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How to Drive Extra Sales in Times of Low Demand: 13 Tips

Vanilla ice creamEvery business has periods of low demand, depending on the seasons, the day of the week, and sometimes even the weather on the day. So how can you anticipate this ahead of time, and create extra demand with your marketing to top up your sales?

These 13 ideas will help you to get ahead of periods of low demand.

  1. Begin by looking for a pattern in your dips in demand, by reviewing sales over the last three-to-five years. When are sales typically very good, and when have you seen a dip in demand? Can you forecast when the next likely dip will be? Use this data to create a demand forecast, then develop your marketing plan to support accordingly.
  2. Experiment with multi-product offers such as the classic buy one get one free device. This will help you to shift stagnant inventory whilst giving extra value to customers.
  3. Vary your PPC budget depending on likely demand – you may wish to spend more on branded keywords at times when you predict sales will be lower, to increase the likelihood of conversions, then when sales recover consider diverting more spend to non-brand keywords to increase brand awareness and grow your audience. A segment of the budget dedicated to retargeting will help you to convert those who have already visited your website. Plan your PPC campaign content accordingly – if you’re a restaurant and one of your top sellers is al fresco dining, then a campaign for this will obviously get more conversions in warmer months.
  4. Create a loyalty program which rewards your existing customer base and encourages additional purchasing.
  5. Reach out to former and existing customers via your email database, with a special offer or information about a new product or service. Existing customers are usually more likely to convert than a new audience, so in times of low demand, this is a good marketing avenue to hone in on.
  6. Consider seasonal pricing. Varying pricing depending on the time of year works for some businesses to buoy up demand.
  7. Social media advertising is a targeted and cost-effective way to expand the reach of your marketing message. Within the targeting parameters, you can specifically show your ads to your competitors’ followers – a great way to reach a relevant new audience.
  8. Create a recurring weekly or monthly offer to top up your sales – for example, a restaurant that regularly experiences low demand during the week might like to trial offering complimentary glasses of wine with meals booked midweek.
  9. Create a special offer pop-up for your home page, such as a limited time discount. Not only will this increase the likelihood of your web visitors converting, but it will also help you to measure the effectiveness of your website as a conversion tool.
  10. Create events to drive interest and awareness, and to give you something new to talk about to your audience. Periods of lower sales are the perfect time to hold events as you and your staff will be freer to manage them operationally. You could even ticket the events and turn them into revenue drivers themselves.
  11. Explore local partnerships and see if you can build on these to create new offerings for your customers. Look at your typical customer profile to assess their other likes and needs – for example, shopping, beauty, cars, gaming – and use this to inform new partner outreach. For example, a bakery with a customer profile that likes events might want to look at collaborating with a nearby venue to deliver an event such as a bread-making workshop.
  12. Create packages that deliver extra value to your customers. Rather than relying too heavily on discounting stock to shift it, seek to add value by packaging items or services together.
  13. Upsell at the Point of Sale – as every little extra revenue helps.

What do you find works to boost demand during dips in your sales? Share your own tips in the comments.

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