How can you make your sales more effective and strengthen your corporate image?
Selling methods are changing because final consumers are changing, even from just a few years ago. Customers are more and more demanding, they have access to plenty of information (sometimes too much, so much they can be overwhelmed), they can approach new sales channels and, especially through the digital ones, they are increasingly embracing ecommerce on domestic and international markets. Therefore, it is up to the business world to offer a better user experience at the time of sale, giving existing or prospective customers a smooth, unique buying experience that will increase customer retention.
In this scenario, the role of the seller is still extremely important, since it can change the approach to respond to the customers’ needs and can prove its worth by providing accurate answers to any question or objection. A prerequisite for a successful negotiation and for customer retention is the quality of the buying experience the customer has with the sales manager. Timeliness in sending the customer all the materials that explain the goods or services; configuring a solution in real time, based on what has been said by the customer; using a plain language that shows great familiarity with the industry and with the state of the organisation, so as to be perceived as involved in the company’s problems; a quick preparation of the quote and, if needed, of the contract as well: these are just of the key factors that pave the way to a successful meeting.
Improving the user experience at the time of sale means being more efficient, but that’s not all. A sales cycle that does not have optimum timing or the risk to make mistakes or inaccuracies come at a price. The need to solve an inaccuracy in a contract, having to hold multiple meetings to present additional materials or correct the draft, take time away from other meetings and, therefore, from the chance to get more customers.
Technology and, generally speaking, all digital tools can support the sales network in their work, optimising the moment of sales.
Digitalising the sales network
Complicated and often obsolete paper catalogues, confusing multiproduct quotes and intricate configuration options are just some of the conditions that may confuse customers. So, having a chance to collect and organise all the information quickly, even on a mobile device, is one of the main opportunities offered by the digitalisation of the sales network.
It goes without saying that, in such a situation, the marketing manager must be sure he has perfect control over the materials that are shown to the customer. Actually, one of the strengths of digitalisation is that it can quickly update the brochures and price lists so as to build a consistent (as well as innovative) brand image. Having online documentation at the ready means, therefore, avoiding the risk of handing out obsolete information and can also have some interesting returns, in terms of savings (just think of the cost of printing and paper).
According to a market survey by GlobalRepTrack 2018 – Reputation Institute, only 49% of the interviewed customers said they trust what the companies say, 13% less than the year before. Using innovative tools in support of the sales process will create a transparent and professional image, which, as well as making the sale smoother, will also enhance the sales manager’s reputation and will strengthen the brand image.
In addition, building a customer relationship on empathy and mutual understanding that may guide and ease the buying choice means playing a new role, but a role that will be more and more important: the proactive seller. Tools specially designed to support the sales process with accurate, objective information are among the key features that a proactive seller must be able to rely on.