Let this blog be all information and no balderdash!
What is the sales cycle?
The sales cycle is a series of events that take place during the selling of a product or service.
What are the stages in a sales cycle?
There are 7 stages in a sales cycle and they are as follows-
1) Prospect for leads-
To sell a product you need to find a lead which is sustainable and gets converted in the long run. Every lead starts as a prospect.
The prospecting stage demands you to seek the answer to the following two questions-
- What unique problem does your product solve?
- What connects the audience to your product?
Identifying leads in the prospecting stage can land you in a win-win situation.
Tracking the website traffic can be very helping in the process of prospecting for leads.
2) Contact potential customers-
After identifying prospects, you need to initiate contact with potential customers. While initiating contact with the potential customers you need to take care of the following-
- Research well about the customer.
- Contact on the platform, your customer is most familiar with.
- Listen to the customer’s problem with the highest concern.
- Suggest solutions with regard to the problems addressed, without deviation.
In the process of contacting potential customers, you can come across people who were once identified as potential leads but revert no longer. In such cases, you need to have a pattern to track the customers and follow them up via. mails, humble phone calls, etc.
Communicate without being clingy.
3) Qualify the customers-
In this process, you can include a member from the sales team to deal with potential leads. This process demands alignment of the Marketing Team of your company with the Sales Team.
In this process, you need to acquaint your customers with the solutions you are offering them and every aspect of the solutions.
This process can be defined in a single line-
Marketing team + Sales team = Qualification of customers
You need to ensure the following-
- Does the prospect need your product?
- Are your services in the budget of the lead?
- What is the frequency in which a lead may require your product?
Based on the analysis of the above aspects you can categorize a lead as a qualified or a disqualified lead.
4) Present your product-
After bringing in your sales team into the picture, you need to pitch your product in the best way possible.
The pitching should be in a way that is aimed at letting the customer feel that the product has been specially designed for him.
Presenting the product is a sheer art that is needed to be mastered by every employee working in your firm.
4 outstanding ways to present your products to the customer are-
- Know well about your products and highlight the essentials while pitching.
- Brand your product.
- Have an online presence of your product.
- Enhance credibility by fetching frequent client reviews and feedbacks.
5) Overcome customer objections-
In this process of the sales cycle, you need to patiently address the concerns of the leads. They may come up with objections related to price, product features, service features, etc.
You can even question a lead’s objection if you find it to be irrelevant to have a complete insight into the lead’s psychology.
This may help you in modifying your pitching scheme and come up with a better one.
6) Close the sale-
Let’s just jump upon the points to remember about this particular stage in a sales cycle-
- This stage can be best communicated and handled by a salesperson.
- The success of this stage depends on the success of the preceding stages.
- The way this stage is handled will depend upon the product being pitched and can range from being highly enthusiastic to less enthusiastic.
This stage must be dealt with a psychological approach which means that the communication to be done with the lead in this particular stage should be an outcome of the observation of the lead’s attitude or mode.
7) Generate referrals-
This process in a sales cycle can either be executed immediately after a sale is closed or later in the course of growth of your business with the client. In this process, you are supposed to ask the newly acquired customers to refer your product to their friends or to other business partners.
This stage largely depends upon the impression that you create upon your newly acquired customer and upon the tone of voice you select to ask for the referral. It is often wise to associate the referrals with future discounts, that the newly acquired customer giving the referral may get.
THE PICTORIAL VIEW-
This is to keep in mind always that every sales cycle is different and the duration may vary from a few minutes to a few days.
The basic need of the hour for every entrepreneur is shortened sales cycle, at least to an extent that is easily manageable by his company.
Research of a few days has brought us to a conclusion that amongst many factors, marketing automation can help you considerably shorten your sales cycle.
As evident from the above picture, amongst the benefits of marketing automation, funnel management also holds an important place. Hence, marketing automation can be sworn by to shorten the sales cycle.
The question which is to be addressed is how to incorporate marketing automation in your system in a way that helps you shorten your sales cycle.
Let us bring the 4 easiest ways to know how to shorten your Sales Cycle with Marketing Automation on the table.
1) Marketing Automation helps you to execute lead scoring-
Being a business-holder, you just cannot stay puzzled about as to which lead to address first. Right?
Lead scoring can be best understood as a process to determine the worthiness of a lead. This is determined by the Sales and Management departments collaboratively and is decided upon by the following factors-
- Duration within which a lead responds.
- Source of lead acquisition.
- The response of a lead during each stage of the sales cycle.
Marketing Automation easily segments leads and even customers based on Recency, Frequency, and Monetary ( RFM) parameters. Thus, helps the sales and management team to effectively channelize their strategy in accordance with the priority set after examining the lead score for each lead.
2) Marketing Automation simplifies lead traction and follow-up-
Marketing Automation helps to send regular follow-up emails to the leads in order to avoid any crack in communication.
Marketing Automation tools like Mautic help you to track leads by-
- Lead scoring
- Scheduling emails
- Updating with relevant marketing strategies
- Easy execution procedures for the planned marketing strategies
3) Marketing Automation helps in achieving the best Customer Relationship Management-
Customer Relationship Management is something upon which your business largely depends.
Marketing Automation tools like Mautic help you achieve a relationship with your customers which sustains in the long run.
Customer Relationship Management largely includes-
- Lead generation
- Lead nurturing
- Lead acquisition
- Customer segmentation
- Customer re-engagement
Marketing Automation makes the process of lead generation, lead nurturing, lead acquisition, customer segmentation, and customer re-engagement systematic and efficient.
Moreover, Marketing Automation makes interaction with leads more personalized.
4) Marketing Automation helps to get a quicker response from leads-
As Marketing Automation quickens the task of lead follow-up, it simultaneously helps to get a quicker response from the leads.
Going by a report from Harvard Business Review, companies that respond in the range of duration from 1 hour to a day convert better.
Marketing Automation also helps to acknowledge every lead and prevents any promising prospect from going stale.
Through Marketing Automation tools, one can also get notified of the unacknowledged leads which makes the Customer Relationship Management better through synchronized customer interactions.
This is how Marketing Automation can shorten your sales cycle.
Marketing Automation is very helpful in shortening your sales cycle. One must know how to efficiently incorporate the automation tools and also the integration apps which help in making the marketing automation tool personalized.
With the help of Marketing Automation tool and integration apps, one can carry out the following stages of a sales cycle in an effective manner and in a less amount of time-
- Prospect for leads
- Contact potential customer
- Qualify your customer
- Present your product
- Overcome customer objection
- Close the sale
- Get referrals
More from CedCommerce-
CedCommerce is a company that provides e-commerce solutions and is heading ahead in the genre of Marketing Automation by providing marketing automation integration plugins such as-
- Mautic Integration Plugin for Magento 1
- Mautic Integration Plugin for Magento 2
- Mautic Integration Plugin for PrestaShop
These plugins make the process of lead generation, lead scoring, lead nurturing, lead conversion, customer segmentation and customer re-engagement seamless.
Other Relevant Reads-
CedCommerce launches Mautic Integration Add-on for PrestaShop to personalize your marketing Automation experience