There’s a difference between making a sale and building a relationship with a customer. Trained sales representatives shouldn’t always be thinking about closing the deal quickly. They should be thinking about how to use customer-oriented selling to create connections with their prospects.
So, how do you take your sales strategy from hollow to impactful? Focus on your sales team’s ability to make helpful recommendations. If they acquire the skills to do this correctly, they’ll be better equipped to build trust and forge lasting relationships.
Explore these four steps to developing customer-oriented sales recommendations.
Listen For Clues About Customer Needs
When customers call, they have specific needs on their minds. They may not communicate them outright, though. That’s why sales performance training for your reps is so important. They should know how to listen for clues that highlight customers’ needs.
Prospective clients may have some knowledge of your industry, company or products. But, your sales representatives are the experts. They should tactfully guide potential customers through conversations, asking strategic questions to pinpoint pains.
Let’s say, for example, that you own an IT company. A customer may approach you with a need for your professional services. But, they may not know exactly what type of IT help they require, so you begin to ask questions: How many people do you employ? What technology are you currently using? What is this technology most commonly used for? What IT problems do you regularly face?
By asking strategic questions, your sales representatives build a better foundation for customer-oriented sales and have a greater understanding of what each customer is in the market for.
Find Common Ground With Prospects
Once the prospective customer’s needs are identified, it’s the responsibility of the sales representative to protect your company’s goals, including turning a profit and increasing your customer base.
First and foremost, your representatives should keep your bottom line in mind. To do that effectively, it’s essential for them to find the common ground between your organization’s goals and your customers’ goals. Both parties should walk away from the discussion feeling like their objectives have been achieved.
Translate Your Products Into Benefits
One essential sales skill is the ability to communicate the advantages that your products bring to customers. It’s easy to describe a product and make it sound appealing, but a major key to selling is convincing the customer that he or she really needs your product.
Train your representatives to utilize the needs they’ve identified at the onset of their conversation with the customer. For effective customer-oriented sales, they should match each one of those needs with a product you provide.
Return to the IT service provider example: You’ve identified what your potential customer needs from your business. You have a service plan that you believe is ideal for them. Communicate how every aspect of the plan you’re showing them aligns with their current issues.
Link Recommendations To Requirements
Once a sales representative has identified the customer’s needs, found common ground and translated the benefits of selecting your product, the components of your recommendation are fully outlined. Now, as the representative guides the prospect through the conversation, the rep is able to make a thoughtful and mutually beneficial recommendation.
If you implement the right sales performance training for your reps, your customers are likely to leave the conversation with positive feelings about your company and a willingness to conduct business with you again.
Want to explore more components of essential selling skills and find out how training could positively impact your profits? Test a free Vital Learning sales training course now.