Alright, sell me this pen. You have probably heard the saying that a sales professional needs to be able to sell anything. But what specific sales skills are necessary to become a good salesperson? How do you go about selling that pen?
If you are thinking about entering the fiercely competitive world of sales or wondering if you are a good fit for the industry, then keep reading. We will show you what skills are key to take you from a used car salesperson to a wolf of Wall Street in no time.
What Does it Take to Become a Sales Team Leader?
Developing a range of skills will ensure you make positive connections with your buyers, which will result in more sales. Additionally, having your own unique sales strategy is key to becoming a great salesperson or eventually, a sales manager.
With training, anyone can improve and go on to sell more and close bigger deals. A mixture of customer-facing and non-customer-facing sales skills are the secret to becoming the perfect salesperson in any industry.
Communication is the foundation of forming relationships with your clients. This is where you can set their expectations and figure out the mindset of your customer. Communicating with your client is more than just face-to-face meetings. You will also need to interact with them through other outlets, including email, phone calls, or even social media. Depending on your industry, following up with your buyer is a key part of the sales cycle.
Prospecting can be a difficult skill to learn when you are first starting out as a salesperson. Shopify describes prospecting as identifying potential customers, or prospects, and it is the first step in the sales process.
You must ensure that your prospecting approach is effective as poor prospecting will scare potential customers away. Develop your strategy and practice it every day through techniques like cold calling. This will give you many opportunities to learn whether your strategy is working. Role-playing with your sales manager or other co-workers is also an excellent way to come up with new prospecting ideas.
Depending on your industry, social selling can be an important part of the process. Most sales representatives do not need to be experts on social media, though. They may just need to be present on certain apps, such as LinkedIn or Instagram. It is crucial that you understand how social media works and the best practices for using it in your field.
Additionally, it is important to understand what is and is not acceptable when contacting prospective buyers on social media. For example, you should not reach out to them multiple times in one week about a product or service because you might push them away. You must strike the right balance when selling online.
Storytelling is an important skill for engaging your potential buyers and keeping them interested. When it comes to storytelling, you want to make sure it is authentic. An authentic story will make your company stand out in a buyer’s mind, appeal to the customer’s emotions, and help the customer relate to your company or product.
Storytelling can also help you close a sale. Work on telling a story to a prospect in your market alongside your manager or fellow sales rep; they will give you feedback on whether it is working.
On the opposite spectrum, you must also have strong listening skills to be a successful sales representative. It is important to actually hear your customer. Stay in the moment and make sure you understand what your buyer is trying to tell you. You may need to slow down the conversation and repeat what the customer said to get a full understanding of what they are asking for. This will show your customer that you are listening and that you honestly want to help them.
Being able to follow up on your client’s comments with questions of your own is a critical sales skill. You should listen to what your customer is saying and follow up with intelligent, relevant questions. Having an understanding of your client’s challenges and being able to explain how your product can overcome them will also help close a sale.
Work on asking questions that show you have a strong understanding of the buyer’s struggles and needs. To work on uncovering the information you need, have your manager or a peer sit in on your sales pitch. Allow them to document their experience and give you tips on how you can improve.
Sales presentations can change from customer to customer, and they should. Each presentation should focus on the customers’ challenges and desires. Your presentation should always be engaging and informative to keep your customers entertained. You can evaluate your presentation skills by having your manager sit in on a sale and allowing them to give you feedback.
Additionally, as a sales professional, you may have to perfect the art of public speaking. This will benefit you and your company since you will be able to appeal to a larger audience than normal. Ensure that you are reaching the right audience then make an effort to connect with the audience to create a two-way dialogue. If you practice public speaking, your clients will trust you more and will want to do business with you and your company.
Non-customer facing skills are also an essential part of the sales process, and they are just as important as their counterparts. These are skills you will learn over time by practicing on your own, as they do not require you to work with customers to improve.
To become a successful sales rep, you should understand the critical technological tools available to you. Depending on your industry, you may have access to tools such as CRM. These can help you better understand your clients and help you get ahead of other sales reps.
Representatives need to know and understand the customers, market trends, geographic areas, and sales triggers that suit them best. Sales reps who do their research by reading the news, checking their CRM and keeping up with social media will rise to the top. This will help you create a more personalized sales experience for your customers. If you are a manager, you should show your representatives where to find the best information about the industry and potential clients.
This could also involve explaining pain points, or problems, that customers in your industry are experiencing. There are several different types of pain points, including financial, productivity, process, and support problems. Looking at these will help you find better ways to reach your customer.
A successful salesperson needs to make the most of every day. You will need to understand how to handle both the buyers and their own time. Additionally, you should understand how long each step in the sales process should take, and know when to move on to the next step. It is important to have your day planned according to the buyers’ needs and adjust throughout the day if necessary.
This skill is typically learned over time. As a representative, you need to read a situation and judge when the client is beginning to become disinterested in the presentation. You should be able to tell whether you will need to change the way you are approaching, for example, by addressing a different need the client has mentioned. Another judgment skill is knowing when a client is ready to make the purchase.
This skill depends on what industry you are in. Some companies may not divide their sales reps into territories, but if they do, this is a pivotal skill to learn. As a representative, you need to understand your specific region and the accounts within it. You should know which factors might affect your prospective clients so that you can get the best sales out of your territory. As a manager, you should ensure the sales representatives understand the region they have been assigned.