Ultimately, you’ll get a nice lift that should carry over into your sales.
8. Adjust your pricing.
Your price points will affect your revenue. Even if you’re wary about moving your price up or down, take it into consideration. Never assume that you’ll lose customers if you move the needle up, either. Many customers who like what you offer won’t have a problem paying a little more. As noted by The New York Times, consumers rarely jump ship as long as your price raise doesn’t go overboard.
One caveat, however: Be careful about raising prices without warning, especially if you have regular customers. A customer who buys from you once a week or month will notice a price hike faster than one who buys occasionally. Giving notice that your prices will go up shows customers you’re thinking of their needs. Additionally, it makes them feel like you’re not trying to pull a fast one.
Still, feeling uncomfortable at going higher? Give your best shoppers a chance to continue buying at the same low rate for a limited time. Or, keep prices the same for items that are purchased in multiple quantities.
Your company’s revenue is a line item that you have more control over than you may have thought. If you want to see it rise, take action now. With some changes, you could be revenue rich and more profitable than you thought possible.
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Featured Image Credit: Photo by Monstera; Pexels; Thank you!