Sales productivity is a critical element of your company’s performance. Sales team productivity can be defined as a measurement of how well a sales team meets the demands of their customers, achieves their goals, and satisfies their expected outcome from working with the company they have chosen.
In this article, you will find the top strategies to drive sales productivity in an organization.
What is Sales Productivity?
Sales productivity is essentially the measure of how much you can sell within a given period, like a month or quarter. It’s often measured in the amount of revenue, the number of leads, or number of clients acquired.
Using this definition, it’s pretty easy to understand why we should be concerned about sales productivity. No business likes to hear that they’re not generating enough cash flow or that their growth has stalled. If your team needs to close more deals to reach the numbers they’ve been told to hit, then you’d better find a way to raise their productivity and help them become more effective at closing sales.
Strategies to Drive Sales Productivity:
1. Advance prospects faster with value.
One of the ways to advance prospects faster with value and drive sales is cold calling.
Cold calling has been around since the beginning of time. It’s exactly what it sounds like when you call someone who doesn’t know who you are in hopes that they will buy your product or service.
As per stats, 69% of buyers have accepted one or more cold calls in 2019. The same study suggested that 82% of buyers have accepted meetings with salespeople after they received cold calls.
To make sure that your cold calling is effective, you can prepare personalized cold calling scripts beforehand.
Also, representatives should add value to the sales conversation by offering content and insights that are relevant to the prospects. For that, they require messaging and sales collateral, which addresses uneasiness and demonstrates the ability to fix an issue.
What’s more, representatives should understand what is most important to their prospects. They should also be able to identify the needs of their prospects through knowledge of the product, service, and other pertinent information.
Sales enablement tools, such as Seismic, come in handy here. It can recommend content and messages based on specific situations and target audiences. Naturally, they can help save representatives’ time and speed up deals.
2. Embrace automation and technology tools
Automation and technology tools can save your sales team time by eliminating tedious jobs, such as data entry.
They can also increase sales speed and overall sales process with email automation tools that trigger emails and send personalized messages to prospects at the right moments in their buying cycle.
Take Convers.io, for instance.
It’s one of the best Shopify email marketing apps that send automated cart abandonment emails, follow-up emails, newsletters, and receipts.
Besides, automation can help improve the sales team’s lead intelligence by reaching the right prospect at the right time. It can further increase renewals by helping sales teams know when contracts end and work proactively to retain clients.
3. Use analytics for continuous improvement
Analytics play a significant role in driving business strategy and making informed decisions that drive sales.
Organizations using sales analytics and sales insights can increase team quota attainment faster than non-users.
Many organizations fail to improve sales productivity as they neglect to track productivity gains and results regularly.
It is crucial to determine the most important metrics, including win rate, call rate, sales cycle length, pipeline conversion rate, and more. These metrics may change depending on the sales function you want to analyze. For example, an outbound call center would track call metrics.
Again, you can use sales enablement tools to get these insights and analytics. They will help visualize trends and gain valuable insights into sales reps’ activities and give you the answers about what makes top performers successful and what is holding back under-performers.
4. Keep your sales team motivated
Sale is a tough job. Calling prospects, setting appointments, trying to close deals – most salespeople don’t last long.
To keep your sales team motivated and driving sales productivity, you need to make sure they are happy, and they know why they are doing what they are doing.
And keeping your sales team motivated is particularly important if they are working remotely.
Here are some of the ways to do so:
- Make them feel valued by inviting them to get involved in decision-making.
- Offer them growth and advancement opportunities.
- Encourage them to be entrepreneurs.
- Allow them the freedom, space, and time to try their ideas with just enough supervision.
- Celebrate wins even when they are small.
- Offer incentive choices.
- Praise the team publicly and encourage them to track their wins.
Also, don’t forget to play games. Gamification that uses game mechanics for work can motivate sales teams by helping you set up competitions, providing context for feedback, and allowing you to celebrate success.
5. Make your sales rep experts on your products and competitors
It’s hard for your sales rep to make viable pitches when they don’t understand how your competitors’ products stack up to yours.
Your sales reps will sell what they know. Thus, they should have thorough product knowledge to answer any customer queries concerning the product. It’s essential your team understands the importance of product management, so you can even consider hiring a product management mentor for an educational purpose.
They should also be able to list all the benefits of the products and supply them based on the prospect’s needs. This will help you gain prospects’ trust and drive sales.
For that, it’s crucial to give your sales reps product knowledge training, which will help them perform well. And you need to curate relevant content for sales enablement to train your sales reps properly.
Here are some of the things you should help your sales representatives with:
- Make them learn how to spot customer needs and how your products or services can benefit them.
- Show them customer stories demonstrating how your products solved your prospect’s problems.
- It is also equally crucial that your sales reps know your competitor’s product and how to distinguish it from your products.
- Making them read customer reviews of both your company’s product and your competitor’s can help here. It will let your reps understand which features are most popular and allow them to speak your customers’ language during a sales pitch.
Apart from training your sales reps on the product features or service, you should train them on product benefits to drive sales. The training should be presented through the eyes of the customer.
6. Monitor critical sales KPIs
If you are looking to improve sales productivity, you should be monitoring significant sales KPIs. Having your key sales metrics in front of you at all times will help you stay focused on reaching your goals.
After all, what you track is what your team is going to focus on. But, for that, you need to set up sales objectives beforehand.
Some of the top KPIs to track include:
- Your lead qualities through each stage of your sales funnel to identify obstructions in the pipeline and focus on the most effective stages and activities.
- Sales cycle length to know how efficient your sales process is and predict sales more accurately.
- Each sales activity and measuring its success rate.
- Average lead response time and average follow-up attempts.
In addition, make sure to track conversion rates to identify how effective your sales funnel is and which stages and activities have the highest ROI.
You can track the conversion metrics, including:
- Visitor-to-lead conversion rate to measure your site’s conversion rate optimization.
- Lead-to-MQL conversion rate to know how well your site attracts the right audience.
- MQL-to-SQL to gain insights into how well your marketing and sales team is associated.
- Opportunity-to-customer conversion rate to measure the percentage of qualified leads that eventually convert into customers.
7. Understand your ICPs
The ICP (Ideal Customer Profile) is your most essential sales productivity tool. If your sales force does not know who they are selling to, they will waste time and energy focusing on prospects who do not fit their profile.
An ideal customer profile is a description of the companies that will benefit from your product or service. Hence, they have the highest customer lifetime value, and it is easy to sell to them.
Here’s what a typical ICP looks like:
Segmenting your database by ICPs and understanding what types of customers you have will help you identify platforms you want to invest more time in. It will also help you to discover ways to offer the best customer experience.
Being on the right channels is crucial. For instance, if you find your customers are on Tik Tok, you can leverage Tik Tok for sales and targeted lead generation.
When you analyze your customer base by ICP, you will also be able to improve your acquisition, retention, and expansion strategies as you will come to know which segments are doing well. You can then examine the buyer’s journey of those customers to acquire more similar customers.
After you create your ICPs and implement them in your processes, ensure that you explain the different profiles to relevant teams and let them know how ICPs are set up, how ICPs can be leveraged, and where they can access the info. Make them understand that it will help them do their tasks more quickly and effectively.
When your marketing team understands your ICPs, they will be able to create better-targeted content. Your sales team can effectively prospect and qualify leads, and they will have a better understanding of what products a prospect will be interested in. they will also come to know what buying roles will be involved in the sales process.
When your sales team leverages ICPs for prospecting, automatically, the service team deals with better-fit customers. The service teams can also easily develop long-term growth plans, possible next-sell opportunities, communication tempos, and quick wins.
Consider incorporating your ICPs into your regularly recurring meetings, such as sales pipeline meetings or customer support analyses. It is also a great idea to build a customized sales funnel for each ICP.
8. Align your sales and marketing smartly
According to stats, 40% of marketers and sales professionals say optimal sales and marketing alignment leads to stronger lead conversion rates. 27.7% of them say that the lack of alignment results in loss of conversions and closed deals.
High alignment also results in higher brand awareness and average deal size, as per a study.
Your first focus should be customer satisfaction. It removes competition, tension, and the narrow focus on stats or quotas that fail to describe the entire customer experience. The alignment will naturally occur when both teams work to make customers happy at each stage of their buying journey.
Each step has to be defined since each team has different roles within the marketing and sales funnel. It will remove confusion, highlight opportunities for teamwork, and ensure accountability.
It is also crucial that your sales team communicate their insights when they interact with prospects back to the marketing team. It will ensure that your buyers receive the problem-solving info they require at the right stage in the buying process.
Apart from that, schedule regular communication processes for both teams to ensure each member knows what to anticipate and when.
Establish standard metrics for both your sales and marketing teams to track performances of both and individual achievements. Recognize members of each team when they make any sale and offer rewards. And up your content management game so that both teams can easily find and use the relevant content while communicating with customers.
Also, consider scaling Facebook ads to get sales. If you are looking for leads, your best bet is to look for optimized Facebook ads. You can optimize them according to age, gender, location, and other demographics that are relevant to your business.
Your Turn to Increase Sales Productivity!
Sales professionals are on the constant lookout for all possible means to drive sales productivity. Drawing on lessons from top salespeople, use the tips from this article to drive your own sales productivity today.