The “sales process” is a fundamental aspect of a successful sales team. A sales process is a layout of the steps that sales representatives need to accomplish throughout the sales cycle.
Different businesses will have their own unique pipeline for their sales teams, but every business needs one. A good sales process strikes a balance between providing a clear framework to follow throughout the sales cycle while leaving room for the salesperson to personalize based on the situation.
This article will outline how to achieve the optimal sales process to help support your sales team, win more customers, and ensure the most ROI.
Setting up the Sales Process Steps
Before creating a personalized sales process for your business, it is important to go over the basic steps to fully understand the flow of a sale. Here are the 5 overarching steps of a sales process:
- Lead Generation: Using outbound tools to identify target persona
- Qualify Leads: Deciding if a prospect is a leads to pursue
- Demonstrate Value: Communicate how the product solves the customer’s problem
- Guide Prospect Understanding: Manage objections to close the sale
- Deliver and Support: Continue to deliver what was promised to ensure customer satisfaction
View this infographic to learn more details about the sales process.
For each of these five steps, provide your sales teams with enough information about what is expected of them at each stage as well as what they should be seeing in a customer’s behavior. This will enable them to effectively communicate with a potential customer and identify their needs and desires early on in the process.
Creating a Personalized Sales Process
To create a process which will optimize your sales, sit down with marketing, sales, and customer support. Map out what your team is currently doing at each of the 5 steps and pinpoint the core requirements in each area. What are the things that every sales rep is expected to do in each step of the process, regardless of the situation?
After solidifying each stage of the sales process, the next step is to create concise training and reference materials. These materials will not only help efficiently train new sales reps, but it will also ensure that customers and leads are getting a consistent experience with the business’ entire sales team.
Just as important as creating these training and reference materials, is communicating, distributing and tracking them with all sales employees. The most efficient way to do this would be through the implementation of an online training platform, such as a Learning Management System (LMS). An online training platform not only helps to organize and track training, but it also doubles as a catalog of materials for sales reps to refer back to whenever they need a refresher.
Once your sales process has been created and implemented, be sure to check back in regularly with the process and the training materials to ensure that it is still accurate and optimal for your business needs.
Optimizing Your Sales Process
Rapid technological advances have allowed for markets and customers to continually change their needs and desires making it necessary for your team to evaluate and test your sales process as much as possible. It is important to track and follow up when a lead leaves the sales process to find out why they decided to go in a different direction.
Some key metrics that are important to track are:
- How long customers are in each stage
- How many prospects close after a demo
- Customer churn rate
If one of these metrics start to be undesirable, test small aspects of the process to see if sales results improve. It is beneficial to continually test the process with role-play exercises and input from every member of the team. Things will change over time, and methods that work one year may not work the next, so be prepared and anticipate these changes by continually evaluating and testing your sales process.
Taking your Sales Process to the Next Level
Your sales process is a key part of your ability to attract and retain customers. Make sure that your entire sales team is on the same page of what is expected of them and what the customer’s behavior should be at each step. Setting up your sales process in this fashion will give the structure that your team needs but flexibility in order to adapt to your customer’s needs. Successful selling requires a developed process that guides each customer through the ‘buyer’s journey’ with the highest level of return.
About Knowledge Anywhere
Knowledge Anywhere is an elearning company focused on providing flexible, modern learning and development solutions that enable organizations to harness the power of an engaged, knowledgeable workforce. Our Learning Management System, Virtual Reality Training, and Course Development services, combined with our experience and customer support enables our users to create a learning and development program that boosts sales and drives company growth.
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