Increasing Sales In 4 Steps: Step 4
Develop Your Competitive Advantage Through Unique Selling Points
There’s a high chance that you’re not the only one out there selling your product or type of product, which is why you need to be able to offer something else that your competitors don’t if you want to make more customers buy from you. In order to do this, you will need to identify, develop and communicate to your customers your competitive advantage, in other words, letting people know what makes your product or service better than anyone else’s.
Identifying your unique selling points
Firstly, you need to be able to identify the things that you genuinely do well. It’s no good saying that you are the best at X, Y and Z if you can’t back it up. You might increase a few sales at the start, but it will quickly come to a halt once your customers realise that it was all talk and they start to tell others the same through word of mouth and reviews. Start to analyse your products and services to find out what is working well for you and what your existing customers have been happy with so far. Do you offer a wider variety of products than your competitors? Do you deliver quicker than the competition? Is the quality of your products better than the competitions? If not, are they more affordable? By asking yourself these questions you can start to gather a few of your strongest selling points that differentiate you from your competitors. Your competitive advantage should be difficult to imitate, consistent (e.g. if using affordability make sure that it is the case for most products and not just the odd few), add real value to your business and be something that you can continue to improve on to ensure that you are able to stay ahead of your competition.
Get your message across
Once you’ve identified the unique selling points of your products or services it’s time to let people know about them. Start to incorporate them into your overall branding and marketing material. Not only would this help with step two in helping to advertise to existing customers but would also help to influence new customers that are needing to make a choice between you or a competitor.
- Dedicate an area of the front page of your website to promote your USP’s for anyone that visits your website
- This is becoming quite popular with many e-retailers and allows you to easily communicate your USP’s to people that that find their way to your website. Consider adding some icons or images to go with them to catch people’s eye and draw their attention.
- Add a tagline to your logo with your main USP
- Using a tagline can be an effective way of communicating your core USP and what your company stands for, helping to consistently put this message across to your customers.
- Talk about your USP’s on social media and add it to adverts or print materials
- Extend your message beyond your website and post about it on social media and include your USP’s in adverts and printed material to reach out to a wider audience that may be interested in your products and services.
Monitor their performance
Once you’ve started promoting yourself based on these unique selling points you should monitor your customers’ comments, reviews and feedback to check that they genuinely feel those USP’s are still relevant to your company. It’s also a good idea to monitor competitors to make sure that they haven’t also decided to start using these USP’s for themselves, otherwise you won’t be able to differentiate yourselves from them. While it’s not advisable to change your USP regularly, if the USP’s that you have selected no longer add value to your business or aren’t accurate it’s a good idea to refresh them so that you are getting the most out of them.
It won’t happen overnight but by developing a competitive advantage with your unique selling points will over time start to strengthen your brand and differentiate yourself from your competitors. By doing this you will be able to show potential customers about the benefits of choosing your products or services over your competitors and encourage them to choose you.
Increasing Sales’ is a 4-part series designed to offer e-commerce sellers advice, tips and quick-win solutions that can help build sales and increase the overall shopping experience for their customers. So, for more information on how to increase sales click on the links below…
Increasing Sales in 4 Steps
Step 4: Develop Your Competitive advantage