Sales Process really is a combination of two things:
The customers experience of a business from the external perspective;
The business processes that manage that experience internally.
It’s the way those two interact that make your sales process, and all of it should hinge around the customer decision making process. This is how your prospects decide whether or not to become your client, and no matter how big that decision is, they’ll always go through it. In its simplest form, this process is five key steps:
Awareness: They know you and your product/service exists
Interest: “hmm that’s interesting, I wonder what it’s about…”
Evaluation: “That looks pretty good, but is it really for me?”
Commitment: “It’s better than the other options, I’ll buy it”
Loyalty: “I’m going to buy another one, and you should too!”
Getting the results you want to see, ultimately, is about taking control of that decision making process, and the easiest way to do this is by having a strong sales process in place.
The first step to creating your sales process is to map the customer journey: what do they experience whilst they go through the decision making process? Improving the experience that a customer has with your business is a major part of successful sales process so it’s vital to first analyse it to understand what they currently see and then work out how you can make it better.
So how do you improve it?
It’s all about the right communication at the right time. At Elation we’ve created The Customer Influence Matrix that we use to understand all the options available to us to make relevant and interesting contact with the prospect at each stage of the sale. In order to contact your prospects frequently enough to influence their decision without becoming a pushy sales person, you have to understand who they are and how they make decisions. This will of course depend on the individual but certain assumptions can be made:
Type of contact: If they found you after an email campaign and never answer the phone, it’s a safe bet to assume they prefer email to phone. So stop phoning them!
Frequency of contact: A lot of this will be down to their personal preference, but to an extent it will reflect the size of their purchasing decision: If it’s a simple choice with limited risk then they’ll make the decision quickly and won’t require much contact. If it’s a bigger decision they’re going to take their time and therefore need more regular communication from you.
What to send: To sell effectively you need to become a trusted advisor. One way to do this is by providing relevant information. Understanding what you’re prospects are considering means you’re able to send them information relevant to what they’re wondering. For larger prospects who you’re really trying to win you can always find out about them as an individual and send them something personally relevant to them.
Once you understand this you can build your process to ensure you’re taking control of your customers’ decision making process. Make sure you stay in front of them, as an expert, and
guide them to make a decision that’s mutually beneficial. If you’ve got a CRM system then this should be built around your sales process.
If you would like more support on building an influential and robust sales process to super charge your sales results – check out our 90 day business growth programme The Growth Academy.