I recently finished writing my e-book “How to Make Selling Easy”, the lessons I learned while writing have really made a big difference for me when selling.
Before I started I thought I knew a lot about the sales process and about how sales is conducted, I had spent years in sales, I had read books, blogs, newsletters and so on.
When I started writing my own book I knew I had to test and adapt what I knew about my industry and other industries and try to find principals that could be used in any sales process, at least in an adapted form. When I used the methodology I was sharing in my book in my own sales everything wasn’t as easy as it seemed in print and it didn’t all fit into my method of selling.
I had to adapt
To use a proper sales process I couldn’t just “slap it on” to my current process. It took some work; new scripts, new ways of thinking and a more methodological mindset.
It required me to listen more to my customers and put their feelings and thoughts first.
It was difficult
But the response I got from my customers was overwhelming. I had been using a semi perfect sales process for years, the changes I made were first and foremost in the needs analysis, and my customers loved it. They felt more taken care of and liked the way I listened to their needs.
The Sales Process lets customers get their say
The start of the sales process is about learning your customers’ needs, wants, problems and how they function as people.
To learn this it requires you to listen, it requires you to respect your customers and use what you learn to better adapt the solutions you have to offer.
It also shows you if you really can help this prospect or not, I have noticed on multiple occasions that I couldn’t help a customer with the problems they were having, instead of masking it, I have been honest and told them so.
This has given me a lot of referrals because my customers feel safe that they can recommend my services because I will only help if I can.
It binds the sales process to the buying process
The most important thing I learned while studying the sales process was how the buying process in people works. How people react to an offer, think about a purchase, evaluate alternatives, rationalize and defend their choices.
The sales process ties in to every step;
People make decisions based on emotion and then justify their choice with logic.
The sales process is built to make a customer make the emotional decision to buy and then feed them logical reasons to justify with.
It also gives them a chance to defend their choices thanks to your follow up, along with a chance to buy again.
It helps you know when to ask for the order
Asking for the order, getting the contract signed, is a major hang up for most sales people, it is their biggest weakness and fear and at the same time the thing they feel they should be best at.
When using a proper sales process asking for the order is smooth, it comes naturally as a part of the process. You will know if you and your customers are on the same page using the tool, trial closes and the sales process almost makes you feel stupid for not asking, because it will be so obvious to ask.
It makes it all so much easier
It did take me time to adapt my own sales process to match the proper one, but once I had the difference was astounding, a 60% increase isn’t too bad and it doesn’t take me any extra effort, actually in many ways it is less of an effort.
Do not try to just slap it on or just use it exactly as stated in the book, try and adapt it to fit your style, your industry and your customers.
But if you do, it can make a real difference for your future.