As a sales leader or manager, you’re aware of how the landscape has shifted in terms of how we grow accounts and boost sales opportunities. In today’s environment, buyers are less patient than they were, so it’s important for sellers to impress them right away and throughout the process. If not, the buyer will move on quickly.
To succeed in this landscape, you have to plan your strategy and focus on properly managing your sales opportunities. Companies who do this right are the ones that direct most of their energy on the most important opportunities and have a specific strategy for each. If you want to increase your success, ask yourself these 10 essential questions.
1. Does the planning stage involve the whole team?
It’s normal that sellers work on their own opportunity plans by themselves. This can actually be a problem. Sellers, like any other people, can be really good at one thing but not so good at another. When you work alone, you’re going to miss certain things or make mistakes that would not happen if you were collaborating. The best decisions and ideas happen when all the top players work together to create a sales opportunity strategy.
2. Does your sales team use all the resources and people available?
Because sellers typically work alone, they can often fail to use all the resources and people available to them. Instead, think about your biggest sales and how you could improve these opportunities by leveraging people with industry experience, important connections, strength in negotiations, inside information, and much more. In terms of resources, consider referring to case studies, presentation material, buyer interaction possibilities, sales messaging resources, and so on.
3. Are the most important sales opportunities chased down with maximum energy?
As explained by Belinda Darcy, a sales expert at Boomessays and UKWritings, “your sales team needs to build a sales opportunity plan and use their maximum energy to pursue each sale. Brainstorm with your team to come up with the best ideas, plans, and strategies to achieve your sales opportunities.”
4. Do opportunities have a seller-assigned intensity rating?
You probably can’t dedicate maximum time and effort to each opportunity due to limited resources. Have your sales teams take a step back and rate each opportunity on a scale of importance to decide which opportunities require your time and energy. If you do that analytically, you’ll be able to better allocate your resources and maximize your opportunities. You can then focus completely on the more important opportunities, which should maximise profits for your company.
5. Are your sales opportunity plans designed to get the sale?
Sellers don’t often enjoy building their sales opportunity plans. However, it’s important to create the plan properly to maximize your chances. Plans should be detailed and compelling, especially for the most important sales, because once it’s written the seller becomes more likely to follow it. Writing it down also gives other sellers or sales leaders the opportunity to improve it or discuss it.
6. Does the sales team simplify agreement in the buying team to progress?
When a seller is facing a buyer group, especially a larger one, it can be difficult to move forward. An excellent seller will identify and motivate an influential buyer within the group to take a stand and push for the sale.
7. Is the sales process as good as it can be?
It can be hard to have a successful sales process when the seller doesn’t understand the process and struggles to move the buyer through the stages, or the process simply isn’t good. It shouldn’t surprise you to learn that the companies whose sales processes are more mature tend to have a greater revenue growth, offer fewer discounts, and have better win rates.
As said previously, your sales team needs to have your best, most experienced people on it.
8. Do your sellers satisfy multiple buyers’ criteria?
The reality is that many sellers in the B2B environment will be selling to teams of multiple people. The sellers who are the most successful with these groups facilitate buyer agreement and they identify and categorize the buyers into five decision roles. You may wish to review your approaches to selling to multiple buyers.
9. Do sellers plan their insights in advance?
To be a great seller, you need to be able to educate or inspire buyers with fresh ideas and perspectives, what’s known as insight selling. It’s actually very important to plan these insights in advance to become a top seller. You could monitor which products are selling well all year, then focus on those next year, or set up a survey to see what potential customers may want.
10. Is your process for managing sales opportunities all about the customer?
As much as companies like to think they’re customer-centric, in reality, they often aren’t. Many companies use opportunity plans that are focused on sales missions, sales objectives, seller approaches, and more. If that seems familiar to you, it’s time to rethink your opportunity management process to make it more customer-focused. It’ll be impossible to focus your organization on customers when your tools and strategies are all about the sellers.
A product that is personalised to the customer, even marginally, is substantially more likely to sell.