When reviewing company goals and targets, it’s commonplace to look for ways to increase revenue. When it comes to sales teams, people think they’ll need to hire more salespeople in order to increase revenue.
The only problem is, hiring is expensive and in the current climate, many businesses are struggling to make ends meet, let alone investing in new hires. Thankfully, there are ways to optimize your existing sales team first, before making the big decision of hiring more salespeople.
Why grow sales teams efficiently?
Boosting the efficiency of a sales team can help businesses to quickly and easily increase revenue before undertaking the expensive process of making additional hires. By spending the time to ensure efficiency, businesses can also grow their team profitably by applying established tools and processes to new hires.
For example, by considering and making changes to the efficiency of a small sales team of 5 sales pros, each averaging $10K revenue a week, a business could easily increase revenue by 20%, effectively canceling out the need to make a new hire with little financial investment.
Businesses should only add individuals to their sales team when they are confident their current team is working as efficiently as possible. Below we highlight what sales teams should be doing to ensure they reach this point.
As technology develops, especially with the wide adoption of AI, the potential to automate more parts of the salesperson’s responsibilities is increasing. By seeking out smart automation tools, sales teams can focus more on the skilled elements of sales and allow the automation to take care of the repetitive tasks.
Although there are options to automate almost anything, businesses must consider the value and quality of each tool they use. For example, you could automate all your sales email writing, although this is likely to lead to emails being impersonal and poorly targeted. Instead, a smart sales team may adopt an automation tool such as TextExpander which can save them considerable time, whilst ensuring the quality of communications remain high and personal.
Another area to consider automating is booking appointments using an online calendar booking tool, like Acuity Scheduling or Harmonizely. Many sales reps still use email to go back and forth to schedule time with leads. Replacing this inefficient process with an online scheduling tool saves time. Using online online calendar scheduling software means fewer emails back and forth before the meeting is set.
Also, many of these tools will send automated meeting reminders to leads, so sales teams can have less sales calls with no-shows or last minute rescheduling.
Duplicating effort and not being able to find crucial information are two aspects of sales that easily, regularly, and needlessly suck valuable time and energy from a sales team. Fixing these issues is as simple as finding and rolling out a quality Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system such as Daylite .
A centralized CRM will help all team members record their actions and access information on what has been done and what still needs to be done on each account.
Plus, once your CRM is in place and up-to-date, you’ll eliminate the need for status update meetings. Instead, managers can look to the CRM to find out the status of deals in the CRM and report on close rates and other insights to make informed decisions. This avoids time-consuming meetings so reps can spend more time closing deals.
CRMs are only useful if they are being used consistently by all team members. Without the consistent input of data, those who are pulling information will have an incomplete picture, and the risk of duplicating effort will increase.
Implementing well-considered sales training
We have discussed how businesses can use smart sales tools to increase efficiency. By pairing this with a considered strategy for sales team training, companies can develop efficiency in the use of these tools and establish more efficient processes for regular tasks.
What type of training would be beneficial will depend on how the team works as well as the strengths and weaknesses of each team member. For example, offering training on time management may drastically increase the efficiency of one sales team, where specific software training may have the same effect on a different team. Wondering how to identify what sales training would be most effective? Ask sales reps where they’re struggling and what their bottlenecks are to quickly identify areas that can be improved and streamlined with training and support.
Expand existing accounts
Some statistics suggest that selling more to current customers is up to 5 times more efficient when compared to finding and selling to new ones.
All sales teams have to invest considerable time and effort into developing relationships with customers before they are ready to buy. With this in mind, it is clear that to increase revenue whilst limiting additional investment, seeking to expand your current accounts can be a good way to grow a sales team efficiently.
Consider asking your sales team to focus on the following:
- Uncover additional account needs using active listening.
- Keeping accounts up to date with your latest offerings.
- Keeping in touch with customers throughout the year to stay top-of-mind.
- Consider sending swag or other mailed goodies.
- Provide excellent customer service to existing accounts to develop trust.
You could also consider incentivizing the expansion of existing accounts by running internal sales competitions.
Better services (or products) are easier to sell. By investing time in developing their offering businesses can make salespeople’s jobs easier and cut substantial time out of the selling process.
The benefit of a great product is clear to see by studying many industry leaders. Find out what the forward thinking real estate brokerages are doing – do you need to leverage remote video tours in order to get your properties in front of the right people? Marketing agencies may wish to expand into new areas of marketing, including the latest social platforms. Use LinkedIn to stay up to date with new and innovative ideas in your industry – and encourage your team to come up with their own ideas for new offerings too.
Growing sales teams efficiently
Businesses can be quick to hire new sales team members when they want to generate more revenue. By taking the time to assess how efficient their current sales team is and introduce ways to increase efficiency, they can ensure that they are only investing in additional team members when it is financially sensible to do so.
If you want to learn more about how you can increase the efficiency of your sales team you can join a webinar hosted by TextExpander and Daylite on Wednesday, 24 March, 2021, 11AM EST/8AM PST. Register today!
About the author:
Kerry Provenzano is a TextExpander Account Executive. She has been with Smile since 2018 and is based in the UK.