May 5, 2017 beyondbluwireless

Increase Accessory Sales to Drive Bottom Line Returns

As a wireless retail company, there is incredible pressure to satisfy multiple groups – consumers, wireless telecom brands, and employees – while also maintaining the health of your business and your profitability. While a majority of sales come from wireless devices and service plans, these are also the areas in which most companies have little control over pricing, incentives, and discounts. This leads your business to focus on other measures for improving profitability, increasing revenue, and competing in the increasingly saturated market of wireless retailers.

Most companies turn to cost controls, new store openings, and improved operational efficiency to improve margins and foster growth. While there is rarely a downside to improved operational excellence, this leaves money on the table in the way of sales – specifically increasing your attachment rate and improving upsell capabilities with new customers.

When companies focus is placed squarely on operations, sales can get left in the dust. Many wireless retail companies spend little time on sales training and offer the basic “safe” accessory options to consumers. With reps that are not trained to effectively sell high-end or upgraded accessories, there is a more likely chance that the upsell will be minimized and the consumer will purchase the bare minimum accessories for their new device.

This can limit profitability per customer and reduce sales volume overall as many consumers are relying on a retail presence or sales rep to educate them on the best accessories. Research from Consumer Electronics Association shows that when making an unplanned purchase, “31% of consumers rely on store displays and another 10% of consumers rely on salespeople” to make their decisions on in-store tech accessories.

The most commonly purchased accessories (per a consumer survey from ABI) are Bluetooth headsets, chargers or car adapters, and protective cases. Protective cases, specifically, have been documented at more than an 80% attachment rate (Fierce Wireless). A more recent report from NPD shows that 75% of smartphone owners have a case on their phone. That number increases to 87% of iPhone owners.

If your reps aren’t succeeding with a minimum of 40-50% attachment rate on new device sales, that could be a sign of a big problem. The most important place to start is to shadow your reps, ask the right questions, and understand what they know (and don’t know) about your accessory lines and how to sell them.

When you collect this feedback, you can also begin to understand what may improve sales. Are the products you are carrying not appealing to consumers? Are the upsell products priced too high or not high quality enough? Do your reps not understand the benefits or value of the accessories you offer?

This process can help you identify where your best options for upsells and attachment rate improvements are. Most importantly, make sure that you commit to taking massive action to improve performance and lead the charge with your team. Too often, business owners get bogged down with multiple roles and responsibilities and, even when confronted with a problem, are too busy to address it quickly. Commit to changing your attachment rate and take big action to ensure that your whole team follows through. If you can’t find the time, then designate an internal champion to make it happen for you.

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