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Accessories are often under utilized and can make an impact on your bottom line. Quite commonly we accessorize our products with must have items that we need for the install but we leave it at that. It’s time to think outside the check boxes and use accessories as a sales tool!

Let’s think about the idea of suggestive selling on a smaller scale and something that most of us have experienced at some point. Have you ever walked into a retail store with the idea that you needed one thing and come out with more? We all do it, and so will your clients. For instance, I used to work for an electronics retailer where printers were a common purchase. Most people came to the store for just a printer, but the idea of accessories were distant from their minds. Every customer, every time was offered a cable, ink, paper, and service plan. It seems simple but almost always it would result in additional purchases.

In the AV world this same principle applies. Offer options to every customer, every time “ make accessories a part of your repeatable process! And let us not stop at just simple accessories; let’s go for the up-sell. For instance, let’s take something as simple as a surge protector. That is a great add-on for any electronic component and has real value. However, there is still that up-sell opportunity there. If the client is willing to say yes to that $50 surge protector, maybe they will go for the $150 one with the power conditioner if you simply explain the added benefit. It is just a small ticket item, but that item most likely is high margin and can be multiplied throughout the whole house (and that is just one type of accessory). Let’s take a look at how this works in SI 5:

The first step is to outline two columns in the Accessories tab of the product. The first column is the Prompt column “ this where you choose what items you want to be prompted for. The second column is the Recommend column “ this is where we outline our must-haves and our up-sell opportunities.

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A good rule of thumb is to have the minimum, or baseline items that you will need for the install checked in the Recommend column. Remember, we need these items and don’t want to have to do that last minute scramble where that simple little item is now losing us money. Once we have our baseline of accessories established, we now move on to adding our up-sell items. These add-on products should be checked in the Prompt column and unchecked in the Recommend column.

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We want to be reminded of these items but not necessarily have them checked to be included automatically. Now, once these products have been added and the appropriate items checked, it’s selling time!

Let’s recap and cover some things to keep in mind with Accessories:

* Accessories can be used for necessary and optional items
* Any items that you do not want to be prompted for can be included automatically by deselecting the Prompt check box
* When considering up-sell options think about a good, better, best scenario
* Remember that not only are you making additional profit on the equipment of up-sells but also on the included labor
* Accessories are associated with individual products, and those products can be added to Packages. So the more complete your individual products are the more effective your Packages will be

In conclusion, there are a lot of ways to increase efficiency and profitability in your company. Squeezing every dollar out of every sale is key; effectively using Accessories will help you unlock that bottom line you are looking for.

–Jeff O.