Overview of the Ebook
What do you think of when you think of someone with good sales skills? Do you think of someone who is a smooth talker, who schmoozes with their customers, and who is focused only on pushing their product? If so, you’re not thinking of someone with good sales skills. Sure, they may occasionally be good at making the sale. But what about making the next sale? Or what about keeping the customer long-term?
How would you feel about becoming someone who helps people solve problems by offering them solutions that meet their needs? At its essence, this is what sales truly means.
We tend to have a picture in our minds of what being a salesperson involves – not all of it positive. Plus, some of us may think we would not make good sales people because we can’t see ourselves cold-calling, prospecting, or being good at closing the sale. But in this ebook, we’ll be looking at sales from a different point of view. How would you feel about becoming someone who helps people solve problems by offering them solutions that meet their needs? At its essence, this is what sales truly means.
Yet how do you get to the point that you can do this well? We’ll be looking at several sets of skills and knowledge that will help you become a better sales person by helping you increase your understanding of what skills it takes to be a good sales person, what the basic sales process is, an overview of sales models, and how to maintain your relationships with customers once you have found them.
The Basic Sales Process
We’ll examine the overall basic sales process. By breaking a sale down into the different stages involved, you can understand the steps of any sales relationship.
Everything related to sales processes is affected by our environment – the time we are living in, the level of technology available to us, and the general trends that are around us.
In this chapter, we’re not looking at specific steps that you as the salesperson need to take, but rather the ‘environment’ in which you will be taking them. Everything related to sales processes is affected by our environment – the time we are living in, the level of technology available to us, and the general trends that are around us. We’ll examine how sales tactics have changed over the years as well as the current trends that are common in sales today.
We’ll look at a sale from the point of view we mentioned earlier – as a solution to a customer’s problem. The process starts with a prospect, not a customer, and builds until you have not only solved the customer’s problem that they originally presented, but you have established yourself as an expert source for the next time the customer has a problem.
General Skills Every Salesperson Should Have
In Chapter 3, we’ll be looking at the general skills that anyone who wants to be a better salesperson should have. If you’ve ever met someone who just seems to be a ‘natural’ at sales, then they either have these skills as an inherent part of their personality, or they have studied or acquired these skills over time.
All of the skills you need to be a better salesperson can be learned and developed.
The important thing for you to know is that all of these skills can be learned and developed
These general skills include:
- Listening Skills – an effective salesperson must be able to listen to what a potential customer or customer is saying to them – as well as what is not being said. They must be willing to take the time to understand what the customer truly needs and identify the problem the customer is trying to solve.
- Effective Communication Skills – in addition to listening, you must be able to respond well. You must be able to offer solutions to the customer’s problems if the customer is ever going to buy from you or your company.
- Problem Solving Skills – good salespeople are always working to solve problems – they understand that problem solving is what their real job is.
- Interpersonal Skills – beyond communication skills, salespeople should know how to work well with their customers and with each other in order to be most effective. They should be courteous, respectful, and skilled at building relationships.
- Organization Skills – good salespeople are well-organized. This doesn’t necessarily mean theirdesk is well organized, but it does mean that they have a system for maintaining information about prospects, customers, products, and any other information their customer might need.
- Self-Motivation Skills – if you’re going to be good at sales, you have to be able to motivate yourself.There will be those times that you don’t want to take the next step in the sales process, but you’ll need to know how to work through those feelings and take the steps that your customers need – and that will help you be successful in your job.
- Persuasion Skills – customers almost always have a choice in the company they work with or choose to buy from. Persuasion is the art of helping the customer to choose your offer over others.
- Customer Service Skills – once you know how to make a sale, do you know how to keep that customer coming back? Do you view them as a one-time sale or as someone who could be a continual source of sales over the life of a relationship with them?
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