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Welcome to your last instalment of our programme: Getting your Business Online! :( 

Hey <<Full Name>>, 

Welcome back to your journey of getting your business online, today is your last taught session. Don't worry, they say that 'good things always come to an end' but the good news for you is that all of the lessons you have learnt throughout the past 7 weeks will be available to you forever - 'Knowledge is power!!' 

Next week will be a reflective session and assignment to complete the course. 

Lets get on with it...Today we talk about the exciting topic of sales. Sales are the life force of any startup - no sales no growth! Sales can drive revenue and also prove to others (investors, competition judges etc.) evaluating your business that your start-up has potential.
We will be helping you explore the topic of sales, looking into the basics of a sales strategy and some top tips to consider when prearing your business for online sales (eCommerce). 

So, let's get started! 

Let's look at strategy... 

To start with have a look a defining a sales strategy, this will help you develop a clear path, help you create a vision, and provides the data and numbers to ensure your business goals can be measured against. A concrete and properly defined sales strategy can give your business an edge and help you build from the ground up.

TASK #1

To start with seeing if you can answer the following simple questions below.

Throughout the 8 weeks you have touched upon a lot of the answers, now its time to draw all of your learnings together to create a sales strategy.

If you are struggling to answer any of the following questions please get in touch to talk it through with one of our enterprise advisers. 

TOP TIP:
Make sure you are 100% confident you can answer question 1 'Who are your target market?' and also an emphasis on who your customer is,  this way you will ensure that all of the other questions are easier to answer.
After all, see below the top reasons why startups fail - if you don't know who your target market is you will not know if it is needed. 

Read this article to help you define your target market!

DETERMINE YOUR SALES CHANNEL #1

A sales channel is a means of selling to your customer. 

You need to know how and where customers want to buy your products or services. Picking your sales channels is an important task.

The more sales channels you use, the more customers you can reach. But each channel adds costs. More is not always better, if you launch or begin a new channel you want to avoid drawing away sales from an exsisiting channel.

Examples of types of channels include: 

  1. Retail - a physical shop or location to sell your product or service.
  2. eCommerce - selling through a digital platform such as a webiste or app. Read the article below to explore sales channels and options.
TASK: Best way to start determining your sales channels are to think about your customers, where do they currently purchase their goods or services. If you are unsure have a look at the competition what sales channels have they selected, could these be right for your business. Best thing to do is research all of the different types of channels, their associated costs and ease of implementation. Then test these with your customers. 
Sales channels and your options.

MAP OUT YOUR CUSTOMER JOURNEY FOR YOUR IDENTIFIED CHANNELS #2
Your customer journey map is a very important tool to your business it will help you discover how your customers get from A to B. The customer journey is how your customer interacts with you as a company and ultimatley how you convert interest into a sale. 

#TIP:
Put emphasis on finding out what your companies contact points are with your customers along the customer journey map. Then begin to determine how you wish to start contacting/engaging with your customer. 

Hubspot have got some really great templates to help you start: 

Sales Channels and Your Options.

PREPARING YOUR BUSINESS FOR ONLINE SALES TOP TIPS 

#1 If you will be selling through your website then check your website hosting plan includes ecommerce. 

This article will take you through 6 ecommerce hosting sites you could consider: 

E-Commerce Hosting Sites.

#2 Get your SSL certificate 

An SSL certificate is a type of digital certificate that provides authentication for a website and enables an encrypted connection. This is the thing that puts the padlock on your website in the address bar. Proving to people the authenticity of your site and increases the willingness for customers to purchase from your site. 

#3 Set up a merchant account - this allows you to receive money

To sell products online, you need a way to accept payments. A merchant account is a business bank account that enables the processing of your sales.

Hostgator have created an article on 'Which payment methods should your small business offer.' Read here: 

Payment Methods and Your Options.

#4 Get good photographs and desciptions of your product and service

To sell products online, you need a way to show people what they are actually purchasing, its better to not only show but to tell too. Make sure you have good, clear images and easy to understand descriptions. The less barriers to purchase the better!

Still unsure and want more tips about sales as a topic?
Check out this video!
RECOMMENDED READS: 

If you want to understand the modern sales landscape and the psychology of selling anything, pick this one up.

Other great reads:

'Start with Why' - Simon Sinek

When you’re selling, understanding the why behind your product gives you a leg-up on the competition and prove to your customer that they need what you’re selling. Simon's teachings will get you to understand your business and persuade others to buy into your business and your products or services. 
Every week we have been asking you to submit an activity to help you to develop throughout the course. 
YOUR OVERALL CHALLENGE THIS WEEK:

Please submit the answers to the questions in Task 1 for review from our business advisers. Thank you.
Activity Submission

THANK YOU!! 

You have made it to the end of 7 weeks of content to help you get your business online. I do hope it has been useful and you are close to beginning your online journey. 

Next week we will send you a wrap up email and instructions of how you will be recieving your certicifcate and linkedin endorsement! 

As always we want to hear from you. Any questions queries feedback, or just simply a hello will do :) We hope you have enjoyed the 8 weeks as much as we have!!

Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Week 4
Week 5 - Social Media Advertising Workshop Video
Week 6
After each week we ask you to submit an activity for review, this helps you keep on track but also gives us a chance to review your content and provide you with expert feedback to drive your business forward. 

But you don't have to do all this alone, every week we host an online Q&A meetup where we talk about the week's topic and provide answers to any business-related questions.
This will be hosted at 3-4pm every Monday on Microsoft Teams (no sign up required).

Click the link here to join. (8th June 3-4pm GMT)
Q&A Session
Has this week helped you develop your business?
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