Sales are the very lifeblood of an organisation. Without the sales, there is no cash. Without cash, there is no business! As the recession bites, there are going to be shrinking pies with more companies wanting to eat from them.

Building a team that is focused on sales success takes commitment and dedication, and every individual within that team plays an essential role. We have outlined here our eight steps to success in sales, highlighting what we believe it takes to be successful in sales, even during a recession.

  1. Define your goals

Without a clear focus, it is difficult to really know what it is you are aiming for. By setting realistic, achievable, step-by-step goals that are relative to your industry sector, you are able to keep a sales team on track and progressing towards real success rather than a finger in the wind, which can lead to desperation.

Each member of your sales team needs to have their own KPIs based on their relative experience and past achievements. These KPIs should be challenging, forward focused, and linked to your company’s broader objectives and growth plans.

  1. Develop a sales strategy

Your sales strategy is a flexible blueprint for moving forward, creating leads, and giving your sales team a framework within which they can work towards achieving their KPIs. That sales strategy will be based on past experiences and data and continuously monitored, tested, and evaluated to make sure your company is optimising on opportunities.

  1. Understand your customer

While knowing what your KPIs are, the focus of every member of your sales team should be the customer. What are the customer’s pain points, and how can you solve that customer’s problems? A successful salesperson will instinctively know the answers to any question a potential client will have and will be able to build a relationship with them quickly and effectively (or, depending on the nature of your business, over a period of time), creating mutual trust and confidence.

Understanding your customer and being able to pre-empt their concerns and questions will help you to build that trust.

  1. Build relationships

The relationship you develop through your sales strategy is one that has already been nurtured by your marketing team through the outreach they have done for lead generation. There is no time frame to that relationship – depending on your product offering, that relationship could be built over the course of a short telephone call, or it may be cultivated over several weeks, months, or even years.

The main rule for a relationship is that no matter what the personality of the individual salesperson, they must reflect the core brand values of the company and maintain professionalism and consistency throughout.

  1. Stay motivated

If someone is hesitating to sign up for your services, don’t get frustrated or upset. Instead, try to understand why. Losing motivation and throwing in the towel too quickly could see you unnecessarily losing sales by stumbling at the last post – when actually, a final push might have got you past the line!

Should you lose the sale, then make sure you learn why – and incorporate improvements in your next sales pitch.

  1. Avoid desperation

Desperation is not a good look in sales and will reflect on an organisation. An individual who exudes confidence and has a deeply held belief in their offering will infect the potential customer with that same confidence. That’s a powerful relationship.

  1. Persevere through rejection

No doesn’t always mean no. Sometimes a no means that they don’t feel confident enough to say yes yet – but they might not be far away. Make sure that you listen to any objections and counter them with valid reassurances.

Also, a no now may be a test further down the line. Maintain the relationship. Keep in touch. You might get a phone call out of the blue when the need for your services prompts that potential client to pick up the phone and start chasing you!

  1. Training

Keep everybody in your sales team sharp and focused with regular training.

Are you looking to build and develop a sales team? Contact us now to seek out the best sales candidates to help grow your business.