There are a few reasons why it’s a good idea to look carefully at your sales process and then streamline it.
For one, the right processes need to be in place to protect your company. Another reason it needs to be in place is to best serve your customers. Did you know, the right processes can also help you maximize your growth potential!
The sales process can involve a lot of different elements.
Taking a deal from quote through to completion is sometimes simple (quote, purchase order, done) and is sometimes a bit more arduous (long courtships and multiple follow-ups, obtaining information to sell a solution, arranging products or services to be delivered, and so on).
A standardized and streamlined sales process is huge help.
It will ensure that whether you have a short sales cycle or a seemingly endless one, you’ll be equipped to maximize your chances of success and productivity.
Protect Your Company
Standards need to be in place to protect your business financially. For instance, you might not want to bring in a large amount of extra stock or commit to man-hours if you don’t have a purchase order. You may not want to send out a large order to a new client unless you’ve done a credit check and had them sign a contract. Businesses need to formulate standards and implementing and adhering to those standards can help you with your process and risk management.
Because companies operate differently, depending on what they sell and what their supply chain consists of, a unique and customized sales process is needed so there really isn’t a one size fits all solution but there are things you can do, regardless of what type of business you have, that can improve your sales process and streamline it.
Serve Your Customers
A streamlined process creates consistency internally and it also does this with clients. Streamlined processes can help you put checks and balances in place that will help you analyze results as well as help you continually boost performance within your sales department. You’ll also present yourself as a professional to customers, too. When you have things streamlined you’ll have a more accurate forecasting tool and fewer lost opportunities. Whether your sales department is large or is an army of one, the right process will mean more success and less redundancy.
Here are some tips to help you get there:
- Log everything. Every quote and every conversation with a client or prospect should be logged into your CRM. Taking a moment to save information can prove very useful in the future. Look for an easy and effective way to do this.
- Identify stages in your sales process and group deals and prospective deals into those stages. This method of organizing things could help you quickly act to make good things happen and can help you ensure that you don’t lose track of anything important.
- Track all your deals. Use a customer relationship management database to help you track what’s happening. This can give you a snapshot of everything in your pipeline with probability of closing so that you can easily collaborate to line up resources and so that you can keep your finger on the financial pulse of your territory, also.
- Begin and end each day by looking at your sales pipeline. This can help you ensure you’re keeping track of everything and that you are taking action when and where it needs to be taken.
- Where possible, cut out extra steps. If your systems or processes are archaic and /or cumbersome, take a look out there to see what else is available. Always look for a better way to do things.
- Regularly analyze your failures as well as your successes. These will help you figure out what went right and what went wrong and that information can fuel future successes.
Developing processes takes time and streamlining is something that should be ongoing. If you are always looking for a better way to do things, you can continually win over and wow your customers.
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