How to Hit Your Sales Target by Doing Less
What would you rather? Your field sales team slaving over reports or your field sales team delivering excellent retail execution and growing sales by up to 20%?
Time is valuable and spending that precious time labouring over sales reports, trying to convince a retailer to commit or a brand to come on board is not the best investment of your sales reps’ time. Their time is best invested in delivering great customer service, supporting your customers and excellent retail execution in the field.
People don’t want to be sold to so don’t sell to them. Instead show them something you believe they’ll see value in. When a customer can see the value or the benefit for them, a sale isn’t a sale, its an investment in growth. That’s what consistent and excellent retail execution is about. It is about proven placement, adjacencies and ranges that deliver sales for the customer and sales for you.
By demonstrating that you want to help the customer grow their business, not just hit your own sales targets, the whole sales process becomes considerably easier. It becomes less of a negotiation and more of a relationship which has benefits for both parties.
Is that easier said than done though? What could your sales team show your customers that results in excellent retail execution and a stress-free sale?
Robust data to clearly evidence the revenue potential to the retailer
Every field sales representative has a wealth of anecdotal evidence that is recited to new customers but having robust data-derived evidence taken directly from retailers just like them, carries more weight and credibility.
When sales are strong, if the field team will have data to hand to present to other stores in the chain, justifying the same retail execution is simple. Equally, if sales are flagging, with robust data the field team can reinforce why that might be by comparing placement and adjacencies with another similar store that is performing better.
In both scenarios, the sales rep is relying on activity data, observational data and sales data to support their recommendations. This is where you say, “Ah yes, but gathering all that data takes hours, time my sales team do not have.” Are we right?
The theme of this blog post is “Hitting targets by doing less” so we are not advocating a paper trail of reports that are manually collated. What we are advocating are systems and tools that do the hard work for you, so you have data at your fingertips to help customers reach the right decision, clients work with you, and your line managers confident in your ability to meet your monthly sales targets.
Repsly is the only retail execution software that can bring together a brand’s observational, activity and sales data into one system. That data is immediately accessible to answer whatever questions are thrown at you and in a user-friendly way.
As your sales reps go about their appointments, they are gathering observational data as they go, photos of the retail environment when they arrive and when they leave. They will have sales data on their mobile device to reinforce their recommendations. They will have immediate visibility of their visits to see when they were last in that store and when they will visit again.
You can find out much more about Repsly and how it can benefit our sales team from this e-book.
Tools that demonstrate your sales professionalism in the field
Having data to support decision making puts your sales team on the front foot and using a retail execution tool like Repsly gives them that edge. No more scrabbling round through paper files to see what was discussed at the last visit, no more foraging for data from a printout that is 3 weeks old, and no more guesswork.
A retailer will not be easily impressed with technology that is just for technology’s sake, but they will be impressed by how your sales reps use it to immediately reference what was sold in last time, its shelf positioning, and how it was agreed to be merchandised.
Knowing these details gives the customer the impression that you value them, as a person and as a customer. With that comes a stronger relationship built on trust and with that comes a growing business for both the customer and you.
Data driven insights for confident decision making
We all know that when an opportunity presents itself, we should grab it because it won’t be around for ever. However, if you hesitate because we are unsure of the data, or wavering on what the impact of the decision might be, we can easily miss the opportunity, wasting time in the process.
With data comes information and with information comes insight. It is that insight that will give your field sales team the confidence to commit to decisions.
When a sales person is confident, they are more convincing to the retailer resulting in a less arduous negotiation and an easier sell. The next time the sales rep visits the store, the retailer knows that they made the right decision last time and have helped them to grow their business. The result of that confidence is an easy sale, saving time for the sales rep and time for the customer.
Everything we have talked about, robust retail data for evidence-based recommendations and confident decisions in retail execution is achievable with any sales team. Consistent retail execution can be achieved with spreadsheets, printouts, files and a lot of admin time. If your sales team have that time available, then by all means, carry on reporting on what happened in store last month rather than the 20% sales opportunity you are probably missing from better retail execution.
In summary there is the hard, manual way of gathering the data that your sales reps need, and there is the process, system way which frees up time to visit more retailers and make easier sales.