Regardless of the size of your business or what industry you are in, optimising your sales process can result in dramatic improvement for your businesses effectiveness and efficiency. Building a competent sales team is the first step but streamlining your overall sales process can take a bit more work and revision. In this post, we will highlight a few strategies which you can implement to optimise your sales process and boost profits.
Big picture thinking
To really achieve your ultimate sales goals, it is important to incorporate “big picture thinking” into your sales process so that the entire team works as one cohesive unit. It can be easy to get caught up in the details of managing sales targets and individual sales reps, which results in sales teams working in silos. Working in silo can result in miscommunication and divergence from the end goal. Whether you are just starting out or run a large enterprise, big picture thinking will ensure your sales team is striving for something bigger than individual wins.
Big picture thinking means that your entire sales team should know:
- Strategy: Knowing crucial strategy facts will help the sales team understand the business better and see how their contribution affects the whole. Consider questions like: where is the business headed? What’s the broad sales strategy? What is the overall market environment like?
- Key metrics: Sales teams love hard numbers. Your entire sales team should know your key metrics. More about this later in the article.
- Marketing vs. sales responsibilities: Marketing and sales are very closely linked but it is important for your sales team to know where the marketing department’s responsibility ends and where theirs begins.
Define your key performance indicators (KPI)
To optimise your sales, you need to be able to measure any growth or change that is significant. To measure how many leads successfully move through your sales pipeline, or how long it takes to complete a sale, or even measure service turnaround time you need to define your Key Performance Indicators. Your business needs to decide and define what you want to measure and why. This will keep your sales team on track and create something tangible to reflect on to keep momentum.
Common KPIs include:
- sales to date this month
- sales to date this year
- overall time in the sales cycle
- closing rate
- burn rate (How much money you are spending in your sales process.)
- average sales price
- lifetime customer value
- customer acquisition cost
- churn rate (How many customers repurchase your services or products.)
Networking is still an invaluable tool in the sales process. People talk, even more so in the digital age. To generate good reviews and recommendation, your sales team needs to rely on trust and authenticity. Networking has also evolved due to the presence of social media. So to optimise your sales it is worth embracing social networking. It is estimated that 30% of all South Africans are on Facebook. The other social platforms like LinkedIn and Instagram are also growing and show no signs of slowing down. Social networks allow your business to engage with existing customers but also raise awareness about your offerings to potential clientele that you would not traditionally reach. Getting customers to visit your website via social media also improves your search rankings and, as a result, your organic growth
Take a personal approach
One way to optimise your sales process is to incorporate a personal touch. In the digital age, businesses have so much data about their customers and this should be used to personalise experiences. The ultimate goal of personalisation is to boost your relationships by treating customers as people and not simply another sales goal.
You can go further and allow your customers to test the waters by offering a personal no-strings-attached experience. This can artfully nudge people to become paying customers if they enjoy your product. The market is so saturated, so this is an inventive way to showcase your products.
Another personalisation strategy is to accept a variety of payment methods. To optimise sales, your business needs to make it as easy as possible for your customers to access your products. This means that beyond credit cards you should consider accepting EFT or mobile payments.
Find solid partners
To optimise you sales process you need a collaborative environment that optimises all elements of the sales process. Optimising your sales also means optimising your accounting software, or your supply chain or even internal operations. To do this, you need to make use of solid partnerships that can support your business and its growth. When considering your partners, it is important to note what sort of customised solution they can provide you. Your business is unique and your partnerships should amplify and optimise for this.
Don’t forget to adapt
The pace of doing business is increasingly rapidly and industry environments are constantly changing. To keep up with this pace and get a step ahead of your competitors you need to incorporate adaptability into your sales process. This requires an innovative mindset that is open to change.
One adaption that needs to be taken into account is that your business is operating in a digitally driven climate where customers have digital expectations of you namely, engagements that are connected, personalised, omni-present and fast. One way to evolve to these expectations is to incorporate a mobile app into your sales process like LetsOrder Mobile. LetsOrder Mobile allows sales reps to do everything on the go without hesitation. You can create invoices, quotations and even sign off deals directly from your smartphone or tablet. This innovative app gives your sales team the ability to collect data in real-time in one centralised platform that has collaborative functionality. You can record hours spent, track location, view documents and send emails. You can even take down any important notes within the app and see a complete client history that can add the personal touch we spoke of earlier.
Find out how Letsap can help you optimise your sales process today.