As the end of the quarter approaches, have you done enough to shorten the sales cycle at your organization? Summer has arrived and the Sumer Solstice, the longest day of the year, has passed and so has Q2. You and your sales team have likely been working long hours to close deals and reach quota, but it is time to become more efficient. The days may be long, but your sales cycle doesn’t have to be. So, here are a few tips learned from Gryphon’s Director of Sales, Greg Smith, to shorten your sales cycle:
Become More Efficient
The first step to better attain your weekly, monthly, or quarterly revenue goals is efficiency. To do so, don’t waste time with people who are going to stretch the process out. Establish clear guidelines from the start because if both sides aren’t doing enough, deals slip – which can become a major problem. To avoid this, identify all relevant parties when trying to close your deal.
Ask yourself, have you identified all the decision makers? It may seem that one person in particular may try to take the deal across the finish line, but the chances are that person is not your decision maker, and it may be someone else’s budget. Who you should look for instead is the person signing the contract.
Understanding who is involved in making a purchase is important as there are personalities at every company; the champion (the person who really wants the deal), the influencer (the person who can help you navigate the closing process), and the boss who will be the one signing off on it.
The next question to ask yourself is have you established a line of communication with legal and vendor management teams? Even after you sell your solution this is important to know. If you don’t, you won’t have any idea of how long their vendor management process takes, and therefore will not be able to accurately forecast when your deal will close.
Further, you should know everything about their process. Be prepared for all sorts of documentation and be ready to share information about your side as well. For example, if working in tech – they may ask where you host and store your information, if you are PCI compliant, and so on. You may convince the other party to buy your solution, but you still must work through their process.
Are you getting an FFC (firm future commitment) at the end of every discussion that you’re on? What are the next steps? When is the next phone call? You shouldn’t leave appointments up in the air. Rather, set concrete deadlines and manage touch points. If everything is looking good, that’s great, but what’s the next step and when’s the next meeting? Determine which department it is with (legal, finance, etc.), and whose turn it is to make a move.
Finally, consider the best practice of putting deadlines on pricing proposals. Just because a discount was offered in one quarter doesn’t mean it will be available in the next one. Are they motivated to move forward? Find out. While vendors have to navigate their way through the prospect’s buying process, it’s imperative for the prospect to understand yours as well. If you need a deal done in a certain timeframe so that you can maintain pricing and allocate resources for a successful rollout, tell the prospect. When both sides are working in unison to get something done, the partnership will be better for it.
Shorten the Sales Cycle
Overall, a good sales rep is proactive and doesn’t just hope deals come in. Efficiency and persistence are essential when trying to seal a deal. Use these tips to communicate more clearly, make concrete commitments, and shorten the sales cycle to crush your quota next quarter.