Selling might be no rocket science - but with so many tools and techniques available, using them all effectively is likely to give you a headache. If you’re struggling to choose the best methods and boost your sales, here are 7 effective sales strategies that can really make a difference for your efforts.
There’s no doubt that the effectiveness of your sales team affects the overall performance of your business. Improving the effectiveness, therefore, should be one of the main priorities for any sales team out there. Sadly, it’s not always the case.
The truth is: there are plenty of sales methods available, but not all of them can be effective for your team and thus, your business. With so many to choose from, making the right choice can easily become challenging - if your sales team struggles with choosing the most effective strategies as well, here are 7 simple tactics to consider.
Boost your sales with these 7 strategies
#1 Pay more attention to lead qualification
For some reason, lead generation is the main focus of modern sales professionals. Yet, it’s lead qualification that’s equally important.
Let’s face it: not all leads are equal. Even though you constantly need new leads to continue selling, not all of the contacted individuals are going to become your customers anyway. What’s more, if your sales team spends too much time on leads who are just not ready to buy - it means that they’re not being very effective in the long run.
How to make sure you’re “choosing” the right leads to focus on, then? Pay attention to your sales prospecting methods, and the way you actually qualify your leads. As a matter of fact, 50% of sales time is said to be wasted on unproductive prospecting.
Start with outlining your sales funnel and building an ideal customer profile based on the characteristics of your target audience. Then, add lead scoring into the equation. It should help you prioritise your prospects based on the strongest possibility for closing the sale quickly. Once you’re at it, you might want to focus on connecting with the decision-makers in the first place.
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#2 Make contact with your prospects as soon as possible
Rumour has it that by getting in touch with leads within an hour, sales reps are even seven times more likely to have meaningful conversations than those who wait longer than that. Actually, the shorter the time, the better: according to Lead Response Management, sales professionals are even 100x more likely to successfully contact a lead if they respond within 5 minutes and 21x more likely to qualify that lead.
The conclusion? Don’t wait too long before you get in touch. Potential customers seem to be more willing to do business with you if you answer to their initial inquiry almost immediately. The more you make them wait, the less interested they will be.
#3 Be prepared to have meaningful conversations
You might find it surprising, but 85% of prospects and customers are dissatisfied with their experience over the phone. Make sure that doesn’t happen to yours!
First of all, equip your sales team with a proper cloud-based phone system. CloudTalk will not only allow your sales agents to make and receive more calls but also access caller data right away and essentially make the most of each conversation.
Then, it’s crucial for your sales team to always be prepared for all calls they’re making. Start by creating a relevant script - if you do it right, your sales reps should immediately become (and sound) more confident. They shouldn’t just read the script out loud, though. It’s important to listen to the interlocutors carefully, and be ready to answer all their questions.
If they actually pay more attention to their conversations, your sales reps can only have more meaningful interactions, but also identify the most common objections, requests and issues, and tailor their sales pitch to them.
#4 Try to leverage more channels than calls and emails
Cold calling and emailing are still effective, but trying different channels can simply help you reach more prospects in the long run. Take social selling, as an example. It might still seem like a buzzword, but it’s actually quite an effective strategy.
As a matter of fact, 54% of salespeople can track closed deals back to social media engagement. Not to mention that 90% of top-performing sellers use social media in their sales strategy. It might be high time for your sales reps to do the same.
#5 Don’t give up until you get a definitive answer
You might find it desperate at first, but email follow up is actually crucial for any sales effort. In fact, 50% of all sales happen after the 5th contact, but most reps give up after just 2. Don’t make the same mistake! Rumour has it that if you send more emails than one, you’ve got a 25% chance to hear back eventually.
It’s worth taking that chance - and follow up as many times as necessary until you get a response. Whatever this answer might be, at least the potential customer is not leaving you hanging.
#6 Consider product demos & free trials
Apparently, incorporating a free trial into the sales strategy can easily boost sales. Consider offering a full-featured, yet relatively short one - this way, you’re attracting prospects who are likely to take the trial more seriously and really test out your tool. If it meets their expectations, they should be willing to make good use of it after the trial ends as well.
In order to make that happen, consider investing in proper onboarding or product demos. By doing so, you won’t leave potential customers to their own devices, but rather encourage them to invest in your solution.
Actually, product demo videos should make it easier for your sales reps to specifically address your prospect's challenges on the spot, and show exactly how your product can help with these challenges. It’s hard to disagree that showing off your best features “in real-time” can be much more effective than talking and writing about them, on and on.
#7 “Target” the existing customers every once in a while
Did you know that, on average, it’s about 5x more expensive to acquire new customers than it is to retain and continue providing value to your existing ones? In fact, increasing customer retention even by 5% can boost profits by 25%–90%.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should stop growing your customer base. But, if you’re planning to introduce new features and deals, you might as well invite your loyal customers to take advantage of them for a limited time before anyone else does. Try to make them feel special - this often results in their willingness to do business with you on a regular basis. Especially if you already have an established relationship with them.
Not to mention that “limited offers” also help you create a sense of urgency - most customers, no matter if prospective or existing, don’t buy until the last possible moment. By offering special deals, you make them realise why it makes sense to buy right now - and this often proves to be a good enough incentive.
Start boosting your sales right now
No matter if you’re leading the sales team or you want to become a better salesperson yourself, the above-mentioned strategies can easily help you boost sales effectiveness. At the end of the day, however, you have to tailor these strategies to your business and see what works best in your specific case. And if you're just starting out, make sure to take a look at this in-depth review of CloudTalk from serial entrepreneur Jeff Solomon.
Keep your eyes open - learn from every interaction with your customers, be it prospective or existing ones, and make sure you’re equipped with the right tools to help you focus on boosting your sales rather than performing manual tasks. Once you’re at it, you might as well check out what CloudTalk has to offer! Try it for free.