Most small businesses have a sales workflow that’s unique to their product, customer base, and team size.
Their sales workflows, however, are often ad-hoc and lack a strategic approach.
Whether your sales process is in its early stages or formally defined, there are many sales workflow best practices small businesses overlook.
Today, we look at how small businesses can improve their sales process to close deals faster and improve productivity.
Sales Workflow Best Practices
To keep things simple, we’ll go through our sales workflow tips based on the stage of the sales cycle they apply to.
Let’s get started!
At the start of the sales cycle, you want to make sure your sales reps are looking for prospects who are similar to the type of customers you want more of.
And while I’m sure we can all think of a few of these customers, you’ll need a CRM solution to get a comprehensive view of who your best customers are.
By looking at the demographics and purchase habits of your customers, you’ll be able to get a strong sense of who your target audience is.
Equipped with this information, you’ll be able to make it clear to your sales reps who they should be seeking out as prospects if they want to close more deals.
In the second stage of the sales process, sales reps must incorporate qualifying questions into their sales workflow. This way they can strategically prioritize which leads to focus on.
Make sure your sales workflow includes these 3 questions:
- Does my buyer need what I’m selling?
- Can they buy my product?
- Do they plan to make this purchase in the immediate future?
Considering the number of messages prospects get every day, sales reps need to cut through the noise with their outreach efforts.
One way to do this is by getting creative with subject lines.
After all, it’s the first thing your potential customer will see!
Give prospects a reason to open your message by:
- Focusing on the value you have to offer them
- Relating your product to a timely event such as a holiday or trend
- Mentioning a project they’re working on or an interest they have
Now that you’ve made initial contact with a prospect, you have to keep them interested in your product by nurturing them.
The first thing to do here is to incorporate activity tracking into your sales workflow.
To do this, you’ll need to keep track of every touchpoint you have with a lead. And whether that’s an email or a quick call, every bit of nurture needs to be documented.
To maximize your nurture efforts, you’ll also want to introduce social media engagement into your sales workflow.
You can do this by sending a potential customer a few likes on their social posts or sharing a congratulatory comment.
Whatever method you choose, this engagement will go a long way in building trust and credibility with potential customers.
Here are a few things to make sure you build into your sales workflow so sales reps can nail their final pitch.
Before you make your final pitch, you’ll want to think of every reason your potential buyer won’t go through with a deal.
Once you’ve done this, you’ll need to prepare a strong argument as to why not buying your product is a bad decision for this prospect.
You need to be ready to take on any competitors a prospect might bring up during your final pitch.
Look at where you win and lose against each of your competitors and highlight why your product is a prospect’s best choice.
Closing the deal
Finally, let’s look at sales workflow best practices for when your sales team is closing a deal.
They’ll want to:
- Share case studies and customer testimonials to validate a prospect’s decision to buy
- Highlight how the benefits of your product offset its cost
- Be transparent about the terms and conditions of a sale to reduce buyer anxiety and ensure the best customer experience
- Make the buying process as frictionless as possible with self-service customer portals
Recap: Sales Workflow Tips
Here’s a rapid-fire summary of the sales workflow best practices small businesses need to use to increase revenue and team productivity.
- Use a CRM solution to find out who your best customers are and look for similar profiles when prospecting
- Prioritize leads with qualifying questions
- Get creative with your outreach messages
- Keep track of all sales nurture activities and go the extra mile to build strong relationships with potential customers
- Come prepared to overcome any objections and competitors mentioned during your final pitch
- Provide potential customers with the resources they need to make the purchase