I thought I would share with you the top sales crimes of B2B salespeople that stop them from optimising their sales process and as a result reduce sales conversions, revenue & profit!
There is no such thing as a perfect salesperson, I know this because not only have I been employed as & am one, I have also worked with, trained & mentored 100s of them! I’ve not found a perfect one … yet!
Understanding which of the top sales crimes of B2B salespeople we personally identify with is part of a self-improvement process destined to increase our sales conversions. Which ones can you relate to?
1. Lack of foresight
It is very important to focus on current sales targets and opportunities. Without working through your sales process and following up, you will convert less. However, many salespeople will get so focused on their current sales pipeline that they forget to think about their future pipeline.
It’s super important that when you are busy trying to convert existing opportunities that you also properly manage, forecast, and prospect for future sales with new and existing customers. Otherwise, you will end up with a “dry spell” leading to gaps in potential sales revenue in the future and unnecessary pressure to grow your pipeline.
2. Lack of listening skills – That old chestnut!
Listening is key, and a very important skill for most communications in and out of work scenarios. It’s one our most important skills. However, when we get excited or anxious about the topic of conversation in a sales activity, our minds can drift into a conversation with ourselves in our heads. “I can solve that issue” “are they interested in our products?” “should I ask for the business now?” “did I explain that well?” … so many things to think about so little time to listen!
If you have these inner conversations, learn how to control them. We have tools to train people to overcome this. If you don’t, how else will you find out what the customer really needs?
3. The sale is more important than the customer
If you are focusing on getting the sale, then you are in the wrong headspace. With this top sales crime, you will be trying really hard to find a solution/product that fits with your agenda way too early in the sales process.
Not focusing on the customer’s real motivations to buy and why they might actually need or want a product/service like yours will most probably result in you missing bigger and better sales at that point and possibly future sales as well.
It’s very tempting when closing a sale to agree to whatever conditions the buyer requests to get it over line. This could be price, timescales and even changes to the product itself.
Best practice is to look towards overdelivering, not overpromising. To do this you need to have a real understanding of the implications of the buyers demands. Do you know the lowest price you are willing to negotiate to for this product/volume of product? Can you actually deliver in that timeframe without compromising quality or other important orders already in the system? Will a change in product have a negative impact on operations or systems?
Until you understand the full story, you may not be able to deliver what you promised. As a result, you will disappoint your new customer and possible loose reputation and trust. Was it worth it for that sale?
5. Lack of preparation
Working with busy salespeople and business owners on a regular basis, I know how difficult it is to find the time to prepare the progression of opportunities. Not spending enough time researching the account or finding out who are the main decision makers, is especially true for high value opportunities. Here are some of things worth preparing before any sales activity.
- How does this prospect fit in my target market?
- What might be the motivations to purchase?
- Who will be at the meeting?
- What are my objectives?
- What are possible next steps?
Are any of these resonating with you?
If you can relate to some of these top sales crimes… don’t worry! There are ways that you can improve your sales skills….
Sales training – This will improve sales skills and understanding of the sales process, especially with regards to better consideration of the customer’s needs and wants. Find out more about our formal sales training
Sales coaching & mentoring – This will give some one-on-one support to understand the required sales mindset and provide better confidence in the sales performance. Find out more about our Sales Mentoring Programme
If you want to find out more on how to improve your sales conversion rates, please contact me.