If asked, most organisations will tell you that they already have a sales process. But only a few have developed their sales processes to a level that consistently generates a compelling competitive advantage.
Building a repeatable, scalable sales process is tough. There's no shortage of diagrams, methodologies, or experts with opinions on exactly how you should be doing things. So where should you start?
There is an abundance of evidence to prove that companies with an effective sales process outperform their less disciplined competitors.
Recent studies have shown that, compared to their peer group, in organisations with an effective sales process:
Average win rates are 31% higher 21% more sales people achieve quota Company-wide revenue performance is 17% higher
WHAT IS A SALES PROCESS? The term ’Sales process’ often refers to a repeatable set of steps your sales team takes with a prospect to move them from early stage to a closed customer. The common stages of the sales process include:
SALES PROCESS VS SALES METHODOLOGY Ok, so if you’ve heard the phrase ’sales process,’ then I’m sure you’ve probably also heard the phrase ’sales methodology.’ There is a difference, and it’s important to understand that -
‘Sales process’ is referring to the specific set of actions that your team follows to close a new customer ‘Sales methodology’ refers to the framework for how different parts of your sales process are actually carried out. Do you need both? Quite probably yes. While your sales process is the high-level map of steps your team takes, within each step, you’ll want to be aware of the different methodologies that can help guide how the members of your team actually approach the sales process.
COMMON SALES METHODOLOGIES To create an effective Sales Process it’s worth considering and reviewing some of the finer points of how your team should carry out their day to day selling activities. Choosing a sales methodology sets the foundation for how your sales team will approach their work, ensuring a cohesive, standardised process.
> Challenger Selling ‘Challengers’ are characterised on their willingness to learn about a customers’ business, and to push the customer or challenge their preconceptions during the sales process.
> Solution Selling Solution selling at first focuses on the customers’ pain instead of his or her own companies’ products. Products are instead framed as solutions, and the emphasis is placed on achieving agreement on what a resolution of the customers’ pain would look like.
> Consultative Selling Consultative selling places the emphasis on the salesperson becoming a ’trusted advisor’ to the customer, gaining authority and trust over time. Consultative is really an extension of Solution selling, but with a more personal, long term touch.
> Inbound Sales Methodology Begin by prioritising buyers that are active in a buying journey. Build trust by participating in the buyer’s online conversation on blogs and social media. Kickstart your sales conversation with personalised messaging relating to the buyer’s industry, role and contact preferences.
Total Excellence Centre has helped a multitude of companies improve their Sales Process by providing a range of training options to upskill current sales force; whilst maximising the businesses’ return on investment.
In the next blog article, we will look at how you can utilise these concepts in order to improve the effectiveness of your Sales Process, and increase business growth!
...in organisations with an effective sales process, average win rates are 31% higher ... revenue performance is 17% higher...