If you’re wondering what you can do to improve sales performance, start thinking about the buyer’s perspective. Buyers travel through several stages on their quest to acquire a new product or service. If you meet them at each critical decision point with the information they need, you build credibility. And your chances of closing the deal soar. Here’s what you should be looking for.
Improve Sales Performance by Being Visible at The Recognition and Research Stage
Long before you reach out to a prospect, they may have realized, or recognized, that they have a problem. An old piece of equipment can no longer be repaired, for example. What is the next step for a buyer? Our research shows that 40% try to fix the problem with their current resources. 36% have discussed their situation with a current supplier. These are logical steps.
Sellers can improve sales performance at this stage by being highly visible online. At least 29% of buyers conduct online research of suppliers and sellers of the product or service they think they need. If your content rises to the top of online search results, you’ve already started to build credibility. Buyers like to see that selling organizations have experience in their industry (40%) and customer ratings on social media (39%).
Chris Duprey, chief strategy officer at IMPACT, encourages sellers to think of the process in the following terms, “What decisions do a customer have to make to buy from you?”
Your sales process might be all about discovery, qualifying, presenting, negotiating, and closing. But buyers don’t think that way. As you move them through your sales funnel, they’re in an “all-about-them” mindset. You have to be present with the right information at the right time.
Agreeing to Interact with a Seller and Sales Performance
In any selling scenario, you might be tempted to rush to the close. But you’ll have more success following the buyer’s decision timetable. After you first connect with a buyer, you must be sure they have the budget and have set a deadline for making a purchase decision. When you do interact, be aware of their expectations. Initially, buyers prefer to interact with sellers via email (37%) more than in-person meetings (26%.) This is your opportunity to impress them with the quality of your preparation and professionalism. Make sure your email messages are free of grammar errors and focus on what the buyer wants. Their first priority is to discuss their overall goals (19%) and learn what your solution will cost (16%). Be sure to include those details in your email.
Making the Decision and Sales Support
As the buyer draws closer to making their decision, they’ll be evaluating offers from other sellers. And they’ll try to determine which solution best meets their needs. Not every buyer will fixate on cost. Prospects also want to understand the complications of adopting your solution. Meeting buyers’ needs at this decision point will set you apart from competitors. Take the time to answer their questions specifically and provide testimonials and case studies from satisfied clients.
The Post Purchase Analysis
You can also improve sales performance by providing stellar support following the close of the deal. Even if you’re feeling the pressure of your sales quota, you can’t afford to skip this step. Buyers will reflect on the success of the decision they made. Listen to everything they share with you. Turn the positive points into a testimonial to immediately improve sales performance. And use the negative feedback to adjust your sales process and set the groundwork for increased credibility going forward.
It's tempting to try to improve sales performance by funneling the buyer into your process. But when you adjust the process to meet the buyer's needs, you may generate more trust and sales success.
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