Sales have never been easy. Many companies find them into a situation where their sales team is not able to convert leads or prospects to sales Order and opportunities are just piling up. All their regular efforts are going in, but nothing is working for a few team members.
Being a service providers, have you ever been in a situation like this? Did you identify the actual reason why your sales team struggles so hard to close the opportunity? Do you have a list of issues which are going wrong in your sales funnel? Are the reasons well defined on what’s choking your sales funnel with sales hold or dead account at the end stage?
We have different business models, but these common issues are some regular limitations which can be faced by every firm in the current economic market. Let’s discuss a few of the issues below:-
Stages of the Sales funnel :
Many of the organization have their own way of managing the sales process and some touchpoints of the customer towards the purchase they make, all these are structured into three distinct stages :
Stage 1 : Discovery and awareness –
Early in the customer journey, your potential customers are facing problems and they start researching and learn about them. This much early in the journey and they are still identifying their challenge. They have so many questions about the problem, they haven’t named the problem itself and they just know what the symptoms are.
Some examples of the questions that they might have for the specific industries :
- Customer support – “Customer support industry benchmarks”
- An electricity provider- “Average Electricity bill”
At the top of the sales funnel, all your prospects must feel educated and confident enough so that they are able to talk about the questions and also the problems when the time comes.
In this stage, all your untouched prospects will turn into contact-made prospects. To tell more accurately, now they are your leads, It is time for the sales rep to ask relevant questions and qualify all of your leads, which brings them to the next stage.
Stage 2 : Researching solutions –
In this stage, you will be no longer dealing with all these nameless and faceless contacts. Now the prospects have named and defined the problem and are looking into all the solutions which are possible like products and services.
Some of the questions asked in this stage are:
- “How to break down an electricity bill?”
- “How to choose the best mattress?”
In the middle of the sales funnel, your lead will be diving very much deeper into the specifics of the problems. They will understand what’s actually bothering them in detail and will try to know all the possible solutions. The content which serves the best to your leads in this stage is guided that are very in-depth, checklists of the comparison-style, insightful pieces, pros versus cons lists.
Stage 3 : Making an informed purchase decision
This is the bottom of the sales funnel, this is often the stage when all of your leads get to know about their problems, the simplest solutions for their problem, and also they are able to select the provider for their problem to shop the solution from that provider.
This is the reason why questions of the leads and their concerns during this stage become vendor-driven. So online searches and likewise as their inquiries to you would possibly appear as if:
- “What can be the terms of the electricity contract compared to at least one provider versus the opposite provider?”
- “Who will offer the long run and also the right warranty policy for the mattress?”
The best content for the bottom of the funnel is the questions that are asked frequently from the leads, videos that contain the features of the merchandise, live demos, and also side-to-side competitive feature analysis. This can strengthen the confidence of the leads in your offers as they will keep seeing that it’ll be appropriate for his or her specific problem.
Most of the Common mistakes done:-
Many organisations face these issues where sales funnel is not organised and administered properly. Collected information is on various modes of communication, the sales team is not coordinated on common topics, customers are randomly called for meetings and more. An organised system of data tracking and recording is the foremost need of the hour for any growing organisation.
As inquiry received, without analysis the sales initial process of setting meeting, sharing details starts. It’s the wrong way of approach. Always remember the start of any process should be correct. First analyze what customer is really looking for? List the requirements and match with your product / services. Many times product names may match but the client may be looking for something else. The client may not know the correct name or not have clear knowledge about the product. Make a questioner understand the correct need.
After identifying Correct Lead, what to do Now? Start rigorous follow-ups, set a meeting, run –follow- run. “NO” a Big No.
In fact, without wasting time check at what stage this Opportunity stands? Is it at Initial, Mid or ready to ripe?
If it is at the Initial stage, it means the stage of just gathering knowledge. It can’t be considered as an opportunity.
If it is at mid-stage, then that client knows what they want , but still no processes are defined like who will take a decision, when to buy, at what price bracket etc. This opportunity is also not a bogus lead but yet need to be taken into consideration as and when the clients approaches for any further discussions.
The next stage is when clients are really eager to buy our products and are showing positive responses to our campaigns and meeting notifications. Next step would be to collect as much information about the client and nurture them further.
In many cases, the sales team don’t have clear demarcation on how to further nurture the leads. This unmanaged system of lead management and tracking leads to a lot of wastage of time and resources for the firm.
Customer centricity is not just a word but a process which needs to be followed by companies at the most micro level possible. Understanding your customers and knowing what they really looking for, followed by being able to take the sales deal to next level but suffering every requirement of the client through customised software services is one the critical part of the sales funnel.
In many organisations, sales funnels choke due to untrained staff and efficient sales team. The sales team needs to be well trained on the products, features and software usage which can enhance overall productivity of the business processes.
Lack of automated features
With the current era of software requirements and technology, if organisations are managing their high no. of incoming enquiries using manual ways and methods, then that’s the sure shot case of choking the sales process and overall productivity.
If your sales team is managing sales call using manual sheets, or setting up meeting reminders using different excel sheets and other tools, then by no choice they will be lagging way behind their competitors in the present state of technology and economic market.
What can help?
A cloud based sales management software is the right choice for organising and automating every sales funnel process and to improve overall efficiency of the sales process.
Let’s understand some of the main advantages of sales management software which will help us to unchoke your sales funnel.
Organised cloud based repository
A cloud based Sales CRM software, will help to organise and track every sales process through a centralised cloud based repository which can keep a track of every sales stages and components involved in each of them like : Information of every incoming leads, list of quotations and sales order sent to interested clients, various activities and follow up planned for different leads and information from every stage of leads and way forward.
All this information help in creating a systematic process to administer the overall sales processes of the organisation.
Mobile sales apps and other automated features help in creating a standardized system of lead management and tracking. These mobile sales app features help in reporting and managing the internal sales team and improve overall productivity of the team.
Also, with efficient inventory management and ERP solutions, sales management software can manage after sales stages and organised end-to-end services to the client for a long lasting relationship and business transactions.
Easy to use software and training tools
Sales CRM software like SalesBabu CRM help in proving easy to use features for sales processes like quotation creation, reports and analysis on various sales stages, tracking individual leads using third party integration with social media and other modes of communication help sales admins to automated and simply their daily jobs and make more time for productive sales and lead tracking.
Many companies face the issue of choked up and unstandardised sales process, but with the help of a sales CRM software like SalesBabu CRM, every sales stage can be systematized and administered for more productive sales lifecycle.