3 Ways to Shorten the Sales Cycle and Increase Sales Productivity | FirstRain

3 Ways to Shorten the Sales Cycle and Increase Sales Productivity

Time is money, and salespeople often find themselves with too little of both. They are constantly trying to figure out how to become more efficient and shorten their sales cycle, in order to win more deals and meet (or exceed) their quota faster. It is a huge task, but there are a few ways you can, at least, make the most of your time.

1. Target the right people

Though salespeople wish that everyone would buy from them, that’s unfortunately not the case. So don’t waste time targeting the wrong people. Understand who and what teams in the organization would most benefit from your solution, given their particular business needs and challenges. And keep a pulse on critical changes affecting them: did they miss their revenue goals? Are they getting eaten alive by their competition? Find the person or people who oversee these goals, and increase your own sales productivity by not wasting time with someone who really won’t be interested in what you provide.

2. Aim high

According to Mark Suster for Inc., instead of pitching your product to a lower-level employee, you can increase your sales productivity by cutting out the time you’d have to spend giving demos and repeating yourself to many different levels of the organization by going as high up as possible. People higher up in the organization have buying authority, or direct access to the person who does. If you’re pitching to a senior executive, they may even send you down to the person who actually does the purchasing—and you’ll have executive endorsement.

Having a champion is invaluable, but if you’re pitching to an executive, you must make sure that you’ve done your research so you don’t waste their time. Executives are busy people, and if you don’t wow them on your first shot, the odds are that you won’t get another. Prepare by using a personal business analytics solution that will help you align your value proposition to exactly how it will solve their specific business challenges.

3. Create value

A salesperson’s job is to sometimes lead the customer to the correct conclusion. In order to do that, you need to truly understand their business. If you point out challenges and opportunities that they may not have even realized and then suggest a solution to address them, they will see you as a trusted advisor. Because there is so much information out there about your customer and their markets, only with access to personal business analytics can you truly understand how your solutions can benefit them, based on their particular customers, competitors and market.