Every business thrives solely on its sales as the revenue generation revolves around the efficiency of its sales strategy. This strategy can only be devised by engaging in the creation and implementation of a sales management system. It is a technique of formulating sales strength, synchronizing sales operations, and applying sales skills that lets a business to constantly improvise and exceed its sales targets. Sales management aids the functioning of activities and tasks which are involved in the dispersal of goods and services.
Selling a product or a service, even to an average consumer needs strategic planning and its effective implementation. One thing evident in a product’s lifecycle is that sales management isn’t as easy as it sounds. It depends comprehensively on crafting the organizations’ offerings in terms of the targeted market needs and desires and using evaluation, communication and distribution.
Sales management as a terminology directly applies to the section of a business that interacts with a prospective customer and attempts to convert it into a sale. Although this task sounds effortless, prolonged research and planning are involved behind its execution. On a less technical note, sales management can be called as the art of assessing and surpassing the sales objective of an organization through efficient planning, controlling, budgeting and effective leadership. An efficient sales management strategy can act as a massive turnabout for any organization in its long run.
The process involved in sales management:
- Planning the Sales Process:
The primary task in the hands of anyone managing the sales of an organization, before even forming a team is planning the sales process. One has to analyze who’d be the prospective buyers and construct a sales plan to meet their requirements. For instance, an organization which sells computers plans to enter a new market. To do so, it will have to devise a sales plan based on an extensive research about that market’s economy and the scope of their product’s sale potential. The channels of targeted audience; be it online or offline should be adequately analyzed, and recognizing the geographical areas where the organization would thrive should be considered as a priority while planning a sales process.
- Hiring the right people:
Efficient staffing plays a vital role in the accurate functioning of any devised strategy. To be precise, a sales workforce is as important to the organization as increased profits. Evidently, both these factors are inter-dependent. Therefore, a sales manager or any employer has to craft up a proficient team to meet the organization’s desired goals. This task of staffing competent sales representatives requires an employer to consider certain facts. For instance, if the organization functions locally, a sales representative with the knowledge of the local language would be the desired candidate. Other such constraints, which should be considered while hiring a candidate include, familiarity with local geographies, willingness to travel, to work on varying time zones etc. An effectively working sales team will carry out all the vital tasks that directly lead to the sale of a product, thus resulting into increased profit.
- Designing the Sales Strategy:
A sales strategy is fundamentally the most vital requirement of an organization in order to sell its products and gain profits. This strategy is usually formulated by the aforesaid sales team. But for a strategy to be derived, the manager of the team has to provide insights and essentially indulge in the activity. This strategy should be based on the factors considered during the planning of the sales process. The designing process of the strategy should include clarity and shouldn’t jeopardize the integrity of a team member. Every team member’s performance should be assessed and provided with guidance during difficulty in attaining targets or deadlines. Regular appreciations and rewards account for improved work motivation and performance. Such a design of the sales strategy when implemented, prove to be beneficial for the organization as well as the team members.
- Forecasting the Sales Results:
Positive sales forecasting is possible only by a productive analysis of the organization’s sales patterns and also considering the current trends in the industry. This allows one to interpret the number of sales one can achieve in the next term. This analysis is provided by the sales team with the data they have collected over the time, about the amount of leads turned into customers and the leads which are yet to be converted for business. By the use of sales forecasting, the future sales plan can be assessed, providing an opportunity to employ experimental strategies and methods. This also allows one to expel the old and unproductive strategies.
- Reporting the sales:
The sales reporting process inspects the efficacy of the various sales strategies applied currently or previously. It is essential to measure the performance of the sales team as well as the proposed sales strategies to evaluate their productivity. The sales team should be required to provide reports of the tasks executed based on which, the future decisions must be taken by the management to implement measures of improvement.
- Analyzing the Sales Efforts:
The resulting productivity of the sales strategies should be constantly measured. Every strategy implemented must be evaluated pertaining to the data of its performance, so as to understand how well it has been executed. This aids the sales team in analyzing common errors in the strategies and achieves enhanced sales.
Why sales management isn’t a walk in the park:
It’s a common stereotype that sales people work comparatively less than people in other departments. The role of a sales representative is not just making voice calls and having conversations with people. It involves a giant of an effort in converting a lead into a customer. This isn’t feasibly possible unless a sales representative possesses equivalent skills and smart work techniques. The sales department in contrast to any other workforce is accountable to target achievements and regular performance reviews. This creates a constraint which evidently proves the complexity involved in the profile of a sales representative.
Since sales people personally interact with a probable customer, they gain the benefit of being able to gain knowledge which will help in performing their sales pitch and offerings to the customer. A sales person is also responsible in building trust and loyalty between customers and businesses. This can only be achieved pertaining to the transparency between the sales person and the customer. While making sales interactions, urging a customer to recommend a friend or provide positive feedback draws an impact on the development of the business through brand awareness and sales.
Efficient sales person not only make a sale, but also build a continual impact on the customer. Long term customer associations lead to repeated customer referrals that increase the organization’s reputation. To conclude, sales play a pivotal role in the all-encompassing growth of an organization and thus, cannot be overlooked.