Increased sales equals increased revenue and an increase in revenue would lead to an increase in business profits. A lot of business owners come up with smart business ideas but unfortunately, they hit a plateau when it comes to the sales aspect of their business. It doesn’t matter what kind of products you sell or the kind of services you render, you would need an effective strategy to drive sales. Having a clear-cut sales strategy involves:
- Identifying your customers and understanding their needs.
- Identifying your business needs sales target.
- Analyzing how your customers would benefit from using your products or services.
- Developing a sales strategy which would enable you achieve your sales goals by helping your customers to meet their own needs and showing them why they need your products.
This is basically what an effective sales strategy is all about and when you want to achieve higher sales performance and productivity, the first thing you should do is to develop a good sales strategy. These 10 other tips would help you to improve sales performance and productivity in your business-:
10 Powerful Tips to Improve Sales Performance and Productivity
1. Recruit effective sales men-: When you have effective sales men on your team; people who are performance-driven and have a huge passion for meeting sales targets; things would be a lot easier. Everybody has their own unique strengths.
While some people are very influential ad persuasive and can sell any item in the world even if it’s a bunch of crap, some people just cannot no matter how hard they try. Your duty therefore, is to search for, and recruit these influential people to join your sales team. This is the first step to improving sales performance in your business.
2. Train your staff-: Yes, I suggested that you employ qualified and experienced sales men but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t train them. Training is a continuous process and your sales personnel must be made to go through this process regularly. There are new trends, new strategies and methods that are being developed daily to help businesses increase their sales performance but how can your staff make use of them if they are totally unaware of their existence?
3. Set targets and give rewards-: This one is very effective. When a person knows that he has goals to be achieved and deadlines to be met; he would do all in his power to ensure that he meets up with these goals and deadlines but when there are none, he would be relaxed and do things at his own pace which may not work out quite well.
Also, it is not enough to just set targets; you should also give rewards when these targets are met as a way of motivating your team. Make them feel like a part of the business; for instance, you could offer them $10 reward for every bottle of wine sold. This means that if a person sells 100 bottles, he gets $1,000. Such a person would want to do all in his power to sell as many bottles as he possibly can to increase his own bonus.
4. Hold regular meetings-: You should also meet with your sales team regularly to discuss and understand their challenges and look for ways to solve them. Although sales people are always very busy and mostly work on the field but a weekly meeting shouldn’t hurt. But if it’s totally impossible to have that, maybe because your salesmen are scattered in different states across the country, you could still hold remote sales meeting via teleconferencing.
5. The art of customer satisfaction-: Every customer you meet is very important and you should ensure that your sales men understand the importance of satisfying customers. Customers are to be studied, understood, persuaded and supported. It always helps to build a relationship with your customers as this would always keep them coming back for more.
6. Highlight the value of your products and services: The fastest way to persuade customers to buy your products or engage your services is by making them see why they need your products. For example, you can hold product demonstrations or offer free samples and free trials. If you sell cars, you can allow a test drive to allow customers feel the car and its functions. This would increase the customer’s interest in your products and help to drive sales.
7. Build Integrity-: Another very important thing is to maintain credibility and integrity. Avoid false advertisements or promising your customers what you cannot deliver. If your product says ‘sugar-free’ ensure that it is indeed sugar free. Customers get easily turned off and discouraged from buying your products when they discover that you have not been totally honest with them. Always be honest and strive to improve your products instead of deceiving your customers. Your salesmen should understand this.
8. Use Online marketing strategies-: Online marketing is the new cool and you have to support your sales men with effective online marketing strategies. Some internet marketing strategies you could e-mail marketing, blogging and content marketing, contests and giveaways.
9. Upselling strategies-: Upselling involves getting customers to get extra products from you to go along with one they have bought or planning to buy. It involves making customers aware of complementary products that can go with the products they are buying. Your sales men have to be taught the importance of using upselling strategies to increase and drive sales.
10. Always exceed your customers’ expectations-: Customers are always very happy when you surprise them. The average customer is filled with doubts when patronizing you for the first time but positively surprising them and exceeding their expectations. For instance, if you promise to deliver products in 10 days, deliver it in 3 days. Always keep your customers happy and satisfied.
5 More Tips to Improve your Sales Performance
a. Establish yourself as an authority in your field-: To be the best in your field, to be a high sales performer, you must try and learn everything concerning your products and services along with those of competitors. Study the materials in your industry for 30 to 60 minutes a day and make distinct between features and benefits of your products versus those of your competitors’. If you can speak to your prospects with a wide grasp of what value you can provide to them, including what is going on in your industry, they will always look up to you as an authority, and not just as a sales personnel.
b. Be confident enough-: When in the process of selling, always speak with confidence, integrity and honesty. If your product truly does what it is talking about, then you can proudly share the benefits and this will come across to your clients. The client will surely pick up on your sincerity, even on a subliminal level. This also will raise your status as one who is honest and can be trusted.
c. Pay attention to what the client is saying-: People always make the mistake of trying to interrupt when the client is talking. When you interrupt someone talking, he or she may feel reluctant to further with the speech. It is very important to permit the person to talk even if he or she is rambling because by doing so, he or she will in time reveal the most important wants and needs which you can match with your products and services. Also, as the client talks more, he becomes comfortable with you.
d. Learn body language and get it integrated in your sales process-: Most of the communications are nonverbal but rather involves body language. Get notice of things like a client folding arms, which could mean he is uncomfortable with you or do not believe you. Always make sure that you leave your arms at your sides to communicate effectively to the client. Also, shift your weight front to the balls of your feet when listening to a client. Since this communicates actively to the clients that you are really listening to him or her. Good body language improves communication, which will enhance your ability to make sales.
e. Protect your time-: You cannot sell if you are not spending time with your customers. Good managers practice good time management habits and they enable their sales teams in making good use of their time by eliminating demands on their time that do not assist to drive revenue directly. With clear aligned goals, every activity can be fast evaluated. Activities that do not support these goals can be eliminated or updated to get them into alignment.
You should always make a good impression by dressing up properly and represent yourself well. Human beings are challenged to form an opinion of you in the first 30 seconds. Strive for the possible ways to appear accessible and at ease.
Always go along with a toothbrush, mouthwash, and breathe mints with you when making your sales calls. If you have lunch before stopping to speak to a client and you do not want to have the smell of garlic or steak sauce on your breath; as the client can form a negative opinion of you right away and it would hurt your ability to make your sales. Always brush your teeth, use mouthwash, and put up a few breath mints.
In conclusion, I believe that these tips when applied would go a long way in increasing sales performance and productivity in your business. However, you must understand that customer satisfaction is the most important tool needed to drive sales in any business.