Sales Guide: Types, Sales Cycle, Techniques, and Everything to Sell More
Sales are the main activity of any business, regardless of size or segment. In this comprehensive guide, you will learn all about sales techniques and how to successfully set up your business operation.
No matter what niche you work in or the size of your business, one thing is for sure: you need sales to be successful and stay in the market!
Selling is or should be, the number one goal of an entrepreneur and for good reason, any company that doesn’t make this a priority is at serious risk.
The problem is that while many entrepreneurs love what they do and have amazing products/services, they know nothing about sales, let alone Marketing.
The secret is to understand that no matter how good your product or service is, it will not sell itself.
So that you no longer have to worry about this problem, we have put together a super-comprehensive sales guide that will help you on your way to success. Here you will see:
- What are sales?
- What is the sales process?
- The importance of the sales process
- Study the cycle in-depth to increase sales
- What are the main sales objections?
- Sales tips: how to improve the process?
- Inbound methodology and consumer behavior
- Inbound Sales vs Outbound Sales
- The sales funnel and the customer journey
- How to sell more?
- How to sell online?
- Learn about the main sales techniques in the market
- Sales vs Marketing: the importance of harmony between both teams
- Key sales metrics
- Sales tools
- How to build a sales team?
- How to be a good salesman?
- Best sales books
Let’s go together to increase sales!
What are sales?
Before our answer, you answer the question, and if it seems too basic, you can reformulate it as follows:
what is your definition of sales?
If you had to think longer than expected before finding an answer, it means that you perceived an unsupported reality when it comes to sales: everyone thinks they already know a lot about it until they need to get serious about it.
Basically, sales involve 2 factors:
- an offer of value;
- a reward for that offer.
In general, the offer is a product or service and the reward is money. But consider the example of a free event. The offer would involve the attractions of the event, while the requested reward would be the time and attention of the guests. Do you see how the sale goes beyond asking for money for something?
Selling consists of offering an item of value in exchange for something. This applies to everything. Even when you need to persuade someone to accept an idea, it is common to say that you need to “sell the idea.”
So a good definition would be:
sales are like a win-win game, as both the seller and the buyer get rich from the exchange of values.
What is the sales process?
As we have seen, sales require persuasion and also encompass a valuable offer to the customer. These two factors are 100% under your control as long as you follow clear and proven processes.
In other words, you don’t have to worry about the following custom or innovating every step of the way, but about doing what’s best for customers. With that in mind, never forget that to build a scalable sales engine, you need to do two things:
- know the behavior of the people you want to sell to;
- use that knowledge to guide these people to “yes.”
And what is the best way to perform these two actions? Following well-established steps. That’s where the sales cycle that is so much talked about comes into play, a series of stages that you can repeat with all leads and that generate consistent results over time.
The importance of the sales process
Following a sales process means not working with assumptions, on the contrary, you must carry out a coordinated effort that treats sales as a science and always makes the decisions that are most likely to be successful.
In the past, there was the idea that selling was a kind of “gift” that a person had to be born with. But today, with the right tools and process structuring, you can sell anything without having the “Wall Street Wolf” profile.
Another relevant issue in the sales process is to differentiate the types of sales and approach each one correctly, seeking the best possible results. Ignoring this would be like using the same bait to catch any type of fish, that is, it would be a recipe for failure.
Now, you might ask yourself: what are the types of sales? You can divide them into two groups: simple sales and complex sales.
Learn a little more about each of them below!
Simple sales are those that close quickly, as is the case with retail sales. The customer enters the store with a good idea of the type of product they want and the role of the seller is to read that preference quickly to provide good service.
Also, the seller’s goal is to persuade the customer not to delay the decision and buy on the spot.
Complex sales are those that involve a greater persuasion process since the purchase only materializes after a series of steps. This is usually the case for the most expensive and difficult to understand solutions.
Because they need more consideration from customers or approval from multiple people (especially in the B2B segment ), the sales process takes longer.
In this case, the role of salespeople takes on a more organic air, like a type of consulting.
In complex sales the salesperson needs to understand the customer’s problem, to show him how the proposed solution can help him solve his problem.
It also helps businesses sell to the right customers and avoid headaches later on in after-sales support and loyalty (which is where the money really is).
Customer prospecting: key stage of the process
Prospecting must be based on research and data. First of all, you need to have your ideal customer profile documented in order to know exactly where to look for your potential contacts and start qualifying leads.
Don’t limit yourself to the old phone or even email. You can also use digital channels, such as social media, as long as your ideal client uses them frequently.
The initial contact, in any channel, must overcome a common barrier: break the initial distrust that the person will feel when having a stranger speaking to them. Only after that can you spark some interest and start qualifying that lead.
Study the cycle in-depth to increase sales
The sales cycle is the average time it takes for sellers to close the deal, and as you can see, simple and complex sales have significant differences between them.
It is essential to know well the cycle of each model to accurately project the income of the company.
In the case of simple sales, the cycle is usually short and lengthens as complexity increases. The more you know and master your sales cycle, the easier it will be to keep it under control and make sure sales don’t take longer than they should.
And do you know what is the biggest stone in the shoe that usually hinders the cycle of any salesperson? Answer: the objections.
And here’s an interesting detail, not all objections are technical. Especially when it comes to B2B (to business) sales, legal or purchasing departments may have objections to the deadline, budget, or process that also affect the progress of the business cycle.
Here we will show you how to manage them effectively to sell without interruptions.
What are the main sales objections?
Whenever you come across someone with an objection (or more), remember that this is normal. Everyone, including you, questions the details of the purchase before closing the deal.
Instead of playing the victim and thinking that no one wants your product just because they don’t show the credit card on the first offer, you must learn to break down those objections. And there is no better way to do that than anticipating them.
At every step of your sales cycle and every detail of your conversation with the lead, address their main objections, only to end them immediately.
And to make your life easier, you should know that the main objections that any client always has, in any niche, are:
- Urgency: the first point refers to how urgent is the prospect’s need to solve the problem they have when buying your product.
- Money: Lack of money is the number one excuse for postponing the purchase. You must show that the value of the offer (your solution) is much greater than the reward requested (the price of the product).
- Authority: this point refers to whether the potential client is the person who makes the decision – negative or positive – when you present your proposal.
- Credibility – If the customer doesn’t trust you, they may think that your entire premise is false. Offer him tests and give him guarantees to change the wind in your favor.
How to break these objections?
Sales objections are the ways people generally use not to complete the purchase, usually with the excuse of ” I’ll think about it and get in touch .” It’s really bad to hear this when we want to close a sale, isn’t it?
So that this does not happen to you, you must ask the correct questions that confirm that there are no objections regarding the four points shown.
Below we will show you some examples of questions capable of obtaining these confirmations.
“Is the solution you present necessary for the customer at this time?”
By answering yes, the lead will no longer be able to use the objection that they can buy it next year.
“Does the price fit in the customer’s pocket to finalize the purchase?”
By confirming yes, the money cannot be used as an excuse for not moving forward.
“Is the person you are dealing with the one who makes the final decision?”
In some cases, some partners or superiors must participate in the decision process. But, if this is not the case and the prospect confirms that it is he who decides, he will no longer be able to deviate from the sale.
“Does the client think that you are the solution they need at this moment?”
After receiving the “yes,” ask why, as the value, they saw in your offer is what will make the purchase go through.
Did you perceive that the examples are linked to the present tense? Use this also in the script of your sales speech, since the best time for a sale to happen is now and not in half a year, because the urgency of the client cannot wait (and neither can the sales commission).
Sales tips: how to improve the process?
The sales process is like an ocean, the deeper you go, you see that there is more to explore. So, prepare your team to dive into some tips to improve the process and make it much more effective and profitable.
We just talked about the two main types of sales:
That was the surface. Now let’s better understand some other types of sales that work well on these two main models.
The payroll deductible sale is a strategy widely used by companies that want to expand their sales in partnership with entrepreneurs who do not act as formal employees, but who do not want to invest much either.
It works as follows:
- You leave your products with the partner to sell them.
- Then, he gives you the value of all the products sold, minus the agreed commission for each sale.
- Products that have not been sold are taken back, which means that the partner does not have to pay anything for them.
Consultative selling is the type of structure already analyzed above when we talk about complex sales. In this type of sales, the salesperson assumes the role of consultant and helps the customer in every possible way.
In some cases, this help goes so far that the seller recommends a product from another company if they perceive that this is what the customer really needs. Why act like this?
Because this is the best way to attract customers with the ideal profile and drive away those who would leave you shortly after, anyway.
Plus, it’s a good way to build a positive reputation in the marketplace as a customer-minded company.
Have you ever bought a pair of sneakers and the seller (or e-commerce) offered you a pair of socks to go with them?
This is an example of a cross-sell or cross-sell. This tactic is very useful to increase the average ticket and reduce the cost of customer acquisition. We will talk about her next.
After all, you take advantage of a sale that is about to happen to add to the purchase of a product of less value and is useful for the customer. Working well can mean more customer satisfaction and increased sales.
Direct selling is a model used by both small and large companies. Perhaps the best known are the cosmetic giants, such as Avon.
These companies do not invest in stores but the personal relationship of the representatives with their own customer bases. Adapting to the direct sales model can be an excellent way to reduce costs and spread your products to a very wide audience.
There are numerous sales channels, both digital and physical, that any business can successfully leverage. In fact, many companies have been successful in integrating physical and digital media to create best-selling strategies.
The traditional physical model is based on the following options:
- store: the store model, or kiosk, does not need an introduction. Salespeople are available to serve customers;
- Vendors: Another option is to send vendors to visit clients in their homes or businesses and present the company’s solutions externally;
- Advertising: Print materials, radio, television, and face-to-face events are well-known ways to publicize solutions and generate sales.
It is interesting to see how technology has turned all these possibilities upside down, which was previously the only option for entrepreneurs.
Advanced methodologies such as Inbound Marketing and Inside Sales have revolutionized the way you buy and sell.
Some of these channels include:
- virtual stores: everything that a physical store offers, but without vendors (sometimes preferred by the customer) and greater convenience;
- Domestic sales: the Inside Sales allows sales to be made with the personal touch of a salesman, even from miles away;
- interactive content: instead of presenting out-of-the-box messages, as in advertising, you can create relevant and interactive content on websites, blogs, emails, and social networks to create a relationship with customers.
Inbound methodology and consumer behavior
One thing that should be clear is that the methodologies follow consumer behavior and not the other way around. Inbound Marketing and Inside Sales only work because people’s buying profile has changed over time.
The lack of information that existed before made people hostage to large companies and also to the labyrinth of salespeople, who had all the power in the business process and all the information. But with the advancement of technology, that changed.
Tools like Google, backed by the speed of the mobile Internet, have made powerful computers available to all customers, who learned how to use these tools to regain power and dictate the terms of business negotiations.
Before buying today, people search Google, social media, and business review sites, looking for information relevant to their decisions.
Therefore, it is common for a salesperson to be contacted with the decision already formed in their minds.
If the customer perceives that a company helps customers, they move forward with interest. Otherwise, you stay as far away from that company as possible and look for a more attractive competitor.
That is why there is the Inbound Marketing methodology, also known as Attraction Marketing. It is a way to help customers before trying to sell them something.
And it works so well that, at the end of a well-done inbound process, it is the customers who are after the company and not the other way around.
Inside Sales, on the other hand, arose from the need for companies to optimize the resources that are lost when sending salespeople to work in the field.
Do you want to know more? Now we are going to dig a little deeper on the subject.
What are Inside Sales?
“Inside Sales” is an English term that can be translated as “Inside Sales”. It is a way to sell without having to leave the company to visit potential clients.
If your company has internal salespeople, you already work with Inside Sales. Maybe you still don’t do it the best way, which is distance selling. And why is this good?
First, visiting potential customers can be costly for your business process. The simple act of canceling a meeting can cause a salesperson to miss the entire day of work.
Inside Sales, in turn, offers greater flexibility and security for the negotiation process. Holding meetings over the phone and video conferencing is a great way to increase productivity without losing effectiveness.
However, don’t think that Inside Sales equals telemarketing. Telemarketing uses the same script for everyone, in addition to trying to promote any product or service at all costs. It is the old sales model, which does not take the buyer into account.
The Inside Sales process, on the other hand, is designed to qualify leads long before offering anything.
You represent a good part of what makes people hate sales. The other is one of the best sales models today.
Inbound Sales vs Outbound Sales
People like challenges. So when a new method of Marketing and Sales emerges, the natural question is: is this method better than the other?
It’s as if they wonder who would win a fight between the two of them. And the same goes for Inbound Sales vs Outbound Sales, to determine who would win (if there is a winner), we must first understand each model.
Inbound Sales include producing content relevant to your ICP – Ideal Customer Profile and helping you find your business easily, preferably organically.
Ultimately, the goal of Inbound Sales is to consistently generate leads, even without a decline in active prospecting that is the foundation of Inside Sales.
Once you’ve generated the leads, it’s time to nurture them with automation tools and, of course, more content tailored to their needs. Through them, you can generate many leads at once and then nurture them with precision.
And, the best part, on an ongoing basis, is valuable content has no expiration date. This is one of the main advantages of the Inbound model: its greater sustainability.
Generating and nurturing leads on a large scale through relevant content assigned to each step of the customer’s journey is the basis of the concept known – and pursued – by many companies as a sales machine.
The outbound is the traditional method where sellers actively approaching prospects, usually by telephone, email, or advertisements.
Contrary to what many people think, the Outbound sales model is not bad, it just needs to be used correctly.
Active exploration, for example, does not work if contact is not well-segmented and targeted. Announcements should also be made based on a strategy and direct stakeholders to the appropriate acquisition and qualification channels.
The great advantage of the Outbound model concerning Inbound is the response time. A good strategy can generate sales quickly, while Inbound takes longer to produce results.
Here is the objective comparison between both methods:
- lower cost of scale;
- takes longer to give results;
- customers seek the company;
- focuses on creating a lasting relationship with customers;
- lower acquisition cost (in general).
- higher cost of scale;
- less time to give results;
- the company looks for clients directly;
- focuses on making a direct offer;
- higher acquisition cost (in general).
Seen in this way, it is much easier to perceive that we are talking about extremely complementary strategies, isn’t it? In many cases, it pays to invest in both forms of sales to accelerate the growth of the business without losing steam in the long term.
The sales funnel and the customer journey
The purchase process and the customer journey are two ways of defining the path that each customer takes from the moment they start looking for a solution to solve a problem until they buy the specific solution that you offer them.
The sales funnel is a key part of driving the customer through their journey keeping your solution always on their horizon.
The idea is to create a relationship with them, even before you make the offer. The funnel is divided into 3 parts :
Each one with its defined objective in the business process, as we will see below.
Top of the Funnel
The top of the funnel is the learning and discovery stage. At this point, the person is still not very familiar with the problem they need to solve, but they already know that they have some “symptoms.”
Therefore, the purpose of the content at the top of the funnel is to help the person understand the problem in a basic way and better understand what needs to be solved.
In other words, at this stage, it is convenient to use introductory, more didactic, and general content.
Middle of the Funnel
After fully understanding the problem to be solved, the person goes in search of the best solution for it.
He begins to travel the middle of the funnel, a phase in which he will begin to consider the different possible solutions to the problem. It is also the time when it will give the first signs of purchase intention.
Control the instinct of wanting to sell immediately. It is not yet the time to offer your solution. Rather, you must generate value by using deeper materials like ebooks and webinars.
The purpose of this type of content is twofold:
- generate leads that will be nurtured to advance to the bottom of the funnel.
Finally, once you have convinced leads that the type of solution you are selling is the best for their problem, there is still one step left: to prove that your company is the best option.
Now is the time for the lead to look for brands, prices, and reviews from other customers.
Therefore, don’t skimp on content with customer testimonials, success stories, and awards from specialized vehicles in your market.
In addition, your sales team should quickly communicate with you and close the sale as soon as they feel that a lead is mature, that is, ready to buy.
But what volume should you produce for each step of the funnel? The basic rule of thumb is that 80% of the content production is distributed at the top, while the remaining 20% is divided between the middle and the bottom.
How to sell more?
That is the question that everyone wants an answer to. No recipe guarantees that you will sell more until the end of time, but there are many strategies capable of multiplying your results, reducing costs, and giving security to your commercial operation. Sounds good enough?
As we’ve shown you so far, to accomplish all of this, you must act with clear data and processes, not assumptions. Another very important, but often overlooked, the factor is strategy documentation.
Many companies do not perform better due to planned but not executed details. It is impossible to solve this problem without having the plan properly documented as a reference when you need it.
In addition to documenting the planning, having a robust solution for everyday use, such as a CRM – which we will talk about in more detail below – helps a lot.
Finally, many companies have preferred the specialization of their salespeople to sales methodologies where everyone does “a little bit of everything” in the sales process. The concept of predictable income, for example, is based on this pillar.
In addition to these points, look at other elements that can make your company sell more.
How to calculate the sale price?
The first key aspect of selling more is knowing how much you spend to attract each customer. The way to measure this is through the CAC, the English term for “Cost of Acquisition per Customer.”
Have you ever stopped to think that attracting customers costs money? This cost includes everything invested in Marketing and Sales and must be taken into account to calculate your CAC.
The calculation is quite simple:
- adds up all the investments made in Marketing and Sales in a given period. And then divide that by the number of customers gained in the same period.
For example, if a company invested $ 100,000 over 6 months and got 400 new clients in the same period, the account would look like this:
CAC = total invested / number of new clients in the period
CAC = 100,000 / 400
CAC = 250
The acquisition cost, in this example, would be $ 250.
The CAC should not be analyzed alone. Other metrics, such as LTV (Customer Lifetime Value) and Average Ticket, should also be compared to get a better view of cost.
The LTV analyzes the average of how long a person stays as a customer. The average ticket, on the other hand, calculates how much that customer spends over their entire useful life.
After analyzing these 3 metrics together, you will discover if you are spending too much or if the acquisition costs are within the acceptable level for your business strategy.
How to sell online?
As we already mentioned, Inbound Marketing is one of the best sales methods through the Internet and includes:
- Traffic generation: you must find out how many visitors you need to attract and what channels your buyer persona uses on the Internet. That way you can devise an attraction strategy;
- lead generation: just like you did with traffic, find out how many leads you need to generate per month to give your sales team the opportunities they need to reach the goal;
- qualification and closing: decide how to qualify the leads and when you should transfer a lead from the Marketing team to the sellers.
The ‘formula’ is this: attract the required number of qualified visitors, convert them into leads, and qualify them until they are ripe to be approached by a salesperson.
How to create a sales website?
Can you believe it, at this exact moment people are searching for your products or services on Google? Do you want to be found?
So, create a website and prepare it to attract the right people, that is, those who have a true purchase intention and the ideal customer profile for your business. How to do that? With a complete SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategy.
You will need the following:
- domain – an address that people can access ;
- hosting: it is the environment in which you will host your active site on the Internet ;
- design: the look and ease of use of your website will make the difference for your success;
- Contents: Have you ever heard that content is king? You need to generate real value regularly, perhaps through a blog, to keep people interested and create an engaged audience.
How to sell on Instagram?
Instagram is currently one of the main social networks in the world and, if you are starting to use the Internet to sell, you simply cannot stay on the sidelines.
First of all, because, year after year, the network shows solid figures in all aspects, starting with its wide user base. More than that, the innovation is such that it tends to influence the pace of other networks, including Facebook itself.
And we are not just talking about generating brand recognition, anyone who uses Instagram well can turn it into a real machine to generate leads and, in turn, sales.
How to sell on Facebook?
Facebook remains the world’s best-known social network, and despite the controversy surrounding data misuse, it remains an inexhaustible source of connection between businesses and customers.
The company’s advertising platform, Facebook Ads, presents enormous profit potential for anyone who knows how to exploit all of its targeting and positioning tools.
It is worth delving into how it works, not to mention the opportunity to generate content that attracts your audience, with the potential to generate traffic for your website and leads.
How to sell by phone?
The telephone is one of the most traditional sales tools, but today it is also one of the most feared. Many people prefer written messages because it is easier to plan what to say in advance and even follow a script.
On the phone, however, you need many faster-thinking skills, as well as making sure the person on the other end doesn’t notice any insecurity.
Here are some tips:
- When they attend you, identify yourself and then explain the reason for the call. Even if you are talking on the phone, do not forget to smile. People can perceive the smile even from a distance;
- speak slowly, clearly and at a good volume so that the person can hear and understand everything;
- find a quiet and private place to make your calls. This will give you more security;
- follow the script. Even if you don’t want to talk like a robot, the script will help you remember everything;
- listen more, talk less. The more the lead talks, the more information you can gather;
- project confidence into your voice and try not to stutter. Lack of conviction breeds distrust, so show that you have mastered the topic you are talking about;
- record calls to learn from your mistakes. Various sales tools allow you to record calls for later review.
Learn about the main sales techniques in the market
There are so many sales techniques that you could miss out on if you tried to apply them all. As we have said several times, the key to selling more is not just techniques, but creating value for customers.
So, take a look at a summary of the most popular techniques below and do some research on the ones that stand out to you.
One of the most dynamic techniques, suitable for teams of all sizes and segments. The Spin Selling is to show the situation, the problem, the implication of that problem in the life of the client, and, finally, the need for the product.
The sellers become experts on the needs of the customer. Suitable for B2B companies with a long sales cycle.
Perfect for complex sales, it works by selling the solution concept, not specific product features.
SNAP Selling is designed to speed up the sales process, is best suited for simple sales, and doesn’t work as well for complex sales.
Sales vs Marketing: the importance of harmony between both teams
If your Marketing and Sales teams work separately today, it’s time for a change. The market is full of companies that lose money because these two teams work more as rivals than as allies.
Uniting the sectors through Ventarketing is the ideal solution to achieve the best results since they all work with the same end goal.
See how Sales and Marketing can, and should, work together to make every step of the business process work.
During the lead generation and qualification phase, also known as presale, the Marketing team plays an important role in creating relevant content adapted to each stage of the funnel.
In addition, the Marketing team also maintains a relationship with the public on social networks and email and does a good job in the medium and long term with SEO techniques.
Here, the sales team is essential to guide the entire communication strategy, to ensure that all this effort is successful in attracting the right people.
In the aftermarket, the mission of the sales team is to keep the relationship alive, to retain customers, and turn them not only into repeat buyers but brand advocates as well.
And where does the marketing team come into all of this? It’s time to help create specific actions that keep the customer engaged, as well as create personalized content to maintain strong after-sales service.
This shows that Vendarketing is the ideal working model, from the customer acquisition stage to the post-sale, and each team has strategic roles throughout the entire process.
A goal is each objective that your company aims to achieve, it is impossible to grow without setting clear and achievable sales goals.
Another extreme would be setting goals that are too generic or surreal. With this in mind, stay focused when defining your goals and always take into account the opinions of the people who will make these goals a reality.
A good goal needs a deadline and an action plan. Otherwise, it is just a dream, which will always be far away.
But how do you set good goals? An effective method is to follow the SMART method:
- Specific / Specific: the objectives must be specific to work. Goals that are to generalist only distract your attention.
- Measurable / Measurable: Can you measure what you plan to achieve? Otherwise, change your goal to one that you can measure.
- Achievable / Achievable: There is no use creating impossible goals just by saying “think big.” Choose achievable goals.
- Relevant / Relevant: your goals should make a difference in the business, goals that are too modest are a waste of potential (and profit).
- Time / Time: of a certain duration, you need a defined deadline, otherwise you will never reach the objectives.
Key sales metrics
Selling is not an abstract activity, but something that must be constantly measured and improved. You can do this by tracking the proper metrics.
In addition to the metrics we’ve already covered, like CAC, LTV, and average ticket, here are some of the most important metrics to monitor:
- Conversion rate: this is the most important metric of any sales strategy and shows how many of the created opportunities are converted into deals.
- Conversion by lead: carry out an internal survey of leads generated and converted in previous months. From there, you can project a probable conversion rate for the current month, taking into account the leads already generated;
- Average Individual Sales: This metric reveals how much each salesperson can generate. In this way, it is possible to improve the individual performance of those who lag behind the team average;
- Time to Goals: This shows how long, on average, it takes salespeople to reach defined goals. It can be used to show which sales method is the most productive and generates the most conversions for the business.
Let’s face it, not all tasks carry equal weight in the sales process. Some of them, although necessary, are repetitive and can be easily automated. So why not enjoy this?
Activities like sending emails to nurture leads, generating daily task reminders, and progress reports are good examples of this.
Here are some quality tools that can transform the way your sales team works.
CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is a customer relationship management system that is designed to centralize information about customers and help serve them in a more personalized and comprehensive way.
Some of the best options on the market are:
- Salesforce – One of the world’s best-known and most respected brands when it comes to CRM. The application features quick start-up and maximum scale flexibility for growing businesses;
- RD Station CRM: the free tool from RD Station, the largest Marketing automation company in Latin America, is a simple and practical CRM option. The goal is not to waste time setting up tools and jump straight into the action;
- HubSpot CRM: HubSpot is one of the most respected companies in the world in the Digital Marketing market. The 100% free CRM is complete and adapts to different types of businesses.
- Pipedrive: used by more than 75,000 companies in hundreds of countries, this CRM promises to make life easier for your company with its great ease of use from the first access.
Customer service tools
Serving customers well should be a top priority for any sales team. Therefore, it is important to consider tools that facilitate contact with them. We highlight the following:
- Zoom: Video conferencing software widely used in the world of Marketing and digital sales. It can be used to hold meetings and give training, carry out product demonstrations, among other functions;
- Chatbots: Chatbots, or autoresponder robots, are great for serving and preventing the customer from having to wait until a salesperson can speak to them in person.
Productivity is the law when it comes to increasing profits. So here are some tools for that too:
- Evernote: perhaps the world’s leading personal organizer application, it has everything you need to organize your schedule without being distracted or interrupting activities all the time;
- Dropbox: makes it easy to access and share files from anywhere. Just save the document in the cloud and access it from anywhere. Very useful for contracts and approvals;
- Harvest: For personal use, it is used to easily time tasks and generate time use reports. This makes it easy to optimize the time of day to get work done.
How to build a sales team?
Building a sales force can be a monumental task, depending on the size of the operation you need to scale. Therefore, we are not going to detail all the necessary processes, because for this we would have to write another guide, in addition to this one.
We are going to remember some principles that you should keep in mind when building your sales operation with a well-structured and qualified team. The tips are:
- Consider the type of transaction you are structuring: internal sellers are different from field sellers. The structure you intend to adopt is a key part of the choice;
- think long term: hiring a less skilled but more adaptable salesperson may be better for your future results;
- Build a team of experts: Sales experts like Aaron Ross argue that a team should have specific roles, think about it when hiring.
- Create a sales manual: creating a well-documented process to follow on a day-to-day basis is also critical to maintaining good team results.
How to be a good salesman?
If you are a salesperson, you understand that a good professional can transform the operation of a company. And you also know that your success depends directly on your performance from month to month, not just at one point or another.
Companies are aware of the need to structure their sales teams well and hire specialists in each function of the process. It is useless to depend solely on charisma, much less on past successes.
In addition to following a well-structured process, following the best practices of the best in your market, to be a good salesperson you need to develop the following qualities.
Ability to tell good stories
The ability to tell stories that convince and motivate people to act is vital to selling. That’s what will get your prospects to connect with you and your promise.
Engaging and motivational stories focus on the client’s emotions and desires, not just logic.
Willingness to help
Many salespeople are only concerned with getting the best deal for themselves and the company, without worrying about what clients will gain from the negotiation. If you think long-term, you will do it differently.
If you earn a lot, but the client does not earn that much, that is the only time you will sell to him. Therefore, show that you are committed to the client’s success and seek a win-win relationship from the start.
This requires curiosity and a deep interest in helping the customer. Ask broad questions early in the process and make them more specific as you work to find the ideal solution.
Dig into what motivates and annoys the customer to find the answers and deliver the results you need.
Do you want some advice to sell a lot more in a short time? Ask for references from your current clients.
The chances of them meeting someone who can buy you are not small, since we usually interact with people with a profile similar to ours, in many respects.
But be specific. Instead of, “Do any of your friends want to buy my product?” Use an approach like, “Do you know someone who is also going through problem X and is looking for a solution right now?”
Courage to follow up
Some companies have been able to increase sales by 15% simply by increasing the follow-up cycle. Instead of returning the contact 2 or 3 times, they send messages until the person responds, yes or no.
It is a simple tactic, but little used. There is even no follow-up for fear of inconvenience. Don’t fall into this trap, dare to return contact as many times as necessary.
Use of mental triggers
The mind does not make decisions with logic alone, as much as people like to think that this is how it happens.
Mental triggers are nothing more than expressions and words that lead people to make specific decisions, perhaps even without realizing it.
These resources are important in all communication with leads, as they help eliminate common objections and justify the reason for the purchase.
A mental trigger serves to show authority, generate expectation and urgency in the leads.
Best sales books
One of the best ways to learn concepts and delve into the structures of the world of sales is to read books written by established authors who are also renowned salespeople.
Below we will give you a list of reading recommendations for you and your team.
The Weapons of Persuasion – Robert Cialdini
This book delves into an amazing topic that we have mentioned in this guide, mental triggers.
The Sales Acceleration Formula – Mark Roberge
This book offers a scalable and predictable approach to building the next $ 100 million business.
How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie
This classic was published in 1936, but it is still widely recognized today. It talks about human behavior and persuasion, being required reading to know how to deal with customers.
Predictable Income: Aaron Ross and Marylou Tyler
One of those books that change the way your team views sales. In this blog, we have mentioned it on other occasions.
The Power of Habit – Charles Duhigg
Understanding how habits are formed is very helpful in understanding customer behavior and knowing how to act; that is the main teaching of this book.
The Sales Bible – Jeffrey Gitomer
A work known as the “Bible” of any segment deserves attention. This book is considered a must-have for anyone looking to improve sales performance.
The Key Point – Malcolm Gladwell
With more than 5 million books sold worldwide, the author shows that ideas and products can spread like an epidemic.
We have reached the end of this complete guide in which we wanted to leave you in an organized way the most important information so that you can be successful when it comes to increasing your sales.