I had an interesting marketing chat with a business owner yesterday. I think you’ll find the core of our conversation really useful, as it’s all about maximizing average sale value and profits. And fast.
So here it is.
I spoke with a coffee shop owner last Monday, who had recently reopened her shop after lockdown. She explained that due to restrictions on capacity, the business was now only able to serve 45% as many people, as before the pandemic. I asked what her strategy was, to increase the average sale value. She said she’d increased prices slightly, but was more focused on keeping her overhead down than anything else.
Increasing your average sale value
Maintaining a sensible overhead is always smart. But improving your average sale value and profitability is absolutely essential, when customer numbers have plummeted. It’s also an easy, highly profitable win. And increasing prices is just one (high-risk and pretty limited) way to do this. I shared some ideas with her, which could be implemented immediately with no cost.
I then popped in yesterday to see how she was getting on.
She’d already put two of my suggestions into place.
- One was to move her impulse purchases to a more central location. Previously, these items were placed close to the counter, so customers saw them as they waited to pay. However, people now have to pay at their table. As a result, far fewer customers were focused for any length of time on her impulse items.
- The other was my suggestion to change the language they used, when asking people if they wanted cake (or whatever snack) with their beverage. I said they should ask customers something along the lines of, “would you like to treat yourself to some delicious (whatever)?”. The key words there are “treat yourself“. Right now, with people feeling anxious or worried, treating yourself feels a lot like self care.
Those 2 suggestions increased her average sale value by around 18% – 20%. The shop owner explained it was tricky to be more accurate, as she had to reverse her price increase 3 days into the week. She’s introducing another of my suggestions next week, which should create an even bigger improvement for her. We’ll see how that goes.
Regardless of whether you sell products or services, online or offline, there’s a really good chance you’re missing out on windfall sales / profits, by failing to maximize your average sale value. Without generating any additional clients or customers, gains of between 15% and 50% are extremely common; with far bigger gains in many cases.
Make no mistake, this is an area you should really give some thought to.