Issue #24 • December 2018

How to Sell Online: The 8-Part Creator's Guide to Making the Sale

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Have you ever told yourself that you weren’t born to be a salesperson?

Maybe numbers haven’t always been your friend, so closing sales can feel scary and overwhelming. Not to mention that your brow starts to sweat any time you have to talk about money

How to sell onlineAs creators, it’s easy to compare ourselves to people who seem better at sales than we are, but luckily, being a great salesperson is a skill rather than a natural-born trait.

Each person has the opportunity to become a better salesperson. It’s a learned skill, meaning there’s nothing in your DNA that is putting you at a disadvantage. This is good news since making the sale is the surest way for our online business to grow.

Learning how to sell online comes with a unique set of benefits.

As an online creator, you are able to have full creative freedom over how you sell your products or services. It’s up to you to convince your target audience that what you offer is better than someone else, and you can do this through your marketing and sales strategies.

You can also build your confidence in selling over time since you don’t have to meet people in person or even jump on phone calls to make a sale. Those methods can definitely help you grow as a salesperson, but they aren’t necessary when you are simply focused on getting your feet wet.

You can make sales on digital products and physical products alike from virtually any device. All you need to get started is social media, an email list, and a simple website that educates your audience on what you offer.

How to Sell Online Best Practices

What can sales do for your business?

Making sales is what keeps you in business. Without sales, you won’t increase your revenue or build your customer base. Your sales growth is a reflection of your business performance, so having an optimized sales process and strategy is crucial.

If you feel uncomfortable with selling, remember the value of what you are offering. Is it a coaching package that can completely transform your client’s mindset? Is it a paper planner that will help your buyer organize their life?

Once you are confident in the value of what you sell, you’ll have an easier time making the sale. Selling becomes enjoyable when you believe in what you are selling. As you create products that you can stand behind, you must know what making the sale consists of.

There are a lot of aspects that go into selling a product, but here are a few things to keep in mind as you create your sales strategy.

What can sales do for your business?- connect to ideal audienceYou can connect with your ideal audience

Utilizing your personal brand and competitive advantage, you can connect with your target audience and persuade them through high-value educational content that what you’re offering is the right choice.

Marketing is often your first touchpoint with your audience, but marketing alone isn’t enough to sell them. You need to have a solid sales process and strategy to back up your marketing content. Too many online creators focus on marketing products rather than selling them.

Instead, you’ll want to build your like-know-trust factor with your audience as you build your credibility and authority through marketing-based content. This can look like behind-the-scenes content, video tutorials, or anything else that adds value to your audience.

From there, you can introduce a call-to-action that will help your audience members qualify themselves as strong leads. Your call-to-action can be to sign up for your email list, attend a live webinar, or fill out your contact form.

This call-to-action leads them into your sales funnel, which will help you create a stronger connection with each lead as they move through your customer journey. As you build your confidence with sales, start with your marketing strategy and strengthen your messaging as you weave it into your sales strategy.
Connect with your audience through your sales funnel when learning how to sell onlineYou’ll also be able to improve your communication. Knowing what to say, when to say it, and how to say it is a big strength in business. When you invest in your sales strategy, you’ll want to stay hyper-focused on your communication style.

What things do people respond to?
What things haven’t worked in the past?
How do people like to approach what you are selling?

Keep asking yourself questions and paying attention to the actions of your customer leads so you are able to better communicate the value of what you offer.

What can sales do for your business?- teaches you to negotiateYou’ll learn how to negotiate

One of the greatest skills you’ll take away from learning how to sell online is how to negotiate. While some products are priced with a solid “take it or leave it” price, others are up for negotiation.

Instead of negotiating a lower price for your product, you could add in more value by offering complementary services or products to sweeten the deal. This way, you don’t lower your revenue or deeply discount your product but rather give extra value so the purchasing decision is even easier to make.

What can sales do for your business?- helps you close more dealsYou’ll close more deals

Ultimately, the success of your business relies on how many deals you close. Not all deals are created equal since some bring in more revenue than others.

Depending on the pricing structure of your offerings, you’ll want to create a sales strategy that prioritizes your high-ticket offerings and offers more of a hands-on approach to your sales process for those offerings.

When you close more deals, you’ll also have more information on what worked and what didn’t. This will help you make tweaks to your sales strategy until you’ve found an optimized workflow. While you are in the sales process, take note of what you notice with each lead during each step.

As you close the deal, remember that your job isn’t finished yet.

As the lead sends over their payment and possibly a signed contract, you’ll also want to have a plan in place for how to nurture them. Since they have already been through the sales process and are building up trust with you, it will be easier to convert them in the future.

This whole process allows you to build rapport with your customer base and give them added incentives for doing business with you. That’s why following up with your customers and letting them feel seen, heard, and understood is so important.

How to sell online successfully with your sales strategy

As you prepare to land a new customer through your sales strategy, let’s talk about some best practices for selling products online.

How to sell online successfully with your sales strategy- know your customerKnow your customer

In order to connect with your customer, you need to do your research first. Take time to understand what world they come from, what they are searching for, what problems they struggle with, and how your solution can solve them.
Know your customer learn how to sell onlineWithout this key information, you’ll have a harder time meeting your customer leads where they are and connecting deeply with them. People don’t want to feel like a number or a transaction.

While you have sales goals to meet, it’s important to remember that you are simply a human trying to help another human. When you take this approach, it will make the sales process feel less icky and more rewarding.

You’ll also want to focus more of your attention on making the conversation about your customer.

Instead of leading with “our product can help you do…”, ask them questions about where their business currently is and where they’d like to grow. Talk about their successes and pitfalls before you introduce your offerings.

How to sell online successfully with your sales strategy- lead with valueLead with value

Instead of trying to make the sale right away, prime them by offering something for free or at a lower cost to help them. It’s the same principle that online creators use to build their email list with lead magnets. In exchange for their email address, email subscribers are able to receive freebies in their inbox that will help them achieve something.

You can use the same approach in your sales strategy. You don’t need to burst through the door in order to sell more of our product. Instead, you should focus on building the relationship and offering something of value that can help.

How to sell online successfully with your sales strategy- be authenticBe authentic

We’ve all heard the term “sleazy car salesman”. In the world of sales, no one wants to classified like that. A sleazy car salesman is usually someone who is willing to do anything for the sale. Sometimes this can lead to someone who guilts other people into the sale, refuses to read the emotions of the people in the room, or is willing to compromise their integrity to get the sale.

Be authentic to sell onlineMany people think of this approach when they hear the word “sales”, but you’ve probably encountered salespeople that are really great. What did you notice when you interacted with them?

You probably noticed that they were willing to help, took extra time to get to know you, remembered your name, and they followed up with you. These are all signs of an authentic salesperson. x

You can bring your unique personality into your sales process in order to create a more personal connection with the people you are selling to.

Remember what turns you off as a consumer. If you don’t like it, your customer leads probably don’t either.

How to sell online successfully with your sales strategy- be availableBe available

Have you ever been interested in buying something, only to find that the person who was going to sell it to you was nowhere to be seen? Maybe you tried calling them, replying to their emails, or even tried to set up an office appointment.

Being available for your customer leads is so important. Many people will have questions before they buy something, so you’ll want to carve out time in your schedule to ensure you are able to answer those questions while nurturing other leads.

You don’t want to lose a sale to a competitor because you weren’t available. Mixing availability with authenticity will be a sure-fire way to make an impact with your customer leads.

A solid sales strategy will help you learn how to sell online

Ready to increase your sales by learning how to sell online with a strategic approach?

With these best practices in hand, you’re now ready to tackle your sales strategy. In this issue of Tradecraft, we’ll go over conversion copywriting, sales metrics, your email list and more to help you become the best salesperson for your business.