Don’t just sell, collaborate

17 Jan, 2020 - 00:01 0 Views

eBusiness Weekly

Robert Gonye

One of the most rewarding and fruitful methods to get high yield and return in your sales is through optimising the sales process and empowering your sales team to achieve better results through frictionless selling.

Simply put, frictionless selling is a way of rethinking sales to effectively reduce friction and create more convenient experiences for both buyers and sellers. Quite frankly the sales model you use has much bearing on the sales output and today we look at the two main variants when it comes to sales output.

The sales funnel

Working in sales you will agree with me that the sales funnel is now a bit outdated. At the top of the funnel, you generate a large number of leads. A smaller proportion of these leads engage with your company, and an even smaller proportion of those who engage convert to an actual customer.

In reality there are several ways in which the funnel doesn’t accurately represent how sales work.

First and foremost, when you use a funnel, you only get output as long as you’re continuously feeding in input. When you stop pouring into your funnel, you stop getting output from the bottom of the funnel.

In real life, this isn’t true. Say you write an evergreen, Skyscraper-type article on SEO strategy. Six months down the road, this article might still be bringing you leads and potential clients — even though you’re no longer actively promoting it.

When you use a funnel, whatever collects at the bottom of the funnel doesn’t affect the top. In real life, this isn’t the case. People who have made their way down the bottom of your funnel (i.e., your customers) have a huge impact on the people at the top.

If someone leaves you a glowing review on a third-party review site and your prospects read this review, it could nudge them into scheduling a product demo or asking for a quote from your company.

Why the flywheel

instead of the funnel

Instead of thinking of your sales operation as a funnel, envisage it as a flywheel, which is a machine that stores rotational energy.

If you add force, the flywheel spins. Add more force and it spins faster. A flywheel will keep on spinning unless there’s enough friction to slow it down, so you can look at each rotation of the flywheel as the growth of your company.

In order to grow your company and get your flywheel to rotate faster two things need to happen either you add force to the flywheel or remove friction.

Adding force involves setting higher sales targets, hiring more reps, or telling your reps to make more calls each day. This is pretty straightforward, and you’re probably already doing everything you can to add more force.

Removing friction, on the other hand, is where most companies fall short. So it’s helpful to look for processes and items to troubleshoot so you stop slowing down your sales. Here, we’re talking about poor customer experiences, sub-par products and more.

Frictionless Selling: Frictionless selling is selling in a way that creates the utmost convenience for your customers. B2C companies are great at doing this; B2B companies, not so much.

However, you’ll never be able to achieve 100 percent frictionless selling, but the goal is to remove as many hurdles as possible. Once you do this, you’ll make your reps’ output more fruitful, and this will have a significant impact on their close rates and won deals.

The frictionless selling framework

Frictionless selling framework, has three stages:

Enable your team to spend more time selling.

Align your team with your target buyer.

Transform your team through a culture of learning.

Stage 1: Enable

In many sales teams, reps don’t know where to focus and may not be allocating their time and effort wisely. They rely on techniques such as lead scraping and cold calling.

Bearing this in mind, the sales manager or director’s job is to enable their team to prioritise their efforts and spend more time selling. They can do this by:

  1. Scrutinising the company’s sales processes. Do these processes need to be updated? How can these processes be improved to maximise productivity?
  2. Evaluating the company’s sales tools and technologies. Are there any redundancies? Are there any gaps that are compromising the team’s effectiveness? Are there any integrations that the team should be relying on, but are not?
  3. Taking a closer look at reps’ day-to-day activities. What tasks are reps spending the most time on? What are the most painful parts of the process? What entry-level tasks can be automated so that reps can focus on more important, revenue-generating activities?

Stage 2: Align

Once you’ve enabled your team, the next step is to align them with your target buyer. The goal is to reduce friction and make it easy for your buyer to say “Yes” to a sale.

You can do this by:

  1. Ensuring that your team is available 24/7, instead of only providing support during working hours. Set up live chat on your website and hire freelancers from different countries to work as your customer service reps so you’re always available for prospects in different time zones.
  2. Making it easy for your clients to schedule meetings with you. Use a tool such as Calendly to minimise long email chains.
  3. Providing transparent pricing and discounts. The more open and upfront you are about pricing, the more trust you build with your prospect.
  4. Making it simple for buyers to cancel. If you’re trying to lock your buyer into a two-year contract, that’s a major red flag.

Stage 3: Transform

The last stage of frictionless selling involves transforming your team through a company culture of learning.

  1. Stop using spreadsheets and start using more sophisticated data reporting tools that give you access to real-time data.
  2. Provide new or struggling reps with playbooks and other training materials.
  3. Encourage your reps to share their learnings and best practices with the rest of the team.
  4. Spend less time on reporting and more time on coaching.

Hoping this adds value to you and the team and in achieving the intended results for 2020. See you next week.


The views given herein are solely for information purposes; they are guidelines and suggestions and are not guaranteed to work in any particular way.


Robert Gonye is a Business Growth Expert and Influencer. He writes in his personal capacity. Comments and views: [email protected]


Share This:

Sponsored Links