The sales process – a guide for beginners
Thesales processfrom prospect to closing often leads along winding paths, often uphill, with unexpected twists and turns. What steps should you take to turn your potential customers into brand advocates?
Stage 1: Leads – Build trust at the start.
Be prepared to walk a mile in your potential customer’s shoes before starting your sales journey. Conduct research – make sure you understand the viewpoints of potential customers, their business model and future challenges they may face. Add value by shaping a potential customer – they may not know anything about your company or the landscape you work in. Show them where there is a gap you can fill. This is the foundation on which you can build your vision and show how you can work together.
Stage 2: Qualified leads – Let them talk
Listening has a significant impact on converting a potential customer into a client. Before telling them right away who you are and what you do, ask them if they would like to tell you what they need, what is important to them and what they want to get out of the conversation. Qualify potential customers with a customer-centric approach. Listen and learn as much as you can about them.
Step 3: Provide value – Verify the benefits and value you offer
It was quite a hike, but you finally made it to the field. This is the time to show, specifically, how you and your company can add value and work together to achieve your goals. This means using the strength of your team. Dig into the data, pull out case studies or references, and show them not only that you can match their vision, but that they match yours. Focus on their needs and the problems they want to solve. Speak the same language as your potential customer.
Step 4: Consideration of objections – Continue the conversation
Objections are an opportunity to learn more about a potential customer’s needs. Let them fully explain their objections and ask many more questions to understand the cause of the problem. Objections are not punishments – they are information. They represent another opportunity for you to offer your potential customers value and solutions to their problems. You don’t want anyone to climb the mountain with you if they are not ready to do so.
Step 5: Build an offer – Create a proposal that works for both parties
The stage before receiving a “yes” can be the most difficult. Sometimes it’s difficult to remain objective when you look at the numbers and create a proposal. Making a deal that keeps everyone happy means that you keep your future customer in mind while maintaining your position. This may be the reason why the software for configuring offerings – CPQ Software – is predicted to grow 126% over the next two years. By now, you should know that this customer has the “budget, decision-making, need and specific time” (BANT) needed to fulfill the contract. Part of proving that the price is reasonable is doing your homework and being able to show your work – use your tools and team to calculate a fair bid. Focus the discussion on value, not just cost. Know your limits and know how much to give in negotiations, trade, not give away services. Make sure everyone is ready to proceed with the contract.
Step 6: Finalize the proposal – Use all the information gathered along the way
Negative buyer sentiment is normal as you approach the end of negotiations. That’s why it’s important to build on the relationship and research you’ve done along the way. A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system is extremely useful in such situations – it can help review previous conversations, promises and problems to discuss at the outset. Stop or walk away if you reach an impasse.
Step 7: Close the deal – Keep your commitments
Customer satisfaction is now the most heavily tracked KPI, by sales teams around the world. For good reason – the company’s core position is based on recurring business transactions. You have worked so hard to bring this client to completion, make sure all that time and resources are not wasted. Once the deal is closed and the ink is dry, make sure the new customer is successful. It boils down to handing over to a new point of contact-whether it’s a customer relations person, like a chief relationship officer. Customers or the customer service team. Make sure your promises are kept. Use your CRM technology to make sure you’re on the right path.
Creatio is a solution for supporting sales, marketing and customer service processes and a low-code CRM/BPM platform emphasizing innovation and a customer-centric approach. It provides the technology needed to build successful customer relationships.