How To Increase Sales Conversion Rates
Your sales conversion rate is one of the most important sales metrics that allows you to monitor two essential things: the efficiency of your sales reps and the overall health of your sales operations. Improving sales conversion rates is closely linked to improving sales demo quality and achieving higher win rates, which will lead to increased revenues.
Your sales conversion rate is one of the most important sales metrics that allows you to monitor two essential things: the efficiency of your sales reps and the overall health of your sales operations.
Improving sales conversion rates is closely linked to improving sales demo quality and achieving higher win rates, which will lead to increased revenues.
Yet, in a recent (2022) Hubspot report, 53% of respondents said their close rate remained relatively stagnant between 2021 and 2022. Only 35% reported an increase in close rates.
While each industry has its own benchmarks (for example, Hubspot stats show that the business software industry has an average close rate of 22%, while the biotech industry has one of 15%), there are tactics that can help you increase conversion rates, no matter what industry your company operates in.
Here’s how you can increase conversion rates in sales.
1. Up your pre-selling game
The way you prepare your prospect for the sales demo and the steps you take before the actual sales interaction significantly affect your conversion rates.
With an effective pre-sale system in place, your sales reps will be able to start communicating with prospects at the early stages of the sales process and help them understand how your product or service can solve their problem or need.
The best way to do that is to set up a pre-sale email sequence with relevant information or data. For example, maybe there’s a video you want your prospects to watch, a white paper to read, or a testimonial to see.
To help prospects know what to expect, it’s also a good idea to send them an email that outlines the structure and agenda of the demo and the time frame for each part.
2. An upfront contract
An upfront contract is an agreement (either formal or informal and oral) made with the prospect ahead of time, which basically states that both sides agree to provide a clear “yes” or “no” decision on whether they want to continue with the sales process.
Continuing with the process could mean making the purchase or setting another sales meeting, but it rules out the “I’ll think about it” kind of response.
Such an agreement can also help sales reps make sure that the prospect they are communicating with has the authority and budget to make a purchasing decision.
Sales reps should go over the agreement with the prospects when they talk to them to schedule the meeting.
Every upfront agreement should include the following:
- Objective - let the prospect know why you’re meeting.
- Timeframe - the duration of the meeting.
- The prospect’s agenda - sellers must know what the prospects expect to happen in the sales demo meeting.
- Your agenda - prospects need to know what you, the seller, expect of them during and after the meeting, including which information you will ask them for.
- Outcome - prospects should know what needs to happen at the end of the meeting and what’s the next step. This includes letting the prospects know that a “no” is also acceptable since the outcome can be that the product or service is not a good fit.
3. Review your sales scripts
Make sure your sales scripts leverage the skills of your highest-performing salespeople.
Identify what your top sellers do that makes them the highest-performing sellers, and based on that, create winning playbooks.
This will allow sellers of every skill level to use winning scripts and also ensure consistency.
A sales enablement software can make this process much easier by allowing you to easily turn your most successful demo scripts into demo playbooks, accessible to everyone on your team in real-time.
Once you have a winning script in place, test different elements to determine how each of them impacts your sales conversion rates, and ask your sales reps to pay special attention to them.
4. Test to optimize
Try to test every possible aspect of your product or service: your price point, your terms, your messaging, the added benefits you offer prospects who act quickly, and even how you frame your offer - what they gain if they purchase or what they lose if they don’t take action.
5. Utilize fear of loss
While you test, bear in mind that fear of loss is one of the most powerful purchase motivators.
By introducing bonuses that the prospects value or giving them a great pricing incentive if they take action today, you can strengthen the prospect’s fear of loss.
6. Train better
So many businesses spend hefty amounts on lead generation and try to save as much as they can on training sales teams.
According to Task Drive, only about 15% of sales managers believe their company provides a good amount of sales coaching. In addition, Uplead found that since 46% of sales reps never intended to become salespeople, many new recruits require quite a bit of training before they can even start, let alone be successful.
The best training programs are ongoing coaching initiatives that shape behaviors.
By using good sales enablement software that provides constant reminders and updates and turns training into clear action items, training can become much more effective.
Plus, don’t forget about the forgetting curve.
Data from Seismic shows that 84% of sales reps say that their sales training is forgotten within only 3 months, which is a very poor sales training ROI.
By using sales enablement tools, you can effectively tackle this sharp forgetting curve.
Such tools allow salespeople easy access to your best practices in real-time and allow team leaders to easily turn training into seller actions. This reduces training costs and eliminates the forgetting curve altogether.
Simply put, the right sales enablement tech can become your salespeople’s personal coach, allowing them instant access to knowledge, links, and examples any time they need it, instead of asking them to memorize all the relevant information.
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