by Alexandria K. Brown, “The E-zine Queen”
Nothing gets people buying products or programs like a special promotion –online or offline. Now, if you’ve never done this before, you may already be thinking, “I can’t have a sale on my products or services. That’s sooo cheesy!”
Au contraire, mon frere. It’s all how you position it. Here are 13 ideas to consider. Choose one that would work for your business and give it a try.
IMPORTANT: You’ll need to put some type of time limit on the offer to encourage folks to buy now and not later. It’s also better if you explain to your readers WHY you’re having the sale, to avoid coming off like Wal-Mart. Give your prospects a reason. (Even a funny one — see tip 13!)
1. Close-out sale. Have inventory you want to get rid of? Making room for other products or new versions of products? Then offer the current version at a significant discount.
2. “Scratch and dent” sale. Have any books, tapes, or CDs that were returned to you by customers? Offer them at a hearty discount for people who don’t mind if they’re a bit worn.
3. Half price sale. Lop off 50 percent from all your goods, or select just one.
4. Coupon sale. Allow customers to enter a coupon or promo code to get a discount. (If you have a decent shopping cart program you should be able to set this up in seconds.)
5. Free shipping sale. Offer free shipping for a limited time. Or, upgrade folks to express shipping at no extra cost.
6. “We’ll finance it” sale. Offer a payment plan – this works great for higher priced items and programs. (Again, if you have a decent online shopping cart program, you should be able to set up timed, automatic billing.)
7. Free 30-day trial. Get their credit card information at the time of order, but don’t charge them until the month is up. Another variation is the 30 day trial for $1.
8. Pre-publication sale. Start taking orders before your product is even ready. (Seeing orders come in is also a great incentive for you to finally finish creating that product!)
9. VIP discount. Give a special offer to a certain group. Show your e-zine subscribers, your clients, your speaking audiences, etc. that they’re special.
10. Buy one get one free! Yes, this can even work for information products and services. The purchaser can give the extra copy to a colleague as a gift, or two people can split the cost and essentially get your product or service at half price.
11. Special bonus. Give something extra if people purchase before a certain date. (This is a great strategy to up your sales without cutting your prices.)
12. Package discount. Offer a big discount if they order all your products/services or a select combination thereof.
13. Birthday sale. Or any fun occasion… Valentine’s day, your anniversary, groundhog day, your dog just had puppies, your kid just lost his first tooth — have fun with it!
BONUS TIP: Many of these options for coupons, discounts, cutoff dates, etc. can easily be set up with a good shopping cart system. www.QueenCart.com links you to the one I use and recommend.
© 2004-2006 Alexandria K. Brown
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Online entrepreneur Alexandria K. Brown, “The E-zine Queen,” publishes the award-winning ‘Straight Shooter Marketing’ weekly ezine with 20,000+ subscribers. If you’re ready to jump-start your marketing, make more money, and have more fun in your small business, get your FREE tips now at www.EzineQueen.com