How to use sales pipeline optimization to eliminate friction and close more deals
Getting up your sales numbers can sometimes feel like cranking on rusted wheels. You could indeed try to pedal hard and fast. But unless you fix the wheels, it’s unlikely that you are going to get anywhere…
For this problem, the logical solution would be to first zero-in on the spots that slow down your progress. Then you can grease these spots to make way for smoother motion. Or else you can power your way through using sheer willpower. In this case, this will just make you exhausted and cover even lesser ground!
The same dynamics can be applied to your sales management process. If you regularly struggle to reach your targets, the problem may not lie with your sales process or team. You may be having problem with friction within your sales pipeline. In this case, you should try to optimize your sales pipeline to have lesser friction.
For this, you need to first understand the various friction points within your sales process. Otherwise, you may struggle to move your prospects along the sales pipeline. You may even face increasing customer drop-offs within your sales pipeline.
Task Prioritization or Conflicting job requirements
According to studies, only a meagre number of people can effectively multitask between the different tasks. Even with true intentions, a significant part of the people are set to get distracted or keep doing less important tasks.
Even if it doesn’t directly involve client interactions, the multitasking should be a potential point of customer friction. It’s because the employees could be made unavailable to the customer at this point of time.
At the same time, there should be an agreement concerning the prioritization of tasks within the organization. It’s quite possible that different people have different priorities for the day. If the prioritizes aren’t quite set, it may cause quite some friction.
The sales management platform is an effective way to organize and streamline the different tasks within the workforce.
By having an inbuilt sales hierarchy, the concerned manager can set priorities for the entire department. Meanwhile, it also makes sure that the organization is working towards a singular direction, which further decreases the inbuilt friction.
Customer problem solving or adapting to market place
It could be tempting for a sales employee to hammer home the same sales pitch at every customer meeting. This pitch would involve a demonstration of all product or service features.
This would lead to an industry wide comparison with competitors. You also would be compared based on a number of parameters such as pricing, packaging, specific utilities etc…All these are potential friction points that could act against closing the particular deal.
Instead the sales professionals can take a problem solving approach in their daily process. This involves an in-depth assessment of customer requirements and resolving them to create actual solutions.
This involves entering into a consultative relationship with the prospect. This helps you better understand the underlying problems and arrive agreeable solutions.
This helps you to relate and connect with your prospective buyer. In turn, you can turn a source of friction into a point of leverage to move your prospects towards closure.
Work on audience recognisability and identity
Most prospects are not likely to purchase from a business that they haven’t heard about before…If don’t have the necessary industry recognisability or happens to be novice, this could be a serious problem.
In these situations, even as you initially reach your prospect, you are unlikely to reach the prospect in future. This also means that all your initial efforts at reaching the customer go to waste.
Most businesses struggle to achieve repeated interaction with your business. And, this happens to be a great point of friction that leads to the highest prospect drop-off in the sales pipeline.
You can achieve repeated interactions with a customer through collecting their data. By collecting the customer data, you could open-up multiple pathways to initiate customer interactions.
You can achieve this through maintaining in-depth data for every prospect.
By availing multiple points of interactions, you can increase the probability of future customer interactions.
Streamline between different Processes
A sales pipeline is usually a set of activities stringed together and that are supposed to act coherently. First of all your marketing team needs to generate the enquiries, send the enquiries to sales team, acquire responses from the sales team etc…All these could be considered independent processes and are usually handled by independent teams.
Having uncoordinated multiple processes could lead to a high level of friction within your activities. This problem also highlights the importance of lead management in your business process.
A lead management can streamline and manage all the incoming enquiries from a single platform. This avails the best responses from a single platform.
Let’s take the two cases of sales journey.
In the first case, all prospects are able to smoothly transition between the different stages. In the second case, customers are sent through an unplanned sales funnel that has multiple friction points.
More prospects are likely to become paying customers in the first case.
For a modern business, it’s essential to manage a well-oiled sales pipeline that’s attuned to maximize customer conversions.
Learn more about improving the efficiency and utility of your customer management system.