Sales productivity is an important aspect of any startup. Regardless of whether your company is booming or whether it’s barely thriving and still struggling to establish itself- your startup’s sales performance matters.
Accurate assessment of your sales performance helps you to gauge the effectivity of your current work hours and strategies. It also helps you assess the efficiency of your team. Therefore, regardless of the scale of your startup, assessing and thriving to increase its sales productivity should be the focus of a founder’s mind.
This article aims at demystifying six strategies via which startups can try to increase their sales productivity :
- Having a Vision
Often, entrepreneurs lose their vision while trying hard to establish the company. They get so involved in its other aspects so much so that they forget why they started in the first place – to sell. It is never too early to start thinking about selling. An organised mental map to keep a track of your product from the start to the finish is a good approach of increasing productivity. If the entrepreneur themselves lose the vision of what kind of product they are building, it doesn’t translate very well to the customers. The sooner you realise that the success of your startup is directly related to how it is performing sales-wise the better.
While building the product you should always have a clarity about what is the kind of product you’re building, who is the target customer, is it user friendly, will it be easily accessible etc. A clarity of thought process will attract more customers who will be able to relate to your vision and ultimately improve the sales performance of your company.
- Directing the Sales Team
When it comes to sales productivity, the efficiency of your sales team is detrimental to the performance of your startup. Therefore, you, as an entrepreneur must ensure that the sales team which you have hired is capable of meeting your targets. Proper training and continuous motivation works wonders. But as the founder of your startup, your responsibility does not end there. It is the responsibility of the entrepreneur to delegate work to each team. Ensure that you have a good rapport with the sales team so that you understand the weakness and flaw of each member. This way you can utilise their skills to the advantage of your startup and push for an increase in the sales productivity.
- Appointing Distributors/Channel Sales
More often than not, entrepreneurs and founders or many startups companies utilize channel sales and marketing to improve their startup’s performance with respect to sales. In channel sales, instead of hiring sales executives, entrepreneurs delegate the responsibility to their distributors and retailers who in turn sell the companies products. In return, the distributors and retailers get margins on the product sold. Many startups hire managers and executives to manage the relationship with channels and distributors. This is a very sophisticated path to ensure the improvement of your company’s sales productivity.
- Sales through Referrals
Sales via referrals is a very underrated method to improve the sales productivity of your startup. Networking and building strong connections is an integral part of owning a startup company. But proper networking and marketing of your company helps it in more ways than one. When you engage yourself in reputed market events with other players in the same game, you are representing your company and what it stands for. Good connections always come with a promise of bringing customers. If you manage to impress prominent individuals in the market, there is always a chance that they’d refer your company’s name in the future. This would lead to your company’s publicity and increase its sales productivity.
- Digital Sales
The entire world is shifting towards an age of digitisation. Therefore, it only makes sense that many startups are trying to hit the jackpot when it comes to selling their products digitally. For this to happen, a strong online presence is required. Having your own website increases your credibility online. A well maintained and sophisticated website is an online representation of your company’s image and many clients may decide to do business with you purely based on how sophisticated the website of your company looks. Creating a blog or being a guest writer in someone else’s popular blogs helps you build a rapport with the online customer base and helps you bring publicity to your startup. Moreover, there are other methods which can help you increase your online presence like – owning a youtube channel, other social media platforms etc. The trick is to maintain constant contact with the customers, trying to know their needs and using the information to perform better.
- Building a rapport with your clients
Selling a product involves building a provider-client relationship. Successful startups have a collaborative startup culture, which is based on amalgamation of bright, like-minded people who take part in networking and engaging ideas. Taking an approach which is collaborative with respect to sales, is beneficial to your business.
When you sell a product to a customer, your job doesn’t end there. To build a loyal customer base, you must ensure that the customer does business with your company in the future too. This can be achieved by building a rapport with your customer, taking genuine feedbacks and using the feedback to improve further. In the long run, you will benefit not only yourself but also the consumers. Your focus should not be short term sales targets, intead, you must focus on building long term relationship with your customer. Make your client feel that you care about their needs and that they are an integral part of your business.