No matter which industry you’re part of, every sales team has the goal of growing revenue for the company. However, the way each team works depends on their product, market, and the people involved, which usually means modifying the team's structure to improve efficiency and results.
A successful sales process can be the difference between a successful organization and one struggling to achieve its goals. According to a survey published by the Harvard business review, a well-structured sales operation is an essential strategy among top-performing organizations nowadays.
A common problem found in sales teams is the good skills at generating leads but unsuccessfully converting them into paying customers. This is where a well-optimized sales process can help you improve your conversion rates. Helping the company grow, and remain profitable.
We gathered some of the best strategy lines for you to apply in your company and start building your best sales plan:
Developing a clear and delimited map of your ideal customer is a key exercise in order to optimize your sales process. For this part, you need to work on a buyer persona for your top customer segments. Considering factors like their motivations, pain points, and indicators they value the most in a business relationship. Knowing how your customers act is essential for being able to connect with them.
So get together with your sales team and determine these factors on your customer's list. Here are some basic questions you might want to start with:
-Which decision-makers are usually involved in a purchase with our company?
-How can I build trust and credibility in my relationship with clients?
-How many touchpoints do I need along my funnel?
-How many touchpoints are working properly on my current funnel and which aren't?
These kinds of questions will help your team to have a wider idea of all the aspects of your overall selling process, allowing the reps to know what to expect in each case.
Once you’ve delimited your buyer personas, you can start developing processes for each of them. It is fundamental that you don’t target all the customers generically, but address their individual concerns and have prepared answers to their questions.
Once you build your buyer persona profile you can start working on your Ideal customer profiles, these will help you focus on the right type of prospects for your company, so you can avoid wasting resources with hopeless leads.
First, you need to gather all the possible data from your current customers. When you have this data collected, write down the common attributes of your ideal customers and start developing your profiles. Below, you can find a list of the most common attributes you should include in your ICP research:
-Internal pain points
-External pain points
One of the most common problems for the sales teams is the low converting range with the generated leads or the constant stagnant on a particular stage of the sales funnel. If your leads are entering the funnel as planned, but just a few are converting to actual sales, then you’ve got a pipeline bottleneck.
If you have this issue, start a nurturing campaign for your current lead lists. Aiming to get the traffic going through the sales funnel, so you can check the parts that aren't working properly and develop a possible solution for the problem.
When creating your sales plan you have to establish a goal, this is essential for a good work dynamic with your team, as the people involved know what they’re working towards in order to have an individual goal in mind.
Your reps need to know which KPIs they are working with, and the managers have to provide constant feedback and updates to them, including metrics like the percentage of team quota, individual goals, and average commissions per performance earnings.
A key part when optimizing your sales plan is developing a compensation system for your sales reps, this ensures you a prolific work relationship with them based on their team and individual performance. If you're still working on this structure plan you might take a look at our previous entry How to Assign Commissions to your Sales Team where we give you some extra tips for this process, remember that nothing motivates salespeople more than the ability to earn more.
After your new strategy starts running, remember to schedule analysis sessions with your team to review the data you've collected, and enlist the prospects that were successfully converted into customers, and the ones that weren’t able to close the deal. Then use this data to improve your current buyer personas and KPIs.
Make sure to review each stage of your strategy to check for areas that aren't working as planned or, that thanks to the newly collected data you're now able to improve. Have in mind that optimizing your sales funnel becomes a continuous and recurrent process. There will always be lines of improvement, and you should continue tweaking your strategy in order to perfect it.
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