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Beating a Recession – 6 November 17, 2008

Posted by David Dirks in business strategy, Recession: How to Beat It!, Retailer Store Strategies, Sales Strategy/Tactics.
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David DirksThe title of this blog entry gives away a powerful (and seemingly obvious) way to battle your way to success in a time of great economic uncertainty.  But what is obvious is sometimes the most difficult to do.  If you are finding your business slowly falling into lower sales, revenues, and profits, it’s time to take inventory of your current line up of products and/or services.

When money gets tight and your customers measure every purchase carefully, you need to make sure you have the right mix of products and services they will still be eager to consider and purchase.  Here are a few things you can do to insure you have a recession-proof product & service mix:

•    Get rid of slow selling inventory or service packages now.  I’d swear that some business owners have an emotional attachment to products or services they personally.  They keep them because THEY like them, in spite of how well t hey sell.  If they aren’t selling and taking up space, it might be time to get rid of them.  Make sure you’re not getting rid of products or services that just need to be positioned more effectively so that your customers see the value of spending recessionary money on them.
•    Good financial metrics and reporting are the keys to understanding what product and service lines are produce the best return in a time when people are highly critical of any and all purchases.
•    Ask yourself:  In my business, what products and services will customers still NEED to buy regardless of the economic times?  Am I offering those products/services now?
•    Have you asked your customers what products or services they would find most valuable in hard economic times?  If you haven’t, you should.  Obvious but not usually done.
•    Bundled products and services together whenever possible.  When customers get tight with their purchases, nothing speaks VALUE FOR THE BUCK than a bundle of products and services together.
•    Make sure you check out your competition on a regular basis to monitor how they are (or aren’t) changing up their products and services. What are they doing well that you might not be doing?

Creating products and services that customers NEED and VALUE during tight times is one way to make sure your business survives through all business cycles.  Yes, I know, sounds like a no-brainer but find a business that conducts a rigorous review of their products and services on a 24/7 basis.  Your customer will pay for products that they feel are essential and hold the most value for the money they have to allocate to those purchases.

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