Oh yes, we all want more leads and we sure want more sales – as many and as easily as possible please! But how, ah?
Did you know?
Research has shown between 60-80% (for B2B and B2C) of the buying process is completed before a buyer reaches out to vendors. This is very different from two decades ago when buyers had to go through printed advertising or ‘Yellow Pages’ directories to find a list of vendors. Then they’d call them up, ask for a brochure to be posted or a sales representative to meet and present on the products or solutions.
This change in the buyer’s behaviour means a couple of things:
1. buyers are now armed with more sources of information than ever before, they analyse and decide (without you!) if your solution is a good fit for their needs. If yes, you get shortlisted or selected. If not, you are qualified-out. Bye Bye!
This means you may have zero chance to influence the opportunity if you are disqualified in the early stage of the buying journey (keep reading to learn what you can start doing now to limit this and maximise your sales)
If you are shortlisted, it means the buyer probably knows a lot about you already and is closer to making a decision, so be prepared for a some grilling. You now have less time to understand their challenges, clarify their needs and influence them before their decision is made.
It could also mean that the buyer may have engaged your competitor much earlier than you. Meaning your competitor has enjoyed longer time to build a relationship and influence the deal in their favour. This usually results in your competitor winning the business and your proposal making up the 2 other meaningless quotes (never fun, right?)
2. If you are not actively engaged in promoting yourself, your business and your solution(s) digitally then you WILL be missing out on business opportunities. GUARANTEED!
Yes, indeed, buyers are doing more of their own online research. Vendors that have a strong digital presence with good content, such as videos, brochures, competitive comparisons, blogs articles, 3rd party white papers, case studies and customers testimonials, stand a better chance of being noticed.
This digital world we enjoy today, with smartphones at our fingertips, high speed data, and vast access to content has proven that traditional selling is no longer the most effective way.
The role of a sales person or influencer is not over, but it has certainly evolved. To be an effective seller in this digital age, it is necessary to have an effective online presence that helps buyers answer the questions they need answering. If you don’t tick these questions off, you run the risk of frustrating the less-patient buyer and getting yourself disqualified.
It is critical that the seller understands how to create value for the buyer.
What does the buyer need? – that is what they value. How do you understand what they need?
Think about and research the following to help your business:
Make time for your business growth!
Happy selling and all the very best for 2021!
Written by Tim Haslett, General Manager, Asian Business Software Solutions (ABSS)