Giving your sales reps the tools to stay in control of the sales process can make a big difference in improving their sales effectiveness. When they have the tools and strategies to guide them, your sales reps will gain the confidence necessary for sales success.
It's not uncommon for sales reps to let the buyers take control. After all, the buyers are the ones making the decision. However, in today’s competitive environment with less and less access to customers and prospects it is more important than ever to effectively control the sales process.
The following three tips can help your sales reps to stay in control of the sales process:
#1 Know Your Customer
Before you can know if a potential customer is worth your immediate attention, there are important details you need to know. Train your sales reps to find the answers to the following questions. The answers will help them to know whether or not to pursue the lead immediately, wait until later, or skip the lead entirely. More importantly, the answers will help them to stay in control.
- What is the customer's decision-making process?
- Who are the key influencers?
- What are the customer's needs, interests, and preferences?
- What are the customer's key factors for making a decision?
- What is the customer's budget?
- What is the customer's timing for making a decision?
- What are the customer's concerns?
- Does the customer appreciate the value of the product or service?
- What are the risks of making a poor decision?
- What are the competitive alternatives?
These questions help your sales reps to stay in control of the sales process and provide insightful value based on the answers.
#2 Quantify Your Results
When your sales reps do their homework, they'll come up with answers to each of the above questions, but what do you do with all of that information? Develop a scoring system that allows you and your sales reps to easily pinpoint where a potential customer is in the sales process.
One way you can quantify your results is to assign a score to the expected responses. If the customer's answer leads you to believe that they're likely to purchase your product, assign a high value to that response. For example, if the customer's needs align well to the value of your solution or product, assign a high value to the response to that question. Add up all response scores, and you will have an overall value that gives you a fairly clear picture of the probability of closing the sale. This is helpful to your sales reps, and it's also helpful to you as you look through their reports and offer advice. It helps you to stay in control of the buying process by having a good handle on which customers to pursue immediately and which to cultivate for later. It also provides a clear methodology to manage towards better sales productivity.
#3 Manage Sales Effectiveness
With scores in hand, your sales reps have a clear picture of potential roadblocks as well as value to emphasize. For example, if a sales rep sees that there is no clarity on the decision process or the key factors that will be used in making a decision, they might be wasting their time. More time should be spent to understand these key elements of the sale before proceeding. This process provides key input for self-management and improvement. Your reps will feel more confident and more in control.
Not only will your sales improve when you follow these three tips to stay in control of the sales process, but the morale of your sales reps will improve also. By having data that allows them to focus on the key insights of your customers, they'll feel more successful, more efficient, and more in control of the sales process.