Rethinking sales processes for 2013

Sales is a dynamic job filled with dozens of variables. There is no one specific way to guarantee conversion, and agents need to be able to personally engage each client to maximize their chances of securing sales. However, that being said, there generally is a formula that many businesses create for representatives to follow. This may include a script for agents to use as a jumping-off point and broad sales processes that they can use to guide sales activities.

For many businesses, this sales process is the ultimate example of "if it isn't broken, don't fix it." As a result, sales processes may outlast several other business practices, and in some cases, may still be used for years after they are originally formed. As Business 2 Community notes, it is absolutely crucial that companies always reevaluate their sales processes to ensure they remain relevant, particularly coming up on the dawn of a new year.

For example, sales managers need to think about some of the following possibilities: customers changing the way they buy, a market transformations, wavering or improving engagement and customer experience, evolving lead nurturing and demand generation programs, changes in competition and the introduction of new products. There are any number of variables that could impact the success of the sales process, and companies need to constantly be on the lookout for ways to improve them.

"Take the time to reassess and tune your sales process," explains Business2Community. "It's supposed to make you much more productive, efficient and effective. It's supposed to align you more effectively with how your customers buy, enabling you to create much more value and more effectively engage your customers. If you are relying on your same old process then you are doing yourselves, your company and your customers a disservice."

The key is making the sales process reflective of how customers are buying. By understanding their decision-making processes and the way they buy, businesses are better positioned to make effective sales processes that maximize customer conversions.

Sales performance management (SPM) solutions can help provide deeper insight into sales processes, enabling companies to identify potential problem areas in their sales departments.