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CEOs Guide to Sales Performance
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Why Your Sales Performance Sucks

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Sales-i's top tips to make your sales performance doesn't suck! Expert insights on the tricks behind successful selling. For more information and to read our other ebooks visit http://www.sales-i.com

Why Your Sales Performance Sucks

  1. 1. An honest guide for wholesalers & distributors Whyyoursales performance andhowdatacanhelpitsuckless
  2. 2. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 2sales-i.com Some hardtruths
  3. 3. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 3sales-i.com of salespeople misstheir quotas.That’stwothirds ofyoursalesforcefailing todowhatyouhiredthem todo:sell.Asproblemsgo, it’sanexpensiveone. Notonlyareyoumissingoutonlostsales,you’re alsotakingahitbypayingforaresourcethat underperformsmonth-on-month.Research showsthattheaveragesalespersoncosts$500 perdaytoemploy.That’saninvestmentnot everywholesalerordistributorcanaffordwithout asolidreturn.Butit’snotaneasyproblemtofix either,especiallywhenthecostofreplacingabad salespersonissaidtobeaneye-watering$114,957. Sowhat’sbehindthiscostlysalesperformance problem?Wespokewithhundredsofwholesale anddistributionbusinessesinNorthAmericaand Europetofindout. Onethird(33.6%)saytheirbiggestchallengeis acquiringtimelyinformationtohelpmakeasale, and28.3%endupwastingtimetryingtogather datafromdifferentsystems,inmultipleformats. 39.9%claimtousetechnologytohelpwithdata analysis,but13.8%stillsortthroughdatamanually: somesalespeople(6%)arestillmakingdecisions basedsolelyongutinstinct. Tocutalongstoryshort:whensalespeople(even thereallygoodones)don’tusetherightinformation, theycan’tperformaswellasyouneedthemto. Somedon’thavetheinformationatall,somecan’t accessitfastenough,andsomejustwon’tuseit. Theresult?Wholesaleanddistributionsalesteams aremakingjunkcallsandgoingintomeetingsblind, andit’shittingyourbottomline. 67%
  4. 4. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 4sales-i.com Junkcalls
  5. 5. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 5sales-i.com ofallcustomerinteractions takeplaceoverthephone, soit’sincredibletofind thatsomanycompanies today still fail to make everycallcount. Withonlya20secondwindowtoraiseinterest, salespeopleneedtobeabletopresentclear, relevantinformationtoguidethesalestraight fromtheget-go. Spendanhourlisteninginonyourteam’ssales callsandaskyourselfwhichoftheseisabetter representationofwhatyouhear: If the first story sounds more familiar, your salespeople aren’t connecting with your customers where it counts. They’ve got a customer insight problem, which in turn means you’ve got a junk call problem. 90% Analysisofthe perfectgolfswing Discussionof recentweather Predictionsforupcoming sportingfixtures Misplaced,mistimedor misjudgedsalesattempts 20% 10% 20% 50% A 5% Smalltalk 20% Anticipatinga customer’sneeds 30% Timelyup-selling thatgrowsanaccount 45% Smartcross-sellingthatadds newproductlinestoanaccount B
  6. 6. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 6sales-i.com Danger Lowvisibility
  7. 7. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 7sales-i.com Somesalesteamsare doomedtorepeatbad practiceslikemaking junkcallsforoneprimary reason:theylackvisibility. 49.5%ofthecompanieswespokewithstruggle tospotwhichcustomers’ordersaredroppingand wherethenextsalesopportunitieswillbe. “Weweredeliveringtoplineinformationon customeraccountstooursalespeopleinpaper packsmonthly,soyoucanimaginethequantity ofpaperbeinggenerated,postedandhandled. Wadingthroughthatmuchinformationtounearth salesopportunitiesorchangesinbuyingbehavior wassimplyimpossibleandtheinformationwasout ofdatebythetimethesalespeoplereceivedit.” Bathroomsuppliesdistributor,UK Thatmeanssalespeoplearegoingintocallsblind withoutthedatatheyneedtomakemeaningful recommendations. Thelackofvisibilityiscompoundedwhenmanagers areunabletokeeptrackoftheirsalesteam’s performance;notjustwhichcustomersthey’ve spokentoandwhen,butexactdetailsaboutwhat wassoldandforwhatprice. Ofthesellerswespoketo,16.6%reportedthattrying togainvisibilityintotheirsalesteam’sactivitieswas theirmostsignificantday-to-daychallenge. “Wehadasalesteamwritinglongmonthly reportsthatofferedveryfewbenefitsbuttook alotoftimetocreate;theyhadlittleaccessto salesdataandwereflyingblindforalotofthe timewhenitcametosellingtoourcustomers.” Tilesupplier,UK It’snowonderonly13%ofcustomersbelievethat asalespersoncanunderstandtheirrequirements. Sohowdoyouturnthissituationaroundandwina customer’sconfidenceaswellastheirbusiness?
  8. 8. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 8sales-i.com sales Restoring clarity
  9. 9. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 9sales-i.com Thefirststepinsolving yoursalesperformance problemisrecognizing thatit’snotyoursales team’sfault. Alotofsalespeoplearesetintheiroldways. Butwholesaleanddistributionsalesischanging, soevenreallytalentedsalespeoplearestruggling toperform.Toselltodayyouneedinsightand agility.Youmustdeliverasmart,personalizedand predictiveservicethat’spartsales,partcustomer service.Whichmeansifyoursalespeopledon’t havetheinformationtheyneed,they’regoing inblind.Andifyoucan’tseewhatyourguysare doing,youcan’toptimizetheirperformance. Restoresalesclarityandyou’llunlocktwo keyadvantages: 1.Totalvision. You’llhavevisibilityofyourteaminthefield. Wherethey’vebeenandwherethey’reheaded (andwheretheyshouldbeheaded,whichisn’t alwaysthesamething). 2.Informeddecisions. Whenyoucanholdthenumbersuptothelight, that’swhenyouturninsightintoaction.Discover whichcustomersyouseetheleastbutselltothe most.Identifyweaknessesinyourproduct portfolio.Trackhowtargetedcampaignsaffect uptake.Inshort,you’llbeabletouseinsightto fuelyourdecision-making.You’llsellsmarter andyou’llsellmore.
  10. 10. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 10sales-i.com Itallstartswith
  11. 11. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 11sales-i.com Traditionally,when wholesalersanddistributors wantedtoimprovesales performance,theystarted witheverythingbutthe data:theyhirednewsales reps,investedintraining oroverhauledprocesses. Nowdataisearningrecognitionasdistributors’and wholesalers’mostvaluableasset.Bystartingwith howyouorganize,useanddisplayyourdata,you canmakeadramaticimpactonsalesperformance. Andwhileyoumaycomeupagainstresistanceto change,rememberit’sinyoursalesteam’sinterest asmuchasitisyours.Nosalesprofessionalwants toworkharderforlongerreelinginlittlefishwhen theycansellsmarterandcatchkillerwhales. Thedifferenceisinthedata. We’veidentifiedfivekeyareaswheredatacan helpyoursalesperformancesuckless–soyour teamcansellmore,plugleakagesandgrowyour customerbase.
  12. 12. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 12sales-i.com Fiveways datacanhelp yoursales performance suckless
  13. 13. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 13sales-i.com Knowyourcustomers ““Weweren’tabletoknow eachandeveryoneof ourcustomersinside outandwehavelotsof independentaccounts, eachspendingadifferent amountwithus.Itwasn’t alwaysthemostefficient tospendtimepreparing individualreportsforeach ofthem.” Animalfeedmanufacturer,wholesaler, distributor,UK Deliveringthekindofservicethatgrowsaccounts isn’tpossibleunlessyoureallytakethetroubleto knowyourcustomers’buyinghabits.Andsimply havingthisdataisn’tenough. Ifit’sspreadacrossmultiplesystemsand applications,itwon’tgiveyouacomprehensiveview andyoucan’tactonit.Whenyouknowwhatyou sold–andwhatyoudidn’tsell–atalltimes,youcan meetyourcustomers’needsmoreexactly.Take theluckoutofright-place-right-timesales:findthe patternsandanticipatetheneed.
  14. 14. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 14sales-i.com Makebettermargins “Wewereveryrelianton manualreportingand countingstuffuponyour fingersjustwasn’tfeasible anymore.” Soilsupplier,Ireland Arguablythemostimportantindicatorofsales performanceandcertainlyamassivecontributorto successfulgrowth,marginsarewhereyourdatacan reallymakeadifference. Salesopportunitieswaitfornoman,sodon’tlet dataholdyouup.Havetherightinformationonhand whenyouneedittomaketherightoffersatthe crucialmoment. Andaswellasindividualsales,keepaneyeonthe biggerpicture.Doyouknowwhichcustomersyou meetthemostandselltotheleast?Andwhichones youmeettheleastandselltothemost?Whenyou do,you’llknowwheretofocusyoureffortsnext month,nextquarterandnextyear.
  15. 15. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 15sales-i.com Actfast “Wehadnoabilitytodive intooursalesdata,Iwas goingtoITtogetreports thatwereoutdatedwithin 24hours.Weneededto bemoreintunewithwhat ourcustomersweredoing withus.” Restaurantsupply,designandfabrication company,USA Whetheryou’reliningupanewleadorclosingadeal, speedcanbethedifferencebetweenagreatsale andamissedopportunity.Foresighthelpsyouplan strategicattacksthatshortentime-to-saleand datagivesyouthatforesight. Empoweryoursalesteamswithmobilesolutions sotheycanactonnewinformationwhenever itcomes,wherevertheyare,andclosedealsfaster. Withtherightsystemsinplaceandanorganizational culturethattreatsdataasaserioussellingtool, youcanbeagileenoughtoturnreal-timeinsight intosales.
  16. 16. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 16sales-i.com Spotthesalesgaps “Ourareasalesmanagers weren’talwaysuptodate withinformationontheir customersandwefound itdifficulttokeepontop ofwhowasorderingwhat andwhen.” Naturalstoneimporter,UK Thisisallaboutbroadeningtherangethatyousell andimprovingthequalityofthereturn:up-sellto highermarginalternativesorcross-selltonewlines notboughtbefore. Todoitwell,youneedanintimateknowledgeof yourcustomers’requirementsandbuyinghabits. Here,whatyou’renotselling(butshouldbe)isas importantaswhatyouareselling.Identifythegaps anduseyourfamiliaritywithacustomer’sbehavior tofillthatgapwithacomplementarysale.Thisis thezonewheresalesmeetsserviceandcustomer relationshipsstrengthen.
  17. 17. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 17sales-i.com Runsmartcampaigns Soyou’vefoundacross-sellopportunityby searchingyourdatatoseewhohasordereda printerfromyoubutnotyetboughtinkorpaper. Butidentifyinganewsalesopportunityisonlythe beginning.Youneedtoruntailoredsalescampaigns, poweredbyaggregateandcustomer-specificdata. Eventhebest-plannedcampaignscanfailwithout buy-in.Giveyourmostimportantinitiativesthebest chanceofsuccessbyinvolvingyoursalesteams fromthestartandcreatingsomeexcitement aroundthecampaign. “Havinginformationisnot anissue,itistheeaseand speedwithwhichyoucan slice,diceandaccessthat informationthatmakes therealdifference.” Informationmanagementcompanyand contractstationer,USA
  18. 18. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 18sales-i.com Startwiththedata Insalestoday,insightiscurrency.Withtheright informationatyourfingertips,everymeetingwillbe valuableandeverythingyoulearninthatmeetingis recordedaspotentialinsightforfutureuse.With thisinformationinaCRMsystem,andanalytics softwarethatcanmanagelargevolumesofdata, youcangeneratesimplereportsthatgiveclear answersonwhattodonext.Record,manageand actionyourdataandyou’llkickstartavirtuouscycle ofinsightandreward. Mashitup Dataisnogoodinisolation.Tomakeitactionable, createasingleviewofyourcustomerthatyoucan manipulateandscrutinizefromdesktopandmobile devices.BringtogetherinformationfromyourCRM, ERP,billingsystem,customerdatafiles–wherever it’sstored–andmashitallupintoactionablesales insight.Makeitfindable,accessible,searchableand usablebythepeoplewhoneedit,whentheyneed it–intheofficeorontheroad. Lookbacktomoveforward Letpastexperienceguidefutureefforts.Findthe patternsthatwillhelpyoupredictwhereyourteam canreallyboostperformanceinfuture–theninvest resourcesinthatdirection. Withoutaneyeonyourcustomers’pastbehavior, youwon’tbeabletospottheordersthatshrink ordropoff,andyouwon’tbeabletointelligently anticipatefuturegrowthopportunitiesorfillsales gapsastheyemerge. Automatethehardwork Themoredatayougather,theharderitwillbecome tokeepholdoftheball.No-onecankeeptrackof everything,solettechnologydothehardworkforyou. Makeyourlifeeasierwithtriggerednotifications thattellyouwhenopportunitiesarisesoyoucan actfasttocapitalizeonthem.Likewise,program notificationswhenanyredflagsgoup.Forexample, ifalong-standingcustomerfailstomakeoneof itsregularordersthismonth,youcanreceivea notificationstraighttoyourmobile. Answersixkeyquestions Evenwhentheyusesmartsalessoftware,too manysalesteamshaveaone-sidedviewoftheir customerrelationship.Theygetthecontactdata (softdata)buttheycan’tseethehardmetricsthat leadtodecisiveaction.Makesureyoucananswer sixquestionseasily. Notjust: • WhendidIseeyoulast? • Whatdidwetalkabout? • WhenamIseeingyouagain? Butalso: • WhathaveIsoldtoyou? • Whathaven’tIsoldtoyou? • WhatshouldIbesellingtoyou? Quick-firetips
  19. 19. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 19sales-i.com Butdataisonly thebeginning
  20. 20. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 20sales-i.com Tokeeppace,sales teamsneedtodeliver amorepersonalized, data-drivenservice. Justhavingalltherightdataisn’tenoughtomake yoursalesperformancesuckless.Yoursalesteam needstoknowhowtoaccessit,manipulateitand putthedatatowork.Iftheydon’tknow,they’llkeep makingjunksalescallsandmissingtheirtargets. Fortoolongthisvaluableassethasbeenneglected. It’stimetoturndataintoinsightanduseittodrive sales.Coulddatahelpyoursalesperformance suckless? Thewholesale anddistribution businessis changing.
  21. 21. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors 21sales-i.com Formoreonwhy wholesalersanddistributors needbusinessintelligence tostayaheadofthe competition,download ourwhitepapersnow. FurtherReading
  22. 22. Anhonestguideforwholesalers&distributors sales-i.com Aboutsales-i Wearetheworldleader insalesperformance managementfor distributorsand wholesalers. Oursalesperformancesoftwareintegrates transactiondatainyourERPandbillingsystemswith informationonyourcustomers,soyoucandiscover newsalesopportunities,up-selltohighermargin alternativesandcross-selltolinestheyhaven’t boughtbefore.Andbecausewemakeitallavailable onanymobileplatform,theinsightisusedwhereit makesadecisivedifference–withyoursalesrepson thephonesandontheroad.Theresult:insightful sellingthat’spersonalized,profitableandalways fuelledbydata.
  • JenniferMartin25

    Jul. 14, 2021
  • lesina95

    Jul. 3, 2021

Sales-i's top tips to make your sales performance doesn't suck! Expert insights on the tricks behind successful selling. For more information and to read our other ebooks visit http://www.sales-i.com

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