• July 10, 2018

10 Tips to Improve Your Sales Process

Your sales process is essential to your success. If you’re struggling with your sales process, don’t sweat it, you’ve come to the right post.

By improving your sales process, your sales team will become more efficient, which means higher revenue. So, take a few minutes to read these 10 tips guaranteed to help.

1. Strategize

Planning is the secret to success in improving your sales process. You can’t manage all the parts of the sales process if you don’t create a tangible sales strategy for the team to follow.

Without a strong plan, the house of cards comes crumbling down. Don’t do this to yourself, your company, or your team. You’ll want to sit down with any other decision-makers in your company and formulate your marketing and sales strategy, which will be the backbone of your sales process.

2. Design Your Pipeline

From setting appointments to following up with customers to in-person meetings and so much more, your sales pipeline is constantly moving. If your sales strategy is the skeletal system of your team, the pipeline is its nervous system, with a wide array of activities happening at different points in the pipeline.

When you design a strong pipeline for the team to work within, your team’s success will increase accordingly. Never skimp on effort in this aspect of your sales process, since a well-designed pipeline will save you time and increase your team’s productivity.

3. Utilize Data

Data and analytics are all the rage, and rightfully so, as they have changed the way sales are conducted. Investing in a proactive relationship management platform like Spiro will automatically collect all your teams’ data and create amazing sales reports that you can use to keep a check on everything from prospects to forecasting.

Though data can be daunting, once you get some help at sorting through all the data, which you don’t need to physically do you’ll manage to gain control over the data to start using it to increase sales.

4. Stay Organized

If you’re disorganized as a sales manager, then your entire team will be disorganized. Organization is something that can be taught, but you need to be willing to put in the effort to learn.

Whether you’re a salesperson or a manager, think about how miserable your sales life would be if you didn’t have an organized sales track to follow. Organization is paramount in any facet of business, but sales are so important to the growth and sustainability of a company. Without sales, the company sinks. So, stay organized!

5. Communicate

If you want to improve your sales process, you have to keep your lines of communication open. Do this for interactions with buyers, vendors, prospects, customers, the rest of the sales team, sales management, and anyone else you do business with. If you’re not open and upfront with others about what you want or need, you can’t expect anyone to truly know.

Assumptions don’t work out for anyone. This is important in sales with regard to following up with prospects. That line of communication will be open until that sale closes, but how do you do this without burdening them and possibly turning them off? You need to be frank and forward. The same goes for dealing with others on the sales team.

6. Find the Right App

There are so many apps available today, it seems like there are ten apps for any one thing you need to do, especially when it comes to business. From generating invoices to scanning and faxing to telecommunications and more, there are apps to help you do practically anything.

Salespeople are extremely busy, and apps can help you save time and make your life easier. Do your research on the apps you plan on using though, because out of the many available, only a handful are worth your time or trouble.

7. Review Your KPIs

How are you supposed to know what you’re measuring or if you’ve met any of your goals? The answer is by understanding what key performance indicators (KPIs) you need to review, and only then can you track these indicators. Some of the common KPIs to review include:

– sales-to-date this month
– sales-to-date this year
– overall time in the sales cycle
– closing rate
– burn rate
– average sales price
– lifetime customer value
– customer acquisition cost
– churn rate

8. Nail Your Sales Forecast

This is one part of the sales process you can’t ignore. Sales forecasting may feel difficult at first as you must balance wishful thinking and meeting the realistic goals of the company. Sales forecasting isn’t necessarily difficult if you have the proper tools to do so. Your analytics will help you in deciding where to focus your time and energy so you’re not wasting any precious time and resources devoted to any part of the process that is not working.

Forecasting is important in the overall sales process because it allows you formulate goals and have something concrete to achieve. For sales managers, if you know that the team needs to sell 50 units to meet their sales goal, you can forecast that you’ll need x number of hours to complete that task, resulting in how much money would be spent on such tasks.

9. Automate Your Sales

Oftentimes the sales process can be distracting with all of its moving parts, so it’s imperative that you don’t lose sight of what’s important. Keep things as simplified as possible. If you can have an automated process for something, do it. It will save you the hassle of having to follow up with everyone for everything, and you’ll rest easier at night as a result.

The point of developing a good sales process now is so that you don’t have to worry about each part. Having a sales process set up means you can work smarter, not harder.

10. Consistent Maintenance

At the end of each sales cycle, go back through the pipeline to clean up any unusable contacts or other outdated materials, setting up for a clean slate minus your current customers, of course) for the next sales cycle. (Once you do this for a few seasons, it’ll feel natural.) This may be hefty for the first purge, but over time it will be become a nominal task.

Maintenance is valued because all that data starts to take up space, so it’s important to “use it or lose it.” You’ll feel so much less stressed once you’ve gotten rid of all the information that you no longer need.