Step 2: Create, Document, and Refine Sales Process
Have you ever dissected and documented your current sales processes while simultaneously looking for ways to improve the buying journey for your customers?
Regardless of the size of your company, every business that offers a product or service has a sales process in place. Whether your sales process is intentionally mapped out or haphazardly implemented is up to you.
The most basic function of your sales process is to serve as a successful model for finding prospects, solving customer challenges, closing deals, performing upsells, and improving client loyalty. If this process is strategically implemented, then any member of your sales team can replicate the process in order to replicate successful sales practices throughout your entire company.
Composition of an Excellent Sales Process
So what comprises an excellent sales process?
First and foremost, an excellent sales process aligns well with your buyer’s purchasing journey.
This means that, as you develop and refine your sales process, you are evaluating every stage of your ideal buyer’s purchasing journey and mapping out every step of the process from the customer’s point of view.
If you are wondering if your current methodology is on the right track, remember – an effective sales process is:
If your sales process lacks any one of these traits, your sales team will perform at a significant disadvantage in a highly competitive digital economy.
Stages of the Sales Process
Along the way, it is imperative to simplify your workflows and track your process so you can measure success and improve your methodology.
Not all sales processes are created equal. Companies who take the time and energy to fine tune each aspect of their overall process are the ones who will be the leaders in their industry and create sustainable business practices.
Periodically conducting a sales process audit is one way in which to increase your sales performance and up profitability. Make sure your audit includes analyzing performance metrics and A/B testing campaigns so you can compare different outcomes.
For example, you can test whether or not a new methodology would work better for a specific activity in your pipeline than the one you currently implement. Although data analytics might feel foreign at first, keep in mind that knowing your metrics and paying attention to sales trends within your scope of practice is the only way to get ahead in a culture of competitive product marketing.
Integrating an Adaptable Sales Process
As consumer behavior and market conditions shift at lightning speed, cultivating adaptable processes has become an imperative business practice. No sales process is exempt from this reality. Sales professionals can no longer depend on outmoded approaches to accomplish their target goals. Part of adapting your sales process includes adopting next-generation thinking and technologies that will elevate your sales practices and performance.
Creating a reliable template to follow is one of the most effective tools you can engage to combat underperformance in sales as well as guard against fragmented processes which lead to inconsistent outcomes. By re-imagining your sales process and reinforcing your efforts with updated knowledge, tools, and strategies, you will not only eliminate obstructions to sales success, you will also raise the bar for your entire team and pioneer a growth trend in your company.
Refined Process, Refined Results
When you think of manufacturing, what comes to mind? Perhaps you are thinking of the safety regulations in place or the various streamlined processes involved in product production. When we talk about manufacturing, we assume structure and systems – both of which are comprised of refined processes that have been tested and altered over time.
Continuous improvement methodologies are at the core of manufacturing industries and a variety of other industries. No one questions the continued refinement of these systems; rather, we assume manufacturers are constantly analyzing which systems and processes will yield greater safety, efficiency, and profitability.
The same principle applies in sales. However, rather than build a culture of continuous improvement into the DNA of our sales processes, we tend to assume that analyzing sales processes is an add-on or annual obligation. This type of thinking will drive any sales system into the ground instead of driving customers towards what you are selling.