Tough economy, yet many B2B sales teams are still doing extremely well here in South Africa. What’s their secret?
Here are 3 ideas to help you to increase your sales:
Idea #1 Run your sales analytics for the past 5 years
Looking back in order to plan forward is a good starting point. Take a look at your sales stats in terms of how big your customer pool is in total and what number of customers are active on average every year. Export your accounting database (which is often a far cry from your CRM database) into Excel and look at it from all angles. Frequency of purchase, average value, size of customer spend etc etc. For example: if you have 1500 customers on your accounts base and only 250 were active in the past 12-18 months, you most likely have a goldmine of neglected, inactive customers that could be a source of new sales. It requires poring over customer details of those inactive customers line-by-line and separating out the “once-offs” vs. potential repeat orders, but it pays dividends once you start targeting and reactivating those accounts.
Idea #2 Thorough research your active customer accounts
Figure out what your current ‘share of wallet’ is and if/how there are other products or services to offer each active customer. You’d be surprised how many times that my clients share their frustrations about their sales reps not getting their full ‘breadth and depth’ of offerings into their customer accounts. This needs intense interrogation of what you are (and what you’re not) selling – but should be selling – to each and every customer you have.
Idea #3 Prepare and plan like a sales professional
Set a ‘commitment objective’ for each and every sales interaction with a prospect or customer. One of the weakest skills sales folks have is knowing that they should be advancing a sale but not being able (or having the discipline) to implement this effectively. It’s not enough to have an objective for a meeting – (many reps don’t even get this far), you need to have a crystal clear commitment objective for every interaction with a prospect or customer i.e. What do you want THEM to commit to i.e. a first appointment, organising a meeting with their CEO, a site visit to assess your strengths, etc etc.
If you need some assistance with this, then visit www.actionselling.com for great tips on advancing the sale. They’ve also got some short YouTube videos that will seriously improve your prep skills. Winging it is not going to increase your sales, if anything you are most likely losing hundreds of thousands of rands in sales because of lack of research and preparation.
Commit to actioning at least ONE of these three ideas in the next few days – it will, without doubt, increase your sales revenue.
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